A popular joke from the 1980s depicts an old man yelling at kids to get off his lawn. Although he seems incredibly grumpy and unreasonable, it makes sense that someone would be protective of their property. After all, many people do very little to treat others and their possessions with respect. Therefore, it’s not surprising that as we age, people start to hate everyone. Moreover, the results can be incredibly negative for our health and well-being.
Throughout one’s youth, there’s little time to focus on anything other than loved ones, studies, and fun. They also blissfully believe the world revolves around said person and are mostly unaware of other people’s negative qualities. However, as we get older, we seemingly become more aware of people. Furthermore, we become more aware of how others’ negative choices or energy may affect us. As a result, it’s not uncommon for people to feel disdain toward others and, in extreme cases, hate everyone.
Sadly, when people “hate everyone,” it can severely strain relationships with co-workers, friends, and even family, not to mention all the random people who fall victim to your wrath. Be it laying on your horn at a stop light, yelling at someone for mistakenly cutting you in line at the grocery store, and so on. Moreover, to hate everyone requires a lot of energy and causes bitterness, resentment, and other mental health complications. In fact, experts warn that choosing to hate everyone can even have a physical impact.
Reasons People Grow to Hate Everyone
In addition to becoming more aware of people around us, as we age, we also find ourselves with differing opinions. For example, as a child, there’s very little to be really passionate about except treats, no naps, and playtime. However, later in life, people tend to pay more attention to politics, religion, sexual orientation, cultural differences, and social expectations. Also, they become openly vocal about their preferences. Moreover, when people are passionate about something, but it’s in opposition to someone else’s beliefs, it can lead to feelings of anger or betrayal. As a result, some people grow to hate everyone.
Second, some personality types, such as those who identify as “introverted” or suffer from social anxiety, may also be more prone to claim that they hate everyone. The reason for this is that people can become agitated, anxious, uncomfortable, or have several other negative emotions that ultimately make it easy to hate everyone.
Last, stress is a major factor in a lot of life’s aspects, including severe physical and mental health concerns. Therefore, it should come as no surprise that stress can also cause people to hate everyone.
Is it Normal to Hate Everyone?
All of these factors have a particularly strong influence on the brain and how it functions, causing irritability and outbursts of anger toward others over time.
Interestingly, it’s not uncommon to have negative feelings toward people. Actually, this is very normal and, in some cases, can actually act as a method of self-preservation. On the other hand, it could become problematic, especially if that hatred is long-lasting, constant, and directed toward everyone. Rather than just someone who made you mad at work, school, the store, a date, etc.
Combat it with Love
According to John Kim LMFT, aka ‘The Angry Therapist,’ people aren’t born to be jerks. They become that way from negative influences. For example, a painful or traumatic childhood and a lack of tools for coping with those hardships. However, understanding that most of the time means people either go through their own struggles or have been hurt and let down badly in the past. Therefore, one of the most effective tools in preventing someone from hating everyone is simply to be more compassionate and understanding. Although it’s not okay for people to be disrespectful or hurtful toward others, accepting those moments will make it easier not to hate everyone. By not allowing them to upset you and understanding that person’s treatment of you isn’t a reflection of you but of the hurt that they’ve experienced in life, you’ll be able to break the cycle easily.
Next, try offering support or encouragement rather than lashing out at them in response. Again, it’s difficult to accept being treated poorly by others. However, when we respond from a place that is fueled by love and compassion rather than ego and pride, more and more people will learn to interact with each other more effectively, and we may even be able to do so with the idea that to hate everyone, is the way to live our lives.
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- “I Hate People: Why You Feel This Way and What to Do.” Very Well Mind. Sajana Gupta. February 13, 2023.
- “How Not to Hate People.” Psychology Today. John Kim. January 6, 2017.
- “Why Do We Hate?” Psychology Today. Ashley Pallathra and Edward Brodkin. May 22, 2021.