Ego Work & Santosha – Wk 2

Posted on Posted in Self-Study, Yamas & Niyamas

ego quote

Ego Work

I will be completely honest and say I’ve been having a hard time recently. Mercury being in Retrograde for almost the entire month of October has been a pain in the ass challenge. I’ve been moody, withdrawn, overwhelmed, lacking energy, and in general feeling weird. There were also a few moments where my husband and I both had to backtrack and apologize for saying things in a less than kind tone. I also noticed the usual technological disturbances. Mercury went Station Direct about midday PDT on Saturday the 25th. I still felt the same through this past Monday, but have finally started feeling back to “normal”, whatever that means!

Besides Mercury, I’ve been doing some work on myself personally. I’ve been reading and journaling about the ego using Eckhart Tolle’s book, “A New Earth”. I’m about halfway through; it’s not a quick read. There have also been other things showing up for me that have been guiding me along the path of ego-realization and awakening to my True Self. All of this is a tumultuous journey, or at least it is at present. I would say I really started along this path in March, but this past month I’ve been starting to deal with my Shadow Side. I believe this is an important part of ourselves that must be recognized and understood, not just swept aside. I didn’t really think about this until it smacked me in the face – so to speak.

Our shadow sides are always there, and in my experience at least, very closely relates to the ego. I think we never really escape our shadow side. It’s always there, I mean. There are certainly things we can do to grow past them, but I’m not convinced they ever truly leave us. I’m also not convinced we want them to. Of course I don’t want to be angry, judgmental, short-tempered, and petty, but knowing those things about myself allows me to acknowledge and embrace all sides of myself. I believe that if we are always denying parts of ourselves, even the good parts are in some way denied.


To review, Santosha means Contentment. Last week I was working with Deborah’s suggestion: “…notice how much energy you expend moving towards what you enjoy and avoiding what you dislike. Notice any physical gripping sensations in your body. Journal what you notice.” This was easy this week….

I spend a lot of time avoiding traffic. Yes, traffic. I hate sitting in traffic. I drive out of my way to avoid school zones and areas I know that heavy traffic is likely to build up. I also dislike noise. Noise can be kids crying, music that is too loud, construction noise, or areas that are just full of people and all the noise we as humans make. Maybe that’s why I like libraries so much! 😉 And the second part about physical gripping sensations are definitely there for me in traffic and around noise. If I’m not in a hurry and don’t have my toddler with me, traffic is less of an issue, but noise bothers me over 90% of the time. I just have a hard time with it. Something in my chest and stomach squeezes in on itself and it’s like I curl inward into myself (I actually believe there’s something else that has to do with this, but that’s for another post).

How does this relate to contentment? Noise is noise. Traffic is traffic. It’s how I think about it and the emotions/physical feelings that those thoughts create that make me feel discontent. Deborah writes, ” It is our need to satisfy our preferences that keeps us from contentment and makes our days difficult.” She also writes about allowing other people to make us feel content or discontent by what they are or aren’t saying. This goes hand in hand with what Eckhart writes: the ego takes everything personally.

I try every day to meet each moment as it comes. This is harder or easier depending on the day, but it is something that I actively work on. Dropping expectations and breathing through anything I find annoying is usually what works for me. That doesn’t mean I don’t think ahead and plan my day or think of the things I need to do next, because I do, but I’m working on it. That is really all we can do anyway, work on the things we would like to change and try to be a better person.

I hope you all have a great Halloween! Namaste Friends <3

Yamas book cover


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