I want to share with you 10 ego myths that can trick you up, and some of them may surprise you, and some you may even believe are enlightened thoughts.
I have to work very hard to get to where I want to be
I recall when I was learning NLP years ago, the NLP teacher said that the difference between successful people and unsuccessful people was that the successful person was working when the other person was ending their day and relaxing. So even NLP teachers will teach you ego myths! That is a straight out promotion of workaholism and exhaustion! Mother Theresa said
“Not all of us can do great things. But we can do small things with great love”.
The ego thinks that it is the power and leads us on the path of ambition and workaholism but Mother Theresa knew that the humble and ordinary way, when infused with love, created miracles. We are all here to co-create, and co=creation is not about hard work; it’s about having an intention and taking peaceful, loving and inspired action towards what you want. The WAY is just as important as the end result. Journey not destination. Enjoy the WAY and you will enjoy the result.
I should have achieved this by now
You’ll go into a low vibration if you believe the ego lie that you should be further ahead than you are. This thought will keep you feeling constantly “behind” and prevent you from ever getting to where you want to go. Accept where you are right now, and know it’s perfect. Do not compare yourself to others as we are all unique and here for different reasons. When we resist the present, we go “off grid” from the Universe. When we accept the What Is, we come into alignment with the Source. The Universal Law of Acceptance deems that whatever we accept has the power to change. What we resist persists. So accept the “What Is” now, and at the same time take peaceful and considered action to make the changes you wish to make. And trust in the words of the Zen Master Osho who said “When the fruit is ripe, it drops from the tree by itself.”
I must get this done by then
The ego can trick us into believing in false deadlines. Must you really get something done by a certain time, or is it your ego or other people pressuring you into believing this? The Universal Law of Timing deems that there is a time for everything under Heaven, and the Universe is in charge of the timing of it all. When we go with that timing, it will be perfect. So if you’re experiencing delays and roadblocks, trust that the timing may not be right, do something else for a while and come back to the task at a later time. You’ll know it’s the ego if you’re “pushing”.
There isn’t enough time
In my book A Shift to Bliss I write about our relationship with time and that for many of us, life is a race against the clock. We may work in high pressure environments or have busy lives or families that run on tight schedules. We jam our diaries with meetings, activities and deadlines, waiting for a time in the future where we can reward ourselves and relax, but this rarely happens. If we believe there is never enough time, there never will be! This belief can be so entrenched that we cannot see that we are creating our own “busy-ness”.Observe how often you say “I don’t have enough time”. With every such statement, you create the reality. If you feel or believe you don’t have enough time, know that you DO have enough time to do everything that is in your highest good to do. And remember the words of Rabindranath Tagore “The butterfly counts not months but moments, and has time enough”.
This shouldn’t be happening
In any difficult situation, your immediate reaction will likely be resistance. That’s OK. That’s normal. It’s your ego. But with awareness, you can stop and observe yourself. You can observe your own resistance. In A Shift to Bliss I write that the challenges you face are the keys to realising your full potential.
The Universal Law of Challenges deems that we will be challenged. Life will not leave you alone. Wherever there is work to be done, you’ll be presented with a challenge – the challenge has been created by your soul as a healing and growth opportunity. The challenge is requiring YOU to change in some way. So rather than wish that the outside circumstances or other people would change, look within and ask yourself “What do I need to change within myself?”. ALWAYS it is about this, and, magically, once you’ve transformed yourself in whatever way was required of you, the challenge disappears. It does not need to be there any more. Its work is done!
It is very normal to resist the What Is when the What Is is causing fear, chaos and destruction. But how often do we do this in our everyday lives? It’s not our fault. The ego has taken over our minds. It likes to think that it is in control of everything, but this is a delusion. We have control over some things but not others, as we found out during Covid. In the Serenity prayer, we say
God, grant me the serenity
To accept the things I cannot change;
Courage to change the things I can;
and wisdom to know the difference.
The ego detests problems and challenges. But no matter if we are good people or bad people, rich or poor, we are all here to keep growing, evolving and transforming ourselves. Some of us are further along the path than others, but just because you’re further along the path doesn’t mean you’re not going to be challenged. The way will get easier however, if you learn the art of acceptance and know that everything is happening for a good reason. In his book Man’s Search for Meaning, holocaust survivor Viktor Frankl wrote about how people’s mindsets in the concentration camp played a huge part in their ability to survive.
He said “When we are no longer able to change a situation, we are challenged to change ourselves.”
I have to make a decision now
Sure, there are times when we must make an immediate decision. There are times when time really is of the essence. And times when we must keep moving forward even if we don’t want to. But there are other times where the ego can trick us into believing a lie. Sometimes it’s not the right time to make a decision. If a decision feels impossible, then it’s not meant to be made yet. There may be some other necessary steps to take first. The Universal Law of Process deems that there is a process to getting anywhere we want to go. How can you make a decision until you genuinely feel ready to make a decision? If you trust in the process, and you’re ready to make a decision, the decision won’t even feel like a decision. It will feel like an obvious and affirmative action. At other times the Universe will make the decision for us.
I should have gone the other way
Have you ever made a decision, but your mind tortures you after the decision with “you should have chosen the other way”. The ego mind thinks in terms of right way / wrong way, but whatever decisions we make, there will always be both positive and negative aspects to the choice. There is no one perfect way, whatever you choose. You chose what you thought was right at the time, so therefore it was right. Don’t beat yourself up if you do make a mistake. Mistakes are lessons and you can always choose again.
I need to be in a high vibration all of the time
This idea comes from the egoic teaching of the Law of Attraction. It is an ego illusion AND it’s impossible. We are human; we are here to experience life in all its shades, and with that will come all the emotions.There will be times when we feel sad, angry, frustrated, flat.
The ego thinks in terms of black and white – happy/sad, angry/calm, positive/negative. Trying to be in a high vibration all of the time is like expecting summer to last forever. It’s not going to happen. This idea that we must be upbeat and positive creates a sense of failure and shame when we don’t feel that way. And society enforces this idea on us too. Loving yourself means giving yourself the right to feel how you feel, and loving yourself no matter what you feel. If you’re feeling low but you’re trying to force yourself to feel happy, that is not being in a high vibration anyway. You’re repressing an emotion, and emotions stay in your energy field. Repressed emotions can eventually turn into mental or physical illness. So feel your feelings – that way you process them – they move through you and move on. Accept that you will feel many feelings throughout the day.
I’m supposed to be around high vibrational people all of the time
You may have heard the saying “Show me who your friends and I will show you who you are” – and yes there is some truth in that. But once again, the ego can be very black and white. Wherever we do have choice, it’s wise to choose the people around us to be of a high vibration, BUT it is not always possible. We get to choose our friends but not our families. Does that mean we have to dump our family members if they’re not measuring up to an ideal? Does it mean we have to dump old friends who are not growing and transforming as fast as we are? This all depends.
Sometimes we must walk away from people who are abusive or toxic. It is wise to let go of people who are on a deliberate mission to bring you down and believe me, they do exist. Narcissists and psychopaths make up at least 10 percent of the population – we may work with them, we may befriend them or marry them, because they wear a false mask until they have us where they want us. It is best to let go of these people.
But there are many other people who may be at a lower vibration than ourselves – those who are struggling with their woundedness, who are unawake, who are ill, depressed or anxious or even struggling with addictions. You may find it difficult to be around them but you love them and care about them. They may be family members or friends. So where does that leave us when we’re relating to the words “Show me who your friends are and I’ll show you who you are”?
We are all here to learn how to love, and love will require forgiveness and acceptance. St Francis of Assisi was a highly enlightened being. He befriended and hugged the lepers who lived in the leper colony below Assisi, when nobody else would. Princess Diana embraced AIDS patients when society had shunned them. Staying in a high vibration is NOT about the people you hang out with, it is about the relationship you have with the people around you.
If they are bringing you down, WHY are they bringing you down? What are they bringing up for you? You are not here to rescue anyone or to fix anyone. You are just here to love and accept them for who they are and where they are at. Everyone is where they are meant to be. Give up the need to judge them, or to push them to where you think they should be. Only they can do that for themselves. The author Steven Covey wrote “Strength lies in differences; not in similarities”, and Brian Tracy wrote “unconditional acceptance of others is the key to happy relationships”.
Another aspect of love is having boundaries. Many us did not learn what boundaries were and that we are entitled to create boundaries that work for us. If you’re an empath, it is really important to create boundaries in all of your relationships. When you master boundaries, there is no need to let go of anyone. It is usually a matter of changing your relationship, but not ending it. And please also remember this. If you have not learned the necessary lessons in a relationship, even if you leave that person, you will be met with a similar lesson in the form of another person. When the lesson is learned, the difficulty will stop appearing in your life.
I can’t be happy if those around me aren’t happy
I recall reading on a date calendar years ago the words “A mother is only as happy as her unhappiest child”. I related to those words because that was very much my reality. If you’re an empath, you can fall into the trap of thinking “How can I be happy when so-and-so is unhappy” or “how can I be happy when there is so much suffering in the world”. If someone close to us is unhappy, we may feel guilty if we feel happy. But if we take ourselves to the lower vibration of the other person, we cannot truly help them or inspire them. The truth is that we can feel peaceful and joyful and empathise. When we remain in a higher vibration, we can access resources that the other person cannot. In A Course in Miracles we are gold “Miracles are done by those who temporarily have more, for those who temporarily have less.”
There is no need to torture yourself with these ego myths any longer. It is through meditation that you will gain a greater awareness of your ego mind. When you have the awareness, you can question your thoughts. You can recognise the ego at work, and through meditation your True Self has the chance to come through.