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7 Signs Your Ego Is Limiting Your Success (And How To Tame It)

7 Signs Your Ego Is Limiting Your Success (And How To Tame It)

There’s a fine line between confident and egotistical. It’s definitely okay to take pride in your work and have the self-esteem to know that you’re good at what you do, but it’s another to think you’re better than everyone else and act superior to them. Your ego can really get in the way. If you truly are better at performing your job than other people are, gloating about it only wastes time and energy. Instead, you should work on building others up in order for the entire team to succeed.

Signs of egotism:

  • Frequent complaining

Egotists find any and everything to complain about when things start to go wrong, when they should really be using that energy to right the ship. These people tend to blame others for a team’s shortcomings, rather than look at what they can do better, or what they can do to help others grow.

  • Frequent arguing

Since they tend to place blame on others, egotists are often very confrontational. This leads to rifts between colleagues and coworkers, ultimately impeding any progress for all parties involved.

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  • Defensive behavior

Egotists are quick to blame everyone else, but somehow always have a reason for why they didn’t perform well on a task. When others mess up, they’re incompetent; when they mess up, it’s because they didn’t sleep well, or have a lot on their plate. They often don’t listen to constructive criticism, believing their supervisor is simply out to get them. Obviously, this attitude completely impedes their ability to improve.

  • Self-criticism

Behind closed doors, egotists are incredibly critical of themselves. They are afraid of taking risks or stepping out of their comfort zones because they fear being laughed at. This stems from the notion that they actually think anyone else truly cares enough to judge them. Egotists also believe that others think this way simply because that’s how they operate themselves.

  • No apologies

Why would an egotist apologize? In their eyes, they never do any wrong. This goes back to how they often blame others for their own mistakes or shortcomings, and how they rationalize their own behavior. When someone wrongs them, they’ll hold a grudge until the other party apologizes. When they wrong others, they believe the other party should just let it go.

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  • Impatience

Egotists are rather impatient when it takes others a little longer to learn something or complete a task. They think they’re more intelligent and efficient than everyone else in the room, so they get frustrated when someone else takes their time doing something. They don’t take the time to consider other people’s thought processes or abilities. Rather than help others, they simply complain about how long it’s taking them to get a job done.

  • Passing judgment

Obviously, egotists are incredibly judgmental. They don’t consider other people’s background, personal life, or any other factor when analyzing their ability to perform a specific task. When others fail, egotists don’t see them as a work in progress; they simply see them as a failure.

Ways to overcome egotism

You might not even realize you’re acting in a way that comes of as egotistical. If any of the preceding characteristics apply to you, you should take action in order to become a more compassionate, team-driven individual.

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  • Help others instead of putting them down

Don’t waste time and energy complaining about how terrible others are at their jobs. If you’re so much better than them, it should be easy to help them improve. Share the strategies you’ve used to move forward in life. Your colleagues will most likely appreciate your efforts, and your team will move toward success.

  • Use criticism wisely

When helping others, point out the things they do well. Although they probably have areas in need of improvement pertaining to their performance, don’t harp on them. Instead, guide them toward growth. Nobody likes a critic, so if you’re going to criticize others, make sure it’s for a positive reason.

  • Only judge yourself

You should never, ever judge anyone other than yourself. Don’t compare other people’s performance to your own because you have no idea about any other aspect of their life, and have never walked in their shoes. Compare yourself only to the person you were yesterday. If you haven’t made improvements yourself, you have no right to judge anyone else.

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Featured photo credit: Flickrr via farm8.staticflickr.com

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Matt Duczeminski

A passionate writer who shares lifestlye tips on Lifehack

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Published on May 4, 2021

How To Spot Fake People (And Ways To Deal With Them)

How To Spot Fake People (And Ways To Deal With Them)

They say we are the average of the five persons we spend the most time with. For a minute, consider the people around you. Are they truly who your “tribe” should be or who you aspire to become in the future? Are they really genuine people who want to see you succeed? Or are they fake people who don’t really want to see you happy?

In this article, I’ll review why it is important to surround yourself with genuine individuals—the ones who care, bring something to our table, and first and foremost, who leave all fakeness behind.

How to Spot Fake People?

When you’ve been working in the helping professions for a while, spotting fake people gets a bit easier. There are some very clear signs that the person you are looking at is hiding something, acting somehow, or simply wanting to get somewhere. Most often, there is a secondary gain—perhaps attention, sympathy, or even a promotion.

Whatever it is, you’re better off working their true agenda and staying the hell away. Here are some things you should look out for to help spot fake people.

1. Full of Themselves

Fake people like to show off. They love looking at themselves in the mirror. They collect photos and videos of every single achievement they had and every part of their body and claim to be the “best at what they do.”

Most of these people are actually not that good in real life. But they act like they are and ensure that they appear better than the next person. The issue for you is that you may find yourself always feeling “beneath” them and irritated at their constant need to be in the spotlight.

2. Murky in Expressing Their Emotions

Have you ever tried having a deep and meaningful conversation with a fake person? It’s almost impossible. It’s because they have limited emotional intelligence and don’t know how they truly feel deep down—and partly because they don’t want to have their true emotions exposed, no matter how normal these might be.

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It’s much harder to say “I’m the best at what I do” while simultaneously sharing “average” emotions with “equal” people.

3. Zero Self-Reflection

To grow, we must accept feedback from others. We must be open to our strengths and to our weaknesses. We must accept that we all come in different shapes and can always improve.

Self-reflection requires us to think, forgive, admit fault, and learn from our mistakes. But to do that, we have to be able to adopt a level of genuineness and depth that fake people don’t routinely have. A fake person generally never apologizes, but when they do, it is often followed with a “but” in the next breath.

4. Unrealistic Perceptions

Fake people most often have an unrealistic perception of the world—things that they want to portray to others (pseudo achievements, materialistic gains, or a made-up sense of happiness) or simply how they genuinely regard life outside themselves.

A lot of fake people hide pain, shame, and other underlying reasons in their behavior. This could explain why they can’t be authentic and/or have difficulties seeing their environment for the way it objectively is (both good and bad).

5. Love Attention

As I mentioned earlier, the biggest sign that something isn’t quite right with someone’s behavior can be established by how much they love attention. Are you being interrupted every time you speak by someone who wants to make sure that the spotlight gets reverted back to them? Is the focus always on them, no matter the topic? If yes, you’re probably dealing with a fake person.

6. People Pleaser

Appreciation feels nice but having everyone like you is even better. While it is completely unrealistic for most people to please everyone all the time, fake people seem to always say yes in pursuit of constant approval.

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Now, this is a problem for two reasons. Firstly, these people are simply saying yes to things for their own satisfaction. Secondly, they often end up changing their minds or retracting their offer for one reason or another (“I would have loved to, but my grandmother suddenly fell ill.”), leaving you in the lurch for the 100th time this year.

7. Sarcasm and Cynicism

Behind the chronic pasted smile, fake people are well known for brewing resentment, jealousy, or anger. This is because, behind the postcard life, they are often unhappy. Sarcasm and cynicism are well known to act as a defense mechanism, sometimes even a diversion—anything so they can remain feeling on top of the world, whether it is through boosting themselves or bringing people down.

8. Crappy friend

Fake people are bad friends. They don’t listen to you, your feelings, and whatever news you might have to share. In fact, you might find yourself migrating away from them when you have exciting or bad news to share, knowing that it will always end up one way—their way. In addition, you might find that they’re not available when you truly need them or worse, cancel plans at the last minute.

It’s not unusual to hear that a fake person talks constantly behind people’s backs. Let’s be honest, if they do it to others, they’re doing it to you too. If your “friend” makes you feel bad constantly, trust me, they’re not achieving their purpose, and they’re simply not a good person to have around.

The sooner you learn to spot these fake people, the sooner you can meet meaningful individuals again.

How to Cope With Fake People Moving Forward?

It is important to remind yourself that you deserve more than what you’re getting. You are worthy, valuable, precious, and just as important as the next person.

There are many ways to manage fake people. Here are some tips on how to deal with them.

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1. Boundaries

Keep your boundaries very clear. As explained in the book Unlock Your Resilience, boundaries are what keep you sane when the world tries to suffocate you. When fake people become emotional vampires, make sure to keep your distances, limit contact, and simply replace them with more valuable interactions.

2. Don’t Take Their Behavior Personally

Sadly, they most likely have behaved this way before they knew you and will continue much longer after you have moved on. It isn’t about you. It is about their inner need to meet a void that you are not responsible for. And in all honesty, unless you are a trained professional, you are unlikely to improve it anyway.

3. Be Upfront and Honest About How You Feel

If your “friend” has been hurtful or engaged in behaviors you struggle with, let them know—nicely, firmly, however you want, but let them know that they are affecting you. If it works, great. If it doesn’t, you’ll feel better and when you’re ready to move on, you’ll know you tried to reach out. Your conscience is clear.

4. Ask for Advice

If you’re unsure about what you’re seeing or feeling, ask for advice. Perhaps a relative, a good friend, or a colleague might have some input as to whether you are overreacting or seeing some genuine concerns.

Now, don’t confuse asking for advice with gossiping behind the fake person’s back because, in the end, you don’t want to stoop down to their level. However, a little reminder as to how to stay on your own wellness track can never hurt.

5. Dig Deeper

Now, this one, I offer with caution. If you are emotionally strong, up to it, guaranteed you won’t get sucked into it, and have the skills to manage, perhaps you could dig into the reasons a fake person is acting the way they do.

Have they suffered recent trauma? Have they been rejected all their lives? Is their self-esteem so low that they must resort to making themselves feel good in any way they can? Sometimes, having an understanding of a person’s behavior can help in processing it.

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6. Practice Self-Care!

Clearly, putting some distance between the fake person and yourself is probably the way to go. However, sometimes, it takes time to get there. In the meantime, make sure to practice self-care, be gentle with yourself, and compensate with lots of positives!

Self-care can be as simple as taking a hot shower after talking to them or declining an invitation when you’re not feeling up to the challenge.

Spotting fake people isn’t too hard. They generally glow with wanna-be vibes. However, most often, there are reasons as to why they are like this. Calling their behavior might be the first step. Providing them with support might be the second. But if these don’t work, it’s time to stay away and surround yourself with the positivity that you deserve.

Final Thoughts

Remember that life is a rollercoaster. It has good moments, tough moments, and moments you wouldn’t change for the world. So, look around and make sure that you take the time to choose the right people to share it all with.

We are the average of the five people we spend the most time with, so take a good look around and choose wisely!

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Featured photo credit: Priscilla Du Preez via unsplash.com

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