What Is the Purpose of Your Ego?

"How was the exam?" Somebody might have asked you before. And you probably answered, "I thought I did well." That image of yourself doing well in your exam was your ego. When the teacher informed you of your score and grade in that exam that image of yourself which was your ego was either built up (if your expectation was fulfilled or more than fulfilled), shattered (if you got a low score or one you did not expect), or just disregarded (if it didn't matter to you either way).

What Your Ego Is

If you look at the dictionary you will find that the word "ego" has many meanings, from the simple translation of the Latin ego as an emphatic "I" in English to the more complicated understanding of this word in psychoanalysis. But the meaning which is apropos to our discussion here is that it is the image we have of our self, or self-image. This is one of the meanings we find in the dictionary and it is one which we can use with consistency.

Your ego is what you think of yourself in relation to others around you, whether persons, animals, plants or simply things. It is your identity as you see it. Thus it may be different from what you really are. It is only your estimate of yourself. That is why some understand the ego as self-esteem. This image of yourself, if it is positive, gives you self-confidence. If the image of yourself is negative then your ego gives you the feeling of dejection and even depression.

Tendency to Identify Your Ego and Your Self

There is a tendency in you, as with the rest of mankind, to identify your ego with your real self. Most people think that what they think of themselves is what they are. For example, in underdeveloped and developing countries most people think of themselves as poor, as poverty ridden and unable to get out of the curse of poverty. There is even a joke circulated in one developing country that God so loved the poor that he made so many of them.

The truth, as so well pointed out by Bob Proctor, is that all of us were born rich. Our real self is rich, not poor, as those living in poverty tend to think of themselves. It is only in our self-image, in our estimation that we are poor. In reality our self is rich.

There are times when a person is hurt because he was despised for something that he did. Maybe he was not able to answer an oral question in class and the rest of the class laughed at him. He may not realize that what they despised was only their image of him as a dull student, not his real self. This is because we tend to identify our real self with our ego. He may in reality be a brilliant student although nobody knows about this.

The Purpose of Your Ego

The purpose of your ego is to influence the way you think, talk and act. Your ego is as it were the natural, built-in pre-conscious rudder in your life. It is pre-conscious because normally you do not think about this ego as guiding your life. If you think of your self as someone with potential for music, you are going to think of learning more about music and engaging in musical activities. If you think of your self as someone with a broken, out of tune voice, then you are likely to decide to overcome this musical disability or keep out of singing in the presence of other people.

In school our teachers helped to form our ego or self-image. If a teacher told us that we would not amount to anything in life and we believed her then indeed we would go through life not amounting to anything because that is what we think of our selves. On the other hand if we believed otherwise we would go on proving to ourselves and our teachers that we would amount to something in life later on.

We might have teachers also who praised us for our work and told us we would succeed in life and so we did. This was because we believed the image of ourselves as presented by those encouraging teachers. Belief led to actions which helped us to succeed.

So it is very important that you build up your ego in the right way, if possible nearer to the reality that you are. You are a champion, a rich person, endowed with so many abilities by your Creator.

If you do not have the correct self-image it is better that you abandon this and learn more about your real self. Then you form your ego or self-image according to your real self.

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