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Sunday, December 6, 2015

Active Inoperative Mediocrity Disorder (AIM Syndrome)

New Insight

The 'pressure for excellence" or inner tension towards suppuration of current limitations, is actualized through creativity or, in a vicarious way, through attraction and admiration for excellency in others.

If this 'pressure for excellency' is greater than the abilities or possibilities for expression, the frustration may originate neurotic, psychotic or addictive psychopathology.

In the other extreme, the defect or inhibition of the 'pressure for excellence' also originates pathology, which we term 'mediocrity disorders'.

Three forms are described:

  1. Simple, almost asymptomatic, with hyper-adaptation and lack of originality. 
  2. Inoperative or pseudo-creative, with passive-aggressive traits and tendencies to reproduce the external manifestations of the normal processes of self actualization; and 
  3. Active Inoperative, the malignant form, with exaggeration of the repetitive and imitative tendencies of type 2, active impersonation of the external signs of excellency, including pretensions of notoriety and demands for undeserved respect and admiration, and jealous envy against brilliant and excellent people, with destructive trends.

JL Gonzalez de Rivera (

This opens a whole new dimension for understanding of corporate and political behaviour.

In Simple Terms:

If a person is challenged with excellence he or she can behave in a number of ways:
The healthy way is to be creative and drive for excellence oneself, or by admiring excellence in others. Wouldn't our world be a phenomenal place if this is the norm?

However, if the "pressure for excellence" is too great for one's abilities it can lead to some scary and stupid (probably unnatural) human behaviours:

Three likely behaviours can occur:

  1. Zombies: People that simply "ride along". Cannot be bothered, and is not to be bothered by anything that challenges the status quo.
  2. Passive Aggressiveness: Indirect expression of hostility, such as through procrastination, stubbornness, sullenness, or deliberate or repeated failure to accomplish requested tasks for which one is (often explicitly) responsible.
  3. Go after the excellence by impersonation, jealousy, envy, demands for undeserved respect and admiration and/or eliminate the the cause - i.e. get rid of the excellence. For example: If you cannot stack up, better cut others down to your level.
Somehow, the malignant form is way too familiar.

If you have anything more about this, please share.

Google is surprisingly sparse on content about this Disorder.

Hendrik van Wyk

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1 comment:

Unknown said...

Very well written article.