The Necessity of Ego
There's something almost instinctual that happens when we hear the word 'ego'. We immediately assume the negative.
That man is a egotistical jerk.
If he just got past his ego, then maybe we'd get some work done.
She lashed out because you wounded her ego.
Sure, these statements are accurate. I've heard them before. I've probably used some variation of them. Still, ego shouldn't be saddled with this immediate negative connotation.
When you google the word ego, the first and only definition is: a person's sense of self-esteem or self-importance.
What's wrong with that? Isn't having a good sense of self-esteem a good thing? Don't we always get told to believe in ourselves? If we don't have a high opinion of ourselves, who will?
Yes, of course, it's a slippery slope. One can over-indulge when feeding their ego. It's important to have self-confidence in oneself, without also believing you walk on water. There's only one creature I know who can do that — the Common Basilisk. (That's who you were thinking about too, right?)
I am, however, unsure of the size of a common basilisk's ego.
Having an ego isn't bad. We need ego. All of us. Ego is what separates those who lead and those who do not. Having a healthy ego helps us finish projects, complete assignments and find overall success at our careers. Every great leader has an ego. Anyone in a position of power has an ego. Even the kid serving you candy and popcorn at your local movie theater has an ego. I know. I've worked with them.
You have an ego. Feed it!
Today, I work primarily in marketing and content creation. A large chunk of my everyday life is around those two functions. Under the umbrella of storytelling, of course.
If I didn't have an ego, I'd get nothing done. I'd second guess every decision I make. If I didn't have high self-esteem, I wouldn't be where I am now.
It's not a perfect process. Satisfying your ego can lead to some missteps. but ignoring it may cause something far worse. Stagnation.