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‘Hubris syndrome’ or ‘the disease of power’: a disorder that also affects women

It is common for issues related to power to be less associated with women, but you have surely heard someone say something like “the mood has risen” or “she has a lot of temper”, referring to someone. Two variants of the same phrase that They refer to a vain or conceited person and also have a lot to do with people obsessed with power..

Precisely, this obsession is what is centered on what is known as Hubris syndrome. A disorder that, taken to the extreme, can be as dangerous as the well-known Othello complexbut in this case It is characterized by an excessive ego and a great disregard for the opinions of others.

A syndrome that, although it has its origin in mythology, is also more present than you imagine in the real world and is experienced by kings, politicians or rulers, among others. Hence it is also known as the disease of power.

What is Hubris Syndrome?

Hubris syndromealso know as Hubris syndrome either power diseaseis a disorder that It develops in those people who experience a personality change when they find themselves in a position of power.

This high position begins experiencing extreme pride and ego, gaining excessive self-confidence and acquiring contemptuous ways of behavior towards others. Especially towards those who have a more humble job and those who carry out cruel and gratuitous acts against them. This impulsive form of behavior can even be destructive.

It is a syndrome that, in addition to being very widespread in the business worldis also very present in countless kings, rulers, dictators, politicians, soldiers, etc.

At the moment, It is considered a subtype of narcissistic personality disorderdespite not being specified in the main diagnostic manuals (DSM and ICD), but it is contemplated within the fields of psychology and psychiatry.

Origin of Hubris Syndrome

The word hubris or hubris It has a Greek origin and Its meaning is pride, presumption or arrogance.. The Greeks used this term to refer to human behavior and defined a defiant arrogance in the face of the gods, as well as an excessive, reckless and insolent ambition.

This syndrome was detailed for the first time by the former politician David Owen and also by the psychiatrist Jonathan Davidson to use it as a diagnostic table with which to classify the excessive power of some politicians.

In the research carried out by Hubris, Owen and Davidson, they analyzed the psychological profiles of the presidents of the United States and the prime ministers of the United Kingdom who had served in the last 100 years.

This study showed that seven of the presidents of the United States had shown personality traits related to arrogance (Woodrow Wilson, Theodore Roosevelt, Franklin D. Roosevelt, Lyndon Johnson, Richard Nixon, John Kennedy and George W. Bush), but all mentioned only one could fit within the diagnosis of Hubris syndrome (George W. Bush).

As for the ministers, Four were found who also fit Hubris syndrome: David Lloyd George, Neville Chamberlain, Margaret Thatcher and Tony Blair.

Symptoms of Hubris Syndrome

To identify Hubris syndrome in a person, the presence of at least three of the following symptoms is needed:

  • Exaggerated way of approaching normal matters and giving a lot of importance to oneself, accompanied by arrogant and arrogant behavior.
  • Contempt and envy towards others, whom he does not hesitate to defeat at any cost.
  • Exaggerated self-confidence, which leads him to be excessively reckless and impulsive.
  • Excessive and excessive concern for image, eccentricities and luxury.
  • Feeling of superiority over others and arrogance.
  • Conviction that you do not have to explain yourself to your peers, your friends or society; but yes to higher and more powerful people.
  • The loss of power leads to rage, resentment and desolation.
  • Progressive distancing from reality.

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