Your Ego Isn’t the Enemy – These Are the 5 Stages of Ego Recovery

The goal of mindfulness was never to get rid of your ego.

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Nothing is wrong with you.

When was that last time someone said that to you? When was the last time you believed it?

If you’re anything like most people, it’s probably been a while. In fact, many of us spend our whole lives believing that something is wrong with us.

I often remember thinking that there had to be something seriously broken in me. Why can’t I just be happy and normal and hang out with healthy people? I’d ask myself. But because I was showing up to my life from a deeply rooted sense of exclusion and dysfunction, that’s all I ever noticed. It’s what I attracted through my own thoughts, beliefs, actions, and energy.

Through mindfulness, I began to wake up and think, let’s find out what it’s like to show up as a mature, kind, joyful, loving, compassionate, aware person. And that’s what I did.

I want that understanding for you, too—there’s nothing wrong with you either.

Learning this fact can be as simple and as profound as shutting up and sitting. But it can also be as difficult and uncomfortable as shutting up and sitting. Excavating your lifelong patterns of belief and giving your ego a compassionate overhaul is hard work. But for the work to work, you need to experience both the difficulty and the simplicity, the magic and the discomfort. Otherwise, you’re just sitting still.

(Honestly, some people could sit still every day for the next forty years and still be assholes, right? You probably know a few.)

Mindfulness teaches you how to sit in silent, still, present, focused awareness. But its goal isn’t to get rid of the ego.

Instead, mindfulness is an invitation to recognize that your ego developed as a protective mechanism, probably one that served you at some point in your life. By recovering an ego that no longer serves you in the present moment, you’re bringing it back into wholeness and into right relationship with the whole experience of who you are.

Mindfulness is about recognizing that your ego serves a purpose, and rather than judging it or silencing it, learning how to “right-size” instead. Check out these five stages of ego recovery:

  1. Bring control, order, and structure into your life.
    • Confess what’s there, even if it’s under control.
    • Feel what’s there, but resist acting out.
  2. Establish a conquest—a clear purpose for getting out of bed every morning.
    • Something greater than yourself.
    • Something that will challenge you to grow and evolve.
  3. Confront your issues and the source of them.
    • Go to the root and remove it permanently.
    • Refuse to live in denial—confront the issue head-on.
  4. Conquer what you have confronted.
    • You need both instincts and intellect to conquer.
    • Believe in yourself, stand up for yourself, and remain firm.
  5. Celebrate—throw a party and rejoice in your victory!
    • Give praise to God (or Source/the divine/Universe, etc.) for your success.
    • Merge with the energy and flow of abundance.
Did this post make you think about your ego a little differently? If so, I want to know! Head over to Facebook to share any new insights, ideas, or questions you have!

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