10 Signs Of An Inferiority Complex

Date February 13, 2018

Although having an inferiority complex is an extremely common phenomenon, many people don't even know they have this problem.

Perhaps, we can all recall a moment in our lives when everything seemed like "it couldn't be worse." If you constantly have the feeling that you are not good enough, you are probably suffering from a hidden inferiority complex.

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Some psychologists consider this feeling useful because it can motivate people to success.

To become a full-fledged person, you have to experience an inferiority complex. This is how the human desire for victory is born! (Alfred Adler)

However, practice shows that inferiority complexes can have negative consequences on the health and well-being of most people. In some cases, the symptoms are so serious that the person can't do without professional intervention.

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Below are 10 signs that indicate a person has a hidden inferiority complex.

1. You constantly need other people's attention.

Are you always eager to know other people's opinions? Or are you constantly looking for an opportunity to boast of your own successes? People who have an inferiority complex need constant validation of their merits. To attract people's attention, they can resort to aggression, imaginary illness, depression, complaints about life, and the like.

People with a hidden inferiority complex are always thirsty for compliments. But even if they receive praise, they tend to doubt whether the person has been honest with them.

The roots of such behavior most often go back to childhood, when a child needs praise from their parents. It is at this early stage of life that parents form our self-esteem. So if a child is constantly ignored, they will definitely look for other people's attention when they grow up.

2. You are too sensitive to other people's opinions.

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Do you get extremely upset when you hear negative opinions about yourself? Are you too sensitive to the opinions of your family and friends?

A person with a hidden inferiority complex takes everything close to heart and is always concerned about what people think and speak of them. These negative feelings can last for several weeks.

Of course, it's okay to feel frustrated when you find out that somebody is spreading terrible rumors about you. But if your reaction is too strong regarding any opinion about you, this can be a sign of a hidden inferiority complex.

3. You put your own needs last.

If you always tend to put yourself last, you will most likely remain at the end of the queue. In fact, there is a huge difference between an inferiority complex and readiness for compromise.

If you have an inferiority complex, you always feel low and unworthy, therefore it seems right to see everybody else above yourself.

Don't forget that prolonged ignoring of one's own needs will inevitably cause anger and resentment in a person.

4. You cannot take constructive criticism.

People with a hidden inferiority complex are exceptionally sensitive to criticism. 

People with an inferiority complex react negatively even to friendly jokes.

If the tiniest critique leaves you desperate and low for days, then this is definitely a sign of an inferiority complex.

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5. You never want to recognize other people's successes.

One of the most common symptoms of an inferiority complex is the "sour grape syndrome.'' For example, your colleague easily coped with a task you failed to complete and you attribute his success to external factors (for example, the help of an influential person or accidental good luck). 

People with an inferiority complex never perceive other people's success as the result of their personal abilities or merits.

This symptom is a subconscious way of dealing with the truth that somebody can actually do something better than you.

6. You constantly find faults with others.

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People who suffer an inferiority complex feel a constant need to be better than others since this greatly increases their self-esteem. Any failure can make them belittle other people's virtues and behave in an aggressive and rude way.

A person with an inferiority complex feels better when others feel bad.

Think about what your true talents or strengths are and focus on your actual virtues, instead of finding faults with others.

7. You procrastinate too often.

Is it hard for you to start a new project or a task? Do you often put off things until tomorrow and fail to find a way to motivate yourself?

It is difficult to start something if you are not sure you can actually do it well.

People with an inferiority complex are afraid to act only because they feel a deep fear of making a mistake and getting punished.

8. You hate competitions.

Do you constantly refuse to participate in any type of competition where your abilities will be compared to others?

If it is impossible not to participate in the competition, the sour grape syndrome immediately manifests itself in the person with an inferiority complex. The sour grape syndrome helps the person level out the subsequent disappointment in case of failure.

In most cases, people with an inferiority complex "know" in advance that they cannot win or compete with others. That's why they tend to avoid any tests of their own abilities!

9. You voluntarily isolate yourself from society.

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People with an inferiority complex often voluntarily withdraw from society. They feel they are not good enough to be with others who always seem better than themselves.

If you suddenly notice you've started to lead a closed life, think about why you don't feel like going out.

Maybe you want to avoid listening to people's opinions about yourself, or you just know you are not good enough. Or, maybe you prefer to stay at home so that others will not know the truth about you? Avoiding social interaction may be a sign that something is wrong with your self-esteem.

10. You blame your failures on the universe.

Individuals with an inferiority complex tend to look for causes of their problems in external factors, such as poverty, a bad company, or simply the environment.

Everybody is to blame except myself!

People with an inferiority complex are not able to admit that failure can be caused by their own mistakes. It is easier for them to blame the universe!

If you have noticed some of the symptoms mentioned above in your friends, ask them to read this article. This information may help them test themselves for an inferiority complex. If somebody has most of the symptoms described above, it's time to make an appointment with a psychotherapist. 

Eleanor Roosevelt once said that nobody is able to make you feel incomplete without your own consent! Keep this in mind and find your right place in the world!

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The material in this article is for informational purposes only and does not replace the advice of a certified specialist.