Self-Respect vs Ego - Where to draw a line?

  • 3 min read

I have been thinking for quite sometime as to what to write, I wanted to come up with something that is very simple yet something that everyone goes through on a daily basis. So after a lot of perusal I thought of bringing to you the topic of Self respect Versus Ego, and basically understand the difference.

First, let's understand what is self respect?

Self respect is the respect that we hold for our own self and It is the regard that we uphold for our standing. It depends on confidence that you have on yourself as a person and also on your abilities. Self respect is an inner quality and is built over time as we grow as a person and mature.

Why is Self respect so very important?

A healthy level of self respect is very essential for every person

  • It helps you to hold on to our values, ethics and principles.
  • It is only when we respect our own self, then only others will be able to respect us.
  • It is also helps us to be successful in whatever we do and also improves our self efficacy.
  • It helps you to understand your strength and your inner potential and so in this way, self respect is more internally dependent.
  • It helps you to take a stand for yourself.
  • It saves you from being vulnerable.
  • It protects you from being manipulated, exploited ,tortured or ridiculed.
  • Self respect builds a positive and appealing image of yourself and you become people's role model.
  • Self respect generates the qualities of respecting others, love, empathy etc.
  • Self respect is fuelled by inner virtue and is far away from materialism.
  • Self Respect is always a two way concept we hold on to one and we also respect others.

What is Ego then ?

Ego is a feeling part of our conscious mind, when we have an inflated feeling of self. It is a persistent feeling of inflated self importance. When we have a high ego we see only three things I,Me and Myself and

  • One is not ready to accept anything that makes him feel inferior.
  • One is not ready to accept his mistakes
  • Thinks only about how he or she feels.
  • Flattery and undue praise satisfies him or her.
  • It makes a person Hollow from inside and Shallow from outside.
  • It definitely affects your mental well being because you are constantly in need of others approval in this way, ego is externally dependent. In the sense that we make sure others agree and nod to what we say.
  • Inflated Igo always is unhealthy and definitely strains your relationships
  • Ego also creates a barrier for your growth because you sometimes you become more insecure, unapproachable and unfriendly
  • Ego creates a pretentious or false persona and you want to be in the bubble.
  • Ego creates a barrier between you and people.
  • Ego generates negative feelings of anger, jealousy, frustration etc
  • Ego also makes you arrogant.
  • Ego is more materialistic.
  • Ego is one way traffic and its only about us, we end up not recognising and appreciating others.

The fine line that is between Self respect and Ego is very blurred. Sometimes when we cross that line and go to the ego zone, we don't really know.

How do we understand this?

  • Question yourself - How are you feeling ? What are the emotions ? See sometimes every person has negative emotion but definitely most of the times. If you feel angry, intolerant frustrated most of times then its ego.
  • Understand your circle - Observe the circle of people whom you meet almost daily, are the fond of you, look forward to be with you or not If not and if they are merely sycophantically agreeing to you.
  • Understand yourself - Are you suggestive or you force your opinion and make sure people follow them.
  • Gain a deep understanding - Are your expectations unrealistic or it is realistic and reasonable.
  • Introspect the reason - Are you trying to feed to your superior image or are you trying to just hold on to your principles and integrity.

In this modern age of accumulating wealth and materialism, somewhere our deep rooted virtues have unconsciously taken a back seat. A little bit of awareness, introspection and mindfulness will definitely keep us grounded and well rooted.

As a final word to this small piece, I would like to quote this most loved citation of John Maxwell which goes like this:

There are two kinds of pride, both good and bad. 'Good pride' represents our dignity and self-respect. 'Bad pride' is the deadly sin of superiority that reeks of conceit and arrogance.
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Author / Speaker  →

Freelance Clinical psychologist and on call consultant psychologist for Athulya senior care. Expert Panelist for online mental health portals for PARENTUNE and RYTLIFE
A mental wellness therapist/ counsellor/ psychologist. I believe in maintaining healthy mind enriched with healthy postive thoughts.
* Disclaimer - The article reflects the perspective and opinion of the author only, and not of 'thebulletinbox.com'. For more information, please visit our terms & conditions.

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