How to Soften the Ego

Sometimes I have a big ego, but I am learning to soften it. My ego presents itself as self-important, special, and seeking approval. I need to address my ego so that I can become aware of how strong it can be and work on transforming it.

One way to soften the ego is through compassion. Compassion for yourself and for others. When I am with my dying patients, I am compassionate and my ego takes a back seat. The hospice environment is easy for me to be compassionate. However, I need to learn how to transfer that same compassion into different situations.

According to the Merriam-Webster dictionary, compassion means, “Sympathetic consciousness of other’s distress together with a desire to alleviate it.” I think the key word here is “consciousness.” We need to become aware that we all go through difficult times and we need compassion for each other. My friend Harriet who is from Africa says, “I seek humanity.” These are powerful words. We are all one. However, the ego may not like the fact that we are all one.

The mind likes to compare, judge, and analyze. The mind observes how well or how terrible we are “doing” in life. The ego can rise up to either praise or criticize. My mantra right now (to deal with the critical mind) is to sing the three words from the “Frozen” song: Let it go. Let it go…

We all have an ego. It keeps us alive. Joan Halifax who is a Zen Buddhist Teacher says, “We believe that it takes a strong back and a soft front to face the world.” That soft front is compassion.

Namaste, world.

Metta for All

human beings

I like this quote written by Albert Einstein. It is true, we will never spiritually grow as a human species if we only love our circle of friends and family. I think we need to expand our thoughts and actions. On Facebook there is a quote by Coco Chanel:


The quote says, “I don’t think about you at all.” This statement is untrue. The mind thinks about EVERYTHING! As a human species, we need to stop and use our thoughts for the higher good. The ego will run with selfish thoughts.

I think the quote should say: “I care about you, and I think about you.”  This quote shows more love and concern. The quality of the quote has a higher vibration. Also, there is more inclusion. The original quote has exclusion and harshness.

In Buddhism, there is a word called, “Metta.” In English, it means “loving-kindness.” But there is another translation that has a higher spiritual resonance: “active interest in others.” When you show someone that you care about them and think about them – this is true Metta. Your presence and compassion create the spiritual leap we need as humans.

When I walk down a busy street, and I make no eye contact with other humans – this is not  Metta. When I walk down a street, and I make eye contact and chat with strangers – this is Metta.

When my coworker’s mother was just in the hospital, and I do not show concern or ask questions – this is not Metta. When my coworker just attended a funeral, and I express concern, ask questions, and offer help – this is Metta.

I  have been practicing Metta for several weeks now. My main area of focus is in my work as a massage therapist. I have taken the time to show concern and ask questions about my clients. I decided not to talk about myself unless the client asks me questions. I put my whole focus on my clients.

There are several things that I noticed when I practice Metta. First, I enjoy asking questions and getting to know my clients (many who are strangers). Second, I look forward to going to work because I am making a difference in people’s lives. And third, when I practice Metta, life is much more vibrant and loving.

May you share your Metta with all living creatures.

Namaste, world.

world healing