If you’ve been wading in the spiritual waters for even a little while you’ve probably heard the “E” word a few times. And have you noticed that we tend to think of Ego as the enemy?
This post won’t go too into detail about “Ego” as a concept. For now, for the purposes of this topic, we’ll define Ego as a lens that distorts the truth.
When you don’t get that job that you interviewed for, but someone with less talent and less experience (as you perceive it) does, Ego says: I am better than that person. They don’t deserve that job. This company is full of idiots.
This is a perspective, and a pretty ugly one at that. It’s not the truth.
When you are doing spiritual work, truth is the Holy Grail. Looking at the world through your Ego’s eyes will taint your work with useless value judgment, and also pave the way for misinformation, inaccurate interpretation, and lower-vibrations in general.
Now - where there is money, Ego often follows. This makes the issue of money a big one in the spiritual community. There are all kinds of hangups, but it doesn’t necessarily have to be that way.
I got a question recently about how to keep Ego out of paid readings.
The first step involves separating what is truly Ego, from what is healthy, and truthful. We’ll tackle some beliefs and dig into what it really means when we have those thoughts and feelings.
1. Money is bad. Therefore wanting to earn money is bad and I should feel bad about doing it – especially for spiritual work.
False. Money is energy. Tons of articles have been written on the subject of this hurtful belief that healers and readers don’t deserve to be compensated for their work as much as anyone else who gets paid for a skill and service they provide. So I’ll save that rant for another time, but I will say this: If you are doing honest work and you’re not lying, or cheating someone out of their money, then there is nothing to feel bad about. What you’re experiencing is a negative programmed belief that’s coming from someone else’s Ego. Not yours.
2. I am excited and happy when someone orders a service from me – and that is my Ego taking over.
False. This is gratitude, not Ego. You deserve to do good things, and get good things in return. Be grateful! Get excited! Be happy that you can afford your groceries and pay your electric bills! Be happy that if those are already paid for, you can buy yourself some chocolate or a big ol’ cup of coffee from your favorite shop because YOU DESERVE IT! And I don’t care what you did to get that money. If it made you happy, made others happy, and didn’t hurt anyone – then you’re GOOD. Be happy.
3. I am gifted, that makes me special, and the expert. The people that come to me for help aren’t as special as me and they don’t have as much to offer the world because they aren’t as spiritual or gifted as me.
This is a belief that can come up when you find yourself successful in your work. And this, my friend, is Ego. If you find yourself with a superiority complex and looking down at your clients, then you have some work to do. If you fear getting to this point, then there are steps you can take.
Here are my three big tips for keeping ego out your spiritual work when money is in the mix:
Give gratitude to yourself, to your clients, to the universe, to your family, to your hot shower, anything and everything. When you approach life from a place of gratitude (and it takes practice) that lens of ego starts to crack.
Get real honest with yourself about why you’re doing this work. Do you want people to hang on your every insight? Do you seek out that feeling of power above actually helping someone? You’re not automatically a bad person if you have that in you, it just means that ego is at work and you need to dig deeper.
Respect & Perspective.
You need to keep this in balance. Respect yourself, the energy you invest, and the good that you accomplish – but make sure to acknowledge how many threads help to make up your web. Respect your client for trusting you, and wanting to improve their life. Respect the people in your life who taught you valuable life lessons that got you to this point. Respect the farmer who raised the crops that ended up on your plate for lunch, which gave you the energy to do your work and hug your kids. When you take some time (not all the time) to zoom out and look at the big picture you understand that at once you are amazing, and you deserve to be happy and abundant. At the same time, this universe is incredible, this world is mindboggling, and everyone is at the center of their own little webs. When you see the whole, Ego has no choice but to retreat.
Here’s a little cheatsheet. If the self-talk in your head sounds fearful, angry, judgmental, bitter, or self-deprecating – you’re either acting from Ego, or being influenced by someone else's.
If your self-talk is compassionate, forgiving, empathetic (not sympathetic), gracious, and kind, you’re fine. Ego is not holding the reigns.
Now there’s one more belief you may have had, and I am going to open up the floor for a discussion. I’ll give you the belief, and you tell me if it’s Ego or not.
“I should be getting more clients than this. I’m a good reader, I have a lot to offer, and I deserve abundance.”
Well? Let me know what you think.