An argument erupted between the brothers over an important business project. Younger brother Vivaan was trying his best that his older sibling Vikas see things in its true perspective. But Vikas had a mindset of his own. His ideas were fixed, although they were not in favour of their joint company. Deep inside he knew Vivaan was right. But why didn’t this scheme click him first? How dare Vivaan lecture him? And worst of all, why should he accept that his younger brother was smarter than him? So only to fan his ego, he allowed the damage to happen. Eventually his ego paid a heavy price and he had to witness a divided business and a broken family. Why? Only because he wrongly loved himself more than anything else.
* * * * * *
Tears stream down his closed eyes, when Suresh reflects back and thinks of all the injustice he did with Sudha, when they were together. She tried innumerable times to talk to him, to clarify, but in vain. She pleaded with him before signing the divorce papers, “Suresh please! We can still work it out. Think about it. This is an irreversible mistake.”
But Suresh was flying high in his infuriated ego and lashed out at Sudha,
“I don’t need you to tell me what to do. I’m better off without you. Just sign and get lost!”
Today, three years later, Sudha is happily married to an old friend of hers and here Suresh is regretfully gulping down his own harsh words. Like a ghost, they haunt him all the time. And all for what? A king-sized ego!
* * * * * *
Ego: A person’s sense of self-esteem or self-importance.
This is the definition according to the dictionary. But sadly, it sometimes takes a very ugly twist in real life and leaves behind irreparable devastations.
In both the above anecdotes, it is clearly visible that the suffering is more on the side of the person who was not willing to bow and bend. Without thinking, slipping in to feed your unreasonable ego is easy and tempting. And of course temporarily, very satisfying. It camouflages your ability to think clearly and definitely hampers your judgement.
A laughable aspect isn’t it? We become slaves to our own ego, know the damages and yet give in to it.
Let’s change the path and fly high in a different direction.
We all have many good qualities. Plenty. And it’s perfectly fine as long as you are happy about it and utilise it for the benefit of yourself and others. But it’s foolish to think that you are
indispensable. Nobody is. There are countless out there better and smarter than you. Remember the song from ‘Kabhi Kabhi’?
कल और आएंगे नग़मों की
खिलती कलियाँ चुनने वाले
मुझसे बेहतर कहने वाले
तुमसे बेहतर सुनने वाले….
This very thought should melt your ignited ego.
You’ll undoubtedly meet people you disagree with or don’t get along with. Nonetheless, have an open mind. At least be respectful enough and hear them out. Who knows, a novel idea might just come up on the table!
Being rational or being just and fair, in no way does it kill your self worth or bruise your self-esteem. Ego is something which needs to be tamed like an unruly and a wild pet. Channelising it in the right direction, taking all angles into consideration and working in the interest of all. If only Vikas had taken Vivaan’s ideas? They’d still be together. If only Suresh had compromised a little? He’d still be happily married to Sudha.
EMPATHY is a quality which will surely help to tame this gigantic beast in us. Only when we step into the shoes of the other, feel for that person, will our ego become smaller or go down to the size of what it actually should be…a peanut. You must have noticed, people who don’t fan their egos, say please, sorry and thank you very easily.
Surely you might be doing your work wonderfully and with precision. But that’s not what you’ll be remembered for. You can only leave an impact on the hearts and minds of people with how you treat them. Your ego may be of supreme importance to you. But frankly speaking, more fundamental are your family and friends. They are the ones who complete you. Therefore what they think of you and how you approach them is far more essential than anything else.
When ego comes in the way to think and decide rationally, just stop for a minute and question yourself,
“What really matters??”