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How to Find Self-Acceptance By Mastering These 8 Ego-Destroying Tips

How to Find Self-Acceptance By Mastering These 8 Ego-Destroying Tips

Our ancestors had a one-size-fits-all approach to solving their problems. If someone were different, they would kill them. If someone were sickly or weak, they would kill them. Even the people who were exiled were hunted down and killed sooner or later.

Today it is a little barbaric to go around and just kill people. Sadly, we still do it. Only now, instead of a hatchet we use our massive egos to kill the things that we are most threatened by. The ego thrives on fear and keeps us in a primal, fight-or-flight state. In this state, we behave like wild animals. Unfortunately, we can never fully destroy the ego. The only thing that we can do is tame it through social domestication and training. Here are eight ways to achieve this:

1. You can begin the process of ego destroying by accepting the primordial parts of the self.

There are certain behaviors that are embedded in all humans. Many of these behaviors are needed for our survival. However, when a behavior becomes instinctual, it is virtually impossible to control. Through the years we have worked to control the ego through a social domestication process. So, much like a dog or cat, our genetic code has been altered. It has been socially neutered to stop the procreation of anything that is inherently harmful.

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2. Human domestication is part of the ego-destroying process.

The human domestication process was intended to weed out all of your bad traits. It was suppose to work as a process to tame your primal instincts and wild nature. It was a means of giving the ego self-restraint. So, when it starts to bark or bite, you can just place a muzzle over it and pretend it doesn’t exist.

However, this kind of behavior has resulted in suppression. This causes the ego to become much stronger. Then the ego will start to act out by defecating on the living room floor, leaving you to reprimand it when it loses control. You need to train the ego to control itself. Besides, the whole point of being socially domesticated is to learn how to clean up your doo-doo. Sadly, if your ego doesn’t understand right from wrong, you’re probably going to be knee deep in it!

3. You can master the process of ego destroying by choosing not to be overly defensive.

So, what happens when someone smells it and calls you out on your stuff? You revert back to your primal instincts. You devolve into your natural, uncivilized state where all problems were fixed with one simple solution: Kill! If you feel threatened by someone’s ideas or presence, you have to kill. If you are sexually attracted to someone and the feeling is not reciprocated, you have to kill. If someone makes you feel weak, feeble, and insecure, you have to kill. Your ego wants to kill anyone and everyone who makes you feel bad. Suppression causes the ego to spiral out of control. Negative energy will always be released when presented with the right opportunity.

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4. You can master the process of ego destroying by accepting the fact that the ego is a part of you.

In fact, you need the ego to survive and grow. However, you have got to put the ego in its place. When you seek to suppress the ego, you suppress the most natural parts of who you are. You become less creative and spontaneous, and you just can’t relax and live in the moment. If you’re having problems with suppression, just let go. Go wild and learn how to live in the moment. You need to understand chaos theory and that creation stems from disorder.

5. You can master the process of ego destroying by surrendering control.

Your ego wants to turn you into a control freak. Control freaks are looking for pets, not friends. They want to tame people by keeping them on a short leash. After all, it is best to not let them wander too far. Egos want to surround themselves with people who will obey, sit at their feet, and love them unconditionally. Fortunately, people can never be pets. If you want to stop treating people like pets, learn to be a giver. Also, learn how to appreciate people’s shortcomings and mistakes. You need to learn how to use experiences as life lessons that will enable you to become a better person.

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6. You can master the process of ego destroying by training the ego to be less judgmental.

Sadly, control freaks have massive egos that cause them to be extremely judgmental. In fact, they only feel safe and comfortable when things are done their way. If you want to stop being controlling, ease up on the judgments. Start to accept everything and everyone as they are.

7.You can master the process of ego destroying by standing up to your ego when it acts like a bully.

Bullies are like the ill-reputed pit bull terrier. In many situations, they have been beaten and abused by their owners. Only, their owners in real life may be their parents, friends and relatives. Your ego will approach every confrontation like it is a dogfight. It will bare its teeth and mangle anyone who poses a threat. Sadly, the ego is riddled with fear. It is in a constant state of fight or flight, so it is no longer able to think rationally. It solves its problems much like a fighting dog: by biting off its opponents’ heads and rolling them out of the ring once they’re dead.

8. Your ego wants to be your best friend.

If you have anger issues, are impulsive, short tempered, have a lot of regrets, and treat people badly, you can combat this problem by facing your fears. The ego thrives on fear. Behind fear is the feeling of vulnerability. However, we can only allow ourselves to be vulnerable when we feel safe and secure. If you have issues with your ego, you need to figure out what’s triggering you to go into fight-or-flight mode. If you’re constantly feeling threatened, ask yourself why. Then start to reprogram your mind by visualizing yourself in a safe and secure place.

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The ego is a primordial part of the self. Many behaviors that are associated with the ego are instinctual and thus difficult to control. Ego destroying may be virtually impossible; however, the ego can be tamed by mastering these eight life-changing tips.

Featured photo credit: Ego Destroying via dreamstime.com

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Last Updated on January 15, 2021

7 Ways To Have More Confident Body Language

7 Ways To Have More Confident Body Language

The popular idiomatic saying that “actions speak louder than words” has been around for centuries, but even to this day, most people struggle with at least one area of nonverbal communication. Consequently, many of us aspire to have more confident body language but don’t have the knowledge and tools necessary to change what are largely unconscious behaviors.

Given that others’ perceptions of our competence and confidence are predominantly influenced by what we do with our faces and bodies, it’s important to develop greater self-awareness and consciously practice better posture, stance, eye contact, facial expressions, hand movements, and other aspects of body language.

Posture

First things first: how is your posture? Let’s start with a quick self-assessment of your body.

  • Are your shoulders slumped over or rolled back in an upright posture?
  • When you stand up, do you evenly distribute your weight or lean excessively to one side?
  • Does your natural stance place your feet relatively shoulder-width apart or are your feet and legs close together in a closed-off position?
  • When you sit, does your lower back protrude out in a slumped position or maintain a straight, spine-friendly posture in your seat?

All of these are important considerations to make when evaluating and improving your posture and stance, which will lead to more confident body language over time. If you routinely struggle with maintaining good posture, consider buying a posture trainer/corrector, consulting a chiropractor or physical therapist, stretching daily, and strengthening both your core and back muscles.

Facial Expressions

Are you prone to any of the following in personal or professional settings?

  • Bruxism (tight, clenched jaw or grinding teeth)
  • Frowning and/or furrowing brows
  • Avoiding direct eye contact and/or staring at the ground

If you answered “yes” to any of these, then let’s start by examining various ways in which you can project confident body language through your facial expressions.

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1. Understand How Others Perceive Your Facial Expressions

A December 2020 study by UC Berkeley and Google researchers utilized a deep neural network to analyze facial expressions in six million YouTube clips representing people from over 140 countries. The study found that, despite socio-cultural differences, people around the world tended to use about 70% of the same facial expressions in response to different emotional stimuli and situations.[1]

The study’s researchers also published a fascinating interactive map to demonstrate how their machine learning technology assessed various facial expressions and determined subtle differences in emotional responses.

This study highlights the social importance of facial expressions because whether or not we’re consciously aware of them—by gazing into a mirror or your screen on a video conferencing platform—how we present our faces to others can have tremendous impacts on their perceptions of us, our confidence, and our emotional states. This awareness is the essential first step towards

2. Relax Your Face

New research on bruxism and facial tension found the stresses and anxieties of Covid-19 lockdowns led to considerable increases in orofacial pain, jaw-clenching, and teeth grinding, particularly among women.[2]

The National Institute of Dental and Craniofacial Research estimates that more than 10 million Americans alone have temporomandibular joint dysfunction (TMJ syndrome), and facial tension can lead to other complications such as insomnia, wrinkles, dry skin, and dark, puffy bags under your eyes.[3])

To avoid these unpleasant outcomes, start practicing progressive muscle relaxation techniques and taking breaks more frequently throughout the day to moderate facial tension.[4] You should also try out some biofeedback techniques to enhance your awareness of involuntary bodily processes like facial tension and achieve more confident body language as a result.[5]

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3. Improve Your Eye Contact

Did you know there’s an entire subfield of kinesic communication research dedicated to eye movements and behaviors called oculesics?[6] It refers to various communication behaviors including direct eye contact, averting one’s gaze, pupil dilation/constriction, and even frequency of blinking. All of these qualities can shape how other people perceive you, which means that eye contact is yet another area of nonverbal body language that we should be more mindful of in social interactions.

The ideal type (direct/indirect) and duration of eye contact depends on a variety of factors, such as cultural setting, differences in power/authority/age between the parties involved, and communication context. Research has shown that differences in the effects of eye contact are particularly prominent when comparing East Asian and Western European/North American cultures.[7]

To improve your eye contact with others, strive to maintain consistent contact for at least 3 to 4 seconds at a time, consciously consider where you’re looking while listening to someone else, and practice eye contact as much as possible (as strange as this may seem in the beginning, it’s the best way to improve).

3. Smile More

There are many benefits to smiling and laughing, and when it comes to working on more confident body language, this is an area that should be fun, low-stakes, and relatively stress-free.

Smiling is associated with the “happiness chemical” dopamine and the mood-stabilizing hormone, serotonin. Many empirical studies have shown that smiling generally leads to positive outcomes for the person smiling, and further research has shown that smiling can influence listeners’ perceptions of our confidence and trustworthiness as well.

4. Hand Gestures

Similar to facial expressions and posture, what you do with your hands while speaking or listening in a conversation can significantly influence others’ perceptions of you in positive or negative ways.

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It’s undoubtedly challenging to consciously account for all of your nonverbal signals while simultaneously trying to stay engaged with the verbal part of the discussion, but putting in the effort to develop more bodily awareness now will make it much easier to unconsciously project more confident body language later on.

5. Enhance Your Handshake

In the article, “An Anthropology of the Handshake,” University of Copenhagen social anthropology professor Bjarke Oxlund assessed the future of handshaking in wake of the Covid-19 pandemic:[8]

“Handshakes not only vary in function and meaning but do so according to social context, situation and scale. . . a public discussion should ensue on the advantages and disadvantages of holding on to the tradition of shaking hands as the conventional gesture of greeting and leave-taking in a variety of circumstances.”

It’s too early to determine some of the ways in which Covid-19 has permanently changed our social norms and professional etiquette standards, but it’s reasonable to assume that handshaking may retain its importance in American society even after this pandemic. To practice more confident body language in the meantime, the video on the science of the perfect handshake below explains what you need to know.

6. Complement Your Verbals With Hand Gestures

As you know by now, confident communication involves so much more than simply smiling more or sounding like you know what you’re talking about. What you do with your hands can be particularly influential in how others perceive you, whether you’re fidgeting with an object, clenching your fists, hiding your hands in your pockets, or calmly gesturing to emphasize important points you’re discussing.

Social psychology researchers have found that “iconic gestures”—hand movements that appear to be meaningfully related to the speaker’s verbal content—can have profound impacts on listeners’ information retention. In other words, people are more likely to engage with you and remember more of what you said when you speak with complementary hand gestures instead of just your voice.[9]

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Further research on hand gestures has shown that even your choice of the left or right hand for gesturing can influence your ability to clearly convey information to listeners, which supports the notion that more confident body language is readily achievable through greater self-awareness and deliberate nonverbal actions.[10]

Final Takeaways

Developing better posture, enhancing your facial expressiveness, and practicing hand gestures can vastly improve your communication with other people. At first, it will be challenging to consciously practice nonverbal behaviors that many of us are accustomed to performing daily without thinking about them.

If you ever feel discouraged, however, remember that there’s no downside to consistently putting in just a little more time and effort to increase your bodily awareness. With the tips and strategies above, you’ll be well on your way to embracing more confident body language and amplifying others’ perceptions of you in no time.

More Tips on How to Develop a Confident Body Language

Featured photo credit: Maria Lupan via unsplash.com

Reference

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