• Joseph

how to avoid secure crash - remove the ego from the driving seat

There is an inner voice in our heads that sometimes pushes us to do and say things that are just not us. Like fighting with friends and people we love just to defend a point of view.


Think of when you forgot the actual reasons you started arguing, but you just can’t drop it as it feels it would hurt your persona.


That, my friend, is your ego whispering.


Let’s delve deeper into this, but let’s think about the ego in two ways: the reactive and the proactive.


The former is what acts to defend you from perceived external attack. This is the side of your ego that takes you to dark places, the one that gets carried by fears and fights back with rage.


The latter is the side of the ego, which defines who you are as an individual separated from others. It’s incredibly useful for you to keep this alive and nurture it, so you can develop your real self as a unique being.


But let’s go back to the reactive ego, as this is the one I see many of us struggling with the most.

Many of us can recall times when we responded so harshly to people we love if somehow their comment hit us deeply. Like a small joke or a bad comments to that track, sometimes we really feel like our inner confidence is undermined.


When our internal defense mechanism detects a threat, we have to fight back. We fall into the ego trap and ‘no way we will even take into consideration what this fuc**r says’.


Even when perhaps their view can help us a lot, we drop it or fight it back, just to validate our ego and not let the other win.


There are other manifestations of ego. For instance envying others. I recall a very subtle effect in one of my closest relationships: the one with my label cofounder Flaminia. She is a great cofounder in many ways and we love each other and normally work really well together. We are both artists and at some point she started gigging more than me, in bigger clubs, with more attention from the outside world and more followers on social media. Of course I am happy for her, and have always been supporting her to the best of my possibilities.


But, my ego dark side at some point started screaming. I found myself arguing with her for small things, finding very hard to speak with her about music stuff. I would get upset and get angry very quickly for even a minimal argument. How was it that music, the thing in the world that united us as soulmates, was being the trigger for so much resentment and negative emotional response?


It took me quite some time to realise this and be aware of the perverse mechanism I activated. Deep inside of me I was envious of her success, because my ego could not accept to be ‘less’ than someone else.


It took me even more to admit this, change it and take proactive action to stop my ego from getting in the way. I still catch myself being nervous sometimes for no apparent reason, but I now flag it, and bring my state to what serves me.


If you haven’t figured it out yet, we as humans, are ‘comparing apes’. And if we let our ego take over, comparison is a big reason of disruption as we start focusing too much or solely on being more than others, instead of understanding that each of us has their own path.


If you haven’t figured it out yet, we as humans, are ‘comparing apes’. And if we let our ego take over, comparison is a big reason of disruption as we start focusing too much or solely on being more than others, instead of understanding that each of us has their own path.


When you create something such as art or you broadly run a business, your ego can make or break your entire venture in the long run by:


1) Becoming so narrow minded that you can’t accept comments from others and the outside world, and taking any feedback as a trigger for your reaction versus an input for you to get better


2) Not being able to listen to people you work with, thus killing mutual trust and support. And focus groups and teams of one are not a great choice


3) Putting your 'perceived competitors’ in the driving seat, while you spend more time and energy in reacting, instead of being focused on improving your craft every day


Next time you are getting into an argument with someone, ask yourself: what if I did the complete opposite of what my inner voice suggests? What if I freely opened up to a new possibility, even when this is the opposite of what I thought true?


The decision is always yours and the price to pay for letting the ego control what you do, is very high from ruining your business to destroying the most important relationships in your life.


With love,

Joseph


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Resources:

https://www.amazon.co.uk/Ego-Enemy-Master-Greatest-Opponent/dp/1781257027/ref=pd_lpo_sbs_14_t_1?_encoding=UTF8&psc=1&refRID=ER1FACQK91JN3CP8XASR


Challenge: Spot your ego in motion and go the other way

1) Think about one recent episode when your ego made you take an action that costed you in terms of relationships or had consequences on your output, art, business

2) Think what was the moment when the ego kicked in and pushed the real you out of the room. Write down what you would have done differently

3) Now observe how your mind starts noticing the same pattern in other situations

4) For the next 7 days, catch your ego taking ownership, stop it by taking opposite behaviour and write it down. Be keen and commit to sacrifice your ‘beliefs’ completely - and at least listen to what others say. Remember is better to focus on finding the truth, instead of winning your truth

5) Celebrate small every time this happens and do a big celebration at the end of the 7th day



And things to remember…

- Ego is part of each one of us. No need to nullify it, but removing the dark side of it from the driving seat, is a more constructive way to live life and relationships

- If you f**k it up, and make ego-driven decisions, you can always admit it and try to remedy. Like telling that person that you mistreated ‘sorry’ (yes this is ego too!)

- It will take time to admit and learn how to play with it, we all struggle in different ways at different times



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