Having strong sense of opinion where you are correct enough, having self awareness about what you deserve and having complete awareness and clear thinking of your choices is categorically indicative of stronger sense of self. To have a fair and clear idea about how you treat others and how others should treat you is not an EGO but crystal clear state of sense of self and state of belonging environment.
When one voice out against something which clearly unethical and unacceptable, it is not EGO but a sample of mental strength, awareness and clarity. When someone is maltreated and you voice out, it just projects mental maturity, sensibility and empathy.
When you laugh your heart out, you are not called mad similarly when you have clarity about yourself in your mind and you put it in front of world it is not an ego !