How I overcame Inferiority Complex by Olowolaju Odunayo
I am OLOWOLAJU Odunayo Olamide, born on January 18 into the family of Deacon and Mrs
Olowolaju some years back. I am very fortunate to be the 3rd child among the four (4) children given
birth to by my Parents. Though I was born in Ado Ekiti, Ekiti state of our country, Nigeria, but my
family hails from Ondo state.
I had my Primary Education at Petoa Nursery and Primary School, Ado Ekiti, Ekiti state, had part of
my Junior secondary Education (Jss 1) at Christ School, Ado Ekiti, Ekiti state, and I completed the
remaining part of my Junior Secondary Education and Senior secondary Education at Federal
Government College, Ikole Ekiti, Ekiti state.
At a very tender age, say age 10, I suffered so much from lack of self-worth, doubts and
uncertainties about myself and a feeling that I am not measuring up to standards. It made me feel
incomplete, unworthy and unacceptable as a person; no matter what I did, achieved or fixed about
I could remember that in my secondary school days (being a boarding house student, surrounded by
various students from different backgrounds: the rich class, middle class, and average class; which I
believe I belonged to, because, some of my needs, not all, could be met), I had a very low self esteem
and as a result, I had to run around people to be their friend; I had to beg for friends. I can not point
out one person in particular who really wanted to be my friend.
To have a friend therefore, I had to
become someone else- I had to do some certain things which I wouldn’t have naturally done, like:
dodging of labour, bringing food out from the dining hall, stealing from others, I broke so many rules,
I could remember I once lied to my Principal and I was boasting about it all around, I untucked my
shirt during school hours on a particular day too just because I wanted to ‘feel among’, and several
other things were done. The truth of the matter is that I lost myself totally, I became someone else, I
became a slave to myself, I lost all, I never became good at anything, I rather became jealous of other
people… These and many more are what happen when you have this same feeling that almost
What brought about the feeling and how did I deal with it?
I can say that what really brought about the feeling was my thought pattern. I thought there was
nothing I could do that could ever be accepted. I thought I needed to prove my worth over others
whom I believed were doing very fine and all their needs properly catered for, unlike mine.
Fortunately for me, I later realized that I was not in competition with anyone and right from this
point of understanding, I gradually gained a little of my self-worth back. I also realized that I
compared myself too much with others, forgetting I was a special version of myself and there’s no
need to measure my worth by invisible, intangible and constantly changing yardsticks set
against other people. I became enlightened that I could become better and I was the only internal
measurement for that.
Few years to the end of my secondary school (SSS 1 precisely), I contested to be my class captain and
won. I also became my house captain assistant in SS2. These experiences eliminated my inferiority
complex a little.
Still on my quest to ‘be myself’, I began to add more values to myself through reading of books,
taking reasonable risks, really doing those good things I was initially only imitating in others, I no
longer worried if I would be accepted or not, I didn’t pay attention to improper criticisms from
anyone, I strived for leadership positions, I renewed trust in myself and believed so much that I
could do anything I set my heart on; I became positive in my thinking.
What has changed?
Ever since that my ‘transformation’ time, I have served in various leadership positions till now. I have
served as an executive in the Faculty of Management Science students’ Association, Ekiti state
chapter, I have served in various capacities in my campus fellowship, I served as the NYSC (National
Youths Service Corps) Corps Liason Officer (CLO) in my Local government of deployment in the capital of
the state where I served, and now, I don’t feel inferior any longer; I am not uncertain about
If I could overcome and have these little achievements so far, you can be better…
Be encouraged, it’s not the end of life