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inferiority complex

Inferiority complex is a term attributed to and adopted by Adler though, according to the Ansbachers (p. 256), probably not originating with him. It refers to those feelings of inferiority which are personal as opposed to universal and which are so overwhelming that they undermine an individual's courage to move forward with life, to meet and overcome obstacles, and to develop and make a contribution to the community.  The term inferiority complex applies when inferiority feelings cease to be a spur to further growth and become themselves a rationale for hesitation, an excuse for loss of courage, an alibi for failure.

Excerpted with permission from Griffith, Jane & Powers, Robert L.


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