This is a very good question and one that I get asked quite often. The biggest problem with the concept of self-esteem vs. ego is that they are not at all similar. In fact, to the best of me, these are the most distantly linked of all the concepts in the world of personal growth and improvement. Let’s take a closer look at what ego and self-esteem are and how they relate to your own personal development. If you have any confusion regarding this please keep reading because it is going to get a little confusing as I go along.
Ego is a concept that is related to self-confidence. Basically, the higher your self-esteem is then the more likely it is that you will be able to get the same results that other people are getting. So if you are the kind of person that is confident, it stands to reason that you also need a high level of self-esteem so that you can assert your own individuality and not be intimidated by other people.
This does not mean that you should never feel intimidated by other people or that you should be overly self-confident. There are many successful people that fit into this category. The important thing here is that you know you are better than the average person and that you can accomplish whatever it is that you set out to do.
What about self-esteem and ego then? The concept of the two being at odds with each other is something I do not understand. The truth is that ego is very dependent on a person’s ability to define his or her personality. If you are not very sure what that looks like then you will have a very difficult time trying to boost your own self-esteem based upon the picture you have painted of your personality.
On the other hand, self-esteem is based upon some notion of the future that you have determined. Ego is more of an attitude you have about yourself. It is not an actual thing but rather a description of how things will be when you achieve your goals. There is a difference between believing something will be and actually experiencing it.
For example, if you want to succeed in business or in your personal life you will need to convince yourself that things will be better than they currently are. If you don’t really believe that will happen you will find it very difficult to change your behavior so that it aligns with this belief. However, people who are successful in business and in their personal lives know that things happen and they use their ego as a tool to get what they want. They are not the ones that tell themselves things happen but rather the people around them.
The problem with trying to gain self-esteem through the use of your ego is that it can actually be detrimental. The person who tries to increase their self-image by improving themselves usually doesn’t do any real thinking about what they are doing. They focus on the end result instead of doing whatever it takes to get there. If they didn’t believe in themselves they would never achieve their goal. Just like a person without belief in themselves won’t go out there and earn a living they won’t fly airplanes into buildings.
Therefore, in order to build higher self-image and improve your self-esteem, you must work on changing the way you think about yourself. You must work to improve the way you think about your ability to be successful. Instead of focusing on your failures you must focus on your successes. This may require you to look at something you did that may have prevented you from becoming the person you were meant to be but you have to be willing to look at those things.