9 Signs of an Inferiority Complex and 9 Tips to Overcome It

As you might tell by its name, an inferiority complex is a deeply seated feeling of being inferior to others. This feeling can be present whether you seem to have a specific rational reason for it or not.

I still remember the first time I became aware of an intense feeling of inferiority living and thriving inside of me. While this feeling of worthlessness was present ever since I can remember, it got worse over the years, especially during my teenage years and all the way to my twenties. That’s when I ended up in a deep depression.

It seems like the famous “I’m not good enough” was the constant echo in the back of my mind, and the only way I could silence it was by consuming drugs and alcohol.

“I’m not good enough” is what lies behind every inferiority complex.

So what exactly is inferiority complex, how can you tell you have it, and what can you do to dissolve it?

Take a look at the infographic below to find out!

inferiority complex infographic

As Dr. Maxwell Maltz puts it in his book “Psycho-Cybernetics”:
“Inferiority and Superiority are reverse sides of the same coin. The cure lies in realizing that the coin itself is spurious.

The truth about you is this:
You are not “inferior.”
You are not “superior.”
You are simply “You.”Stop Feeling inferior - Inferiority Complex Hypnosis Promotional Banner“You” as a personality are not in competition with any other personality simply because there is not another person on the face of the earth like you, or in your particular class. You are an individual. You are unique. You are not “like” any other person. You are not “supposed” be like any other person and no other person is “supposed”‘ to be like you.”

If you have found this infographic helpful, please share it on your favorite social media sites and help others on their path to inner peace and social confidence!

If you’d like to overcome social anxiety and transform your social life, check out the “Bye bye, Social Anxiety” guide and get on the fast track to inner peace and lasting confidence. It’s an extensive ebook I wrote, based on my own experience with overcoming crippling social phobia.

19 thoughts on “9 Signs of an Inferiority Complex and 9 Tips to Overcome It”

  1. Thank you for the site
    My Inferiority Complex has worsened over the years, and anxiety has shown up too.

    I am age 90 and just to change the subject, I don’t suffer from loneliness, I have too much to do,
    Living alone gives me time to do what I enjoy like writing, reading, sewing crowshaying, cooking and baking, not to mention cleaning.

    All the best

    • Hi, thank you for your comment. I hope the article helps you find ways to grow more self-acceptance and dissolve anxiety. It’s good to hear you always find something you love to do and keep your creativity high – living alone definitely has its advantages 🙂
      I wish you all the best too!

  2. I never knew what this feeling was exactly until i stumbled upon this. I always had a feeling of being lost whenever I’m deep in that mind set. Seeing others know what it is and being advised how to fix it from those who have had it is amazing. Thank you for this, this really opened my eyes up. Gets rid of that lostness.

  3. I’ve been struggling with this since childhood and some days it’s nasty. Every word I say I question – wasn’t that stupid? It has made me a little bit socially awkward. In a group setting, my brain produces so many thoughts to say, but I immediately run them trough a filter and either say nothing or play it safe, so I come accross as not genuine or boring. I am 33 now and I learnt slowly and deliberately to let go and allow myself to be spontaineous in what I do and say. Every day I must conciously work on this. Sometimes, it’s very tiring. I think about talking to a therapist, but it seems silly because other than that, my life is beyond blessed.

    • Kudos for working on it and making progress! I can relate to what you say as I used to struggle with it too. It’s really about accepting ourselves for who we are, and when we do that, we also become more spontaneous and communication becomes fun and pleasant. Ultimately, it’s not about WHAT we say but HOW we say it since people consciously or subconsciously pick up the energy/vibe and the confidence we emit. Getting out of our comfort zone is one of the most important things, as long as we also get our mindset right.

    • Hey Ashley, thanks for the comment. I agree a lot of people suffer from this without realizing. After all, at the core of all inner suffering is the feeling of not being good enough.

    • Hi Leonard, it means the world to me to know that the content I create and post is helpful to someone. It’s what makes all the work worth it. Thank you for taking the time to comment and let me know.

    • Hi Abdul, glad you liked it. Thank you for the suggestion. I might write another article on this subject and go into more dept on how to dissolve the inferiority complex. In the meantime, all articles on my blog that talk about overcoming social anxiety are basically also about overcoming inferiority complex, since inferiority complex is at the core of social anxiety.

  4. Hi there! Would you mind if I share your blog with my facebook group?
    There’s a lot of folks that I think would really appreciate your content.
    Please let me know. Cheers

  5. I had suffered sibling bullying from childhood into adulthood. It was a chance comment to a therapist who pointed out that my brother has an inferiority complex. I then researched it further and made sense of my brother’s actions. He disguises his complex with Superiority. He also took it to psychotic extremes. It began early in life. One day he bashed my head against school railings until I collapsed unconscious. In my mid teens I put on weight which enabled him at every opportunity to call me fat. I left home for college. He would apply coercive control usually venturing around money which for him was a controlling mechanism. I left home and took up weight training. I got ripped. I then noticed my brother became a feeder always pushing me to eat treats often buying them. I appreciate now he needed me to ‘ve fat so he could feel superior. The coercive control got to me leading to an overdose. I wrote this down and handed it to him thinking it would change him. I think I just gave him a way in. My youngest brother killed himself and I tried again. The cruel brother used our mother’s death to finally destroy me. This is too long a process to detail. However I made my most perfect attempt a year later. Having survived I decided I would return to uni. I went to Uni in the 90s. He tried to sabotage my degree by taking my money and feeding me treats. It was while at Uni my youngest brother killed himself. Because I buried my previous attempts I did not put 2 and 2 together and realise he to was being bullied. The chance remark that I mentioned to the therapist was my brother telling me he was going to uni to do a Masters degree regardless of not having done a degree or even an A level. He had to go one better. He had to be superior. My first degree was art. My second will be English and creative writing which is my other passion. I took to writing a series of books which arose from childhood imaginings. It was and is this World of my imagination which enabled Me to escape and survive. I recently went through a torturous period revolving around his lifelong campaign to destroy me even though he lives in Australia. I came through it as I was made myself his victim. I’ve survived him and his wife who was complicit in his actions surrounding my mother’s death. In that he was calculated. I was with her for months before she passed carrying it all on my shoulders. I was the most vulnerable. They are the way they are and deal with it in cruel ways. I just hope their children are not contaminated. What is worse in all of this is having pushed one brother to kill himself and tried to finish me off he deprived our mother if a sin and still put himself across as the golden child. He hurt my parents by killing my brother but this psychotic inferiority complex sufferer rather than get help to cure himself chose instead to go to extremes and gain a feeling if superiority through hurting others.

  6. Hi Rick, sorry to hear about all this and thank you for sharing. It sounds like you went through an awful lot of hardship in your life. Maybe talking about it with your father would help?
    A very strong need to feel superior comes indeed when a person tries to compensate for their feelings of inferiority. When you truly love and accept yourself, you don’t have the need to feel superior and prove yourself to others.
    I hope you find peace in this whole situation, even if this means cutting contact with your bullying brother. His opinion of you and actions towards you define him, not you.


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