19 Habits that Chronically Unhappy People Have

Chronically unhappy people are the way they are because of their negative outlook on life and self-destructive habits. What are some of the most common habits displayed by these kinds of people? You’ll find 19 of them in this article. 


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People become very unhappy when they begin to overthink everything. They analyze everything they say and the way they say it. They try to read into everything that other people say. All of this overthinking is unhealthy, and consequently, the person finds it hard to relax when engaging in normal conversations. 


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Another habit that makes people unhappy is perfectionism—that is, expecting too much from yourself and trying to do everything right. “Perfectionism becomes the culprit that prevents us from trying new things, which can lead to procrastination that can cause anxiety as well as severe negative self talk,” says Forbes.

Being Doubtful

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A person who is chronically unhappy is likely to be very doubtful. They don’t trust the things that other people say and do and try to look for ulterior motives in everything. They find it hard to trust even those who are closest to them, such as friends and family. 

Judging Others

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Judging others is a trait that makes us sad because it pushes us to concentrate on people’s shortcomings and the things they’ve done wrong. Constantly judging others can make us feel disappointed with our own achievements in comparison. Those who judge others are normally unhappy with their own lives.

Putting Others Down

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Some people think that putting others down will make them feel better, but that’s not the case. Those who look down on and talk badly to others are usually jealous of the other person. Putting them down makes them look powerful on the outside, but it’s a facade. 

Addictive Behaviors

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Addictive behaviors such as substance abuse are common in chronically unhappy people. People use substance abuse as an outlet for their pain or a distraction from it, but the resulting destructive behavior and the consequences that come with it make them feel even worse. This intensifies their pain.

Raising Their Voices

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You might think that a person who raises their voice to win an argument feels happy about themselves afterward, but they don’t. Unhappy people are the ones who raise their voices and start shouting matches. All of this actually causes them a great deal of stress. 


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According to statistics from the American Psychological Association, “an alarming proportion of adults reported that stress has an impact on their day-to-day functioning, with more than a quarter (27%) saying that most days they are so stressed they can’t function.” Stress is common among those who are chronically unhappy.


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People who are chronically unhappy also tend to be pessimistic. They see the glass as half empty rather than half full. They have a negative view of the future and find it difficult to think positively about how events will unfold. Their negativity can easily rub off on others.

Unrealistic Expectations

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Chronic unhappiness can stem from unrealistic expectations. That is, expecting too much from others or yourself. When events don’t turn out the way the person imagined they would, they feel disappointed. It’s better to expect less and get more than to expect too much and be let down.

Bottling Things Up

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A person can’t truly be happy if they never let others know how they feel. A bottler is a person who doesn’t share their feelings with others but rather keeps them close to their chest. With time, this makes them feel weighed down, anxious, and even exasperated.


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The Cambridge Dictionary says that sarcasm is “the use of remarks that clearly mean the opposite of what they say, made in order to hurt someone’s feelings or to criticize something in a humorous way.” People who have a sarcastic attitude might find themselves criticizing every aspect of life. 


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It’s natural for all of us to feel a measure of anxiety when going through certain situations in life, but too much anxiety isn’t a good thing. People who are overly anxious aren’t happy, and they easily become stressed. High levels of anxiety can make a person shut down. 


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People who easily give up on tasks are normally unhappy. They never try to stick to anything, and as a result, they never get feelings of accomplishment. They view themselves as failures and don’t see the point in really trying to do anything because they’re convinced they’ll fail. 


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Chronically unhappy people are often this way because they lie. They’re constantly having to think on their feet and cover their tracks. They can’t relax when conversing with others because they’re always thinking about which version of a story they need to tell and how to make it credible. 


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The National Institute of Mental Health says that “obsessive-compulsive disorder (OCD) is a long-lasting disorder in which a person experiences uncontrollable and recurring thoughts (obsessions), engages in repetitive behaviors (compulsions), or both. People with OCD have time-consuming symptoms that can cause significant distress or interfere with daily life.”


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People who go out of their way to help others feel satisfied with their lives and happy with themselves. But people who live self-centered, egotistical lives don’t get these elated feelings. They’re always thinking about what they can get out of life and rarely try to put others first. 


male sad tech
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When your life or living space is unorganized, it’s hard to feel good about yourself. The chaos around you reflects onto your mood. So when someone lives in a messy environment or fails to coordinate their day effectively, they end up feeling frustrated with themselves and everyone around them. 


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A resentful person is someone who finds it hard to let go of things. Feelings of resentment eat away at a person while the person you’re angry with continues with their life, blissfully unaware of your feelings. Resentment doesn’t lead to happiness and can make a person physically sick.

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