Expressing yourself is healthy. But it is also useful to consider what part of yourself you are expressing. Are you expressing your heart? Or are you expressing your ego?
Your ego is your self-identity. It is what you think you are. It is the image of yourself that you present to the world. It is contrived. It creates separation. We all have one. If you can’t see it, it is likely controlling you.
Your ego likes things the way they are- with it in control. When there is something new that involves change, letting go, and surrendering, the ego will have to die and reformulate itself. It will not do this without a fight and some attempted sabotage.
True artists, on the other hand, are an excellent example of healthy expression. They strive to express something genuine and substantial from inside themselves.
When we do sharing circles in workshops and ceremony, we encourage people to express their heart- something real that is going on inside them.
But listen to conversations- in-person or on-line. Many of the things people are expressing are ego-based- their specialness, cleverness, cuteness, and powerfulness. Their belief about how the world should be.
So we get to hear how he put his boss back in his place. Or how she thinks it is so unfair. Or how he is so in tune with other people. This is inherently different than expressing something real and substantial from our hearts.
So it is essential to discern what part of yourself you are expressing. It is also important to discern what part of themselves others are expressing. This way we can reinforce pure expression and stop reinforcing ego expression- both in ourselves and others. Somebody has to- if we want to live in harmony. And if not you, who?
This is especially important in children and adolescents. Children need to be taught to access and express the genuine, substantial parts of themselves. How many times have you heard, “Oh Johnny is just expressing himself.” And you look over and their child is throwing a major tantrum or willfully acting out (their ego).
So what part of yourself have you been expressing lately?
Posted on Sat, March 29, 2014
by Michael Hoffman filed under