Marina Abramovic, an artist, said that we stop being creative when we start to believe in ourselves as greatness. She is referring to the ego, the way self-absorption destroys the very thing it celebrates.
How can we stop this selfishness and toxic ego? How can we stop ego sucking us down like gravity? The first answer is awareness. It’s not difficult after that.
In this article, I have given best way that will help you for killing your ego.
While researching Ego is The Enemy, I discovered many strategies to combat our selfish and arrogant impulses. These 25 proven strategies from successful people throughout history will help you remain sober, clear-headed, and creative. If you put your mind to them, they will work.
Ways To Make Killing Your EGO Faster
- Keep an open mind. Epictetus said, “It is impossible to learn what one believes one already knows.” It is impossible to learn when we allow our egos to tell us we are done. Take a book on a topic you don’t know much about. Take a walk through a bookstore or library to remind yourself of how little you know.
- The effort is what matters, not the result. We can’t control what happens after we have made a creative effort. We cannot let the outcome of that point determine what happens next. Remember John Wooden, the famous coach: “Success means peace of mind. It is because you have done your best to be the best you can be.” Keep your eyes on this. External rewards are only a bonus.
- Choose purpose over passion. Passion is hot and exhausting, while people who have a sense — which can be described as passion mixed with reason — are more committed and have greater control over their destiny. Christopher McCandless was passionate about his venture “into the wild,” but it didn’t work out well. Segway’s inventor was passionate. It is better to be clear-headed.
- Don’t be distracted by the pleasure of talking, and get down to work. Marlon Brando once stated that “Void” is “terrible to most people.” Social media allows us to get validation and attention, but we avoid creating the hard and scary work. We creatives need to get on with the result. Face the void, despite the pain.
- Before you lose your head, kill your pride. Cyril Connolly said, “whom the gods desire to destroy,” “they first call promising.” It is not the time to let your early pride lead you astray. Every day, you must remind yourself how much work remains and not how many things you have accomplished. Humility is the antidote for pride.
- You don’t need to tell yourself a story. There is no excellent narrative. You might believe that the next chapter of your story is the one you have already written. It is an easy way to fail — get too confident and cocky. Jeff Bezos (the founder of Amazon) reminds himself that there was no “aha moment” for the billion-dollar company, regardless of what he may have read in his press clips. The story is irrelevant if you are focusing on the moment.
- Learn how to manage yourself and others. John DeLorean, a brilliant engineer, was a terrible manager of people and himself. One executive described DeLorean’s management style as “chasing colored balls” — he was constantly distracted and abandoned one project in favor of another. It doesn’t suffice to be intelligent, right, or a genius. Although it’s satisfying to be the bossy, micromanaging, egotistical boss in the middle of everything, that’s not how organizations succeed. It is not how you grow as a person.
- Decide what is important to you, and then ruthlessly refuse to accept anything else. Follow the philosophy of Seneca’s euthymia, which is the peace and tranquility that comes from knowing your goals and not being distracted. It is achieved by having an honest conversation with ourselves and understanding our priorities. It is rejecting everything else. Learn how to say no. First, say no to your ego that wants it all.
- Don’t give credit or recognition. Belichick was a grunt worker who made his superiors look great and helped him climb the ranks in the NFL. It is essential to try to trade short-term pleasure for long-term rewards when we start our pursuits. Learn from those who have succeeded before you and take what you can. Don’t take credit.
- Connect with nature and the whole universe. Nature is a powerful feeling that we should be able to access as often as possible. Material Success is what draws us away from it the most. Get out and connect with the world. You are small in comparison to all things. It’s what Pierre Hadot, a French philosopher, has called the “oceanic sensation.” It is the feeling that you are small about everything else.
- Choose live time over slow time. Robert Greene states that there are two types of time in our lives. Deadtime is when people wait and are passive. While busy time is when people learn and act every second. The ego chooses to waste time when there is a failure. It says, “I don’t want that.” I want __. It is my wish. It indulges in being angry, aggrieved, heartbroken. Do not let it get you down. Choose to live in the present moment.
- Get out of your head. Anne Lamott, the writer, knows about the dangers of the music we listen to in our heads. “The endless stream, self-aggrandizement and the recitations of one’s uniqueness, of how much open and gifted and brilliant, knowing and misunderstood, humble one is,” that’s what you could hear right now. You can break through the haze of self-aggrandizement with courage, and you can live with the tangible and actual, even if it is uncomfortable.
- Give up on control. Micromanaging and the poisonous need for power are often overcome with great Success. Ego begins to say: It all must be done my style — even small things and inconsequential. It is simple. Intelligent people must be aware of their limits and reach. It’s easy, but not simple.
- The mission and the purpose should be above your own. General George Marshall, who won the Nobel Peace Prize in the Marshall Plan for his work on the Marshall Plan, was offered command of D-Day’s troops. He told President Roosevelt that the decision was his and that my wishes had nothing to do. It turned out that Eisenhower led D-Day’s invasion and did an outstanding job. We need to remember that Marshall placed the mission and purpose above himself — an act we should never forget.
- Stop digging when you find yourself in trouble. Alexander Hamilton advised a friend who was in grave difficulty to act with fortitude, honor. Do not attempt to go any more profound if you can’t reasonably expect a positive outcome. Be strong enough to stop—our ego rattles and screams when we are hurt. Then, we will do whatever it takes to get out of trouble. Don’t panic. Do not make it worse. Do not make things worse.
- Be careful not to be seduced by Success, recognition, and money. The combination of Success, money, and power can be addictive. In those moments, it is important to be sober and not indulge. It is easy to see why Angela Merkel, one of the most powerful women on earth, is impressive. Her appearance is modest and straightforward. One writer stated that Merkel’s greatest weapon is her unpretentiousness — unlike many world leaders obsessed with their position. Forget about self-absorption or obsessing about one’s image.
- Your entitlements are out the window. Ty Warner, the creator of Beanie Babies, was able to overcome the objections of an employee and boasted, “I could put Ty heart on manure, and they’d purchase it!” It is a clear example of how ego can lead to Success and downright failure.
- Choose love. Martin Luther King knew that hatred is like “eroding acid” that eats away at the best and objective center of your existence. Hatred occurs when the ego transforms a minor insult into an enormous sore, and it lashes. Stop and think: Has hatred and lashing out ever helped anyone? It shouldn’t eat at your soul. Choose love. Love is possible. You will be amazed at how much happier you feel.
- Mastery of your chosen craft is what you should strive for. You will find that the more you learn, the more humble you become. Because you know there is always more to learn and because you feel humbled by the fascinating career or craft you choose. When you have chosen a path, it is challenging to become overconfident or egotistical.
- Maintain an internal scorecard. You don’t have to win; just because you did it doesn’t make you worthy. It is essential not to forget the validation of others and external indicators of success. Warren Buffett advised that you keep an internal scorecard and not an external one. Your potential, your absolute best — that’s what you should measure yourself against.
- A political advisor who witnessed paranoia at its worst, Seneca wrote that “he who indulges in empty fears earns him real fears.” You will appear weak if you allow your ego to think everyone is out for you. Then people will try to take advantage. Be strong, confident, and forgiving.
- Always be a student. Place yourself in places where you are the least educated. Learn from others. Do you know that uncomfortable feeling of defensiveness you get when your deepest beliefs are challenged? It is essential to do it with intention. It will humble you. Keep in mind John Wheeler’s words: “As our island grows in knowledge, so does our shore of ignorance.”
- Ego is sensitive to slights, insults, and not being rewarded. It is a wasteful use of time. Frederick Douglass was asked to travel in a baggage vehicle because of his race. Someone rushed to apologize. Frederick’s response? Frederick Douglass’ reply? No one can destroy the soul within me. This treatment is not affecting me; it is them who are causing it.”
- Focus on the higher purpose and stop playing with images. John Boyd was a great strategist of the 20th century. He asked his young protégés: “To be, or to do?” What direction will you take? Will you fall in love with Success’s image or focus on a higher purpose. Are you more focused on your title, fans, paycheck, or actual accomplishments? It is clear which direction your ego wants to go.
- It is so crucial that it is being repeated twice. Accepting that you only control the effort and not the output will help you master your ego. We all have to do some work. The ego wants control over everything, but it can’t control the reactions of others. It would be best to focus on your side of the equation and let them handle theirs. Keep in mind Goethe’s words: “What matters to active men is to do right; it shouldn’t bother him whether the right things come to pass.”
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