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Tall Poppy Syndrome: The act of cutting people down

Benjamin Franklin Fairless, the president of the United States Steel Corporation once said:

“You cannot strengthen one by weakening another; and you can’t increase the height of a dwarf by cutting off the giant’s legs.”

I have finally figured it out! I have finally discovered the proper term used to describe people who attack others because of their success. They are people so filled with envy and disdain at the success of others, that they attack and slander them. Back when I was still involved in the music business, the common term used to describe such people was, “Player Haters”. Of course, that term is still used today in the world of Rap/Hip-hop because such people still exist. They are everywhere! And from all walks of life! The term used to describe people who suffer from this form of mental and social illness in the world of psychology is, “Tall Poppy Syndrome”. It is a term derived from a story told by Herodotus and collected by Aristotle.

The story is about a ruler of one city, Periander, ruler of Corinth, who sent a messenger to the ruler of another city, Thrasybulus, ruler of Miletus, to seek his advice about how to better govern his people. Without saying a word, Thrasybulus led Periander’s messenger out into a wheat field, and as they walked along, he began to cut down the tallest wheat ears, thereby destroying the best of his crop. When the messenger returned to convey what had happened, Periander was at first shocked. The messenger described Thrasybulus as a madman who had no problem destroying his own possessions. But after reflecting on the peculiar interaction between the ruler and the envoy, the message Periander derived from it was that in order to maintain his rule, he needed to destroy anyone with extraordinary charisma, influence, or abilities to prevent them from rising above him.

I have never thought of myself as being better than anyone else. I have had, and in some ways still have, my own personal insecurities. Insecurities aren’t necessarily a bad thing in my opinion because they help a person to maintain a proper balance between arrogance and confidence. Insecurities humble people, thereby removing the tendency to be arrogant. On a personal level, I have always been strong-minded and determined to accomplish whatever I have set out to achieve. I have overcome insecurities with a healthy balance of confidence. The scales must be balanced. The objective is to not become so confident that you display arrogance. Unfortunately, despite the effort put forth to avoid being arrogant, sometimes other people will accuse a confident, determined, or successful person of being just that. However, those accusations