When you successfully overcome feelings of inferiority, you’ll no longer feel hostage to what other people think of you. You will increase your self-confidence and the ability to express yourself more assertively. Eliminating (or at least diminishing) a sense of inferiority will encourage you to pursue professional and social opportunities you may have retreated from in the past.
Dr. Roger K. Allen has shared that making a decision not to feel inferior based on comparisons to other people will help you feel happier and healthier. Mastering self-defeating emotions such as feeling inferior will, as Roger explained, invite happier, more attractive, and more successful people to bless and influence your life.
Do I Have an Inferiority Complex?
The term “inferiority complex” is used in Alderian psychology to describe a sense of not feeling, or perceiving oneself, as worthy or as important as other people in society. These feelings prove to be debilitating in many areas of the affected person’s life.
While more clinical definitions of similar disorders omit the use of “inferiority complex,” the Diagnostic and Statistical Manual (DSM-V) identifies multiple manifestations of feeling inferior to other people. If a person struggles with feeling as worthy or as important as the people around him or her, then those feelings are often exhibited as:
- Avoidant Personality Disorder (APD) which is what we typically associate with someone who suffers from feelings of inferiority; withdrawn, antisocial, low self-esteem, reticent, and passive-aggressive behavior.
- Narcissistic Personality Disorder (NPD) on the other hand, is overcompensation for a sense of inferiority; bragging, hostility, arrogance, suspicion, and authoritarianism.
Mainstream psychology dismisses the notion of an overarching inferiority “complex” these days, but the literature does suggest these feelings may concurrently dominate multiple elements of our lives. In addition, we know by observation and experience that feelings of inferiority can metastasize to sabotage several areas of our lives at once.
How Do I Overcome Feelings of Inferiority?
As Dr. Allen points out, not feeling inferior to other people is a choice we make. That choice to not feel inferior is strengthened by shifting our perceptions and changing certain behaviors.
If you struggle with feelings of inferiority, there are strategies you can use to diminish or even eliminate these feelings and start feeling better about yourself. If someone you know suffers from feeling inferior, you can serve as a mentor to help them learn and apply these strategies.
The first is to stop comparing yourself to other people. The habit of comparing what you have or don’t have relative to others yields no real benefit to your self-esteem. Even when you derive a bit of satisfaction from feeling better than someone else (more intelligent, more financially successful, more beautiful, etc.), that satisfaction will only last until another person comes along with more of that particular thing than you have. Feeling good about yourself needs to be independent of comparisons to others.
You can also develop expertise in an area; expertise that is defined by goals and outcomes…not defined by comparisons to other people. As we discussed earlier, feelings of inferiority often hemorrhage to taint other areas of your life. Yet, developing expertise in a particular field can also compound to increase self-assurance in all areas of your life.
Applying the two previous strategies dovetails well with a third: to become the source of how you feel about yourself. You should not let external factors such as the approval of other people, financial success, etc., dictate how well/poorly you feel about yourself. You need to base your feelings about yourself on elements you can control. Ultimately, what you feel about yourself is determined by the decisions you make about how to feel about yourself.
All of these things take time and require patience before experiencing noticeable improvement in how you feel about yourself. If you harbor a little impatience and want to see some immediate results (in addition to the long term changes brought by the above), there are a few things you can do right now.
The first is to identify some of the things you feel you are lacking in life. They might be love, appreciation, gratitude from others for your contributions, recognition, etc. Next, identify ways that you can give those things you feel you lack to other people around you. Difficult as it seems, following this course will produce a magical effect in your life. The need or desire you have to receive those very things will quickly seem fulfilled.
One more strategy to apply immediately is to defeat your self-defeating beliefs. Step outside yourself and evaluate the words and messages you communicate to yourself. Is what you say constructive and motivating? Does your internal dialogue encourage you to pursue your goals and dreams? As you deconstruct your self-talk, do you recognize your own responsibility in how you feel about yourself?
We discuss all of these proven strategies in detailed training videos, and pair them with exercises and references guides in our new online video course:
Dr. Allen and I have teamed up to create this new, top-rated video training course on how to use five actionable strategies to reduce or eliminate feelings of inferiority. As a subscriber to Roger’s email newsletter, we’re offering you a special opportunity to enroll in this course at a 70% discount.
This discount will only be available for one week. After that, the enrollment price will go up.
If you or someone you know struggles with having healthy self-esteem, if you’ve had a difficult time managing emotional and psychological fallout from damaging experiences, or, if you just want to build up your self-confidence a little bit more, then join us and the thousands of other students who have already enrolled in our courses.
You can learn more about this course and watch free preview videos from the course by following the link below:
We look forward to your enrollment and participation in our course!