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16 Signs of Inferiority Complex & Coping Tips

16 Main Inferiority Complex Symptoms and Tips to Overcome It  If you are wondering, “What is an inferiority complex?” and want to know everything about it, this article

If you are wondering, “What is an inferiority complex?” and want to know everything about it, this article is definitely for you. Signs of Inferiority Complex: What It Is & How to Effectively Cope with It?

Here, we will provide a complete overview of this mindset that causes distress. You can find out the definition, main causes, symptoms, and ways to cope with it.

Let’s get started!

Inferiority Complex: Definition

In a nutshell, this is an intense personal feeling of inadequacy, insecurity, weakness, and physical or psychological deficiency.

Usually, a person with an inferiority complex constantly underestimates themself and lacks confidence. They always tend to notice only flaws and imperfections. These people are afraid of criticism and being judged by others.

An inferiority complex hinders living a fulfilling and joyful life. A person concentrates only on negative emotions and erroneous perceptions of themselves. It can take a serious toll on social and professional life as well as affect relationships with others.

People with inferiority complex don’t value and always compare themselves to others. They are always in doubt and uncertain because of constant attempts to keep up with self-imposed standards.

It’s also worth noting that, nowadays, the term “inferiority complex” is outdated. More mental health professionals use the “chronic low self-esteem” term to define this feeling of inferiority.

Causes of Inferiority Complex

Now, once you understand the main definition of the inferiority complex, let’s dig deeper to learn what might cause it.

Here are the main causes of an inferiority complex:

  • Overly criticizing parents who often shame or discourage their kids;
  • Bullying by peers;
  • Negative social media experiences;
  • Inability to meet realistic or unrealistic goals which fail;
  • Harassment from family members, peers, colleagues, love partners;
  • History of abuse, trauma, stress, depression, and anxiety;
  • The urge for perfection;
  • Genetic predisposition;
  • Societal pressure.

16 Most Common Symptoms and Signs of Inferiority Complex

If you have been asking yourself “Do I have an inferiority complex?” then it’s the right time to find out the truth. Down below, you will find the list of the main inferiority complex signs you can use to suggest whether you have them or not.

  • Check it out carefully to make accurate assumptions:
  • Isolation from family, friends, and colleagues;
  • Constant feeling of shame, guilt, embarrassment, insecurity;
  • Lack of personal confidence and feeling of worth;
  • Aspiration for perfectionism;
  • Extreme self-criticism;
  • Constant seeking of validation from others;
  • Positive thinking of oneself only when they are doing something better than others;
  • Being sensitive to criticism (even to constructive criticism);
  • The tendency to find imperfections, faults, and weaknesses in other people;
  • Inability to accept compliments;
  • Avoiding any type of competition;
  • Lack of motivation;
  • Constant feeling anxious and depressed;
  • Insomnia
  • Seeking attention
  • Trust issues.

These are only basic signs of an inferiority complex. It’s crucial to understand that only an experienced online therapist or another mental health professional can use these signs to assess psychological problems.

Feel free to use this list to analyze your behavioral and thinking patterns. In case you have these inferiority complex signs, you may find an online therapist who will help you identify your emotional struggles, cope with them, and live a happy and healthy life.

Signs of Inferiority Complex

Inferiority Complex vs. Superiority Complex

These seem like two opposite issues but they can overlap somehow. A superiority complex means that a person feels superior to other people and they consider themselves to be much better than those around them.

They tend to exaggerate their worth, achievement, personal abilities, knowledge, and talents. At first glance, this superiority complex has nothing to do with an inferiority complex.

However, if to look at a person who has the signs of this complex from a different perspective, one may notice they feel helpless and psychologically weak. Their actions are a coping mechanism that helps them hide from the feeling of inferiority.

A person tries to compensate for their lack of abilities or other characteristics. This feeling is very burdensome. So being superior to others is the only way to cope with it.

How to Overcome the Inferiority Complex

Overcoming the inferiority complex requires some time and effort. As it’s been mentioned before, this mindset can gravely affect their relationships, professional life, and self-perception.

Therefore, if you suspect you might have similar symptoms, start solving this problem right away. Here are some well-working tips that will enable you to make your first steps toward self-love, confidence, and respect.


It will allow you to keep track of all your feelings and emotions so you can track down where the inferiority complex comes from. It will be beneficial to do this daily.

Journaling will help you not just define the root of your behavior but also be a source of inspiration that might indicate what you are good at.

Affirmations and positive self-talk

You should completely stop worrying about what others think and practice positive self-talk and affirmations. Just remind yourself as many times as you need it that you are amazing, as good as others are. Use any other compliment that will make you feel better and let you believe in your worthiness and inner power.

It will be quite useful when you feel low.


This is an effective way of getting your peace of mind back. It’s a must for those who feel anxious or depressed because of their low self-esteem. Meditation will keep you distracted and bring harmony into your emotional life.


Practice self-care and treat yourself to make you feel good inside and outside. Do whatever you like as long as it brings you joy and pleasure. Pamper yourself regularly, and you will become more confident over time.


It’s important to stop comparing yourself to other people and try to be like all people around you. Therefore, it’s your main job to identify and focus on your strengths, talents, and to channel all your effort into developing them and becoming a better version of yourself.

Positive people around

Try to surround yourself with positive and non-judgmental people. Get rid of the toxic environment that makes you feel bad. Rethink what people you want to have by your side and let them enter into your life.

Let yourself make mistakes and be imperfect as no one is. Don’t be harsh on yourself and accept all your failure. Use it as an opportunity to grow.

Inferiority Complex Treatment: How Online Therapy Can Help You Overcome Your Problems

Though you can start addressing your negative thinking patterns yourself with the working tips described above, it’s still crucial to turn for mental help to professionals.

Not all people can afford to attend in-person sessions with a therapist. Therefore, online therapy is a great cost-effective alternative that makes it possible to have sessions at any time, from anywhere, via your favorite gadget.

For example, the Calmerry platform has gathered experienced and licensed therapists with different specializations. A therapist will develop a step-by-step treatment plan so you can overcome the issues with self-esteem, self-confidence, self-worth, and body image. You will learn how to love yourself.

With the guidance of a therapist, you will explore your negative behavioral and thinking patterns that contribute to low self-esteem. In addition, a mental health professional will do everything possible to get to the root of the problem and support you in exploring the experience that caused a negative image of yourself.

With their guidance, you can reshape your self-image, become more confident, and learn how to love yourself again. Moreover, online therapy is a chance to share everything that’s going on in your life, bothers you, and get all the help from a therapist to become a better version of yourself.

Final Thoughts

Chronic low self-esteem or, also called inferiority complex, require your special attention and professional support. If you have noticed most of the symptoms listed in this article, it’s important to get help.

Online therapy is a modern way of coping with emotional problems and is completely worth it. A qualified therapist will come up with an effective treatment to help you live a happy and fulfilling life.

It’s a very convenient and affordable option. You can get back on track, overcome low self-esteem issues, and take your emotional well-being to a whole new level.