14 Reasons You Think You’re Better Than Everyone Else

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Do you think you’re better than everyone else?

Have you ever gazed around with contempt, feeling that you’re surrounded by nothing but fools?

Have you looked upon others with disdain because their clothes were shabby and their dialect sounded coarse and uneducated?

Or maybe you’ve declined a drink because it was $12 wine instead of a vintage bottle and you felt that you deserved better.

What is “better,” exactly?

Some people seem to feel that they’re above others for one reason or another, and they treat others poorly as a result.

Why does this happen? Where does this idea spring from, and what are some of the causal factors that may contribute to you thinking that you’re better than everyone else?

Speak to an accredited and experienced therapist to help you address thoughts of being better than everyone else. You may want to try speaking to one via BetterHelp.com for quality care at its most convenient.

1. You were raised with privilege.

Many people who were born into wealthy or otherwise privileged families may have been programmed from an early age to believe that they’re better than others.

Basically, they think that having more money than someone else, or having access to great resources and life experiences, means that they’re somehow superior.

They equate having more stuff—or luxury items—to being a better, more important human being than someone who uses the basics instead, or doesn’t even have those basics at all.

These are often people whose parents took them on expensive trips or to five-star restaurants for special occasions.

As such, when and if other people talk about how excited they were to visit Disneyworld or go to a themed restaurant for their birthday, they’ll be met with scorn and mockery.

After all, they went skiing in Aspen for their birthday and sat at the chef’s table at a Michelin star restaurant in Paris to celebrate their graduation.

What is to be gained by putting down someone else’s joy?

If they feel excitement or delight at something, then that’s wonderful. That experience might mean more to them than yours ever would.

Let people enjoy things on their terms without comparing them.

2. The cultural caste system.

There are many places in the world where cultural castes will determine one’s position in society.

In some areas, caste may be dictated by physical attributes that one has no control over, such as their skin color.

This is common in India, where people with lighter skin are more valued than darker-hued members of society.

Some would say that this kind of caste system also holds true in the West.

Sadly, racism is still rampant around the world and can be found on every continent.

People with lighter skin are often given more respect and preferential treatment over those with more melanin. As such, many light-skinned individuals treat people of color (POC) poorly simply because they have darker skin tones.

The same goes for those who don’t speak English as a first language.

Native English speakers often look down upon those who have it as a second (or fifth) language, even if they speak it more eloquently.

The fact that they speak with a “weird” accent, or make occasional spelling blunders, is enough to make them roll their eyes and laugh at that person.

Said person might be more well-educated, more philanthropic, wealthier, and even of higher social rank, but paler-skinned, English-speaking folks may consider themselves superior anyway.

If you find yourself feeling better than someone else simply because of a pigmentation or language issue, then be sure to rethink that idea.

Remember that some of the most influential people in history were neither light-skinned, nor English-speaking.

Case in point, there isn’t a single “white” person in the Bible, Talmud, Qur’an, Taoist texts, Bhagavad Gita, or many other sacred writings around the world.

Let that sink in for a little bit.

3. Heritage.

This goes along with the caste system and privilege mentioned earlier, but specifically revolves around esteemed ancestry.

Unlike the peasants around them whose genes came from muck farmers, these people can trace their lineage back to royalty, heroes, and other persons of note.

As a result, they consider themselves to be superior to others by virtue of shared DNA circling around in their veins.

They haven’t done anything personally to earn any accolades, of course. They simply ride the coattails of their forebears, using their genetic inheritance as justification for elitist behavior.

After all, a descendent of Richard the Lionheart or Charlemagne shouldn’t have to dine with a blacksmith’s great-great-great…..great-grandchild.

As you can imagine, this kind of posturing doesn’t do them any favors.

If we trace our ancestry back far enough, we’re all related to someone who did something special. That doesn’t mean that we get to use their rank for preferential treatment.

There’s a line from the Lord of the Rings that summarizes this idea perfectly, “You are a lesser son of greater sires.”

If you want to be acknowledged for great accolades or acts of nobility and bravery, then get out there and do some things worth acknowledging.

You aren’t any greater or lesser than anyone around you because of something that someone else did a thousand years ago.

4. Social connections.

One reason some people think they’re better than others is via the status of those they spend time with.

You’ll know these people because they name-drop on a regular basis to impress others.

They’ll casually mention that they were having lunch with a famous actor the other day, or constantly bring up the time they spent the night with that world-renowned musician.

They’ll get themselves invited to events such as film or music festival after-parties so they can hobnob with celebrities, then turn down invitations out with friends because they prefer to spend time in better company.

Once again, this is an attempt to feel special by association without achieving anything on one’s own.

It’s perceived value and recognition by proxy, and it carries no weight at all.

Remember what we said about one person not being any better than another? Just because someone is well-known doesn’t make them a better human being.

Additionally, keep in mind that society is fickle. The person who’s loved today might be a social pariah or laughingstock next year.

Furthermore, you might be the flavor of the moment now, but you might be dropped and forgotten about in a fortnight.

Meanwhile, the people who still invite you to their dinner parties, even though you’re a snobbish nightmare, are likely to be the ones who’ll offer you a couch to crash on when you need to.

Invest your time and energy in people who sincerely care about you, not those who consider you a temporary—and discardable—accessory.

5. Superiority via one-upmanship.

Basically, everything they’ve been through, you’ve been through something that was worse, more difficult, more painful, or more exciting, and you handled it much better (or more gracefully) than they ever could.

Similarly, if and when they talk about their achievements or attributes, your response is along the same lines as the Southern “bless your heart,” as in “You gave it a good try but you didn’t quite get it right, did you?”

If your friend broke their ankle, you might offer a bit of sympathy but then launch into how you broke your leg and then set it yourself before walking 40 miles to the hospital.

They got into law school on their second try? Well, you breezed in without even studying!

They’re whining about a chronic headache? That was nothing compared to the 30 hours of labor you had with each of your 8 perfect children, and so on.

Even if you have an easier time with something than someone else, or you have more emotional, mental, or physical fortitude than another, that doesn’t make you superior to them.

The oak tree that’s outside my window isn’t superior to the maple of equal size that’s on the other side of the creek. Both are resplendent in their own way, and one gifts us (and the forest animals) with acorns while the other blesses us with maple syrup.

Keep that in mind the next time you feel like you need to one-up someone.

Imagine how you would feel if your roles were reversed, and they were invalidating your life experiences because theirs were so much more important than yours will ever be.

6. Physical appearance.

This expands upon the caste system we mentioned earlier.

It’s not just skin color or social standing that can make a person believe they’re better than others: physical appearance in general can play a massive role as well.

A person who’s naturally physically attractive will often be considered to be better than others who are not.

They’re visually—and by extension, sexually—appealing, which puts them in high demand.

Basically, these people are considered to have higher value than those who may not be as traditionally attractive.

The same can be said for people who feel that they’re better than others because they’re more physically fit.

Being strong, lean, and healthy is admirable, and it takes a massive amount of hard work to maintain. But there may be a ton of reasons why another person isn’t able to get to your fitness level that go far beyond a lack of motivation.

We never know what’s going on in another person’s life, as everyone’s struggles are individual.

As such, you might think you’re better than the person who can’t bench press 300lbs like you can, unaware that they have cerebral palsy, or similar, that literally prevent them from being able to do so.

Is it a fair comparison? And what about the things that they excel at that you’re unable to do?

That person with cerebral palsy might speak 10 languages fluently or made huge strides in astrophysics.

Does that make them better than you in turn?

No. It just makes them different.

Remember that every person on this planet is a mind riding around in a temporary bone mech suit, clad in flesh armor. No two bodies are the same, and no body remains the same for long.

Your bones, organs, and skin will deteriorate over time, and unless you invest millions in plastic (and internal) surgical maintenance, the signs of aging will affect you eventually as well—if they haven’t already.

What aspects of yourself will you value as a result?

And what will you choose to value in others?

7. The illusion of higher caliber education.

Let’s say there are two people who have earned equal degrees in a particular field.

Both people have the same amount of knowledge and experience under their belts, but one earned their degree at an Ivy League school, while the other did not.

The higher-priced college degree will be considered better than the other, even though the knowledge learned was identical.

Education is education, and one person isn’t better than another simply because they paid more money for their degree.

Unfortunately, social stigma carries a great deal of weight, and the person with the more expensive degree might be more likely to get an in-demand job than the person who earned a generic one.

The latter might be more intelligent, more skilled, and better suited to the job overall, but the weight that the school’s name carries makes the graduate appear to be the superior candidate.

Please remember that this isn’t necessarily the case at all.

Consider the Australian Aboriginal people who have been managing their lands for tens of thousands of years via controlled burns.

When they tried to get permission from the Australian government to continue with these traditional “cultural burns,” they were denied.

The government told them that their techniques were naïve and had no basis in modern science.

And what happened as a result of them not being allowed to continue their millennia-old traditional practices?

Approximately 50,000 square miles burned horribly in 2019/2020, causing immense loss of natural habitat, animal life, and housing.

No matter what it is you think you know, be aware that someone else has already forgotten more than you will ever learn, and it may be the person you least suspect.

It is a good idea to seek professional help from one of the therapists at BetterHelp.com as professional therapy can be highly effective in helping you to develop a more realistic view of yourself compared to others.

8. Moral superiority.

Many people who adhere to certain lifestyles or personal choices believe that they’re better than others because their life choices are morally superior.

Maybe they choose to only eat certain foods due to what they consider to be more ethical than the alternatives.

Or they’ve chosen to eschew one type of medication in favor of another and look down upon those “too stupid or naive” to do the same.

Generally, their derision will be aimed at those who haven’t made the same choices they have.

They believe that their choices are the only right ones, and anyone who chooses differently is either morally inferior or a flat-out idiot.

The same often goes for people who adhere strictly to a particular religious doctrine.

They may feel better or more righteous than someone else because they dress or behave a certain way. They consider those who don’t to somehow be misguided or downright inferior.

After all, the just know that their religion is the right one to follow, and nobody else is as devoutly observant as they are, so they must be better than those around them.

If you find yourself thinking this on a regular basis, check yourself.

Remember that no stance or faith is any better than another; they are best suited to the individuals who hold to them.

9. Lack of life experience.

A fish that has spent all its time in a pond cannot even begin to conceive of what a sea looks like. Its entire perspective revolves around its surroundings, because that’s all it has ever known.

Furthermore, if it’s the biggest fish in that pond, it’ll consider itself to be superior to all the minnows swimming around it.

Imagine its surprise if it’s tossed into the ocean and comes face to face with a great blue whale or a shoal of swordfish.

All of a sudden, it’s patently aware that it’s nowhere near as special as it thought it was, and that’s damned humbling.

I knew of a girl who thought herself better than her peers because she spoke (Canadian) French fluently. She excelled at written tests and was accepted to an exchange program in France as a result.

Once there, the French people promptly asked her to just speak English, because her Quebecois dialect butchered their mother tongue so badly.

You might think you’re amazing at something, but that doesn’t mean everyone else agrees with you.

So, stop being arrogant and start being humble.

10. You’ve been too easily influenced by contemporary culture.

Take a look at the famous people you follow on social media, or check out the shows and such that you watch on a regular basis.

Do they have anything in common?

Chances are that they’re full of rather superficial people who feel that they’re above others, and behave as such.

If you immerse yourself in content created by these people, then you’re going to be influenced by their behaviors—even on a subconscious level.

How many people have started to speak like the Kardashians over the past decade? Vocalizations and catchphrases spread like viruses, but so do fashion styles and interpersonal behaviors.

Or, to sum it up in four simple words: “monkey see, monkey do.”

If you find that you’re emulating the behaviors of those you watch or listen to on the regular, ask yourself whether this makes you a person who anyone else actually wants to spend time with.

Do you have sincere friendships? Or merely casual conversations with people at the gym or eyelash salon?

Are there people in your life whom you can truly count on and trust? Or do you change social circles as often as you change your underwear?

11. The belief that your preferences are correct.

This is similar to the moral superiority mentioned above, but it relates to personal preferences rather than lifestyle choices.

For example, you might laugh at Android phone users because you have an iPhone, which you believe to be far superior.

Similarly, you might choose not to even associate with people who root for different sports teams or listen to music that you consider to be low-class or even simply ridiculous.

You might even exclude people from your social circle for not wearing what you consider to be the right brand of shoes.

It doesn’t matter what they’re like as people—they could be the kindest, funniest, most loyal and amazing friend in the world, but since their chosen footwear isn’t up to your personal standards, you don’t give them the time of day.

This is sometimes chalked up to a condition known as an “Aristotle complex,” in which a person doesn’t just believe their opinions are correct. They’re determined to argue with others about them until they’ve proven them to be so because they need to be right all the time.

Sometimes, the person will try to break the others will with nonstop staccato interrogation and fact frothing until the other simply gives in with a “Yes, you’re right,” just to make it stop.

They don’t actually agree; they’re just too tired to engage in that argument anymore.

12. Fame or other public recognition.

If you’ve ever shrieked, “Don’t you know WHO I AM?” in a situation where you haven’t gotten exactly what you wanted, when you wanted it, then you might fall under this category.

Some people who are in the public eye have developed the idea that they’re somehow better than all the “common folk” who aren’t as well recognized as they are.

Maybe they’ve earned their fame through performance work such as visual art, music, or film.

Or they’ve gained accolades (or even notoriety) for something they’ve done.

Suddenly, they have a devoted fanbase that’s constantly telling them how great they are—trying to get their attention, pouring out compliments, asking for autographs or selfies, and generally being recognized wherever they go.

As a result, some let this fame go to their heads so they believe that by being more well-known than others, they’re actually better than others.

After all, fame doesn’t just come with greater monetary earnings: it often bestows additional privileges as well.

Oh, you’re famous? Well, then you don’t need to wait in line with the plebs: you can bypass the queue and get in first.

Preferential treatment is par for the course and becomes expected.

Before you know it, you’re turning your nose up at all the “little people” whom you swan past without a second thought… even though they’re the folks who keep you on the pedestal you’re enjoying.

Lose the crowd’s love and you’ll lose your status.

13. Overcompensation for an extreme lack of self-esteem.

Deep down, you might feel like a failure, or that you’re inferior to everyone around you.

As a result, you’ve counteracted these feelings on a subconscious level by behaving as though you’re superior to all those around you.

Some people try to overcompensate for their terrible self-esteem by doing, buying, and wearing things that are considered high value.

This is a sort of armor that protects them from other people’s judgement and naysaying about them.

For example, someone who’s been bullied or mistreated for being unattractive or overweight might treat themselves to luxury items like jewelry, accessories, and even vehicles.

That way, if and when anyone insults their appearance, they can laugh and say that the one insulting them is “just jealous” that they can’t afford their Rolex watch or Louis Vuitton handbag.

This kind of rationale is a common form of ego protection.

By convincing oneself that others are simply jealous or wish that they were like them, they can avoid self-scrutiny.

After all, if they take a good look at themselves and their behavior, they might realize that they’re actually rather awful people to be around, and they aren’t better than anyone else at all.

14. It’s easier to reject people before they reject you.

This is a self-defense mechanism that’s often used by people who have been badly hurt in the past.

By thinking that other people are somehow below you, it won’t hurt as much if they choose not to include you in their social circles.

After all, you wouldn’t want to sit with them anyway, right?

Keeping them at a distance and allowing yourself to feel superior means that you have absolutely no problem discarding them at will.

You’ll choose to spend your time in better company instead: namely your own.

Are you familiar with Marcus Aurelius? He was a Roman emperor who wasn’t just incredibly noble, he kept the empire together during an incredibly fractious time.

His written meditations on stoicism still inspire people greatly to this day. To keep himself humble, he hired an assistant to follow him around and whisper, “You’re just a man,” to him every time he was praised.

Consider wearing a bracelet or ring with a similar phrase on it. That way, any time you start to wander into “better than thou” land, it’ll serve as a reminder.

Would you like to stop thinking of yourself as better than others?

Speak to a therapist about it.

Why? Because they are trained to help people in situations like yours.

They can help you to see yourself and others from a more balanced and realistic perspective to overcome your somewhat arrogant beliefs.

BetterHelp.com is a website where you can connect with a therapist via phone, video, or instant message.

While you may try to work through this yourself, it may be a bigger issue than self-help can address.

And if it is affecting your mental well-being, relationships, or life in general, it is a significant thing that needs to be resolved.

Too many people try to muddle through and do their best to overcome issues that they never really get to grips with. If it’s at all possible in your circumstances, therapy is 100% the best way forward.

Online therapy is actually a good option for many people. It’s more convenient than in-person therapy and is more affordable in a lot of cases.

And you get access to the same level of qualified and experienced professional.

Here’s that link again if you’d like to learn more about the service BetterHelp.com provide and the process of getting started.

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About The Author

Finn Robinson has spent the past few decades travelling the globe and honing his skills in bodywork, holistic health, and environmental stewardship. In his role as a personal trainer and fitness coach, he’s acted as an informal counselor to clients and friends alike, drawing upon his own life experience as well as his studies in both Eastern and Western philosophies. For him, every day is an opportunity to be of service to others in the hope of sowing seeds for a better world.