Do you have a big ego? If you do, your conversations might start with ‘I,’ ‘Me,’ and ‘My.’
According to renowned psychologist Sigmund Freud, our egos regulate our impulses. They remind us to take socially responsible actions. But a too big ego may cause us to become self-serving and seek immediate gratification. This self-centeredness can destroy relationships.
How would you know if your ego is too big? More importantly, how would you keep it in check?
How a Too Big Ego can Ruin Your Life
We must not have limiting beliefs. Self-confidence is a virtue. But there is a difference between that and being egotistical.
My ego shows itself at restaurants. I must admit that I tend to become snappy with service staff when I don’t receive my food within 10 minutes. It has resulted in the staff banging glasses on my table and giving me enraged looks.
So, how can a too-big ego ruin your life?
1. It makes you unkind
First of all, a big ego can make you discompassionate. You may believe the worst of people and withhold the benefit of the doubt. That distrust can remove empathy.
2. It repels people
A big ego might push people away from you. Most people would avoid those who make them feel small. A massive ego is a conversation killer. It can stand in the way of your career and relationships.
3. A big ego stops growth
Believing too much in yourself can make you stubborn. You won’t take advice from the well-meaning people who are more experienced than you. That might hinder your success.
4. You become irrational
Also, a big ego might make you try too hard to prove others wrong. If that happens, you might start behaving in unreasonable, irrational ways. Also, it can cause you to say things you might regret.
5. A big ego makes you too competitive
Furthermore, an ego that’s too large might make you too competitive. You might become discontent when you compare your life with someone else’s. The cost? Your happiness.
6. It makes you too critical
Moreover, too much ego can make you find fault with absolutely everything. Nothing will meet your standards, and you will find it hard to enjoy life.
7. You become unappreciative
Consequently, you’ll want nothing but the best. Don’t get me wrong because high standards are necessary. But setting benchmarks that are too high might make you forget the good that’s around you.
8. You’ll have constant frustration
Finally, an enormous ego can cause you to take everything personally. You’ll become stressed because you’re always worried about meeting your high expectations.
Signs of a Too Big Ego
So, do you think that your ego’s in your way? Here are some signs that yours might have become too large.
1. Nothing’s ever good enough
First of all, you’re always irritated because something isn’t good enough. If you are always grumbling because no one can complete tasks just the way you want, you’re probably egotistical.
2. Not liking other’s success
Then, you might hate it when someone gets promoted at work instead of you. Are you merely feeling discouraged because your superiors overlooked your hard work? Perhaps you are only envious of your colleague’s success. You may have a too-big ego if you just hate it when someone does better than you. Too much self-love might make you compare yourself with others all the time.
3. Always focusing on yourself
Do you always make yourself the center of conversations? When someone starts talking, do you redirect the attention to you? Perhaps you have an excessive ego. You, and not anyone else, must have attention.
4. Craving Respect
Also, you may have an unhealthy need for recognition. Everyone needs appreciation. However, you may have an ego that’s too big if you must have it all the time.
This scenario often takes place at the office. You might recognize a colleague who expects praise for his or her work from the minute he or she clocks in.
If you have a massive ego, you’d probably snap at the slightest criticism. Any disagreement or feedback is a slight against you.
6. Seldom helping others
Moreover, you won’t help others especially if you find the tasks too menial. You might feel resentful because they take up your time.
7. Setting unrealistic goals
Goal-setting is essential and pushes us toward excellence. That said, you may set goals out of sheer pride if you have a big ego. The only reason you want to do so is to prove that you are superior to others.
8. You are manipulative
Consequently, your belief that you are better than others may make you want to assert yourself over them. You might compliment people just to get them to do what you want. You probably believe that they should feel grateful for your attention.
How to Keep A Big Ego in Check
If you have a big ego or know someone who does, it’s probably time to keep it in check. Here’s how to set boundaries for it.
1. Control your impulses
First of all, try to rein in your impulses to have more and more. It’s important to express gratitude for what you already have.
2. Congratulate others
Do you remember the colleague who got promoted instead of you? Even if you don’t feel like extending your congratulations, just send him or her your best wishes. You’ll feel better knowing that when one door closes, another opens.
3. Don’t always seek attention
Also, always seeking attention is counterproductive and annoys others. Give them their due turns to speak.
4. Hear others out
Listen when someone provides you with feedback. It may help you more than you realize.
5. Don’t compare yourself with others
Furthermore, stop comparing yourself with others. Remember that you are special and don’t need validation all the time.
6. Set realistic goals
Have smart targets. Set goals that are reachable.
7. Stop manipulating others
Finally, don’t use manipulation to get your way. People will lose their respect for you when they realize your agenda.
A big ego isn’t always healthy, so self-checking measures are helpful.
By Michelle L.