If you peek in to the deep explanations of “ego” and “self” in philosophies like Buddhism, you will find the concept of “illusion.” That is, there is no real, inherent “self.” “Ego” is illusory.
This can be a lot to wrap your head around, but if you back out of this ontological explanation one step and just look at it all from a psychological perspective, the concept of “illusion” is much easier to see, regardless of what is happening from a higher perspective of Truth.
From this vantage point, we can eventually come to see that the “you” that you take with full confidence to be “you” is actually a constructed multi-variable narrative that you have accepted to be true. This is not to question your experiences that you have used to construct your version of “you,” but to point out that those things that happened aren’t as straight-forward as you think they are. In reality, the actual events have been skewed and embedded with bias and emotion, resulting in an interpretation that wasn’t inherently true. This means that, to some degree, you created your own version of the meaning and significance of those events, and made that part of your story. And then this version of “you” becomes the lens through which you view and interpret future experiences, which further ingrains the narrative.
Therefore, your version of “you,” of who you think you are based on past experiences, is heavily fabricated by variables that aren’t necessarily in alignment with reality.
So what does this mean?
It means this: you have the power to (re)create who you are, because the definition that you have now of who you are is at least partially self-fabricated. So if you aren’t happy with the person you believe yourself to be, you can work to change it by changing the narrative that you have held on to so tightly. A different version of you is so much closer than you think. Break free from the hypnotic spell that you have cast upon yourself and move in to a future of more freedom and volition.
Understand the illusion, and then change the story. Step in to, and live as, the person you most long to be.