What does it mean to have an Alter Ego? (Psychology)

" Alter ego "Is a Latin phrase whose meaning might be something like"my other self"or"my alternative self."

If you want to know your alter ego, you will want to know your other self, which is characterized by having a personality different from yours.

alter ego

The alter ego can be a real or fictitious person, regardless of this, we identify with our alter ego, we feel absolute confidence and we somehow idealize ourselves in that"person".

Origin of the term"alter ego"

In the 1730s studies were conducted using hypnosis to separate what was then called"the other self."

These experiments carried out by Anton Mesmer Determined that people when in waking state acted differently than when they were hypnotized.

However, it was not until the 19th century that the term"alter ego"was coined when the first Dissociative identity disorder , Initially known as Multiple personality disorder.

It is important to emphasize that having an alter ego does not imply suffering dissociative identity disorder.

In fact, the main difference is that normally those who have multiple personalities are not fully aware of these personalities, whereas those who have an alter ego are not only aware but could even be said to define and work that way of acting or alter ego by Own will.

The concept of alter ego and self-knowledge

Much of the evolution that a person may have in their self-knowledge originates in the concept developed by the psychologist Roberto Assagioli In which it is said that we all have an I of rank or preponderance superior to the rest of roles that we assume or have assumed in our life.

Under this I exist the different alter egos or sub-personalities that we can assume throughout our experiences or as a product of the education we receive throughout life.

Some of these"alter-egos"or sub-personalities are quite universal, roles that we all or almost all assume in certain circumstances of life, for example, the role of protector, that of controller, that of hero, that of victim, etc.

Is it necessary to have an alter ego?

If I asked you if you know who Sasha Fierce is, your answer would probably be negative, and it would still amaze you to know that it is the alter ego of an artist as recognized as Beyoncé.

If this person has an alter ego then it will not be so bad to have it, in fact all in some way we need to develop alter egos that allow us to live in a fuller way.

Why full? It's simple, an alter ego allows you to express yourself in such a way that you would not feel comfortable expressing yourself with your own self.

Can you create an alter ego?

The answer to this question is yes, in fact most of the alter egos are consciously developed although clearly influenced by the lived experiences and the circumstances that surround us.

The steps to create an alter ego are:

  1. What do you want to have an alter ego for? Just for fun or for an important purpose for you? Some of the most common purposes are to protect privacy or to project a personality other than one's own. As long as you do not lose sight of reality, you can create the alter ego you want.
  2. Define the personality of your alter ego. Usually the alter egos have different characteristics to those of the personality of its creator.
  3. Create an appearance for your alter ego.
  4. What story does your alter ego have? What is your past? What are your current projects? What are your future ambitions?
  5. Give your alter ego a name.
  6. Take on that new identity in the context that you want to develop it.
  7. Even if you maintain your alter ego for important periods of time, you must always keep your feet on the ground so that the boundaries between your reality and your alter ego are not erased.

Caution with the alter ego

Having alter egos is not negative, it can allow us to adapt to a medium that is not always pleasant or does not always fit our strengths and weaknesses as a person.

However, starting from the fact that the alter ego is in some way a way of idealizing what we would like to be and are not, or how we would like to act but our own self can not act, we must be careful not to abuse the alter Egos.

In addition, the alter ego can also be used to guarantee anonymity and then one should pay attention not to use them to escape from a reality and pretend to live a life that is not one's own.

Alter ego in a virtual world

The popularization of the internet has made many people more aware of how advantageous it is to have an alter ego to be able to express themselves more freely. It is for this reason that many people create alter egos for their operation on the internet.

Not all people invent names or profiles on social networks to hurt others, not all do so by hiding, there are also those who feel more free expressing themselves under the anonymity that allows them to use another name.

In other cases, the use of alter egos on the internet is given simply because it allows them to have a privacy that makes them feel more comfortable or allows them to keep their professional life separate from their personal life.

Creating an alter ego for your online action also allows you to protect yourself against prejudices either yourself or others.

Moreover, there are pages on the internet where you can create a new life in which you can control your present and your future. Is this healthy? If it is, as long as it does not stop you from living your own life and isolate you from your reality.

And what kind of alter ego have you created? What do you think about them?


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