8 non-obvious signs that someone secretly dislikes you

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There are almost eight billion people in the world, which means there’s a pretty high chance not everyone will like you.

And as disappointing as that may be – especially if you actually like the person and would be up for developing a closer connection – it’s just a fact we all have to accept at some point or another.

Not everyone’s on the same wavelength. Full stop.

However, things get a little bit more complicated when someone who dislikes you doesn’t give you any obvious hints, leaving you feeling confused and unsure of where you stand.

Well, worry not!

Here are the 8 non-obvious signs that someone secretly dislikes you. The moment you notice and recognize them for what they are, it’ll be much easier to let the person go and focus on those who reciprocate your energy.

1) Their smile doesn’t reach their eyes

There are all kinds of smiles – a warm and peaceful smile, a sad smile, a contemplative smile…

And a polite smile. You know, the one that never reaches your eyes because you don’t actually mean it. There are no wrinkles and no motion in the eyebrows – there’s simply a thin-lipped smile, and that’s about all.

While an ingenuine smile isn’t only applicable to dislike – for example, the person you’re talking to might just be having a bad day or they may be too busy to properly acknowledge what you’ve said – it is one of the many signs that, when put together, might point toward an energetic mismatch.

In other words, the person you’re chatting with might not like you very much.

2) Their body language signals withdrawal

Our bodies tell us more about our emotional states than we’d like to admit.

And if you pay a little bit more attention to how people’s bodies communicate when around you, you might be better able to tell who truly likes you and who’d rather keep their distance.

Watch out for signs of withdrawal, such as:

  • Leaning away from you
  • Having one’s feet pointed away from where you’re standing
  • Crossed arms
  • Pressed lips or putting one’s hand over one’s lips frequently

Again, it’s important to take these with a grain of salt. If your colleague often crosses their arms during conversations, they might just feel stressed out about work or they may be a bit shy.

It’s only when many of these signs are paired together that you can see the full picture.

3) They’re all about small talk

True connection is based on honesty and vulnerability.

People form friendships by opening their minds to let another person in, and small talk is the equivalent of a shut gate. You can bump your fists against it, but unless the person you’re talking to wants to open it, there’s nothing you can do.

Don’t get me wrong, small talk can also be a gateway to meaningful connections – if you use it to establish rapport and then move beyond it, that is.

If someone’s insistent on small talk and nothing else, though… it’s quite a big sign they want to remain acquaintances.

4) They always find a way to quickly end the conversation

As soon as you’ve gone through the necessary steps of small talk – the weather, your mood, you know the drill – someone who secretly dislikes you will very likely try to get away.

And the manner in which they choose to leave depends entirely on their personality.

While Mary may be quite rude, James could resort to more polite phrasing, such as, “I’ll leave you to it then. Talk to you later.”

Whatever their “goodbye of choice” is, the main point here is that someone who genuinely likes you won’t mind chatting with you about something you’re both interested in. On the contrary, they’ll enjoy it a great deal (assuming they’re not busy or in a rush).

People who always try to reduce contact or avoid you in the first place, however… it’s safe to say they’d rather keep their distance.

5) They don’t try to include you in group activities

Oftentimes, you can tell someone dislikes you not because of what they do but rather due to what they don’t do – such as try to include you in team activities and plans.

It’s one thing to stick to one’s close friends and not pay much attention to others. It’s another thing entirely to ignore you to such a large degree that you feel unwelcome in the group.

This person doesn’t ask you questions (despite having asked others). 

They don’t assign value to your opinions (although they seriously consider the opinions of other people). 

They accidentally “forget” to invite you to a night out or a work party until someone else has to send you an invitation to make sure you’re included.

Group dynamics can be complicated, but if there’s one specific person who just makes you feel like a complete outsider, it means they may not like you.

6) They’re always too busy

We’re all busy. That’s just the fact of life.

But amidst all the “busyness”, we make time for those who matter. If I want to see my friend Julia, I’ll reorganize my schedule. And if Claire and I fall out of touch, I’ll make an effort to create automated Google calendar meetups so that it doesn’t happen again.

But if someone dislikes you, you’re obviously at the bottom of their priority list, which means that they’ll almost never reach out, might often leave you on “read”, and will decline all your invitations because they’re simply “too busy”.

They’re not too busy. They just don’t want to make time for you, which is completely valid.

There are other people out there who will absolutely love to hang out with you, so redirect your energy elsewhere if it’s not reciprocated.

7) They respond to your excitement with lukewarm energy

I don’t know about you, but I absolutely hate it when I get excited about something and the person I want to share it with acts like they don’t even care – or worse, like you’re too silly for their liking.

If you’re genuinely fond of somebody, you won’t try to sour their mood or ignore their joy and excitement. On the contrary, you’ll celebrate every single milestone they cross, you’ll “wow” and “yay” your way through the conversation, and you’ll root for them every step of the way.

Lukewarm energy is a sign the person in question either doesn’t care about you enough to partake in your happiness or dislikes you so much that every success you reach brings a bitter taste to their mouth.

Both teach you one clear lesson, though: next time, share your excitement with someone better suited to what you’re looking for.

8) They take things way too personally

Does it ever feel like every conversation with that one specific person is a minefield?

Like no matter what you do, you always end up saying the wrong thing even if your intentions are good?

Yeah, that might be because the person you’re dealing with isn’t your biggest fan. When we dislike someone, we’re much more sensitive to potential insults or argument starters because we’re already approaching the conversation from a negative place, so one wrong word is all the kindling we need to start a fire.

And while you may think they are just way too sensitive, chances are that the issue is much more complex – it’s not just that they find what you said upsetting, it’s also that it was you who said it.

So, do these 8 signs sound familiar? I’m sorry to say, but you might be dealing with someone who secretly dislikes you.

The next step is to completely charm them and win them over… right?

Not so fast. 

Some people make up their minds about somebody in the first few minutes of talking to them, and no matter how hard you try to impress them, they might have simply decided not to be your friend.

And that’s okay. As I said before, there are billions of people on planet Earth. If one person doesn’t like you, give your time and effort to those who do.

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Tina Fey

I'm Tina Fey, the founder of the blog Love Connection. I've extremely passionate about sharing relationship advice. I've studied psychology and have my Masters in marital, family, and relationship counseling. I hope with all my heart to help you improve your relationships, and I hope that even if one thing I write helps you, it means more to me than just about anything else in the world. Check out my blog Love Connection, and if you want to get in touch with me, hit me up on Twitter

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