“It’s not about you Ewan. It’s not about you! What right do you have to say people aren’t worthy of your help? That you aren’t worthy of theirs!? What right!? It’s blocking you. You’re not fully giving your gifts to the world.”
Her words echoed around my consciousness for weeks.
As any great friend would do, she’d let me have it. The loving sledgehammer applied with precision to a fragile pride. My heart felt the truth in her words immediately.
My ego felt rather grumpy about the whole thing.
“What the hell do you mean it’s not about me? I’m very special don’t you know!”
When I think of ego I think of a small child. One who has just discovered their will, and power. I want does get.
“Look at me mommy, I’m climbing really high, look at me, look at me!”
And we celebrate it don’t we? It’s new and fresh, and beautiful.
But it doesn’t stop with children.
“I just made $12,000 in a single phone call. It was so easy. This is the sign of progress, and really owning your power. All you need to do is just believe in yourself, just like I did, and you can have anything you want, whenever you want. Look, I’ve got 274 facebook likes on this already. Wow, it’s so simple!”
It may be dressed up in adult drag, but it’s the same voice at the core. “Look at me, look at me! I’m a big boy!”
At some point appropriateness kicks in.
Just like it’s generally not appropriate to shit in our pants past the age of 3, it’s probably not the best idea to wave a 3 year old ego about when you’re 33 or 63.
But hold on, let’s also put this in perspective.
Getting an Ego is a Groundbreaking Move
It’s a developmental stage.
In child development, the development of the ego is paradigm shift in perspective. Groundbreaking. Suddenly you can see your own identity as distinct from everything around you. You’re no longer fused. You are you.
“I’m TOM! And I like trains!”
You can possess things, want things, have things, take things.
The ego transformed culture too.
It enabled people to determine want they did and did not want. To realize they could take it or defend it. They had their own power. It’s what enabled humanity to move from small tribes, to big powerful clans.
It was a totally groundbreaking shift. And, it was also 10,000 years ago now.
We don’t consider it particularly cool or honorable to just take other people’s stuff anymore. What was once paradigm-busting, is now hopelessly insufficient for our ideals.
I Have an Ego Apparently
And then it happened.
I got hit over the head by a priestess.
“It’s not about you Ewan. It’s not about you!”
What? But surely it’s about me? I’m the one impacting people, blowing their minds, transforming their lives. I’m the one they’re paying a lot of money to, to coach them. What do you mean, it’s not about me!?
Of course, my heart actually knows already. I’ve known all along. Much to the annoyance of my partner.
“Stop being a moron Ewan, why do you always make it about you?”
She’s a priestess too, and relentless in her teaching of me. I hazard to think what would happen to my ego without her.
My ego thinks about what would happen without her a great deal.
“Freedom! No more complaints! As much lazy, bullshit self delusion as I can stomach!”
Today it sounds like hell. Sometimes, it still sounds like heaven.
Apparently I need to be reminded. A lot.
It’s not about me, or propping up some idea of who I need to be to feel worthy. It’s about answering the call, burning through the karma that is required, and serving those I’m sent to help.
I forget that sometimes. So, thanks to the women, and two in particular, for reminding me.
And What About You?
This is the part where I want to not make it about me, and make it about you instead. Because then I’ll be ‘serving you’. Or something like that.
But what I actually want to say is…
You’re amazing, and beautiful, and powerful. You are worthy, by the grace of being alive. You are as worthy as worthy gets.
It’s just that you have to open your heart wide to truly remember that. And there are a squillion reasons not to do that.
For me, they’re all some variation on “Fuck that! I’m not going to show the real me, no-one will love that!”
My coach said to me: “what would happen next week Ewan, if you just didn’t make it about you?”
It felt like such a yummy question.
So, I’m posting this blog…that’s about me. Except it’s not really. It’s about each and every one of us, and how we’re all scared to truly show up in one way or another.
I know I’m outing myself, because my ego is begging me not to show it to you.
It’s saying, “you can’t post something that’s almost all about you”.
Ha, the irony.
So, here’s to not making it about me. Or you.
What would happen today if you didn’t make it about you?