Maybe it’s just me talking in my 30s (31 in a few days to be exact), but lately I’ve been paying close attention more to what the little voice inside me is saying. No, it’s not insanity that’s knocking at my door, but more of a reflection of thyself. Without trying to sound super philosophical, I’ll try my best to keep it simple.
I’m constantly making comparisons to myself from the person that I am now, and the person I was in my 20’s. Too much to prove yet not much yet proven, always looking for reassurance. Competitive. Passive aggressive. Wanting to be seen doing things that are often not seen doing. Among many other things.
Letting go of my ego has been the biggest challenges I’ve faced in my 30s. I don’t care to be the best anymore. I’d rather make other people feel smart. Yet while doing so, I am noticing the ego in others and trying (so far succeeding) in biting my tongue.
My younger brother taught me a lesson (therein lies another shot to the life line of my ego) when I jokingly mentioned that someone did something better than him. He respond nonchalantly, “O.K.”.
It was my understanding that my statement wasn’t taken in a joking manner as I intended, but it still struck a chord with me. If someone is better than you, who cares? Feeding your anger/jealousy/thirst for winning/etc. is like the rich man who finds solace in his material things. You just end up with more and more, but are never truly satisfied.
It was only a year ago that I still felt the need to interject if I felt offense was being given to me.
It was only a year ago that I always felt the need to defend myself.
It was only a year ago that I felt I had to one up the competition and be the center of attention at whatever I did.
Realizing my own faults and knowing my own ego I can see it in others, but do not fault them for it. I can hear the voice in my head and the first thing I would say once I felt my ego being attacked. I can hear the voice in my head crying for attention if someone else gets credit for the things I have done, but is too aloof to remember who it really was that should deserve the credit. I can hear that voice and I can hold it back with aching restraint. And finally when the feeling passes, I feel good inside and ask myself “Who cares? For what?”