There’s a lot of discussion in spirituality about ego and the myriad of ways to diminish it. No matter what spiritual tradition you are studying, there are unlimited suggestions and tools for doing so. However, no matter how many methods we come up with – nothing can replace service as one of the most powerful techniques.

But even service isn’t immune to the devious ways of the ego to assert itself. Nothing can demolish a great experience of service more than the ego getting all puffed up about yourself and how much you’re helping others. Well, if this is the point of view you are approaching service from, obviously you’re not going to lessen your ego – you’re going to inflate it.

In truth, service is not convenient or easy, nor does it present itself only when we have no other obligations in our lives. Too often people renege on service because they feel it’s not something they would like to do, or they feel that they simply don’t have the time for it. But that’s the point! If you’re only doing what you want when you want to do it – what entity other than the ego approaches life from this point of view? Only ego behaves this way.

The key is to catch yourself when you hear your internal and/or external dialogue giving every justification and excuse for not stepping forward and making an effort to assist when life is calling you. I’ve noticed that I’m asked to be in service when my particular skills are needed in a life situation. Each of us is blessed to have unique combinations of abilities that may be called into service by life/Spirit. If you truly have faith in the way our universe functions, you will also have faith that when you are called Spirit will make it possible for you to be in service - even if it feels inconvenient, unpleasant or untimely.

I have no doubt that most of us are too busy to even take 5 minutes for ourselves to rest – but the truth is time is plastic and conforms to the demands put upon it. If you’re needed come forth and take a chance – time will make itself available if you allow it. You’ll see that although you may feel tired, you also have a feeling of purpose and greater good working inside of you. In these moments the unknowable that exists only as potential is called forth from us and we grow in ways we could never expect. And therein lies the real gift.

Just as you begin to get used to the idea of being in service to another, you realize that the person you are truly in service to is yourself, your personal evolution and the expression of your unconditional love and Spirit. Well, fancy that!

Life is never one-sided and when we move past the selfishness of the ego - the bounty of life and love steps forth to reveal itself burning brightly in our hearts and souls. I encourage you to stop making excuses about why you cannot answer the call of life. Leave your fear behind about why you are not capable enough, smart enough, worthy enough to be present for another and take a leap of faith. I promise you it’s SO worth it.

Author's Bio: 

Sheri Rosenthal DPM is a master Toltec teacher and author of The Complete Idiot's Guide to Toltec Wisdom and Banish Mind Spam!. Having trained with don Miguel Ruiz, author of The Four Agreements®, she currently takes students on spiritual journeys works with personal apprentices and enjoys being extremely happy. You can reach her at or and