What is More Important to You; Success or Your Ego?

Many misconceptions are floating around about both Success and Ego. The most common one is that they go together, as in you can’t have success without an ego, and you cannot have an ego if you are unsuccessful.

Although we all know successful people with HUGE ego’s, they are not as closely tied together as most think. In reality, there are more successful people without huge egos; they just aren’t always promoting themselves, so as a result, they are less apparent.

Even though you can find MILLIONS of articles on Google (About 58,800,000 results 0.37 seconds when I just checked) about the need for an ego to be successful, I have found that your ego often blocks further successes once you have achieved a modicum of success.

The reason is a fear of failure and the risk of losing self-esteem and reputation. Whenever you venture into an area with a distinct possibility of failing, you do what is psychologically called “self-handicapping” to preserve your ego. This is where you engage in one or more behaviors known to hurt performance, like missing practices, getting too little sleep, using harmful substances, or not working as hard.

By doing these behaviors, you are attempting to distance the outcome of what you are trying to accomplish from your abilities. Essentially, you are building ready-made excuses into your pursuits and likely creating a self-fulfilling prophecy for your failure. As I tell my clients, “The biggest difference between successful and unsuccessful people is that the former make commitments, and the latter make excuses!”

By now, you have probably already figured out that success is more important to me than ego. I wrote about one of the other dangers of Ego in 2012 (linked here), nearly four years before Ryan Holidays’ excellent book “Ego is the Enemy” was published, and both of those are worth reading for those interested in learning more about the dangers of ego.

I strongly urge anyone reading this article to do all you can to keep your ego in check. This will increase your odds of continuing your success after you achieve it and give you the side benefit of being less likely to ruin any relationships you hold dear.


You can follow Sam on Twitter: @SuperTaoInc







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