What Is Inferiority Complex (& How To Overcome It)

One of the most terrible social anxieties a person can have is something called “inferiority complex.” It is something that destroys one’s self-esteem. It forbids them from ever socializing with others. In worse cases, it can make someone absolutely hate themselves

There’s so much more to the inferiority complex than what it seems on the surface. In this article, you’ll read exactly what this means. More importantly, you’ll learn how to overcome this terrible complex.

What Is Inferiority Complex?

When someone has an inferiority complex, it means their sense of self-worth is incredibly low. They tend to always feel inadequate and weak. They think they’re somehow lower as a human than those around them.

Worst of all, no matter how successful they get, they’ll still feel as if they’re not enough.No matter how many good things they do, they’ll still feel a hint of self-resentment. It is a powerful issue that revolves around one’s psychology and destroys their mental and social health.

Whenever someone around them exhibits some form of success or another, they might feel happy for them, but they’ll also feel extremely self-conscious in the process. They’ll immediately jump to thoughts like, “Wow, they’re so amazing. I could never be like that.”

What Causes Inferiority Complex?

The most common cause of someone having an inferiority complex is something that happened in childhood. Trauma that involves lowering a child’s confidence and self-esteem can lead to them having an inferiority complex as an adult.

This is a very terrible thing. However, the inferiority complex problem can definitely be eliminated. As an adult, you now have a lot of experiences, knowledge, and a strong maturity that will help you overcome this issue.

How To Overcome Inferiority Complex

Man Facing The Sun

Take note of the steps below. Just because you have an inferiority complex now, that doesn’t mean you should forever suffer for it. Here are the things you can do to overcome your inferiority complex.

Avoid comparing yourself to others

One of the worst things you can do as someone who has an inferiority complex is to compare yourself to others. If you compare yourself to someone who’s immensely successful, you’ll only end up disappointing yourself. If you compare yourself to someone who’s doing as well as you, you’ll still find something to fault yourself with there.

Just avoid this habit altogether. Simply be happy for other people if they become successful. You’ll get there too. Everyone has a different pace. Mark Zuckerberg may have been 19 years old when he created Facebook, but Stan Lee didn’t have a major break until he was 40.

Celebrate your successes

If you get wins every now and then, be sure to celebrate them. Acknowledge the fact that something amazing happened to you. Whether the win is something major or something very little, celebrate them.

Doing this will also promote the idea that you’re doing something good. It will motivate you to do better. It will make you love the idea of you succeeding.

Aside from these things, celebrating your successes will also help you become a more positive person. This is key if you want to overcome having an inferiority complex.

Be your own supporter

You won’t be able to overcome your inferiority complex if you don’t lift yourself up. That said, be your own supporter. Have a “mini-you” in your head that acts as your own cheerleader. It might sound silly, but it’s a helpful thing if you want to combat something as terrible as a self-esteem destroyer.

If you’re about to do something difficult, convince yourself that you can do it. If you’re about to socialize, tell yourself that you can befriend people without failing. Even though mistakes can happen, remind yourself that it’s okay. Mistakes can happen anytime and it can happen to everyone.

Tell the closest people in your life

Man Consoling A Friend

Having an inferiority complex is no small matter. It’s a terrible thing that needs to be dealt with as soon as possible. However, you definitely don’t need to deal with it alone. If you have people in your life you trust and love, let them know what you’re going through. Let them know that you’re doing your best to better yourself.

Your friends and family will be more than happy and willing to help you deal with this issue. Your acknowledgment will matter so much to them. Therefore, as long as you reach out to them, they’ll be there for you every step of the way.

Don’t fight this alone, especially if you don’t have to. If things get too tough for you, call them. If you feel like breaking down and giving up, reach out to them. They’ll lift you back up and motivate you.

Know what your strengths and weaknesses are

If you know what your strengths and weaknesses are, you’ll know exactly how to combat your inferiority complex. Knowing your strengths will make you know what to do to win others over. You’ll know which of your traits you can use to befriend others or to lift yourself back up.

On the other hand, if you know what your weaknesses are, you’ll know which aspects of yourself you can either improve upon or let go of entirely.

Set proper expectations for yourself

The notion of overcoming your inferiority complex is exciting. It can make you want to get over it immediately so that you won’t have to deal with something so terrible anymore. While this is great for motivating you, you should also balance this out by managing your expectations.

This isn’t to say that you won’t succeed in your goals. What this simply means is that it can take a while for this to fully happen. You can overcome your inferiority complex, but it won’t be an overnight process.

Depending on your willingness and strength, this can either happen in just a few weeks, or it can take even longer than that. The most important thing you should keep in mind here is that it will happen. Don’t give up just yet, but don’t expect it to happen right away.

Help lift others up

Lifting others up is something you can do that will hit two birds with one stone. On one hand, you can help others. You can make their day simply by being uplifting or helpful. On the other, it will boost your self-esteem.

Being helpful and nice to others has been proven to lift your mood. Try it out! You’ll be surprised at home gratifying it can be.

Of course, you shouldn’t help others simply for this fact. Don’t do kind acts for your own benefit. You should also acknowledge the fact that the world needs more kind people. Be one of those. The fact that it also lifts you up is a great bonus here, and one that serves your goal of overcoming your inferiority complex.

Face your problems instead of shrugging them off

Annoyed Woman In Front Of A Laptop

One of the most common things people who have an inferiority complex do is disregard their problems. This is because they believe they’re not strong enough to face those problems. This couldn’t be further from the truth. You can face your problems and you can rise above them. You just have to believe in this fact.

Shrugging your problems off will only make things worse for you. This will continue to lower your self-esteem than it already is. Problems also have a habit of coming back to you when you leave them unsettled for too long. Don’t fall under this trap. Face your problems now before they become worse.

Differentiate constructive and destructive criticisms

Every once in a while, you’ll hear criticisms from other people. Whether it’s about your personality, your job performance, or whichever. When this happens, make sure you’re able to figure out which criticisms are constructive and which of them are destructive.

What you’ll want to focus on are constructive criticisms. These are responses that, although they can be painful, will serve you in the long run. Use these to better yourself instead of making them hold you down.

Destructive criticisms, however, are outright hurtful and malicious. These are the kinds of words you never should pay heed to. They don’t serve any good purpose and they’re often said in hopes of hurting you.

A constructive criticism sounds like this: “Your work could be better if you do it like this.” Meanwhile, a destructive criticism sounds like, “Your work is laughably terrible.” The former response is better because there’s something you can learn from it. The latter, however, is said just to hurt you.

Take better care of yourself

Another thing you can do to combat your inferiority complex is to take better care of yourself. Physically, mentally, personally, and socially.

Work out and be physically healthier. Allot a few hours of your week and dedicate it to physical welfare. Go to the gym, do cardio, do yoga, whichever activity suits you best.

Rid your mind of any negative thoughts. Since one of them is your inferiority complex, you’re already taking better care of yourself by reading this article. If there are more that plagues your mind, acknowledge them and deal with them.

Be better at the things you do, whether they’re your career or simple hobbies. Constantly improve.

As long as you continue to do all of these things, you’ll better yourself. The more you better yourself, the more you’ll overcome your inferiority complex.

Surround yourself with positive people

If you surround yourself with positive people, you’ll feed off their positivity. Seek out these kinds of people. If you have friends who are like this, then great! Be sure to be around them as often as you can.

Observe how positive they are. Observe how they’re able to always smile and laugh. If you can, you can also ask them how they remain so positive. These words of wisdom will help you also become more positive yourself.

Balance having a social life and minding your personal time

Shut off every once in a while

While having an active social life will greatly help you out as you try to overcome your inferiority complex, you should also dedicate a few days to yourself. If you’re an introvert, you especially need this.

That said, after going to multiple events to socialize, make sure you allot of a day or two that’s dedicated to just you. Indulge your hobbies and interests alone. Be comfortable in your own skin, with your own thoughts, without other people around you. The way you think when you’re alone is just as important as the way you think when you’re socializing.

Actively combat your negative thoughts

One of the best things you can do to overcome your inferiority complex is to actively combat it. Whenever a negative thought arises, combat it immediately. Tell yourself something that’s in direct retaliation for that negative thought.

For example, if your mind suddenly tells you, “Most of the people in your life are more successful than you,” combat that by thinking, “Yes, but I’m doing well now. Life is not a race. I know I’ll get there eventually.”

Seek professional help

If the problem is much worse, if you’ve done everything here and nothing still works, and if your thoughts are grimmer than most, seek professional help. Never hesitate to see someone about this. While some forms of this issue can be personally resolved in time, there are some people who need more than that.

If this applies to you, call a professional and set an appointment as soon as you can. Learn from them. Listen to them. They can tell you exactly what it is that you need to do moving forward.

Finally Overcoming Inferiority Complex

Overcoming your inferiority complex isn’t an easy task. It can even take a while before you can definitely say that you’ve dealt with it. That’s okay. As long as you’re actively doing your best to eliminate this problem, you’re already on the right track.

Be sure to read up on our other articles that tackle social shyness and loneliness. You might find other things there that will ultimately help you out as you overcome your inferiority complex.

About The Author

Scroll to Top