5 Reasons Why You Hate People According To Psychology


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5 Reasons Why You Hate People According To Psychology

Do you find yourself saying “I hate people” more often than you would like to? But have you ever wondered why you hate everyone? Let’s take a look at the psychology of hate and find out why you hate people.

Hatred is a natural instinct

Just like love, complex emotions like anger, envy and hatred are instinctive emotions that have an evolutionary advantage. It enables us to decide who we fight or flee from to keep ourselves safe. A 2013 study on the psychology of hate describes this negative emotion as “a deep and emotional extreme dislike. The objects of such hatred can vary extensively. Hatred is often associated with disposition towards hostility against the objects of hatred. And can drive oneself to extreme behaviors such as violence, murder, and war.” However, love and hate is not all that different.

5 Reasons Why You Hate People According To Psychology

A 2008 study titled Neural Correlates of Hate scanned the brains of 17 individuals while they looked at someone they hated and someone they had neutral feelings for. It was observed that “Viewing a hated face resulted in increased activity in the medial frontal gyrus, right putamen, bilaterally in premotor cortex, in the frontal pole and bilaterally in the medial insula.” Research also revealed 3 areas “where activation correlated linearly with the declared level of hatred, the right insula, right premotor cortex and the right fronto-medial gyrus.” In the right superior frontal gyrus, a single area of deactivation was observed.

Read also: 7 Ways to Cultivate Love in Your Life and Become Happier

Research shows that our brain has a unique pattern of activity when it comes to hate. In fact, hatred shares some similarities with romantic love. The study concluded “Though distinct from the pattern of activity that correlates with romantic love, this pattern nevertheless shares two areas with the latter, namely the putamen and the insula.

According to a Scientific American article, “The areas of the putamen and insula that are activated by individual hate are the same as those for romantic love. This linkage may account for why love and hate are so closely linked to each other in life.”

Why do we hate?

When you start understanding the science and psychology of hate, you begin to realize that there are numerous complex reasons for your hatred towards people. In an ideal world, we would love and respect everyone we interact with. Everyone will be compassionate, empathic, generous, considerate and kind. We will accept each other’s views no matter how opposing they may be to ours and would learn from different perspectives. But reality is far from ideal. And this is perhaps why we often get upset, angry and annoyed with others.

Read also: 6 Ways To Stop Hating Women

Sometimes we are fortunate to be surrounded by people we like, but other times we have to live, work, or interact with people we don’t like,explains Chicago-based writer Ladan Nikravan Hayes.

5 Reasons Why You Hate People According To Psychology

The psychology of hate

Although it’s not possible for us to like each and every person we know and meet, it is also not necessary that we hate everyone. Yet, if you find yourself wondering how you hate people, then you need to take a better look at the psychology of hate and why we hate people.

Read also: Psychology Of Mean People And How To Deal With Them

Here are some psychological reasons for why you might hate people based on the psychology of hate:

1. You have high expectations

People, like me, who hate other people tend to have excessively high expectations from others. And these expectations dictate how we interact with other people around us. Being both realistic and unrealistic, our high expectations from others influences how we see and judge them. We expect others to understand us – our personalities, thoughts, emotions, moods, perceptions and motivations. We expect them to agree with our opinions and do things the way we want. And obviously, people fall short of our high expectations. This is what turns us into people haters.

2. You are afraid of others

We are often afraid of people who are different from us. Even though you might not admit it, when someone shares different views, perspectives, opinions, beliefs, attitudes, mentality and even physical features, we tend to hate them. Why? Simply because they are different, says licensed psychotherapist and author Allison Abrams, LCSW-R. She explainsAccording to A.J. Marsden, assistant professor of psychology and human services at Beacon College in Leesburg, Florida, one reason we hate is because we fear things that are different from us.

This is perhaps due to the in-group out-group theory according to behavioral researcher Patrick Wanis. In social psychology, the social group which you can psychologically relate with and identify yourself as being a member of is an in-group. Contrarily, the social group with which you can’t personally identify is an out-group. So, when you feel that there is a threat from certain outsiders, you will seek the support of your in-group. Hence, hatred is a survival mechanism as per the psychology of hate.

Considerable evidence suggests that dividing the world into Us and Them is deeply hard-wired in our brains, with an ancient evolutionary legacy,writes author Robert Sapolsky. He adds “Humans universally make Us/Them dichotomies along lines of race, ethnicity, gender, language group, religion, age, socioeconomic status, and so on. And it’s not a pretty picture.

Patrick Wanis explains, “Hatred is driven by two key emotions of love and aggression: One love for the in-group – the group that is favored; and two, aggression for the out-group – the group that has been deemed as being different, dangerous, and a threat to the in-group.

Read also: 6 Ways To Stop Hating Men

3. You are afraid of yourself

When we feel insecure about our own selves and are unable to accept our own flaws, deficiencies and imperfections, we start to cope with those insecurities by blaming and hating others. Clinical psychologist Dana Harron says that what we tend to hate about other people are the exact things we are afraid of ourselves. We use the targeted person or the group of people we hate as a blank canvas upon which we project those parts of ourselves which we refuse to acknowledge. It’s like we telling ourselves that “Nothing is wrong with me, it’s you who is terrible.

5 Reasons Why You Hate People According To Psychology

This is known as psychological projection which is a defense mechanism we use subconsciously to deal with complex and difficult emotions. It includes projecting our undesirable feelings onto another person, instead of accepting or coping with such unwanted emotions. It is our need to project our bad aspects outwardly to see ourselves as good, says Allison Abrams, LCSW-R.

Following the psychology of hate, psychologist Brad Reedy explains “We developed this method to survive, for any ‘badness’ in us put us at risk for being rejected and alone. So we repressed the things that we thought were bad (what others told us or suggested to us that was unlovable and morally reprehensible) – and we employ hate and judgment towards others. We think that is how one rids oneself of undesirable traits,” but this strategy can often result in various mental health problems.

Read also: How to Discover Your Deepest, Darkest Core Wound

4. You lack empathy

Empathy is our ability to put ourselves in someone else’s position. When we have our own perception of how things should be and we are strongly set in our ways, then it can be difficult for us to accept and understand others’ point of view. We become incapable of feeling or understanding what others are experiencing from their point of view. Lacking empathy is another reason for hating people according to the psychology of hate.

Writer and editor Ladan Nikravan Hayes explains that one of the basic reasons why we hate and dislike people “is the aspect of human cognition to see the world through one’s own eyes. Even those of us who try to have a healthy tolerance of different viewpoints occasionally catch ourselves thinking: ‘How in the world can you believe what you’re saying?’ Disagreements can manifest as outright dislike.

5. You lack self-compassion

When you lack compassion for yourself, you will lack compassion for other people as well. Loving kindness and compassion is the solution to hatred, according to the psychology of hate. When you practice self-compassion, you begin to accept yourself as you are and that empowers you to accept others without feeling the need to change them or dislike them.

Psychologist Brad Reedy explains “If we find part of ourselves unacceptable, we tend to attack others in order to defend against the threat. If we are okay with ourselves, we see others’ behaviors as ‘about them’ and can respond with compassion.” He further says “If I kept hate in my heart for (another), I would have to hate myself as well. It is only when we learn to hold ourselves with compassion that we may be able to demonstrate it toward others.

Read also: How Showing Compassion And Kindness Is Good For Your Mental Health

Apart from these there may be some other reasons why you may hate everyone based on the psychology of hate. Some of the additional reasons include:

  • You may find certain types of behavior and habits of people irritating
  • You are not interested in dealing with things that are not worthy of your time and energy
  • You are not really interested in meeting new people or making new friends and acquaintances
  • You have trust issues when it comes to relying on others
  • You believe in putting yourself and your interests first before anyone else
  • You lack inner peace and self love
  • You feel constantly stressed which makes you less tolerant & forgiving
  • You are not satisfied with your professional and personal life

Coping with difficult emotions

5 Reasons Why You Hate People According To Psychology

Compassion is the true antidote to hatred, believes licensed psychotherapist Allison Abrams. In her article, Allison explains that hatred has to be learned, while compassion comes from within. As it is evident from the psychology of hate, there are a number of reasons why you may hate the whole world. But it is only with self-awareness, compassion and empathy you can start healing your complex emotions.

Psychologist and author Bernard Golden says “We are all born with the capacity for aggression as well as compassion. Which tendencies we embrace requires mindful choice by individuals, families, communities and our culture in general. The key to overcoming hate is education: at home, in schools, and in the community.

Read also: 12 Tips To Self-Love And Compassion

Practicing mindfulness and stress relief strategies like meditation can enable you to realize when you begin to impose a negative attitude on other people. Once you identify the moment your attitude is turning negative, you can decide to be more compassionate. Being intentional in your thoughts, behaviors and actions can help you overcome this negative cycle of hatred.

Choose love over hate

Remember how love and hatred are closely linked? Once you become self aware and start living more intentionally, you can choose to convert your hatred into love. No, it’s still not necessary that you love everyone you meet, but it’s also not necessary that you hate everyone either. You need to remember that you are always in control.

Ladan Nikravan Hayes concludes “You should never let someone else limit your happiness or success. Remember that you have control over your feelings. Don’t let someone gain power over you just because they momentarily darken your day.

Read also: 6 Positive Psychology Practices To Boost Happiness and Improve Your Life

The Psychology of People Who “Hate People”
Why You Hate People According To Psychology pin

68 responses to “5 Reasons Why You Hate People According To Psychology”

  1. No Longer Human Avatar

    I really don’t hate people, I just find them boring and annoying. Especially neurotypicals, most or them are dumb and/or evil, and sadly they rule the world. But there are many better things to do than hating humans, life is short and time is precious. But in my bad days, I hate them all lol.
    90% of Aspies > 90% of Neurotypicals
    Fictional characters and real cats >>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>> real people. 🙂

  2. Chris Avatar

    I dont hate people, I just could not care about them.
    I dont have friends because I never bother and I forget peoples faces as soon as I dont see them regulary I dont remember them. I love being alone, I love freedom to do what I like when I like. People restrain my freedom in every way, I cannot cope with that and I hate being lonely and thats what people around me make me feel like, lonely, tyred and bored. People are a drain on my energy and a negative impact on my overall health. I detach myself from society in every possible way because society is evil and couses only suffering, people couse suffering and Im not willing to suffer!

    1. Cory Avatar

      That sounds Terrible, & a hard scenario to ponder, the loneliness unfortunately will more than likely become a catch-22 later in life…. as in; it may help you feel good now in life and give you an energetic feeling of ambition- but later leave you tired, rundown & angry as well as lost. 🙁 |)??

      1. Chris Avatar

        No, the blessing of solitude and silence, in mind and heart can never leave you run down nor lonely!
        The noise, suffering and drama coused by people, the draining of the mind and energy that is what leaves you lonely, bitter and increadibly angry. As soon as there is someone else around your freedom is restricted and your energy drained. People are poisson. When your alone you can never experience lonelyness, lonelness can only be experienced in the presence of people!

    2. Matt Avatar

      I relate to this massively. A drain on my energy. Now I am not arrogant in saying this, I have many faults, but I am more perceptive and intelligent than most people. Not an intelligence that is necessarily associated with great intellect, but one that enables me to see what others cannot. I was never really aware that this was even an attribute I possessed, I just believed all would see things in the same way, without prejudice or judgment, and I am not suggesting that my way is the only on all matters, but more so seeing the morally right thing to do and understanding how my actions can influence others, and being careful in the way I interact with people. A pertinent example now, I moved to Finland with my girlfriend, and I am hearing my neighbour argue because of a car parking space being taken (despite others being available, just not his) and back home in the UK, there are people still caged in their homes, suffering, dying. I cannot understand the mentality of someone who would invest so much time and energy into something so trivial and meaningless, and doing nothing to contribute positively in this world. These same people claim they have no time for others, yet they can find time for menial and quite pathetic pursuits of redundancy. I am not sure I ever want to relate to that kind of perspective, yet I am the one forced to as I am the one who accommodates others, I get hurt trying to help because people don’t know how to help themselves so they hurt others, fortunately I am strong enough, but what about those who are not?

      I do believe we have grown beyond our means and mentally we are devolving, for the pursuit of money and success seems to take precedence over all else, and anyone with half a brain surely recognises that money brings nothing but pain and anxiety, well having too much anyway. But to propagate this ideal, we have created the need for money in so many of us that even those that would shun the whole concept, are trapped by it out of necessity. We look at Christopher McCandless, the protagonist of Into The Wild as some great hero who was brave enough to live by his own means, something that would be now impossible nearly 30 years later. But what this man learned is actually that we need people, intrinsically we are not solitary creatures, so as mentioned we find ourselves in a catch 22, for we need people, but we do not have the people we need.

      Humanity is a plague, and yes there is good in the world, but every storm has its eye, doesn’t stop it from destroying everything in its wake.

  3. john Avatar

    I hate humans because they are a disease. Humans do not deserve life and i hope we never spread this disease beyond this shitty dying world.

  4. Dave Avatar

    You have it wrong. I hate people solely because they intrude on my freedom, restrict what I want to do and try to control me. It is normal to hate prison guards and bosses who micromanage or just insist that you do stupid, worthless things. Nothing to do with jealousy or envy. I love love love being alone where no-one can tell me what to do.

  5. Anna O. Avatar

    I started unfortunately hating people recently. But I don’t really hate everyone, I have friends. But I can’t tolerate so many narcissists around me in this society that is getting more and more stupid. People became very selfish, self serving, egocentric, have no empathy, are mostly superficial, care just about having a comfortable and easy life… I find it terrible.

  6. Jo Ann Avatar

    The world is in a heap of a mess because people, for the most part, are just down right STUPID! Just look at our politics and our leaders, look at climate change, look at how capitalism has evolved, look at our diets and the fact that only 12% of our population have a healthy weight and metabolism, look at the way this pandamit has been handled, etc., etc. I am now retired and am happily married to my one and only husband for the past 35 years. I found purpose in my work and I loved my career (not easy, but great rewards in loving what I was doing). I’ve never found “my tribe”. I’ve always marched to my own drum beat. I find people to be shallow, self promoting, lacking wisdom and STUPID! Sure, I could strive to find a way to make things better in the world, but the way I see it, the younger generation should be doing this, but I can only laugh at what I see. I think mankind is doomed.

    1. Jo Ann Avatar

      …and that’s the reason why I hate people – for allowing the world to be at this cusp in the 21st century. Sooooo sad that we have not evolved to a higher level of consciousness than where we are at in 2020. Collectively speaking, we are in the dark ages.

    2. Grundle Avatar

      Stop bitching about capitalism, socialism isn’t helping us. People who sit and bitch about hating people then turn around and make themselves an example of the stupid I can’t stand hearing about every fucking day. Getting upset that people are fat while talking about how superficial humanity is ugh just stop.

  7. hater Avatar

    Not true in my case. I hate egos, the need for superiority, control, nosiness, expectations of conformity and insistence that everyone mingle with them. Leave me alone and let me do my thing. If I am not affecting you, you have no right to complain. People can’t do that.

  8. Fractured Avatar

    What if u just hate people because they exist? I hate everyone I don’t talk to anyone

  9. Abe Avatar

    Why would compassion and kindness and love be “ideal”? If they’re so ideal, why don’t humans largely treat other species that way? The way we treat the rest of the natural world–even when we’re aware other beings experience pain, suffer…–is as if it were nearly-inert resources for us to use as we want. I think that’s one of our species’ default behavior modes–to exploit other things for our (own, individual) benefits. After experiencing enough of this kind of common behavior, especially if it’s cumulatively damaging, of course people would begin disliking other people–like the way humans tend to dislike mosquitos. It seems perfectly natural and reasonable to me that people would hate at least some others.

    1. Anna O. Avatar

      So true, I hate it when I see people causing suffering to others, abusing and killing innocent animals. No animal on this planet is so cruel as a man is.

  10. Tired of the Human Race Avatar

    I’ve managed thousands of people for decades. 90% are a disappointment 5% are excellent, 5% are full on psychopathic criminals. 50% are below average intelligence. Generally all a misery. There is not enough land to distance myself from the trash that is humanity in my retirement.

    1. Abe Avatar

      No offense meant, but I’m confident most others feel the same way about you/us. Such is social life.

    2. hater Avatar

      That’s your problem – the need to manage people. Your expectations of conformity, need for dominance and your insistence that anybody who doesn’t knuckle under is inferior or stupid.

    3. Anna O. Avatar

      I agree, I could say the same about my experience with people. Really a misery.

  11. raine b Avatar

    God whatever. 90% are trash (until I’m proven wrong in which event yay.)
    Thing is it feels so excellent to have no expectation and laugh at their expenses because you live the way you love in every way which apparently royally pisses them off. /I mean puts them in a holy rage./ It’s RICH to have these secrets in the palm of your hand.I only feel miserable when I think of family. Those are faces I dream of breaking physically with my fists. <3

  12. Angel Myne Avatar

    When I say I Don’t like most people it will Never change. Those Ideals or Expectations are that you don’t abuse animals for personal gain let alone at all. you don’t steal, cheat, lie, rape, manipulate or otherwise seek to harm others. You think about more than Just your own selfish wants. You don’t build yourself up off of kicking those below you. You don’t go rioting and destroying your town because a thug was killed-for which the only thing that matters to you is their Color and not the content of their character. Not to abuse or rape children or need I add animals. Not to Use other people. And most of all not to be silent when others Do pull this crap. I mean seriously, those expectations aught to be Everyones Normal Expectations of them selves and others. I Love Good People! but I don’t like how many people are just scum.

    1. Kayla Avatar

      There are more of those people than there are good people in the world, and the only end in site is when human beings will completely and forever be destroyed. Because humans will always be out for themselves.

  13. Jill DeLeary Winship Avatar

    I’ve always been a loner type and a don’t like most people person . I’m not judgmental and don’t really have high standards , I have however worked in customer service retail for over 26yrs I think one Christmas season in this environment will do it for most !

  14. Corneisha Smith-Burger Avatar

    Michael Medina I thought of you when I read this lol

  15. Emily Ward-Jenkins Avatar

    Julia Jenkins Scott Jenkins

  16. Teresita Mathis Avatar

    It’s just a word people always says something they don’t mean

  17. Jen Simmons Carlston Avatar

    I have found that a lot of people who hate other people as a rule actually are unhappy with themselves. They seem to have a idea in their head of what life should be and can’t accept it for what it is. They throw a blanket statement out there “I hate people” instead of looking at it on an individual basis. There are good people and not so good people… there are people I don’t like and people I do like and there are people we click with and people we don’t. This is nothing new! Many of the “people haters” that I have met are just not satisfied with their own behaviors and this is an easy out. This gives them an excuse to act out and “give up” on others. I see it as a cop out or a lack of ability to cope in a world that is full of injustice. It is easier for these people to write everyone off and be bitter than to make an effort to better their lives and the lives of others. They cling to an expectation that even they can’t meet because it is not realistic. I see it as a lack of empathy and total self absorption yet some of these “people haters” are my friends. I can only imagine that I am and will be hated by many as well as loved by many!

    1. Jerald Baxter Avatar

      I agree with you, but, if I may be so bold as to say that, yes there are people who definetly lack empathy, but there are some who have too much empathy. Every complaint, each sad story they hear, they feel in some way; given what a negative and complaint ridden culture we live in, well, these people are like emotional open wounds, walking around in a world of knives, without even a band-aid for protection.

    2. Jen Simmons Carlston Avatar

      Understood, as I fall more into that category than any other and can understand how hard it can be. However, seeking out a way to heel and find joy is very important. Giving up or hating everyone is not going to make it any better. It can turn into a hopeless circle and instead of looking for good in people the decision has been made that they are worthy of hate, devoid of goodness or joy.

    1. Em Fayth Avatar


  18. Jennifer Laurel Avatar

    Not sure I learned much from this article, but sadly I do kinda hate people. I do have high-ish expectations (good grammar, modest dress); however, I will say I learned something this year. I’ve noticed a correlation between hating others and hating myself. When I am not so hard on myself, it seems easier to love others as they are. We all have our faults and are quite human.

  19. Cecilia Ladelapellidoraro Avatar

    I believe one of the main reasons is that people that think this way, see “people” as a mass as opposed to seeing each person as an individual being.

  20. Anna Hathis Avatar

    Hate is better than indifference. Indifference is what drives the horrid behaviours that people are capable of.

  21. Ed DeLancey Avatar

    I’ll read the article in more detail later. But before I read it I am going to say, “Hate the sin and not the sinner or hate the deed and not the doer”.

  22. Aili Renee Avatar

    I don’t “hate” people per say…I just find socializing exhausting and would rather be in a quiet room alone:)

  23. Stephani Spitzer Avatar

    Misanthropy. If you don’t believe it, try working in retail, food service, or customer support for a little while.

    1. K.D. Tatum Avatar

      Right!!! They’ll understand clearly then..haha

  24. Anirudh Raman Avatar

    Swamini Phansekar

  25. Janine Stranger Avatar

    I don’t ‘hate’ people.. finding anyone with integrity and clarity sure is tricky though… am becoming tired of giving people a go!

  26. Foxx Joanne Avatar

    Not true completely the point is that the human race is evil and do so many things wrong and just continue to go to hell in a hand basket with all the crooked evil stuff they do Not to mention all of their double standards and hyprocy Oh Oh Oh let me Not forget the lack of caring or morals standards that have gone out the window so so so so much more

    1. Fiona Bing Avatar

      It is the rise of Narcissism and Cluster B in the world. Only takes one in a family, friendship group, workplace to cause mayhem between normal people who haven’t a clue what they’re dealing with. These people happen to mostly run the world unfortunately.

  27. Fabiana Zeitter Avatar

    Hating somebody is exhausting…a nonsense of wasted energy and negativity….just enough what they deserve. Then it’s better to move on..

  28. Darlene Eva WhelanOehlert Avatar

    as a person who loves them self…I am not capable of hating anyone….there are people that do things and have personality traits I do not like and would choose not to be around or engage with…but as far as “hate goes” I would not know what that is….if people focused more on love and less on what they want to hate on-the world would be a much better and safer place….and how anyone can hate on another human being that they do not even know shows that they are just a hateful,emotionally insecure person in general…and would not be someone I would choose to stick around…one reason I am happy in life is because I choose company that is loving and respectful and values humanity….that is my perception….my best teachers in life showed me how to truly love myself and walk away from them or anything else that insulted my soul ,so they were my last mistakes….you may not be able to change people who are hateful…but you sure as hell can choose not to keep them in your company…life is too short to spend on toxic people….I choose to be happy 😉

    1. Darlene Eva WhelanOehlert Avatar

      and if you ever encounter a cluster b personality ….with no human conscience…I guarantee after the experience is over-you will say”NEVER AGAIN” to anyone who insults your soul….

    2. Jyoti Agarwal Poddar Avatar

      even i practice to leave toxic people from my life,n just enjoy my life.

    3. Anna Hathis Avatar

      Darlene Eva WhelanOehlert is correct.
      And so much of the ugly stuff that is going on in the world is not driven by hate, it’s driven my greed and worst still indifference. And this is the issue right there…careful you are not indifferent, a worse human trait than hate.

    4. Darlene Eva WhelanOehlert Avatar

      apathy…in the words of albert einstein…true evil is not the person doing the act itself…but those who stand by,watch,look on and do nothing about it….it may not be verbatim-but I refer to that in a book I wrote whih will bepublished soon

      1. Shaun Avatar

        I think Albert Einstein was wrong. If anyone is evil it is the evil-doer who is evil. The person standing by may not have it within their power to stop the “evil doer”. Perhaps they don’t want to take part in the evil it would take to stop the evil. This surely does not make them evil.

  29. Larissa Zafy Avatar

    When I say that I don’t like people it’s because I know what they are capable of.

  30. Debra Pry Avatar

    Some people would rather be in their own world, than deal with fake people..they have no tolerance for bullshit.

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