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The KEY Questions: How fragile is my ego?

16 April 17

The worst thing that ever happened to me was a few years ago when my marriage hit a major crisis and everything on which my life depended seemed to be crumbling to dust before my eyes. My whole world was turned upside down in a single day and I thought I would lose everything, wife, kids, house, and my business. Things I had taken for granted for so long, that I’d thought of as cast-iron certainties, were suddenly proving to be as delicate as soap bubbles.

It was a wake-up call, and a massive jolt to my ego. ‘Fragile?’ It lay in pieces at my feet.

But what is the ego? You can’t see it. You can’t touch it. How could something invisible hurt so much? If I think back to that dreadful time now – and it’s not something I make a habit of – it was like entering a very dark tunnel, like I’d climbed aboard some evil, twisted ghost train ride made up of all my worst fears. Chief among those fears was that I had failed, a very familiar theme. Forty years of insecurity and self-doubt engulfed me. For a while I was drowning, swept along by a tsunami of negativity, desperately trying to find any piece of passing driftwood to cling to. There seemed to be no escape from the feelings of inadequacy. Here was proof, finally, that those predictions that had been made about me all those years ago – that I would never amount to anything – had been absolutely correct.

It’s easy to forget that the whole psychology movement founded by Sigmund Freud, (or ‘Sick Man Fraud’ as Richard Bandler likes to refer to him), is only just over a century old, a blink of an eye in the history of our species. Before that time the concept of an ego, along with the word itself, did not exist. At a stroke Freud ushered in a new paradigm, what you might call the cult of personality, which continues to shape our modern world. According to this theory we humans are reduced to a bundle of neuroses learned at our mother’s knee which, (unless we’re in receipt of the proper long drawn-out and very expensive treatment), we are helplessly doomed to act upon our entire lives. Previously held ideas about our common humanity, our shared ‘soul’, were suddenly irrelevant in the thrusting new Edwardian age of machines and expansion, relegated to the realms of philosophy or religion, where they have remained ever since.

Let me state at this point that I am not religious. I do not believe in a God who created the world. What I believe – what I know – is that we share a common humanity, a common soul, even if the term I use for it is Mind. It seems to me completely obvious that we all sprang from the same seed, that each one of us is born with the three ‘gifts’ of Mind, Consciousness and Thought. As Sydney Banks made very clear when he first directed us towards these fundamental principles in the nineteen seventies, it’s how we use these gifts that define us, now and in the future. We do not have to be in bondage to events that happened in our past. Freud was wrong, and his legacy was ultimately to perpetuate human suffering, not bring it to an end.

Seen in this light, the very idea of an ego is revealed to be an illusion, something that the mystics have known about in every culture, on every continent, since humans first walked upright. It may not be fashionable to acknowledge it in the modern world. Perhaps it comes across as a little New Age, too corny by half. But it is true nevertheless. There is nothing to separate you and me. Let me quote Sydney Banks’ own words, taken from his book ‘The Enlightened Gardener’:

“Which is most likely to be correct? On the one hand we have an extraordinary enlightened man, Buddha, saying ego is a delusion. On the other hand we have a physician and scholar, Dr. Freud, saying that ego is a reality. Which one is correct?”

   I was lucky. I survived the near break-up of my marriage, and my study of the three principles was enormously helpful in bringing that about, (though that’s a story for another day).

So tell me: how fragile is your ego?



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  • Having attended David's course and then had some one to one sessions with him my approach to my life has changed dramatically and improved. David has a very gentle and empathic way about him, yet managed to challenge my habitual way of being and thinking. As a result of our time together I now practice his "way of being" and I truly find that I am getting far better results in all of the relationships that I encounter. My inner chatter is under control, most of the time, and I am learning to pause and push away harmful thinking . It's surprising how habitual thinking can do so much damage and how, once you really focus on what comes into your mind you start to realise that you can be bigger than your random thoughts. So David thank you for putting me on a better pathway. Looking forward to sharing another journey with the Auspicium family!
    Rowena Wild

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  • It took me about 5 years of 'dithering' before committing, and in that time I attended several introductory days from various training providers. David's accessible style and the unforced flow of the day is what persuaded me to choose his company. David provides a training model that helps you become your best self - as a student, as a practitioner, as a person. By 'best', I mean more open, less fearful, more confident, less judgemental - whether you attend the course to make a change personally or professionally, to build on existing success, or with no idea where it might go, simply because you are interested (that was me!) you will be impressed at what you are able to achieve with David's expert guidance showing you how to use your curiosity as a pathway to growth. In the first week following the course, I dealt with several potentially difficult situations both at work and home, coming from a changed perspective - resulting in no conflict, calmer colleagues, less stressed family. And this without actively using any techniques; the biggest change has been inside my own headspace. I can't wait to do the next course. Now that I know, unequivocally, the benefits to be had, I wish I had come down off the fence years ago! Added bonus, a bunch of fabulous new friends. And a final thought about cost; some of you reading this will be struggling to justify spending a chunk of hard earned money "just" for yourself. Well, I will be using these tools every day for the rest of my life - pennies a day investment! I am SO worth it. And so are you!
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  • I first met David at an evening business club a couple of years ago. During his presentation something “clicked” with me and I felt compelled to further my understanding of NLP. I attended the Auspicium free trial day. My earlier feelings were confirmed. This guy knows what he’s talking about and has a passion for helping people. I duly signed up for the NLP and Hypnotherapy practitioner course. What a week. All in the class left in such high spirits with a very different outlook on life. Following on I have attended the NLP and Hypnotherapy Master Practitioner course. Again excellent. There was something about the Hypnotherapy element of the course that I loved so on to the Hypnotherapy Trainers Training (another absolutely brilliant week). All the courses that I have attended have been very well organised, have a great team of trainers and support volunteers. The documentation is well put together and the exercises are all structured to push yourself to show you have a grasp of the given subject. I now have a fantastic group of new friends who I have a deep link with. We still meet up when we can to catch up on what we are all doing. As of March this year I have been participating in the Auspicium Freedom Project. This is a yearlong “conversation” about the 3 Principles – Mind, Thought and Consciousness. It took me a while to “get” it but now just by “doing nothing” I find myself doing more with better results and no stress. There are no models or techniques to learn. We all have the Principles inside us. We just need to be woken up to how to use them. It’s a great journey that will take the rest of my life. David is a superb trainer and fully deserves all the praise he receives.
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  • Before going on David’s Practitioner course, I thought I knew what I wanted, where I was headed and how I was going to get it. All I wanted an additional skill to add to my portfolio. I thought my life was in reasonably good order, nothing that needed fixing. I can sum up my experience of working with David in two words: life-changing. Instead of just learning a new skill, David encouraged us to apply his teaching, our learning, to ourselves. In a very safe environment, I gradually dropped the barriers I had painstakingly built up over a long time. This change happened very quickly and I continued growing as a person, studying 2 more courses with David and joining him on the Freedom project. Why David? He is disarmingly honest, genuine and engaging. He has a very broad knowledge of human behaviour and passes his knowledge on with grace. As a result of working with David, I have changed, and my life has changed. In myself I am very happy and contented person. My marriage is better and stronger. My business plans have taken a different route - one that is exciting and feels very right for me.