Everyone has good days and bad ones, depending on how they feel about themselves. While external factors such as the weather or the news may affect you, it’s often the internal mechanisms of the mind that dictate how you feel. In turn, they impact your attitude and behavior. And at times, they nudge your ego to surface. Read on to find out how to keep your ego in check—knowing when to boost it, and when to play it down.

Ego makes up an important part of the personality, and influences how you interact in your relationships at home and at work. A healthy ego is one that allows you to celebrate your self-worth without losing sight of the fact that others are important too. Being constantly insecure or desperate to establish your superiority is a sign that your ego is in need of some downsizing. This is when you need an ego buster:

Remember Where You Came From
Even if you believe you’re at a good place in life, don’t forget where you came from. What you are today is a result of how you dealt with your shortcomings in the past. This means you still have a long way to go, with newer goals to achieve and fresh paths to pick. Stay humble, because that’s the best way to grow.

Be Grateful
Thank your teachers, your peers, your parents, and the situations in which you learnt valuable lessons that have made you the person you are. Being grateful will keep you realistic when you’re in a position of power, because you know that it doesn’t define you and it doesn’t mean others are less capable than you are.

Control Impulses
Exhibiting excessive anger or pride may hamper your emotional growth and may damage you more than the person at the receiving end. Slow down, and observe the origin of that emotion before you deal with the source.

The pressures of a modern lifestyle can bring anyone down and have them functioning at less than their best. If you’re feeling low or generally not feeling too good about yourself, it is necessary to employ these ego boosters:

Mark Your Milestones
Each time you cross off something on your to-do list, it will give you a sense of achievement, which is crucial to fueling self-worth. Knowing how far you’ve come will give you the momentum required to travel forward even further.

Give Credit Where It’s Due
Whether it’s a job well done, or an excellent service rendered, let people know when they’ve exceeded expectations. Boosting someone else’s ego is good for yours too, as it reflects integrity and compassion, values upheld by true leaders.

Be Patient
If you try to rush things, you are bound to lose sight of the essentials and end up with a less than satisfactory outcome. Don’t overreact when things don’t go your way, and give an unfavorable situation enough time. You will be surprised at the results (and you may no longer feel angry or egoistic, after a point).

It doesn’t matter if you’re the head of the family or that of a multi-national corporation, your ego drives you and dictates your actions. As a leader, if you have a healthy ego, you are bound to win the loyalty, admiration and the cooperation of those who depend on you.

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Simona is a journalist who has worked with several leading publications in India over the last 17 years, writing on lifestyle topics and the arts, besides interviewing celebrities. She made the switch to public relations and headed the division as PR Manager at ITC Hotels’ flagship property, the ITC Grand Chola, but has since returned to her first love, journalism. Now she writes on food, which she is sincerely passionate about and wellness, which she finds fascinating and full of surprises. When she isn’t writing, she is busy playing the role of co-founder and communications director of The Bicycle Project, a six-year-old charity initiative that empowers tribal children in rural areas, while addressing the issue of urban waste.