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Handling Our Egos For A Happy Life

Many of the problems in relationships arise from a feeling of ego compromise. We may not publicly accept this. We may project the view that there is difference of opinion over facts or issues, whereas in reality this ‘difference’ is motivated by an apprehended loss of respect or hurt ego. On many occasions we get agitated not because of what is said but because of the manner in which it is said. Form becomes more important than content. It is definitely a sign of one’s falling prey to emotion. In such a situation no discussion or debate can be healthy, objective or unbiased. Therefore, we should guard against avoidable verbal duels that further tension.

The consequences of being too ego-conscious can be serious. Such persons may develop a critical and confrontationist nature. A person who always criticizes and finds fault is likely to be disliked by others. He may consequently be isolated. Love and understanding bring people closer. We should accept the fact that no one is perfect and learn to get along with people of different abilities and attainments. Hammering a point in in an effort to rectify others’ mistakes is often a waste of energy. Such an exercise harms the person himself more than help the other party.

It is a good habit to place ourselves in the position of the other side. If I feel hurt when someone says something rude, I should, in my turn, be careful in choosing the language and manner of communicating with others. If we learn to give respect to others, most of the occasions of conflict will disappear. If I understand that someone close to me has done something wrong, I would invite further bitterness by repeatedly hammering on the same. I should approach the person concerned with love and sympathy and try to render guidance at the appropriate time and in proper language. Even if there is no miraculous change immediately, the long-term effect will definitely be better.

Source – Excerpts from article titled 'Living with Tension' By Dibakar Chakrabarti in October 2005 issue of Prabuddha Bharata Magazine