‘I Hate My Life': What to Do and How to Cope

person depressed laying in bed

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If you feel like you hate your life, you’re not alone. Everyone feels angry, frustrated, and dissatisfied at certain points in life, says Sabrina Romanoff, PsyD, a clinical psychologist and professor at Yeshiva University.

This article explores some reasons why you might hate your life, the impact of this feeling on your health, and some coping strategies that might be helpful.

‘I Hate My Life’: Why You Might Feel This Way

According to Dr. Romanoff, this feeling could come from different areas of your life, which could include:

  • Your career and work
  • Your financial status
  • Your daily routine 
  • Your leisure activities
  • Your health or your body
  • Your residential situation or geographic location
  • Your relationships with romantic partners, friends, family members, and others
  • Your social situation and status

Sabrina Romanoff, PsyD

Usually, there is a specific area that causes frustration and that ripples into the way you view other aspects of your life.

— Sabrina Romanoff, PsyD

For instance, you may be unhappy with your job if you have a difficult manager or an uncooperative colleague. Or, you may be aggravated by the culture at your workplace or in disagreement with the direction your firm is taking. This anger and frustration can pile up and spill over into other parts of your life.

Another example is a family conflict. If you’re having a disagreement with someone in your family, such as your parents, siblings, spouse, or in-laws, it can lead to an overall sense of frustration with your life.

The Mental and Physical Impact of Feeling This Way

If you feel like you hate your life, it’s important to channel this feeling into a productive emotion or experience and use it as motivation to take action and make a change, according to Dr. Romanoff. 

“If you remain inactive it could spark feelings of helplessness and hopelessness. You may start to feel depressed if you believe you are stuck and there is nothing you can do to change the negative aspects of your life,” says Dr. Romanoff.

That feeling of hopelessness can cause you to have negative perceptions of your ability to create change and find happiness in the different domains of your life, including in your relationships, work, family, and even in the way you complete small daily tasks, Dr. Romanoff explains.

In addition to your mental health, being dissatisfied with your life can take a toll on your physical health as well. A 2014 study notes that long-term life dissatisfaction is associated with poorer health-related quality of life.

How to Cope If You Feel This Way

Dr. Romanoff suggests some tips to help you cope if you feel like you hate your life:

  • Reflect on the important aspects of your life: It can be helpful to reflect on whether you are satisfied in the most important aspects of your life such as: your career and your purpose in life, your relationships and your capacity to love others, your self-worth and acceptance of yourself, and the enjoyment you experience through your body via health and movement.
  • Identify your triggers: If you are dissatisfied, it's important to introspect and make the necessary changes. Pay attention to the moments when you are most dissatisfied in your life. Use them as a compass to understand what is getting triggered in you. Be reflective and try to identify themes in what sparks this feeling.
  • Start making changes: Use moments of dissatisfaction as lessons. Try to understand ways you can grow or make changes based on these situations. These feelings might require you to do something brave, such as cutting off a relationship or a situation that is no longer serving you, advocating for your needs to be met, or making some other change. It can be incredibly satisfying to make these changes for yourself. 
  • Don’t let paralysis keep you trapped: On the other hand, if you are paralyzed with fear and do not make changes in these situations, it might only reinforce the feelings of resignation and hopelessness in your life. The key is to be more present in your life and make small changes for the better in each moment, instead of feeling powerless and as if you must make do with your circumstances.
  • Remember that you’re in control: Remember, ultimately you’re in control of your life. If there is something you don’t like, it’s up to you to change it. You can’t wait for others to meet your needs. You must rely on yourself to give yourself what you need.
  • Break patterns of learned helplessness: Often, many people feel like they must make do with their circumstances. This is usually a repetition of an earlier dynamic in their life in which they were helpless and could not escape an intolerable situation. As adults, people find this feeling of helplessness familiar and don’t use all their skills and capabilities to advocate for themselves. It’s important to recognize these patterns and not allow yourself to be trapped in a situation that is no longer serving you.
  • Seek help: If you are unable to cope with your circumstances and continue feeling like you hate your life, it may be helpful to see a mental healthcare provider. They can help you explore the source of your feelings, put things into perspective, develop healthier coping skills, and make the necessary changes in your life.

A Word From Verywell

Hating your life can be a difficult and frustrating state to be in. It can consume a lot of your energy and make it difficult for you to function. It’s important to recognize the source of this feeling and start working toward rectifying it, so that you can start to feel happier with your life.

2 Sources
Verywell Mind uses only high-quality sources, including peer-reviewed studies, to support the facts within our articles. Read our editorial process to learn more about how we fact-check and keep our content accurate, reliable, and trustworthy.
  1. Hong J. The areas of life dissatisfaction and their relationships to depression at different life stages: findings from a nationally representative survey. Psychol Health Med. 2019;24(3):305-319. doi:10.1080/13548506.2018.1537496

  2. Saharinen T, Koivumaa-Honkanen H, Hintikka J, et al. The effect of long-term life dissatisfaction on health-related quality of life among general population subjects. J Psychiatr Ment Health Nurs. 2014;21(8):755-763. doi:10.1111/jpm.12060

By Sanjana Gupta
Sanjana is a health writer and editor. Her work spans various health-related topics, including mental health, fitness, nutrition, and wellness.