Everybody is so critical about ‘Ego’. We usually hear people say ‘It (some bad thing) happened because of her/his ego’. Is Ego a bad thing?
Sigmund Freud's structural model of the psyche explains that, ‘Id’, ‘Ego’ and ‘Super-ego’ are the three parts of the psychic apparatus. The 'Id' is the set of uncoordinated instinctual trends, the only component of personality that is present from birth. The super-ego can stop one from doing certain things that one's id may want to do. Whereas, the 'Ego' is the organized and realistic part that mediates between the desires of the 'Id' and the 'Super-ego'.
I first read about the above Freudian concept when I was studying at the 8th standard – in a book that contained the Malayalam translation of some of the Freudian concepts. Thereafter I made it a habit (that is my Ego :) ) to observe the thought process of people. As the years passed, my interest in the ‘Mind Watch’ increased substantially. You start with carefully listening to someone’s conversation styles, observing their responses in different situations and how they do things. Thus you slowly peep into their mind. At times, it upset my regular academic studies – it is another story. Because in the classes I might hear the teachers well, but my attention would be in the nature in which the teacher convey things – that information was of little help for studying the subjects in the curriculum.
After more than three decades of observing people, I would say Freudian concept is the real chemistry of mind and the efficiency of one’s Ego to negotiate between ‘Id’ and ‘Super Ego’ makes one’s self. Therefore, for a successful life, you have to nurture your ‘Ego’ in the right way. This ‘right way’ is highly relative to your field of activity as well. Keep your eyes and ears wide open, your mind receptive and your brain unpolluted – then your external environment will train you to maintain the right Ego for a right choice of life for you.
Therefore stop cursing the Ego, and start to recognize and respect the Ego of yours as well as others’ for a calm and pleasant life.
Practice it and make it a habit. Then the nature will make it sustainable by triggering necessary genetic engineering!