Me and my EGO
You remember the cartoons that had the devil on one shoulder and the angel on the other? That's how I imagine my ego, except spirit to me is a sweet long haired hippie girl and my ego is a cynical old man.
That cynical old man has caused me more pain and anguish than any other single thing in my life. I still struggle with him today. I hadn't heard the voice of the ego in a while so I tried to remember the things that is said. In doing this my stomach began to ache, my shoulders got tense, and head began to hurt, I got a lump in my throat. I am not sad that he has been in the corner.
I've had a yo yo weight thing going on for most of my adult life. Get fat, get skinny. Never maintain. I decided at one point to take up running. The ego would describe how my fat looked bouncing as I ran, he would laugh and say that the people that were driving by were thinking how gross it was to see that, and how I needed to go farther. He would motivate me with phrases like "your husband will cheat on you if you don't tone up". Sadly, this worked, several times. I either forced myself to obsessively run, or obsessively diet, or both. I would weigh and record my weight every morning and when the number didn't satisfy him he would say "oh I knew it, you didn't try hard enough, ya half assed it. That's because you are lazy"
Anytime I ever tried to get something I wanted and didn't succeed the voice would say "you didn't deserve it. How stupid you must look now. Everyone is going to remember this failure. You should have just stuck to something easy." Then when I would succeed he would somehow even steal that from me. During my stint with running I trained for and ran a half marathon. It was deemed the hardest half in the northwest. Uphill 9 miles and downhill 4. I got a pretty good side ache on the downhill and had to slow up quite a bit. I finished, but the voice said "everybody is going to see that you weren't even in the top 100" "you should have just pushed through and ran". I didn't even get to relish in the moment of completing this grand adventure, I just headed straight for the keg at the finish line.
I've come up with many original ideas and thoughts through the years, and made plans to put them into action, but the voice would enter and tell me everything that could go wrong with them and that it would be safer to just keep a low profile and succeed at sure things. So that's what I did. Until I read something that said I have a choice. I have a choice to listen to that voice, I don't have to. I was so concerned that everything would just go to crap if I listened to that sweet loving voice. I thought I would just get fat, I would be lazy, I would look like a fool. He had brainwashed me. Little by little I started to hear her voice. It was hard at first, he was so loud and the voice I was just used to listening to. I would have to see how he was making me feel and realize there was another option. Before I knew it I was full on, a caring and loving human. Do you know what also happened? when I stopped thinking of myself in the cynical old man voice, I also stopped thinking of everyone else in it too. I found myself feeling softer toward everyone and everything. It was so beautiful and it made me feel so light and well like I could actually breathe better.
I lost the weight by loving myself, by loving my body so much that I didn't want to punish it anymore.By offering it only things that helped it. It's not so much about me anymore either, I realized that voice was a real narcissist. I mostly put the focus on other people now. I want to help people, I want to see them happy, like a permanent sustainable happy. I want to feel good because others feel good. The soft gentle voice has guided all of my focus to love. Love of my self, love of others, love of creatures, love of moments and love of experiences. She directs me to notice the glitter in the snow, the eyes of a stranger, the kindness going on all the time. She directs me to focus on successes and not failures. She gently guides me to notice the good in every part of my day, and guess what? Results still happen, but I enjoy the ride so much more.
I took a walk today to form this article and the cynical old man appeared and said "nobody gives a crap about this happy hippie b.s, and you look like an idiot putting it out there for everyone to see." I just shrugged my shoulders, smiled and said "if this article helps just one person, then it is worth it." and "shut up and sit back in the corner where I put you old man:)"
Love and Light