How to break someone's ego

By M.Farouk Radwan, MSc.

How to break someone's ego

Why do some people feel really bad when they don’t get straight As? Why can someone who got only one B and lots of As feel depressed?

As I said before in my article the psychological identity we all have multiple identities that change according to the situations we face. Sometimes we become the student who wants to get good grades and in other times we become the employee who wants to get his job done, these are examples of different identities.

Some people have a main identity that takes control over all their other identities. Whenever this identity is threatened the person doesn’t only feel worthless but he might also become depressed if he didn't manage to defend it!!

When the main identity is in danger

If a guy’s main identity is to be "The first" then certainly he will be gaining his self confidence from getting straight As and if anything happened other than this he will feel worthless. That’s why you might be happy with a set of As and Bs while a friend of yours may be feeling horrible because of the one B he got.

The main identity differs from a person to another completely but the effect of attacking it is the same in all cases. Some people like to stick to their professional identity or to identify with their jobs and so if a big problem threatened their jobs those people become extremely anxious and may suffer from an identity crisis if anything went wrong.

That’s another reason why critical comments can depress somebody. In my previous article Why criticism hurts I said that criticism hurts the most when it touches an already existing emotional wound. In addition to this criticism can make someone depressed if it attacked his main identity.

Why do some people identify with one major identity?

Usually identifying with one identity on the expense of others means that there is some kind of a problem in the other life areas of that person. The student who is identifying with being the first might be having problems in his social and sports life and that's why he is extremely attached to what is left to him!!

Balance is the only indication that you are mentally healthy. You should identify equally with all of your identities instead of having a single point of failure that can break you if someone attacked it.

Finally, please don’t attack someone’s main identity or make him feel bad. I am only providing this kind of knowledge so that you can be able to protect yourself and not to harm others.

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