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  • Tarshi Mack

Success vs. Ego – Who’s the Jerk?


Do you think that people who become successful develop a huge ego and become jerks?

It’s true! However, a successful person doesn’t have to be a jerk, but you can expect an egotistical person to be one.

Everyone has goals. Power and freedom are two things we all crave. These are necessary for creative work. We want recognition of our hard-earned accomplishments and respect from peers to feel successful. This is neither our vanity speaking nor selfishness but a simple, earnest desire to achieve our potential.

Why Are Some Successful People Jerks?

Here’s an example to help you understand the relationship between being successful and a jerk:

“One day, you can all stand in the same position I am in today,” boasted a college professor with his nose in the air, chest puffed and standing proudly.

This was being said while the class was waiting for the exam papers to be distributed.

“However, most students in this class won’t be able to survive this semester, and for those of you who will, the struggle will be real and hard. So, good luck!”

This highly successful professor was a successful academic and consultant on international projects. So, it makes sense for the students to make him their role model, right?

Yes and no! Even though the professor was excelling in his career, he was a complete and utter jerk! His lack of respect for students and habit of humiliating them for the littlest thing was not something that anyone liked.

No one wants to look up to this person because they don’t have tact. However, if this same person respected their students, offered them support whenever they needed it, and said encouraging words, his success would have done a lot of good.

Why Are Egoistical People Jerks?

Ego is very different from success. It’s a trait that people often have or develop due to overconfidence.

For example, Samantha is good at her job teaching little kids how to dance. She believes in her art and gives it all her time. The only problem is that Samantha thinks that she’s the best out there, and to ensure that the kids succeed like her, they need to be thin, nimble on their feet, and have extreme focus, leaving no room for anything else in life.

Her ego doesn’t allow her to see what’s in front of her because she’s being ruled by her subconscious mind. She just knows that she needs to accomplish something and position herself as the person she was earlier in her career.

Both the professor and Samantha have the potential to become huge jerks. However, the former person can choose not to be, whereas it is too late for the latter person. The perception ingrained in their mind from a young age is hard to let go of now and therefore, they are the bigger jerk.

Even though brilliant, this jerk is caught in the web spun by ego and is blind to ruthless motivation and ambition. If an egotistical person does not get control over themselves, they might give into hostility and aggression.


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