by Loopward | Advice, Anxiety, Conversation
There could be many reasons you say, “I don’t like being around people”. However, feeling like you don’t want to be around people makes it difficult to socialize and create relationships. This alone can even be overwhelming, taking a toll on a person’s mental health.
Now, if you’ve ever felt confused about why you don’t like being around people, or want to move beyond the sore feelings, maybe you’ll find answers in the 21 reasons we have here. Most importantly, we’ll dive into some coping strategies that can help people move beyond not wanting to be around people.
In a hurry? Get the reasons faster here. Click the video below.
1. Anxiety feels like, “I don’t like being around people”
Do you purposely avoid people or become very anxious in different social situations?
If it’s hard to take part in simple social activities such as easy small talk with people at work, at family events, or at school, you may want to consider you may have a social anxiety disorder.
Take a quiz to learn more about your social anxiety. Answer a few questions and get immediate results and recommendations.
Also, social anxiety disorder (also called social phobia) is a mental health condition. Here is more information here at the National Institute of Mental Health.
Social anxiety disorder can make it difficult to be around people. It’s a fear that can affect all everyday activities and relationships with people. However, you can overcome the challenge of social anxiety.
2. You don’t want to be around your social circle
Sometimes we get caught up in other people’s lives and what they want. However, once you become aware you’re in a one-sided relationship, reconsider the friendship or your expectations.
Friends should make you feel good, inspired, and put you in a good mood. If you feel terrible after a meet-up, it’s time to re-evaluate the benefits you’re getting from a particular friendship.
Conversation starters, best questions to ask, how to deal with anxiety, and more
3. Meeting people is hard, so you hate socializing
It can be hard to meet new people even when we all have technology at the tips of our hands. Meeting people is hard, especially if you have some social challenges. But not meeting the right people could be a significant reason you say, “I don’t like being around people!”
Signs you’re not meeting the right people:
- You don’t feel any connection
- Can’t find things in common
- Bored with the conversation
- The conversation isn’t equal or on the same level
- Not motivated to hand with that person or group
** A few places you might find people so you can thrive socially:
- Cooking Class
- Sport meet up (kickball, frisbee, etc)
- Wine tasting class
- Online Friend Groups
- Dog parks
Think about the hobbies you have and check out if there are any groups or events related to them.
Check out how you can meet new friends here.
4. Depression sidelines you from social activities
Not wanting to be around people, or having no desire to be around anyone can be caused by depression. It can weigh you down, preventing you from socializing. Take a test here to learn more about your depression.
Depression can make it difficult to meet new friends and hold on to close relationships. The fear of socializing with people results in missed opportunities to expand your network and develop quality relationships with people. When you feel like you’re missing out and don’t have people in your life, you may angry, hopeless, sad, and frustrated, which can lead to becoming depressed.
Many people believe social anxiety can cause depression and could potentially worsen a social phobia. Don’t let depression and social challenges sideline you from day-to-day activities, you can get help and improve socially.
5. You’re an introvert who struggles around people
Some people are outgoing while others choose to keep to themselves. If you’re an introvert, socializing can be draining. There may be many days you’re overwhelmed by socializing too much and don’t have time to recharge.
Social events for introverts can be uncomfortable because on-the-spot communication is hard to do. Introverts take more time to process what they want to say in most situations such as meetings, interviews, and casual conversations.
6. You need to recharge longer before socializing more
Some people feel overstimulated when socializing. The best thing to do is recharge the social battery. If not, there could be some negative effects without “recharging”.
If you’re overwhelmed by being around people take space from or spend time alone. Mental and emotional tiredness is real which can lead to not wanting to socialize. Depression is serious, if you think you might have depression, sign up to take the test here.
7. It’s hard to find people you’re compatible with
Finding “your crew” you like and want to be around can be difficult. We all want someone or a group to truly get us and are on the same wavelength.
If you have a consistent feeling of never feeling like you’ve found friends you enjoy being around, we talk more about how to make friends you truly vibe with.
Meet like-minded people by attending a class or meetup with people who share your interests or hobbies.
8. You enjoy being alone and that’s important to know
Being alone can feel good.
And we agree it can be draining if you’re always connecting with other people. If you’re alone, you can take time for yourself away from the job of socializing.
Also, you might be making a lot of compromises and you don’t realize it. Sometimes when we’re around others we might compromise our plans or comfort. So, a nice night or weekend to yourself might be all you need.
Once you’re alone, the only person’s happiness you have to worry about is your own.
10. You’re not good at socializing … yet …
If you feel uncomfortable socializing that’s ok. However, your discomfort could be holding you back from your social life. You might think you don’t like being around people but you might be feeling insecure about how you talk to people and you believe you’re not good enough to start a conversation with people.
If you feel this way check out our post How to start a conversation using 15 charming strategies. This post gives you ideas on you can more easily start conversations with people.
You can do this!
9. You’ve had bad past social experiences
Having bad social experiences can scare you from socializing more.
Maybe you’ve had clingy friends or someone took advantage of you. Or, maybe you’re scared of being judged and rejected. Whatever might have happened, socializing means allowing people to get to know you as a person and opening up.
Allowing people into your world can be scary because you don’t them to reject you or experience the same past trauma. If you think you have trauma, think about working with a professional to feel better here.
11. Low self-worth is, “I don’t like being around people”
Some believe hating people comes from hating yourself.
If you don’t like yourself, you’ll have an easy time finding flaws in yourself and in others. You’ll also likely manufacture anxiety. If you’re not feeling good about yourself or the people around you, there’s a chance you don’t have a lot of friends.
People with high self-esteem make others feel good. If you’re feeling low, get some help, and improve how you feel towards yourself and others. Again, feeling low and worthless can be a symptom of depression. Take a test here to learn more.
12. Having a toxic friend can make you feel anxious
Friends are an important part of our emotional well-being. Ideally, they help us feel loved and understood. But it’s important to realize, people in a toxic group are more likely to act in toxic ways, even if it’s not consistent with how they would act on their own.
Investing time and energy in a toxic friend can have negative effects on your overall life, but dealing with a group of toxic friends is even worse. If you hate being around people, look at the people you’re with. Maybe they’re toxic and you’re being influenced.
If you’re feeling anxious, take a test to understand and learn about help.
A survey by TODAY.com and SELF magazine says, 84 percent of women — and 75 percent of men — said they’d had a toxic friend at some point, with 1 in 3 survey takers fess up to a toxic BFF.
The reason it’s hard to dump a toxic friend is the same reason people stay in all kinds of dysfunctional relationships,” says Dr. Gail Saltz, associate professor of psychiatry at New York-Presbyterian Hospital. There’s something in it that you find compelling or familiar.
13. You hate boring conversations and small talk
Some people hate small talk because they think it’s a waste of time. Others may hate it because they’re just not good at it. Maybe small talk drains you and you have limited energy to give to people. All of these are reasons people want to stay at home or leave parties early.
Many introverts are famous for this behavior, however, we have a full guide on how you can enjoy small talk or at least improve so you get what you need out of a conversation too.
You can learn how to move the conversation from small talk to a deeper more meaningful conversation.
14. Past trauma keeps you from socializing more
Some people with social phobia also have a history of being bullied, rejected, or ignored. These experiences can affect your self-esteem, and self-confidence and trigger depression later in life, also making you feel like you have no desire to be around anyone. If you’re worried you might be depressed, take a quiz to find out if you are.
Living with unresolved trauma will most likely bring a lot of bad behaviors to your relationships that are not healthy for any relationship. If you don’t deal with your trauma, you’ll have a difficult time being around people and having a happy social life.
15. You expect people to be perfect but it’s unrealistic
People are messy and imperfect. If you want to be with someone who always says the right thing or agrees with you, then you’re setting yourself up for failure and you’ll never be satisfied. There are things you have to expect if you’re going to be successful socially.
Have you ever considered how expecting others to be “perfect” would work out?
“John was supposed to call me but backed out at the last minute.” I’m so disappointed in him.”
“Emily and I had plans for dinner but she canceled. I’ll never ask her for anything again.”
If you have these expectations, think about being more forgiving, open-minded, and at peace with how things happen sometimes.
16. You can’t be yourself around other people
Sometimes we feel like we can’t be ourselves around others. Maybe there’s a part of you that thinks people wouldn’t like the real you. If you pretend to be someone else, it can be exhausting, so you wonder what’s the point of socializing.
Again, as we’ve already said, maybe you also just need a genuine connection with people you’re more compatible with.
Another reason is that deep down you’re not really sure who you are, spending too much of your life shifting ourselves to match what others want.
17. You try to control people but feels impossible
Many people try to control others because they’re anxious. Some people believe if they’re not controlling the environment around them, things won’t be how they want.
If you’re in a social situation and feel you can’t control what’s around you, this could be the main reason you hate being around people. Feeling out of control can make most of us feel extremely anxious. But, it’s impossible to control every person or situation in your life.
Some signs of being a controlling person:
- You want to upstage people
- They want to be in the limelight
- Demand to know what a person is doing at all times
Clinical Psychologist, Dr. Sasha Hernandez explains,
When people present as socially domineering, it’s often related to some underlying issue.
For example, individuals who were not able to have agency over themselves in the past are more likely to exert a need for control in other situations, such as social interactions. Insecurity, anxiety, and trauma are also antecedents for social control.
18. You’re really stressed out and need self-care
Burnout can creep up. You might not know it’s happening, even if someone tells you, but stress can cause you to behave differently than you normally would.
Here is some research from Meghan Meyer, Assistant Professor of Psychological and Brain Sciences, Director of Dartmouth Social Neuroscience Lab, to give more perspective:
“Our findings show that people who experienced more stress on one day, socialized less with others the next day. This effect may persist for up to two days later after someone has had a stressful day.”
Another great way to self-care is by working with a therapist. They listen and have no judgment. Learn more here.
19. You’re around people who have annoying habits
Have you ever been around people who are overly depressing, talk excessively, are condescending, or are very insincere? Yep, most of us have had at least one of these experiences. Some of us cringe and then run for the nearest exit.
In a study at UCLA, it was discovered people based their perception of likability on more than 500 descriptions. The top-rated descriptors were sincerity, transparency, and empathy (understanding people). These adjectives, describe people who have emotional intelligence, nothing to do with being intelligent, or attractive.
20. Setting boundaries with people is hard for you
We’ve all been people, pleasers, at some point in our lives. Helping is a great trait, however, you might be creating stress for yourself because you don’t want to hurt people’s feelings.
But setting boundaries will save you time and social energy. There’s no need to drain your emotional, mental, and physical energy on one or a few people.
Many Psychologists agree a lack of boundaries with people can lead to emotional and physical fatigue.
Stop giving so much of yourself to people who pull you into their exhausting behaviors.
21. You’re insecurities and anger are besting you
Having no desire to be around people can surface because you’re highly insecure. Maybe even this sentence makes you feel uncomfortable or angry.
Often, people compare themselves to others, especially if they feel the other person is “better” than them, competing, or have something they want. Jealousy erupts, negative things are said, then anxiety is projected onto others.
Be careful because depression and anxiety can take over your life. Don’t let your insecurities get the best of you.
Dealing with people you don’t like being around
If you have to work with an annoying colleague, have excruciating small talk, or deal with family members at holiday events, please know there is hope.
You can learn, if you want, to be around people you don’t like and interact with them. Hopefully, the strategies below can help.
Work with a professional
Many people can’t improve socially without help because without understanding why they get mad or have an insane amount of impatience when around certain people. Identifying what’s bothering you is one of the first steps in understanding why you feel what you’re feeling.
So definitely try talking to a therapist or some type of professional who can help you move forward with emotional intelligence. Even if you’ve had a bad experience in the past with therapy, give it another try because there are different forms of therapy or help.
Try to stay calm
Managing your emotions is a skill everyone should master because emotions can be overwhelming, making you feel crazy occasionally. If you’re not there yet, try to set boundaries and have a plan for what to do if you start to feel overwhelmed.
Communicating in a healthier way is important
Understanding emotions, and waiting before you react to regulate and listen are a few ways to communicate in a healthier way. Clearly and calmly convey a message while maintaining boundaries. This takes lots of practice if you’re not used to this communication but you can do it.
You have control and choices
Remember you can take steps forward to manage your emotions and life.
Try to see the bigger picture of what’s causing you to feel angry or annoyed. Ask yourself why because you can do something about it so you can be a happier person.
What else can you do right now?
If you feel like your social skills keep getting worse, or feeling depressed, talk to a close friend or a professional counselor about the feelings you have.
Or, you can prepare more when you go out to socialize. Joining our community andDownload our Tool Kit for free(mini-course, social blueprint, and more)
We think if you join our community, take our course, or just read a few more blog posts, you won’t be saying, “I don’t like being around people”, but you’ll feel more confident, learn a few more social techniques and how to set boundaries.
You got this!
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What is it called when you don't like being around a lot of people? ›
Social anxiety disorder, also called social phobia, is a long-term and overwhelming fear of social situations. It's a common problem that usually starts during the teenage years. It can be very distressing and have a big impact on your life.Why do I not like being around a lot of people? ›
If you have been feeling this way for at least 6 months and these feelings make it hard for you to do everyday tasks—such as talking to people at work or school—you may have social anxiety disorder. Social anxiety disorder is an intense, persistent fear of being watched and judged by others.Is it normal to not want to be around people sometimes? ›
It's natural to feel self-conscious, nervous, or shy in front of others at times. Most people get through these moments when they need to. But for some, the anxiety that goes with feeling shy or self-conscious can be extreme.Why don't I like to socialize anymore? ›
Anxiety is the number one reason why people hate socializing. It can create an unbearable experience. So the natural thing to do is to avoid situations that make us feel overwhelmed. *But, it's very normal to feel nervous in social situations.What is it called when you don't like most people? ›
Misanthropy is the general hatred, dislike, distrust, or contempt of the human species, human behavior, or human nature. A misanthrope or misanthropist is someone who holds such views or feelings.Why do I always want to be alone? ›
Not wanting to be around others can be connected to:
depression (I am such a horrible person it's better I leave others alone) anxiety (other people stress me out so much I have to hide) intimacy issues (I don't want anyone to see the real me) low self-esteem (nobody really likes me anyway)
Colloquially, the terms 'asocial' and 'antisocial' get used interchangeably, to describe someone who isn't motivated by social interaction.What causes social anxiety? ›
Children who experience teasing, bullying, rejection, ridicule or humiliation may be more prone to social anxiety disorder. In addition, other negative events in life, such as family conflict, trauma or abuse, may be associated with this disorder.
Shyness, introversion, and social anxiety may make people put the brakes on connecting with others. If a person has poor self-esteem or mental health issues, they may also struggle to connect. If this sounds like you, you may need some extra support to start feeling your best.Why do I want to be distant from everyone? ›
Emotional distancing can be temporary, in response to a stressful or unpleasant situation, or ongoing, which appears in people who suffer from attachment disorders. Whatever kind of emotional distancing you're experiencing, you should try and find professional assistance to help you cope with it and overcome it.
Why have I become so distant from everyone? ›
It may stem from an unwillingness or an inability to connect with others. There are two general types. In some cases, you may develop emotional detachment as a response to a difficult or stressful situation. In other cases, it may result from an underlying psychological condition.Why do I stop myself from getting close to people? ›
The fear of intimacy often comes after experiencing emotional distress in relationships, even the early ones. Getting too close to another person can mean exposing your vulnerabilities — emotional hotspots where you could be hurt. But intimacy can also offer you support, understanding, and a sense of connection.Why do I struggle socially so much? ›
In many cases, social awkwardness comes from extreme anxiety. Social anxiety is more than just feeling shy. The National Institute of Mental Health reports that 12.1% of U.S. adults experience a social anxiety disorder at some time in their lives.Is it unhealthy to not want to socialize? ›
"Lacking encouragement from family or friends, those who are lonely may slide into unhealthy habits," Valtorta says. "In addition, loneliness has been found to raise levels of stress, impede sleep and, in turn, harm the body. Loneliness can also augment depression or anxiety."Is it OK to not want to socialize with people? ›
It's okay to be less-social than other people
Others have a lower drive to socialize, which can show in a variety of ways: They like to spend a lot of time alone. They're solitary by choice, not because they want to be around people more often, but can't. They have solo hobbies they enjoy more than being with people.
misanthrope. noun. mis·an·thrope ˈmis-ᵊn-ˌthrōp. : a person who dislikes and distrusts other people.What is it called when you cant like anyone? ›
People who are aromantic, also known as “aro,” don't develop romantic attractions for other people. But that doesn't mean they don't have feelings. Aromantic people do form strong bonds and have loving relationships that have nothing to do with romance.How do I know if I am a misanthrope? ›
Common signs of a misanthrope are avoiding many or all social activities, living alone, feeling superior to others, and socially isolating.What happens to a human when they spend too much time alone? ›
Loneliness raises levels of stress hormones and blood pressure. It undermines regulation of the circulatory system so that the heart muscle works harder and the blood vessels are subject to damage by blood flow turbulence.Is it normal to be alone all day? ›
While loneliness, and chronic loneliness, aren't specific mental health conditions, they can still affect your mental and general health. Loneliness describes the negative feelings that can occur when your needs for social connection aren't met. It's normal to enjoy spending time alone on occasion.
Is it normal to stay alone? ›
Some people naturally prefer time alone and that can be fine. Roughly 50% of the population can be categorized as introverts, meaning they get the most value in life out of time spent on their own.What is it called when you prefer to be alone? ›
introvert. noun. someone who tends to concentrate on their own thoughts and feelings rather than communicating with other people.What causes people to not socialize? ›
After all, socializing is a big part of life.
Unfortunately, many people never learn how to socialize properly because of social anxiety, autism, or lack of exposure to proper social skills. Different personalities or personality disorders cause people to feel anxious and uncomfortable in social situations.
A:Based on the brief information provided it is most likely that you are having Social Anxiety, which could be a part of Social Anxiety Disorder or it may be a personality trait.What drugs are best for social anxiety? ›
First choices in medications
Your health care provider may prescribe paroxetine (Paxil) or sertraline (Zoloft). The serotonin and norepinephrine reuptake inhibitor (SNRI) venlafaxine (Effexor XR) also may be an option for social anxiety disorder.
Anxiety disorders don't necessarily get worse with age, but the number of people suffering from anxiety changes across the lifespan. Anxiety becomes more common with older age and is most common among middle-aged adults.Can social anxiety be cured? ›
Social anxiety is very treatable, with strategies for overcoming social anxiety depending on your individual personality and how much the disorder affects your life.Why can't I get close to anyone? ›
People who are afraid of others' judgment, evaluation, or rejection are naturally more likely to shy away from making intimate, personal connections. In addition, some specific phobias, such as the fear of touch, may occur as part of the fear of intimacy.Why do I struggle to make friends? ›
A few common issues that make it hard to find friends include shyness, social anxiety, complaining a lot, and expecting too much from new acquaintances. If you're not sure why you struggle to make friends, ask someone you trust for their perspective. Make sure you're prepared to hear the answer, though.Why do I always feel disconnected from friends? ›
If you feel disconnected from friends, it is probably because you haven't talked to them, or your interactions haven't been meaningful. Closeness between friends cannot be maintained without quality time, personal disclosure, and support.
Why do I get lonely around people? ›
There are a few reasons for feeling lonely even when surrounded by friends and family: You hide your true self. You have a history of being misunderstood or judged. Perhaps you feel insecure about certain aspects of your personality.Can anxiety make you feel distant from people? ›
Summary: Detachment is a common symptom of panic disorder and severe anxiety. People can detach emotionally from friends, family, and life, or they can struggle with detachment as a symptom itself – feeling as though they are outside of their body or living in an alternative reality.Is it normal to become distant? ›
Is he or she avoiding intimacy? Emotional distance (or emotional drifting) is a common phenomenon in relationships. It typically develops slowly, making it easy to miss until the gulf becomes significant. There are numerous reasons emotional drifting occurs; some might have to do with your partner and some with you.Why am I so emotionally unavailable? ›
Emotional unavailability often stems from fear. Sometimes people are fearful of sharing their complete self with another person. This can be due to fear of rejection or ridicule. Other times they are fearful of getting hurt in the relationship, and so they keep people at an arm's distance.What is Philophobia? ›
Philophobia — a fear of love — can negatively affect your ability to have meaningful relationships. A painful breakup, divorce, abandonment or rejection during childhood or adulthood may make you afraid to fall in love. Psychotherapy (talk therapy) can help you overcome this specific phobic disorder.What is sudden repulsion syndrome in psychology? ›
Sudden Repulsion Syndrome is what happens when a small decision or behavior puts an abrupt end to a budding relationship. We investigate the common causes of SRS and what this says about dating culture today.What are signs of intimacy issues? ›
- have low self-esteem.
- have trust issues.
- experience episodes of anger.
- actively avoid physical contact.
- have trouble forming or committing to close relationships.
- have a history of unstable relationships.
- be unable to share feelings or express emotion.
- have insatiable sexual desire.
Weak social skills are commonly found in children diagnosed with Attention-Deficit Hyperactivity Disorder (ADHD), Autism Spectrum Disorder (ASD), Non-verbal Learning Disability (NVLD), and Social Communication Disorder (SCD).Why do I dread being social? ›
Social anxiety is a result of the fear of a possibility that we will not be accepted by our peers. It's the fear of negative evaluation by others, and that is [part of] a very fundamental, biological need to be liked. That's why we have social anxiety.Are people with social anxiety weak? ›
Myth: People with anxiety are weak and should just pull themselves together. Fact: People are not diagnosed with an anxiety disorder unless it's much more overwhelming and impairing than the typical anxiety people feel. People with anxiety disorders often need treatment to manage their feelings and feel safe.
What happens to your brain when you don't socialize? ›
PREFRONTAL CORTEX: In some studies, people who are lonely have been found to have reduced brain volumes in the prefrontal cortex, a region important in decision making and social behavior, although other research suggests this relationship might be mediated by personality factors.Why do I lack social skills? ›
Learning social skills can be difficult if you weren't exposed to traditional group dynamics as a child, if you struggle with a mental illness like anxiety or depression, or even if you just didn't have a lot of positive role models when you were growing up.Why is it so draining to socialize? ›
It makes sense that both introverts and extroverts would feel tired after socializing, because socializing expends energy. You have to talk, listen, and process what's being said, among other things.Why don't I like to be around people? ›
If you have been feeling this way for at least 6 months and these feelings make it hard for you to do everyday tasks—such as talking to people at work or school—you may have social anxiety disorder. Social anxiety disorder is an intense, persistent fear of being watched and judged by others.Is it normal to not like people? ›
It is absolutely normal to dislike people or have negative feelings about them. Disliking spending time with others or just generally preferring to be alone can be signs of personality traits like introversion.Is it wrong to not want to be around people? ›
If you feel uncomfortable socializing that's ok. However, your discomfort could be holding you back from your social life. You might think you don't like being around people but you might be feeling insecure about how you talk to people and you believe you're not good enough to start a conversation with people.What do you call a person who hates being around people? ›
mis·an·thrope ˈmis-ᵊn-ˌthrōp. : a person who dislikes and distrusts other people.What do you call a person who doesn't like socializing? ›
Colloquially, the terms 'asocial' and 'antisocial' get used interchangeably, to describe someone who isn't motivated by social interaction.What is the lack of desire to socialize? ›
Asociality refers to the lack of motivation to engage in social interaction, or a preference for solitary activities. Asociality may be associated with avolition, but it can, moreover, be a manifestation of limited opportunities for social relations.What do we call a person who loves to be alone? ›
Definitions of troglodyte. one who lives in solitude. synonyms: hermit, recluse, solitary, solitudinarian.
What are the signs of misanthropy? ›
Common signs of a misanthrope are avoiding many or all social activities, living alone, feeling superior to others, and socially isolating.How many friends do introverts need? ›
However, introverts don't need a wide circle of friends. They prefer one or two close friends, even though they may know many people and have many acquaintances. Despite this preference, introverts are often criticized for not attempting to make more friends, and are often viewed as lacking social skills.Why do I have no desire to make friends? ›
There are many reasons why you might feel like you don't need friends. Preferring solitude, being close to members of your family, and being busy with other things are just a few factors that may play a role. Fear of being disappointed or hurt by friends can also be a contributing factor.What happens if you don't socialize for a long time? ›
Poor social skills often lead to stress and loneliness, which can negatively affect physical as well as mental health.