Gerald May in "Will and Spirit" distinguishes four acts of self-definition: the body, our desires and dislikes, the will and our relationships with others. The body is the image we have of ourselves, the Avatar so to speak. Desire is what attracts and repels us; the will is the drive with which we express ourself, while relationship determines how much time we spend alone or with others, and with whom.
YAHWEH once told Moses when he asked GOD what is NAME was, "I AM THAT I AM". I am not sure that Moses realized that he had a conversation with his SELF. This flow concept is our SELF. It is the ability to step outside of ourselves. We can very much be aware of our SELF when we learn to perceive the four ego attributes just as the passing of clouds. The body floats in and out of consciousness, as do our feelings of desire or the presence of will. Behind all that there is the awareness of the SELF.
Our spiritual community loves to beat up on the ego, but I would propose a different concept altogether. Since I gave the cloud analogy before, wouldn't you agree that some cloud formations are quite beautiful? Don't they sometimes protect us from the scorching sun? And what would happen to us if we didn't have rain clouds from time to time! Make the ego forces your friend, not your foe. Your body is your avatar, why shouldn't we have a beautiful one? Our desires and dislikes define us, so why shouldn't we express ourself in a way that we appreciate. And if we didn't have the will of a bull dog sometimes, we would never reach HOME. It takes tenacity to put our own interferences aside to enjoy the SELF. Similarly, your relationships define you; foster the ones that are precious to you.
So I hope you see, that ego and SELF walk and in hand along the WAY. Someone once said, if our SELF is the GPS, we still need the ego to drive. How true! Enjoy the blessed "I AM THAT I AM" moment when it happens, and have fun creating yourself when you are aware of yourself. Along the WAY there is a time for having an ego, just as there are plenty of opportunities to transcend it. Have fun!