Dealing With Your Ego – How to Stay In Your Lane

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Question of the Month

As I record this it is April 1. The first quarter of 2018 is over. What had you planned on doing in that first quarter that didn’t, and what are you going to do differently to make it happen in this quarter. You can leave your answer using the options on the contact page

I need your answer by April 26th.

Defining Ego: The Good Side of Ego

The Freudian definition of “ego” is simply, according to Wiktionary, “the most central part of the mind, which mediates with one’s surroundings.” So many people think that if you have an Ego, you’re a narcissist. If you have an ego than you are conceited. You think you are better than others.  Ego literally means a person’s sense of self-esteem or self-worth. Doing anything new, like starting a podcast, or going against the norm, is directly proportional to how confident you are of yourselves and your abilities. As long as you are in control of your ego, it will work for you. But as soon as your ego starts controlling you, it will hurt you. When ego controls you, it can make the truth look false and the false look true.

How To Identify Negative Sides of Your Ego

When you are overwhelmed by your ego, you will say words you will regret, take actions you will repent later on, and hurt the people you love most. Your inflated ego can also make people lose trust and respect for you

There is a quote by Deepak Chopra to sum it up –

“If you want to reach a state of bliss, then go beyond your ego and the internal dialogue. Make a decision to relinquish the need to control, the need to be approved, and the need to judge. Those are the three things the ego is doing all the time. It’s very important to be aware of them every time they come up.”

If you find yourself defending yourself, this may be due to a couple of reasons. You may actually be right (and you’re trying to educate someone about your point of view) or your wrong and you are defending yourself as you are afraid of the ramifications if it is found out you are wrong.

There is the old saying, you can be right or you can be married. I found this to be true. My ex-wife (note the ex) here are and I would battle for days because one wouldn’t drop it, and the other wouldn’t admit when they were wrong. The opposite of defensiveness is openness, and that means being open to new ideas. When you’re not willing to even ponder another point of view, you may want to check yourself.

If you do a solo show, you may want to take all of the adulations but that’s just not true. Case in point, I record, edit, and post this show. I am the producer, host, editor, web designer, graphic designer. I do this show by myself. That appears true (it is), but I get feedback in the form of emails, speakpipe messages, Facebook likes, etc that help me steer this podcast in a direction that allows it to connect DEEPER with the people who find it. Thanks to my audience who when they hear someone talking podcasting say, “You need to listen to the School of Podcasting, ” or “You need to join the School of Podcasting.” I would be a fool to say the success of this show is 100% because of me.

What Can Happen When You Put Your Ego Aside

This episode was inspired by my going to a Michael Schenker concert. Who is Michael Shenker? Well, unless you are a guitar player of 30 you’ve probably never heard the name. To give you something to frame this in you probably have heard of Metallica (one of the most popular Heavy Metal bands of all time) their guitar player went 100% “Fanboy” upon meeting him and pulled strings (no pun intended) to play with him (see video).

Michael is touring under the name Michael Schenker Fest. Why? Because he is touring with four different singers. To all of you nonmusicians, there is a disease in music called LSD. It stands for Lead Singers Disease. As I look back at my 30 years of playing in (I started when I was 15) I can say the best singers also has the largest egos. Not sure if those are connected, but that’s what I saw. The singers are Gary Barden (age 62), Graham Bonnet (age 70) Robin MCauley (age 65) Doogie White (age 50). Michael himself is 63 years old (so maybe some wisdom has come with the age).

Gary Barden was on the first three Michael Schenker albums and as you age (if you haven’t taken care of yourself the best you can) you just can’t reach some of those high notes. On one song (Attack of the Max Axe Man for those of you keep track at home) I didn’t think Gary sounded great when he was young, and now has no hope of hitting these notes. I about fell over as they did this song as Robin came out to sing the high parts as Gary sang a lower harmony. When you can’t get Eddie Van Halen and Sammy Hagar in the same room, this is like seeing a unicorn on stage. Later all four singers would assume different roles as they all ended up singing backup singer to each other. I’m not sure how I can express how rare this is. It would be like Donald Trump giving Hilary Clinton a compliment.

So by leaving their egos at the door, I got to see a one of a kind show. It was amazing (seeing Graham Bonnet at age 70 gives me hope in my 50’s). They didn’t let their egos get the best of them, and in return are probably making more money than they would if they stayed separate. In an even more mind-boggling twist, they even recorded some songs together on his latest record. This is like seeing a mermaid ride a unicorn into the land of Oz.

The Dick, the Doll, and the Dork

In morning radio, there’s a philosophy called the Dick, the Doll in the Dork. It’s a three-person morning show and everybody has their role. So the Dork is typically the main leader of the show. The dork is the affable one who is a little bit quirky and he’s the guy everybody loves and he’s the AW shucks guy. And then there’s the Dick, he’s just the jackass who says stuff he shouldn’t be saying. He rubs people a little bit the wrong way. You want to like him, but he’s just a little irritating. And the Dork usually says, “oh, don’t say that,” and kind of puts him in his place. Those two roles kind of bounce off each other. They’re the opposites. And then the doll, she’s usually the brains of the organization.

The Doll is the smart one that comes in and kind of puts everybody in their place. And she’s the voice of reason. So everybody kind of has their lane. So if we’re talking about, oh, we got this letter today from a listener named Kim. And she found another woman’s number into her man’s cell phone and she wants to know what she should do about it. And the dick is going to go, “What’s the big deal? You know, it’s just another chick.” The Dorks is going to go, “No, you know what you need to hold on a second. You don’t know what it’s all about.” He’s going to be kind of in the middle. The doll is going to say, “Kick that guy to the curb. There’s plenty more fish out there, right?”

So that sort of triangle and everybody has their role. You have to know your role and you have to stay in your role because that’s what people expect of you. If they change their roles it messes with their chemistry. If the Dork starts saying everything the Dick does, well then we have one too many people sharing that opinion and someone is not needed.

Doogie White Won’t Stay In His Lane

Doogie WhiteThis was evident in my concert. When Doogie White came out to sing he was annoying. The event is called MICHAEL SHENKER FEST, and it’s MICHAEL’S picture on the backdrop. Yes everytime Michel went to play a guitar solo Doogie decided it was time for him to get the audience to clap along, or try to get them to sing “HEY, HEY, HEY” together. Meanwhile, ALL EYES are on Michael, and his vocals were walking over the guitar solo that everyone came to hear. Doogie kept getting out of his lane and messing up the chemistry and the experience.

Mentioned In This Show

Erik K Johnson – Podcast Talent Coach

Podcast Review Show – Get Your Podcast Reviewed

7 Habits of Highly Effective People

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