Ego Flipping

Ego Flipping

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Over the years, I have developed a technique that gets very quick results in terms of personal and collective transformation. I call it ‘ego flipping’. In short, it is a frame of thinking and subconscious reprogramming I have developed to get quick results, without requiring willpower or self-sacrifice.

There’s nothing new about it, since it brings together elements I have learnt over the years. In many ways, it is about using the problem to create the solution. Individually, we often do things that satisfy our ego in the short-term, but are not necessarily in our long-term interests.

The first thing to understand is what I call an individual’s ‘egoic voice’. Personally, I have this steely background determination, characterised by the phrase: ‘I don’t care if it takes me 10 years – but I will win’. Now, I don’t proclaim that this is the healthiest inner narrative, but it can be used to achieve healthy and positive things, if aligned in the right way.

I look for ways to flip this egoic voice and reframe it, to help me do healthier, positive things. How does looking after myself contribute to my winning, over the long term? How does my helping others serve my best long-term interests? I consider the impact of my ego in everything I do, now. If I design things that go against it, they are more likely to fail. So, I look to create solutions that work with it. Most of what I do and how I do it utilises the egoic voice in the process. It acts as a kind of protective scaffolding, whilst I work on what created the voice in the first place.

There are lots of egoic voices out there, all very different. Some sound arrogant, careless of others, greedy or selfish. Some sound like victims or martyrs. One of the common ones I come across says something like: ‘I must sacrifice myself, for my children’. A reframe on that would be: ‘If you sacrifice yourself for your children, what kind of example does that set them? Must they sacrifice themselves for others? Who gets to live?’ A reframe like this would get the ego to think it’s a good idea to shift from ‘sacrifice’ to modelling positive behaviour that allows self-care as well as serving their children.

This type of thinking works in organisations, too. To get organisations to invest in health and wellbeing, I tend to look for the egoic voice of the organisation. Some organisations have a strong focus on growth and profit. For them, I focus on providing evidence that health and wellbeing increases profit and productivity. Other organisations have a heavy focus on risk management. In those cases, I demonstrate that supporting health and wellbeing is one of the most effective ways of reducing risk in organisations. The point is that I use the organisation’s main driver to reframe their thinking – to gain the best outcomes for their people.

Too much of the focus on transformation is a rose-tinted view of what people should be doing, without honouring who or where they are. To achieve lasting change, I believe we need to be compassionate with ourselves, celebrate how our ego operates – and use its power. We also need to employ this thinking to have compassion for others with very different drivers to our own.

Used in the right way, the worst of ourselves – and others – can effectively drive the fastest transformation. All it takes is understanding and reframing what we (or they) want and need.

  • What does your egoic voice say?
  • How can you reframe it, to enable the things you really need to do?
  • What is the egoic voice of those around you?
  • How can reframe their thinking, to assist them with what they really need?

To flipping ego.


P.S. This is a theory and practice still in development; so any thoughts, experiences and contributions you can make are really welcome in the comments section below.

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  1. Your thoughts on parental sacrifice rang true with me, I have used the word before, regrettably, and it is of course an incorrect way of expressing what is in fact a conscious choice, a chosen priority, a duty, a privilege and one of life’s purest pleasures. Surrender to the decision (ego flip) and enjoy the journey is the answer!

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