The idealistic thought of being the best among others makes us land in the vicious cycle of always drawing comparisons and belittling ourselves. This comparison can be healthy too and can lead to one’s growth, but when it reaches its peak, it results in an inferiority complex. But how does it start? How do we get trapped in this?
Alfred Adler who was a great American philosopher, proposed that this inferiority complex can be rooted during a child’s early years of development by drawing comparisons between siblings and peers.
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Humans are born complaining and unsatisfied. There is a constant struggle for power and dominance, and eventually for the ability to outshine others. It’s a human tendency to always compare one’s life chances and wish for more.
“I wish I was pretty like her, even though she lacks intelligence but has good looks.”
“I wish I were intelligent like her; she isn’t particularly attractive, but at least she has brains.”
“You see, this is the never-ending cycle with no way out!”
But it’s past time to acknowledge that, If I was you,” I wanna be me too,” has a real-life counterpart.
This concept is social psychology. It has connections with human minds and behaviour in a sociological context. We must not allow this complexity to overpower our self-esteem and develop a feeling of inadequacy with respect to others. After all, it’s no battle for an elixir; nobody is going to outlive the earth even though being as perfect as politics.
Let us now look at ways to overcome inferiority complexes.
1. Develop your conscience
Throughout your life, you will encounter two types of people: those who will praise you for your accomplishments and those who will criticise you. You should be welcoming to both. Everyone is not blessed with a person who can correct them at the required point of time and guide them. So try to develop a constructive criticism mechanism inside yourself and work accordingly. Constructive criticism is healthy and leads to the growth with genuine suggestions for positive alteration.
2. Limited reliance on positive affirmations
We often rely on affirmations from people to better support our self-esteem and confidence. But you cannot expect people to always appreciate, and such a thing which is uncertain, must not be a parameter of your level of confidence. People may draw out comparisons, and even you would, but it’s nowhere mentioned that either of them is always correct. There is subjective relativity, which needs to be respected.
3. Introduce yourself to the realist part of the idealistic state
We often idealize the lives of social media influencers and find their lives to be perfect! But is that so? If you dive deep into their stories, you will discover that the part you are exposed to is just a tip of an iceberg. Romanticizing perfect lives has become a part of our culture and this is as real as the horizon. Nobody is leading a perfect life; none of the stabilities, economic or social, guarantee one another.
4. Spend time with people with whom you don’t have a complex
Always being surrounded by intellects and societal beauties may make you feel that your presence is unwelcomed. This would make you start feeling inadequate and act as a catalyst to multiply your complexity. You should shift toward people who don’t make you question your worth. In order to counter your inferiority complex, developing a feeling of being born advantageous is very important. This can be induced by spending time with those people who can make you efficient and provide you with mental peace.
5. Take a break
Everybody is a genius, but if you judge a fish by the ability to climb a tree, it will live its whole life believing that is stupid. Abiding by this and believing this in actuality, can help you overcome the feeling of inferiority. You don’t need to break your head over something that someone else is acing but not you. There are a lot of things to do and build yourself up in different fields. Sticking to only one idea and internalising the feeling of being worthless is something which isn’t wise. You need to explore your interests and engage yourself in activities that give you pleasure and a sense of worthiness.
Expecting yourself to be perfect and excel in every field is like a middle child asking for maximum attention. You can try to give unblemished results in order to experience greater satisfaction. Weighing your biological life chances against someone else would only add to the human tendency to complain. Innocuous comparison is necessary for your growth and will not harm you unless taken to its illogical conclusion.