The Mental Health Effects of Hate
Hate is a very powerful emotion that everyone experiences from time to time but for some people it can become problematic. People who feed into their hatred and allow it to grow can start to deal with some seriously negative effects in terms of their health and their social functioning. Hate can affect people deeply and cause problems for themselves and those around them in lasting ways.
Hate is a real problem not only in people’s personal lives but in our society as a whole. In spite of much of the social progress that has been made in the U.S. and throughout the world, hate groups are still very active and cause violent events in their communities. It is a complex emotion that can take a very dark turn for those who can’t find ways to cope with their feelings of fear and anxiety.
The destruction that occurs when someone hates and is unable to overcome their hate can be alarming. They can develop serious psychological issues that can lead to violence and harm. Understanding what causes hate and how to cope with it is crucial for better mental health and overall wellness.
The Causes and Symptoms of Hate
What makes someone feel hatred? Often it comes from feelings of fear, rejection or a perceived threat. In some cases hate can also stem from internalized issues that become projected onto someone else.
Either specific people in our lives or a group of people may trigger some of these feelings subconsciously. You may see qualities that you don’t like about yourself in someone else and begin to feel hatred for them. You might also feel afraid that they will hurt or reject you or are somehow threatened by them in a way that reveals your insecurities.
Underneath hate there is often a deep sense of fear and insecurity that becomes masked by hate. People who hate and convince others to hate are trying to boost their self-worth to avoid confronting their vulnerabilities. Because continuing to hate is a way of never truly dealing with these underlying feelings it can lead to complex psychological issues.
Someone who is not able to cope with their hate may have trouble getting along with others and it can cause problems for them in their life. They might struggle with maintaining relationships or end up losing their job because of conflict with coworkers. Even worse they might become verbally or physically abusive and in some cases plan violent incidents.
Minimizing and Resolving Hate
Hate can be poisonous for a person’s mental health, making them feel constantly agitated and upset with the people around them. Although hate can certainly harm others, it is also very painful for the hater themselves. Resolving and letting go of feelings of hatred can help you feel more calm, relaxed and happier in the long run.
Learning to be more aware when feelings of hatred occur and understanding what triggers them can be a good way to experience the necessary introspection for reducing hate. You need to try to understand why you hate someone and what other feelings it stirs up for you. When you feel you are having hateful thoughts you can take a moment to step back and be mindful of the experience.
When hate starts to build up it can be helpful to try breathing exercises to help produce a sense of calm. Breathing deeply in and out can help release some of the anger and tension that often accompanies feelings of hate. As your body relaxes you can try to challenge some of the irrational thoughts that are happening in your mind.
Distracting yourself from your hateful thoughts can help prevent them from snowballing and getting out of control. Often people tend to feed their hate by continuing to think about reasons to hate someone instead of simply moving on. As you become aware that you are feeling hate you can take your mind off of it by going for a walk, reading a book or exercising.
It is important to understand the destructive nature of hate and be aware of it so that it doesn’t take over your mind. Self-awareness and changing your mindset can help to reduce hatred so that it doesn’t become problematic. People who don’t address their emotional problems can allow their hate to become harmful to others.
If you feel that hate is affecting your mental health it can be a good idea to talk to a therapist to try to understand what it causing these emotions. They may have insights into why you hate someone that you are not able to see yourself. A therapist can also help you develop strategies to cope with anger, fear, insecurities and any other feelings that need to be resolved in order to minimize hate.