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inferiority complex definition, psychology | causes | effects | how to overcome from inferiority complex

inferiority complex

What is the inferiority complex?

The inferiority complex is a sense of inadequacy that’s expressed in extreme shyness, diffidence, or timidity. It’s expressed also as a compensatory reaction in exhibitionism or aggressiveness. 

It was first addressed in the 1920s by Alfred Adler. According to him, those people whose thoughts are so overtaken by negative feelings of inadequacy that it affects their self-esteem, have an inferiority complex.

An inferiority complex is basically a general feeling of being inadequate, being inferior to others.

Inferiority complexes could be developed in two ways; it is a combination of external factors plus internal factors. External factors are criticism and failure. Internal factors are our imaginations. So, it operates in two ways- criticism, failure operating with our imagination, as well as our imagination working on its own. 

Most of the time this complex remains unnoticed. We don’t even realize that there is something wrong with our mindset. We’ll definitely look at the symptoms but let’s first know the reasons behind.

inferiority complex

Reasons behind it

  1. Living in Virtual reality- When we become fascinated by the virtual world. The world of show off, which is completely different from reality. It creates an inhabitable comparison within us which ultimately leads to an inferiority complex. 
  2. Accepting the inferiority- No one in this world can abase you unless you accept their docility. The problem is whenever we face failure rather than dealing with it we lose our sense of pride. 
  3. Attaching failure to self- When a person fails he takes that failure so personally that he starts thinking his own life is a failure. 
  4. Comparison- It is the root cause of complexes in living beings. When do we realize we are inferior? Obviously whenever we compare ourselves to others. 
  5. Underestimate ourselves and overestimate others- As a human being, we can do anything, achieve any goal or create a huge imagination and work upon that. But what we do is; we underestimate our own capabilities in front of others. 
  6. Not taking action- We have a lot of expectations in life. Lots of dreams, ambitions, and so on. But, we don’t have enough motivation to pursue that. Whenever we fail to achieve our goals we stop taking the right actions. 
  7. Family of Origin- Family background is something that affects a big aspect of human life. Inferiority complexes are very common in a middle-class family. 
  8. Bullying- All of us face bullying at some point in time in our lives. Most probably in childhood. It is not just an incident that simply chromes and goes. It is something that stays forever unless we short it out. Bullying creates a feeling of self worthlessness, underconfidence, fear, and many more root causes for an inferiority complex.
inferiority complex

how to overcome inferiority complex

  1. See the truth- We need to understand that the life of a person on social media is not the actual one. It is the life that individuals want to share. Most of the time people share the most memorable and happy moments of their life. Which is about 10% of the actual life and we start making assumptions that he/she is happier than me. 
    • So, stop comparing other’s 10%reality to yours 90%.
  2. Believe in yourself- The most important tool to fight with an inferiority complex is belief. Believe me, if you believe yourself, no one can make you feel low. Try to remember your achievements whether small or big just remember them.
  3. Take challenges- Accept all challenges which are out of your comfort zone. Always try to push your limits. Learn new skills and make yourself ready to face new challenges. 
  4. Goal- Always try to track your progress because this progress report will give you confidence. Your goal and dream have the power to make you push your limits.
  5. Avoid- You just have to avoid those people who make you feel inferior. Not always, just avoid them for some while until you learn to deal with your complex. Avoid all negative thoughts which stop you from taking actions. Once you start taking actions to improve yourself you can deal with anyone.
  6. Take your stand- Always value yourself. In other words, never underestimate yourself. You have to Respect yourself. Don’t think you respect yourself unless you take proper action for it.
  7. Note down- The biggest problem is that we exactly don’t know where the problem is. We don’t realize what we do because of the inferiority complex and what we do naturally. So, note down the problems you face like low self-confidence, fear of insult or simply underestimating yourself. If you find any of the symptoms mentioned in the above heading you should make a note.

After making notes try to find a solution to those problems. Push your limits, break your comfort zone.

To know about inferiority complex symptoms click here 
sad due to inferiority complex

effects of inferiority complex

  • Low self-esteem- Inferiority complex lowers the self-worth. A person having this problem will always underestimate his own capabilities and start feeling worthless.
  • Depression- It can lead to depression. A man with dreams and desires but a big rock on the way has possibilities of getting depressed if he doesn’t address the problems inside.
  • Aggression in behavior- Whenever a man feels he is a loser or is worthless he starts showing anger in his behavior, unconsciously. This anger is shown mostly upon their near and dear ones. 

Learn how to control anger

  • Need for protection- Inferiority complex makes you feel insecure. You need someone to walk with you, not literally. You’ll need someone to take responsibility. 
  • Fear- Fear can be of different types. It can be fear of insult, fear of making mistakes, fear of being blamed, and so on. 

inferiority complex vs superiority complex

Both are completely opposite to each other. Where the inferiority complex is a mental situation in which people feel under-confident, self worthless, and prefer isolation. A person with a superiority complex is overconfident, self-obsessed, and prefers accessibility to as many people as possible. 

Remember both complexes are poisonous for the development of a person. 

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