I love this quote from an interview with Elizabeth Gilbert on Longform.
“A way I’ve heard it said that is nice is that your ego is a wonderful servant but a terrible master. Your ego has a tremendous amount of energy. Wrapped up in your ego is your drive, your passion, your taste, your aspirations, your desire to leave a handprint on the world, your mojo. You need that stuff because without it there’s no energy. There’s no motive, there’s no muscle. But if you let that thing drive your whole story then you’re setting yourself up for a life of terrible suffering because the definition of an ego is that it's the part of you that can never be satisfied. Ever. “
Ultimately we have to ask ourselves, who's driving our ship? Is the basic driving force in our lives ego driven or is it driven by a deeper more authentic calling? Like Elizabeth said, we need our egos to make things happen but what's the source of that momentum?
I will conjecture that the depth of our creations and our ability to remain steady, regardless of the up and down nature of our personal and professional lives, is contingent upon our ability to distinguish clearly between our ego, our true Self and their often contrary motivations and aspirations.
Listen to her funny, no BS, sage wisdom here: