Up-Level Your Life with Mindy

Decoding the Ego: A Tale of Growth and Self-Discovery

November 21, 2023 Mindy Duff Season 6 Episode 61
Up-Level Your Life with Mindy
Decoding the Ego: A Tale of Growth and Self-Discovery
Show Notes Transcript Chapter Markers

There's a hidden force within us all, subtly influencing our thoughts, actions, and relationships. Ever wondered what it might be? That's right, we're talking about the ego, that not-so-silent partner that can either help us soar or hold us back. Unmasking this elusive entity, we share personal anecdotes, explore its impact, and even discuss how it can weave its way into something as simple as a dad joke. It's a journey of self-discovery, with laughter and insights along the way.

Peeking beneath the surface, I examine how the ego can be both a source of angst and a catalyst for growth. I offer practical strategies for reigning in the ego and tuning into intuition. I've found that visualizing the ego as a 'dial', one that you can turn up or down, can be incredibly effective. Further, harnessing the power of journaling can help in managing this untamed force, and with that in mind, we've designed a special journal, teeming with helpful prompts for self-reflection.

As we wrap up our journey through the labyrinth of ego, we delve into my personal tale of transformation and growth. It's been an exhilarating journey, shedding layers of ego and embracing a more fulfilling life. So, join me on this captivating journey, peppered with humor, heart, and a fair bit of self-discovery.

Click here to learn more about the Up-Level Your Life Journal!

To learn more about Mindy CLICK HERE

Speaker 1:

Hey friends, this is your host, mindy Duff, and you're listening to Uplevel your Life with Mindy, your number one personal growth podcast that will bring you closer to uncovering your greatest self. As a certified holistic health and nutrition coach, I created this podcast for anyone who desires to improve physically, emotionally and spiritually. I'll be interviewing experts and sharing tips and tricks that have helped not only my clients, but that have guided me on my own transformational journey. I believe that we all have a greatness that lies within. We just need to uncover it. Are you ready to level up? Let's begin. Hi everyone and welcome back to Uplevel your Life with Mindy. I am your host, mindy Duff, flying solo today Just me. I have been doing so many wonderful interviews. If this is the first you've checked out this episode or this podcast, I would invite you to definitely go back and check out some of the other ones. I've had some amazing guests on lately. I just wrapped up season five, where we delved into spirituality. I am really curious. If you did have a chance to listen to some of those episodes, I would be curious to know what you thought of it. We covered everything from the dying process and hospice all the way to going into really deep spiritual healing. We had one episode, had a nice healing session. We've had psychic mediums on there talking about what happens after death, communication with loved ones, etc. Very interesting stuff. At least it was Timmy, anyway. I'm curious to know if you did check those out. Don't hesitate to reach out and let me know what you thought of it. This season, as we were starting, I think it's season six, maybe it's not. I probably should keep track of that stuff. I think I'm the only one that does keep track of this, and that's totally fine if you're not keeping up to date with what season we're on. I just wanted to give you a heads up for what is in store here coming up. I have a lot more great interviews for you. There is no theme this month. The theme is just random, which is one of my favorite ways to go about it. The reason I titled this podcast if you're curious, ablevel your Life with Mindy is because I wanted to keep it broad. My whole intention with this podcast is just to cover lots of different ways that people can help improve their lives. Whether that's something for me to share on a solo episode like this one, or maybe it's me interviewing experts in their field. That's just. We're going to continue more of the same, but no theme this month. Buckle up and be prepared for just random, all kinds of random things. I've got lots of really great interviews in the hopper ready to be released, but today I wanted to talk with you a little bit about ego, because this is something that has been coming up for me quite a bit, and so I thought you know what. I'm just going to get on and I'll do a quick episode, just myself and share kind of my thoughts on ego. I am certainly not the expert on ego I've learned a thing or two in my day but I have an ego, so that right qualifies me to speak on it, as do you. But let's just talk for a second about what an ego even is, and the short answer to that is I don't know. I wish I did. I don't know what this ego really really is, although I think of it. It's interesting to really have you ever stopped and thought about your thinking before. This gets kind of like twist my brain and knots a little bit, but if you'll notice sometimes when you're having thoughts and then you notice yourself having those thoughts, who is the person that's observing the person having the thoughts. You've got kind of a couple of different things going on in our brains here, so I don't know exactly what's going on, but I have noticed this before and I'm sure you have too, and if you haven't now you will, because I've mentioned it. Just kind of think about what is that thing, and I like to think of my ego as its own separate little person. So we're not talking about multiple personalities or anything like that. This is very much still a part of you, it's within your own self. But I imagine almost like and it's not even quite like you've seen the angel and the devil on the shoulders before. It's not quite like that either, but that helps give a visualization. But I think of my ego as like a separate little person or little piece of me, having its own thoughts, its own opinions and generally a lot of anxiety and worry in my ego. Anyway, I know when we talk about sometimes you hear someone say ego we think of like someone that we know that's maybe very egocentric, whether it's in real life or a celebrity or someone. Oh, they have such a big ego and that goes along with it too. But again, we all have an ego and why do we have it? I don't know that either, boy, that's one of my first questions. Whenever I get to the other side, I've got like this whole list of questions. Maybe you do that too, maybe it's just me, but I would love to know why. What's the purpose of the ego? However, I believe that it's there for a reason, otherwise I don't think we would have an ego. So I know it serves a purpose and that's enough for me. I just know, okay, I have an ego, whatever there it is. But our egos, they tend to hold us back quite a bit and it's almost like that helicopter parent that's hovering over you going, oh, be careful of this, what about this? What if this happens? And you better not do that, because this could happen. That's kind of a lot of times how our egos operate, just in day to day life, and we don't always notice it, but it's definitely there in present, 24-7, all the time. So it's worth it, when you have a thought, to stop and ask yourself whose thought is this? Is this my ego thought? Or is this just my pure consciousness thought? Maybe you've encountered a situation before in your life where someone asked you if you wanted to do something or an opportunity presented itself to you and instantly you were like, yes, and it just got you all lit up. And then, a split second later, you were like wait, no, because at first you were like, oh, this is such a great opportunity and this would be so fun, or I'm so excited. But then you start to hear this little voice inside of you that says, oh, but it's always starts with a but, and then whatever it follows, okay, that's how you know your ego is kind of alive and well and talking to you. So when you hear that but, but that's gonna cost too much money, or but nobody's gonna actually take you seriously, or but you have other obligations, but you know. So, whenever you have an opportunity presented to you or you're thinking about doing something, pay more attention to your first instinct, really, and kind of go with that Cause. That's really your true answer. But again, our egos, I think, are there for a reason, but what that reason is, I'm not entirely sure. I do want to share a story with you, though. Fairly recently this happened to me and, man, this was just such to me, a prime example of my ego, just alive and well. So some of you know that I was fortunate enough. Just a couple of months ago, as I'm recording this, I was fortunate enough to go to England and I recorded an Oxford talk. You can learn more about that at another time. But so I was there, I had prepared this talk, I had been, I'd worked with one of the Oxford talk curators. The words on the page was just. You know, we worked for months to get it, just so, and it was finally ready to record. I'd spent so much time on it. I was very proud of how it, you know it came together. I got to fly over there with my sister and I was in the filming room and there's, you know, of course, all these lights and cameras and people running around and cords on the floor, and I have a makeup gal and she's fixing my hair, cause my hair apparently hates England, which is another story, but anyway. So there's lots going on and I've never really done anything at this level before up until that point. So this is my first time with kind of the lights, camera, action for like a big something. That was kind of a to me a big deal, and I have my talk and it's on the teleprompter and so I'm all ready to go and they're like all right, lights, camera action, ready, set go. And so I read my speech that I have, you know, been working on for months with someone else who was like, yes, this is good, we're ready. So I read through it and as I'm reading through this my own words on the teleprompter all I can think of I'm thinking of like a thousand other things like I'm reading it and I'm definitely part of me, is there an aware and trying to, you know, really invoke this emotion of the words that I'm trying to say? But I'm also very aware of the other people that are in the room. Take, for example, a lighting man to my left who has now taken out his phone, and so, instantly that starts my brain on a spiral of oh my gosh, he's took out his phone. This must be the most boring talk he's ever heard in his life. Keep in mind. The whole thing's like 10 minutes long and I'm probably like two minutes in when this starts right. So I'm thinking, oh my gosh, this is not even good. Who am I to even be here? Why am I recording this? There are so many more people that are more experienced or more capable than I am, and then I start thinking about everyone else in the room like, oh, this girl over here is probably like get me out of here. Is she done? Yet Like, I don't wanna listen to this anymore. I was not the first one that they recorded that day. I thought, oh, they're probably just sick and tired of being here. They don't wanna hear what I have to say. I've got my makeup lady here in Makeup Gal sitting over there by my sister. Like, oh, she's probably like gosh, I should have got out of here before they started recording because her part's done now that they've started rolling. She doesn't have a job to do at this hot second. So she's probably thinking, oh, I wish I would have gone out into the hallway and this is just terrible. But and then, you know, whatever I just have to get through it, I'll just get through it and then when I finish, they'll just tell me to redo it because it's probably just been terrible this whole time. So I am thinking all of those thoughts. I know super uplifting self-talk, right, I'm usually not terrible at the self-talk, but this particular instance I was like, oh gosh, everyone hates this. This is bad. So I finished my talk and as soon as I'm done, it is dead silent in the room for what to me felt like eternity. I mean, it was like to me I'm like hearing crickets and like, oh gosh, this was awful. In reality, what actually happened was after I finished, there was a pause, a moment of silence, if you will, partially because they don't want to talk over top of the recording and now we've ruined some of the recording because they need that extra little bit on the end. And also there was just this pause of wow they. Once that pause was done, the room erupted into a pause. Maybe erupted is not the right word, but everyone was clapping and saying things like wow, oh my gosh. That was amazing for a couple reasons. One was because I did it all in one take, which I didn't realize was not what everybody else had been doing, but I got through it without messing up, basically, so we didn't have to stop and can we go back and redo this again or whatever. So I got through it all and just smooth as it can be. And also, you know they weren't. Maybe you know the guy with his phone. I have no idea what he was doing on his phone. He didn't stay on his phone the whole time. I'm pretty sure he wasn't scrolling social media. So was he looking, checking things on an app that was messing with different levels on the lights, maybe, and he's working. I have no idea what he was doing. My ego made up a pretty good story of what he was doing. I found out after I was done. My sister was like, oh, your hair and makeup lady was so like into what you were talking about. She turned around and said, hey, how do I, how do I follow her work, how can I get more information? So my sister was sharing information about you know, here's how you follow her podcast and her social, whatever it was. So in my head, I had made up this whole story of how awful I'd been doing and how I don't belong here and this is terrible. And the reality ended up being the flip side of that. That, to me, was just such a powerful moment for me to recognize my ego at work and our egos. They're there doing things like this every day, all day long. It's not like this was a one time thing where, oh, once upon a time, and these egos showed up when she filmed the thing. No, this is all the time. It is just it's hard to notice because it is part of us and, again, I don't think it's a. I think it serves a purpose. I don't think it's a negative part of us. I don't think that it's something that we need to try to get rid of. Your ego. Again, I feel like if we were meant to not have an ego, we wouldn't have an ego, we wouldn't be born this way. But we are born this way and I just wanted to share that story to kind of highlight just how how big of a story our minds can spin. Maybe you've been in a situation before where you sent someone a text message and they didn't instantly respond. That for some people, for some of you, I know, are listening and like, oh, I don't even pay attention, I don't care. Good for you. You keep on keeping on. Teach the rest of us your ways. The rest of you are like me instant anxiety. Oh gosh, why aren't they responding? What's going on? Did I do something wrong? Did I upset them? Are they, you know? Are they mad at me? Are they really just busy? Maybe they are just busy, let's see. Do I know what's going on in their schedule right now? Okay, maybe they are just like you create all these stories when half the time you don't even know if they even saw the message, or maybe they saw it and read it, which is the worst, right when they see it and read it, and then don't respond immediately. But then you also have to know some people. Some people do that. I have one friend that replies really, really quickly. And then I have another friend that I'm not super close with but it's taken me a little bit of time to realize that that person usually doesn't respond immediately, almost never In fact. I'm not sure why, but it's not just me, it's a them thing. That's just how they do, it's not, it's just how they operate and that's fine. But again it comes back to us and how we interpret things and how we deal with that. I have another friend who actually shared this story with me just this morning and I thought this was interesting too. Just another example for you. So this friend, her son is in seventh grade and must take his lunch to school every day and so she usually is the one that packs the lunch. And she said this year she started putting in jokes. Just on a little slip of paper She'd write a little. She said she was using dad jokes like little one, liners or just corny, you know which. I am here for the dad jokes. That's like some of my favorite types of humor. Not sure what that says about me, but there it is Anyway. So she'd been sending you know every day like here's a funny little stupid joke. And then she said about three weeks ago her ego got her ego got the best of her and she decided you know, he's in seventh grade, I've been doing this every day like maybe he's probably like mom, stop, this is embarrassing, I probably should just not do this anymore. It's kind of ridiculous. So she quit for about three weeks and she said just this morning he was leaving. And he said, mom, did you put another joke In my lunchbox today? And she said, no, actually your dad packed your lunch. And he said, well, when can you pack my lunch tomorrow and can you put a joke in? Because my friends and I all, like, look forward to that and you know we gather around and read it and I suppose just have a big laugh, whatever. And so she was like, yeah, absolutely. And that was just for her, just such a realization of how her she had let her ego get in the way. She had thought, oh, she'd made up a story. She didn't ask. And, by the way, how often do we do that? We make up the story of what we think the other people are feeling without even asking them. How hard would it have been for her to say hey, son, I know I've been sticking those jokes in your lunchbox. Do you like him? Do you read them? Do you just throw them away and not even pay attention? You want me to keep doing it, you know. But no, like most of the rest of us, she just decided to stop. She just decided, assumed this is ridiculous, I'm being bothersome, I just won't anymore, I don't want to embarrass him. And then she just quit, even though it was something he was enjoying. So that was just an example for her of how she let her ego hold herself back. By the way, I do want to share one of these jokes with you, because I'd never heard this one before. So random joke time. Why are peppers the best at archery? Because they have a narrow. I thought that was so funny. I never heard that one before. So anyway, there's your new dad joke of the day, curious of my friend Jen. So thanks, jen, but yeah, just again. Just another example of how our egos get in the way and I'm sure if you stop and look back on your life you can find a million different times you let your ego get in the way. Sometimes it's big stuff and sometimes it's small, like just not putting a joke in your son's lunchbox because you think, xyz, maybe it's big, maybe I could very well have easily let my ego get in the way of me, even taking that trip to England to record that film. I certainly have been in situations like that where I felt who am I? Who am I to be doing this? Like I'm just, I'm just a little me. You know, I'm no greater or better than anyone else. There are people that are far better at whatever the situation is than I am. Who am I to go do it? And that's our ego kicking in. And I would challenge that and say who are you not to do it? If there's something big or small on your heart and you want to do it, but you feel your ego holding you back, you know there's some ways that you can get around this ego a little bit, so let's talk about that. So we have this ego and we're not going to try and get rid of it. But what do we do if we don't want to let our egos hold us back all of the time? So the first step I hate, but it's awareness, and I feel like in this realm of you know, personal growth awareness is always, that's always it, that's always the number one thing. You just have to first of all, know that you have an ego. And when you know that you have an ego and when you are in a situation like you're listening to this podcast, all about egos, so that's going to bring it, you know, top of mind for a little bit. Now this doesn't mean that here I am doing a whole podcast dedicated to this. This doesn't mean that, oh, every time my ego pops up, mindy just always nips that in the button, says hey there, ego, I'm going to bypass you. Absolutely not. I'm in no freaking way I could do that, because it takes way too much concentration and energy to constantly be looking out for your ego. But when it does pop up and you notice it, you can just notice it. That doesn't feel like enough sometimes, and then I'll give you some other strategies that you can do. But if you're somebody that you know doesn't even, isn't even aware that this is a thing. Your ego is going to hold you back a lot more than you yourself sitting there listening to this right now. You, at least, are aware of it and when it pops up, you can can acknowledge it and do something about it, or not do something. Whatever the case may be, you will not always catch it in action. You won't, and that's okay, it's fine. But so so awareness is so big Once you notice that hey, I think this is my ego getting in the way and talking to me right now Just get inquisitive. So awareness and curiosity for anything again in the personal growth realm, here are your two biggest, biggest players. So get inquisitive. So when you hear that voice say, you know, I don't think you should put those jokes in your son's lunchbox anymore. Okay, ask yourself hold on. Do I think this is a legit concern? Okay, if I do put the jokes in my son's lunchbox and it really is embarrassing him and maybe he's too embarrassed to tell me and doesn't want to hurt my feelings, I don't want to embarrass my son, so maybe this is a concern, okay, so now what? What's your next step? To just stop doing it or just have that quick conversation? Hey, do you like those jokes. Do you want me to put more in or are you over it? Not embarrassing for him, not embarrassing for you? You have your answer, but you didn't let your ego just stop you. You let the ego put in a little suggestion of hey, maybe this is a thing. Sometimes. I think our egos do keep us from dangerous situations, and so sometimes there are things where, ooh, you know what, that is a legitimate concern and it doesn't mean that you shouldn't do the thing, but it's something that's helping raise awareness. Ooh, maybe I don't wanna just blindly follow my ego and not do these things because scary things might happen, but maybe I do need to look into it, maybe make a plan or put something in place so that I'm a little more protected. If that's appropriate, some people will name their ego. I have named mine, tammy. So whenever Tammy's yapping away about you can't do that and who are you, or what about this or what about that, all right, thanks, tammy. You know, maybe be quiet for a little while, but I think that sometimes helps keep it a little bit separate and more contained to where it's not taking over. Again. We can listen to it and see what it has to offer, but that doesn't mean we have to blindly follow everything Tammy says, because she's not always very nice, as it turns out, especially in that case of me recording that talk. Tammy was loud oh my golly, was she so loud and not very kind at all? So naming your ego sometimes is something people do and that can help. I will literally visualize her moving to the back seat of a car and so and another thing that you can do is thank your ego. So you know, when I, my ego, is really loud and I notice and I'm like hold on, I feel like you are trying to drive this car right now and I'm not okay with that. Thank you for your concern. I'm gonna have you move on to the back seat. You can still share your concerns from there. I will listen to them, but I am the one driving this car. I'm the one making the ultimate decisions and choices for my life here. So thanks for your time. Sit down, be quiet, right? So that's something else you can do. And a final thing that I would suggest and this is something that a mentor of mine, jennifer Jade. So if you've been following the podcast, I've done actually a couple episodes with Jennifer and she's just such a wealth of knowledge. Something that she had suggested is that you actually visualize a dial in your brain of your ego, like you know, one of those like an old stereo knob with like the mine goes one to 10. And I visual I don't know why my stereo knob, for my ego, looks like it belongs on a like 1970s record player. I don't know why, that's where my brain went, but that's one mine looks like Yours could look different. So I visualize that knob and I will turn it all the way off, depending on what I'm doing. I don't just walk around all day going, oh, I think I'm gonna turn off my ego. I don't do that. When I turn it off, it's when I'm sitting down intentionally, trying to maybe I'm trying to connect with you know my intuition, or you know something like that Maybe I'm sitting down quietly. That's a time when I will turn it all the way to zero. But if you're in a situation where you just caught yourself like, oh my gosh, ego is being so loud right now, that might be a time to just take a second, close your eyes, take a few deep breaths and try and turn that knob down. Sometimes and I it's so weird because sometimes I will, I'll turn it, I'll wanna turn it off and I can't. And isn't that bizarre? Because it's my own, my own stereo knob. How can I not turn it off? But, depending on the situation, sometimes my ego is so loud and so, like demanding attention, it just will not let me click it all the way off. So I say, okay, we'll just go to one or two, just turn down for a little bit, give me a break for crying out loud. And there's other times where, again, if I am intentionally sitting down to, you know, tap into my intuition about something or other, I will have to give it permission to come back on. And that seems to help. So I will say things to myself or my ego. Tammy, I'll say things like, okay, I'm gonna sit down, I'm closing my eyes, I'm gonna kind of tap into my intuition. Once I get up from this chair, ego, you can go full up to 10 if you need to, whatever. But right now, in this moment, I need a little peace, I need a little clarity and I don't want distraction. So you're off until I get up from this chair, then you can go back, and that seems to help for me as well. Now Jennifer Jade also has mentioned using another dial, and I use this as well. Again, this would be if I want to be tuning into my intuition something of that nature, I will envision the second dial and I will crank that one all the way up to 10. So that's just to like. Really, I really wanna be able to hear my intuition connect with a higher power or whatever, and so I'll turn that up all the way to 10 for that purpose. But again, if your ego is just being loud and pesty, you can do something about that, but it's not. It's part of you, but it's not all of you. So I just wanted to stress that, that your ego is not all of you. This isn't. You are not all those worries and fears and concerns. In fact, you, at your purest state of consciousness, are all love. You're all the love, oneness, happiness, all the good feelings. So it is. You can name it, contain it a little bit and excuse me and you should be able to move forward with things with a little more clarity and not holding yourself back quite as much. At least that's the idea here. Another thing that does help all these podcast episodes I do really are help. You get curious with your own self and how can you maybe live a little better, whatever that looks like for you. And another thing that's going to be really helpful in getting curious with yourself is journaling. I've talked about journaling so many times. Journaling is something that you can do it every day. I know people that do. You can do it once in a while, but journaling is something that really can quickly help you get to the root of what's going on in your brain and give it your ego a chance to get some of those fears out. You can look at what you wrote on paper and then really realize that oh gosh, wow, I guess I didn't realize that I was feeling like that or XYZ. And it helps you really kind of get clear on some things. If you are like me and you love the idea of journaling, but you just ain't got that kind of time every day, that's me. I like to journal once a week. I generally have time, like on a Sunday or something, have time to journal once a week just for a little while. But I just don't have the time to do like deep journaling questions every day, like questions like what makes you feel safe, open-ended questions like that. I do journal a whole page on things that make you feel safe. I like the idea of doing it every day. I don't have the time, but I do also think there are some things that are helpful every day and that would be things like practicing gratitude, being aware of your intentions, daily things like that. If you haven't heard, I created my own journal because I just was frustrated with the lack of journal, like I wanted, I guess, basically. So I created just a quick little journal where it's meant to be done every day, on the things like gratitude and making sure you're on track with your habits and your intentions. There's a whole section on setting and what your intentions and habits are, and then there are some times for weekly journaling prompts. Now, sometimes some of you might take a question a day and you might have time to do that. That's cool. Other people might be like me and you might just journal once a week, sit down. I just like the whole mood of it. I like to get with my cozy blankets and I like to light a candle and sit down and just have a little time to just do some of that journaling on. Again, for me it's a weekly basis, not a daily basis, so anyway. So I did create that journal and it is available on my website, mindyduckcom. If you just hop to the shop, you'll see that there and I can put the link in the notes as well. But that is just another thing that will help you get inquisitive, help you to learn a little bit more about yourself so that you can live the best life that you can live, and that's really what I'm all about here. Ego, along for the ride, absolutely Just not driving the car, so to speak. So, yeah, so that resource is available for you. I'm pretty inexpensive at my website, there again, mindyduckcom. Well, that is all that I have for you today. Again, I have so many super fun, interesting guests lined up. I've got oh gosh, there's a financial lady coming on, there is a scalar light healing man that, oh my gosh, that one's going to be crazy and wild and so many more wonderful things, and so I look forward to talking with you more and I hope you're having a great day. I will catch you on the next one. I'm sending you so much love and light. I'll see you in the next episode.

Exploring the Concept of Ego
Egos' Impact on Our Actions
Tuning Into Intuition and Managing Ego
Weekly Journal and Upcoming Guests