Ego states, Life positions

24/08/2021 0 By indiafreenotes

Ego states

It represents a person’s way of thinking, feeling and behaving. There are three ego states present in everyone: child, parent and adult. They are related to behaviour of a person and not his age. However, they are present in every person in varying degrees. There may be more of one ego state than another at a specific point of time. When two persons communicate with each other, communication is affected by their ego states. These are;

(a) Child ego:

Child behaviour reflects a person’s response to communicate in the form of joy, sorrow, frustration or curiosity. These are the natural feelings that people learn as children. It reflects immediate action and immediate satisfaction. It reflects childhood experience of a person gained generally up to the age of five years.

(i) Adaptive child:

He reacts the way his parents want him to react. He is trained to act.

(ii) Natural child:

He is naturally curious, joyous or scornful. He does what comes his way naturally.

(iii) Rebellious child:

He has the experience of fear, frustration and anger.

(b) Parent Ego:

Parent behaviour is acquired through external environment. As young children, their parents’ behaviour remains embedded in their minds which is reflected as parental ego when they grow up. It usually reflects protection, displeasure, reference to rules and working on the basis of past precedents.

(i) Nurturing parent ego:

As nurturing parents, managers praise good performance of the workers. They interact with them and help them during times of distress. They reflect nurturing behaviour towards others.

(ii) Negative or critical parent ego:

As critical parents, managers criticize or ignore poor performance of the workers rather than help them to improve. They have a critical attitude while interacting with others.

(c) Adult ego:

Adult behaviour reflects the ability to analyse the situation and take logical decisions. He overcomes the emotional feelings and takes decisions based on facts and figures. This state is based upon reasoning, thinking, experience, rationality and discussion based on facts.

It updates the parental ego to determine what is right and wrong and child ego to determine what feelings to express and what not to express. These ego states are present in all human beings at some time or the other. People respond to different situations in different ways depending on their ego state.

Life positions

Behaviour of a person depends upon his experience at different stages of his life. He develops a philosophy towards work from early childhood which becomes part of his identity and remains with him for lifetime unless some external factor changes it. These positions are called life time positions.

(a) I am OK, You are OK:

This life position represents adult ego of a person. It becomes the philosophy of a person who has good and positive experiences with others. They feel confident about themselves and others. Managers with this life position believe in give and take. They are competent to take decisions and also allow others to participate in the decision-making processes. They delegate authority and express confidence and consistency in others. They are not threatened by others and express freely what they want to express.

(b) I am OK, You are not OK

This life position is created when an individual was too much ignored when he was a child. Here, an individual believes that he is right, and all the others around him are wrong. These are the individual who possesses the rebellion child ego and put blame on others for anything that goes wrong with them.

© I am not OK, You are OK:

This life position represents a state of distrust in the person himself. He lacks confidence in whatever he does. He believes he cannot do things that people around him can do and, therefore, keeps grumbling most of the times about something or the other.

Managers with this life position are usually not good managers. They do not perform well, have an erratic behaviour, feel guilty for their acts and often use excuses to act against others.

(d) I am not OK, you are not OK

This kind of life position is created by those who lacks interest in living. They feel life is not worth living and are the ones who have been neglected by their parents in their childhood and were brought up by the servants. Such kind of people commits suicide or homicide to end their lives.