Why Do Bad Things Happen to Good People

What happens to you is ultimately an inside job.

Have you ever asked the question “why do bad things happen to good people?” Or (even more confusingly) “why do good things happen to bad people?”

Often we just throw our hands up and say “life's not fair!”  However, this is an incorrect statement because life indeed is fair.  We all create our realities using the same rules as everyone else. It's just that the rules have nothing to do with being good or bad!

To understand these rules, the first thing we should keep in mind is that many of us have been raised to believe that good deeds are rewarded and bad deeds are punished. We are programed to believe that if we act as if we are “good,” good things will happen and if we act “bad,” bad things will happen.

Now, this type of programming is used to manipulate our actions so that we will behave the way our parents, teachers and governments want us to behave. However, even though our parents, teachers and governments believe that good and bad can be defined and receive consequences, the universe does not.

The truth is, the universe isn’t punishing or rewarding anyone. Again, I’ll say it again for more effect: the universe isn’t punishing or rewarding anyone.

The universe is only ever responding to your thoughts through the Law of Attraction. You get what you expect, regardless of how good or bad you are.  That's it. If you expect that “good” things are going to happen to you, it doesn’t matter if you are mean or nasty.  Your expectations will still yield positive results. 

The same is true in reverse. You may be the nicest, kindest and most helpful person, but if you have negative expectations about how things are going to turn out in life, that is what you will get.

So, although we have been taught that we should be good and do good by others to get good things, what really matters is what we think will happen to us. This is why we all know a few “bad apples” who have the best luck, and a few “good apples” who are always getting beat up by life’s circumstances.

If you don’t believe me, look for evidence in your surroundings. Check out your friends, relatives and coworkers, especially the ones who seem to have particularly good or bad luck. You will find that it isn’t how “good” or “bad” they are that determines their realities, but rather it is their expectations.

For example, I have a personal friend who is one of the nicest, kindest, and most generous people I know. She’s absolutely wonderful. However, she always seems to be getting sick, she has money problems, relationships issues and problems at work.

Why does this friend suffer so much? Well, she’s always talking about her bad luck and her problems. She’s always worried about the future. She’s always concerned about how things are going to turn out. Therefore, the universe delivers her a reality that is chock-full of bad luck, worry and concern.

On the opposite side of the spectrum, I think back to a manager I had several years ago who was rude, arrogant and irresponsible. She was hated by just about every member of the staff. However, she was given promotion after promotion, and good things just seemed to drop into her lap. 

Why did this manager do so well? Well, she was always talking about how great she was, and how much everyone loved her and how deserving she was. None of the rest of us agreed, but what we thought didn't matter because we weren’t the ones creating her reality-she was.

Now this doesn’t mean that good deeds are irrelevant. For many of us, being kind to others and helping our fellow man helps us feel good and lifts our spirits. If you feel uplifted by helping others, helping others is a great idea-because it makes you feel good about you!  Feeling good about you will definitely help you receive good things from the universe.

Spreading love and kindness are great ways to raise your vibration and make you feel good about who you are and what you are deserving of.

So keep doing that, because it absolutely can help.

Just remember, though, that the most important thing is that you have positive expectations for yourself.  Ultimately, your expectations are what dictate what you get and what's held away from you. Without positive expectations for yourself, no amount of kindness, generosity or helpfulness will ever deliver you a positive reality.

What happens to you is ultimately an inside job.

You don’t have to run around trying to prove how good you are or how deserving you are based on anyone else’s rules or expectations. What matters is how you feel about yourself and how you feel about the things you want.

So be as “good” as you need to be to feel good about yourself, and take measures to be as optimistic as possible about the things you want.  Talk up your strengths, and speak about your desires as if you expect them to manifest in your life.  This is how you create reality the way you wish it to be.

I hope this helps to answer the question “why do bad things happen to good people?” If you have any thoughts on this subject, please let me know below in the comments!


Andrea Schulman

Andrea Schulman is a former high school psychology teacher and the creator of Raise Your Vibration Today.

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MargoAkiroq BrostLaurie Lankins FarleyJoeDee77ladyracer Recent comment authors
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I don’t know. I’m not convinced that it’s just because someone thinks highly of themselves that they succeed. Also, If someone is constantly being knocked down by life’s curve balls and negativity, how on earth are they going to find the energy to keep coming back from it. It’s very draining. There’s a certain amount of confidence involved, but there’s a bigger picture. I’ve known people to be feeling down and out then fate gives them a helping hand, and they have a happy ending. It’s natural to feel bogged down by negative events, but you can try and try to overcome those obstacles yet still be kicked back in your place, only to meet with more worry. We can’t all be at the top of the tree or it would tip over. Some people are kept within a boundary in life. They are kept in their allocated spot in life, and no matter what they do to get out of it, success will only happen if it’s meant to be. You also need certain skills, to know the right people in the right places. Lots of those successful people do have something about them though, which is a special kind of trait. They over-exaggerate their abilities to get ahead, in other words… lie. They then have to live up to the expectations they have set for themselves. Its a a minefield, with so many reasons. I guess one can be “ too nice” to be successful too. You need that extra something. I admit, I’m not sure I’ve got it, but that could be because my confidence has been kicked out of me by all the rejections I’ve experienced, yet left behind, or have I? I believe a lot of “ luck” is involved. If you don’t get the breaks, you won’t get any further up the ladder. I’m not sure anyone knows the answer to this, I think people just have certain roles to play, we are all in the cast but there’s only one leading part.


It seems all a matter of perspective seen by each person. Choice is a big point as well. You choose to be happy and I think that positive outlook helps to guide each day.


Bad things sure do happen to good people..because they are so extremely kind and trusting. Sometimes bad things happen to good people because they are in the wrong place at the wrong time. It is not because you are a “bad” person. How we “move on” from the -bad things that happen- can really change our course. How we choose to react is huge. How we see ourself after the “bad” thing is so important. Our attitude really makes a difference.


Easier said than done, unfortunately, when you have had a lifetime of being programmed to feel you are undeserving.


Unfortunately I totally agree with you. For the last 16yrs after my divorce have been hell. Its been one disaster after another and the worse one is 2 yrs ago this March 25 my best friend, my Mom passed away. And this funk wont go away no matter how hard I try


You may need to reach out for help, just because we can get through without help, that doesn’t mean we should. Funk is like mold it grows in the dark, get it out in the light, expose it and it will dwindle down to nothing.

Akiroq Brost

What we think is good may not necessarily be good, conversely what we believe to be bad may not be bad at all. Everything is a matter of perspective. Looking at experiences in terms of reward and punishment is dangerous. When we do this we no longer measure ourselves by our own actions but by the perceived reaction from everything outside of us. This way of looking at things places us in volatile hands. What if we looked at everything that happens in our lives as serving a purpose? Then we would adopt an attitude of growth and learning rather than one of judgment. A great way of thinking is to believe that the universe is always conspiring to help us. Being a great person is, of course, awesome, but also believe we are a great person is what matters the most. <3

Laurie Lankins Farley

Akiroq, I like that!

Akiroq Brost

Thanks Laurie! <3


This could not be farther than the truth. many of your suggestions or statements are your opinion. Opinions anyone can have and give, they are not TRUTH. Time after time you blame people for how they react to a negative situation, as one can control, or respond in the manor you think. This isn’t reality, Bad things happen too all people good things happen to all people. The sun shines and the rain fall on everyone. The difference is how we respond, no two people react or respond in the same manor as you suggest. Evil hearts that choose to do wrong to good people have nothing to do with the good peoples personality or belief. Its OK to be angry, its OK to be sad, its OK to blame publicly those whom have mistreated us. Your way is think good thoughts all will be OK. Look at the mental, physical, sexual, mistreatment of many good souls, do you think its OK for them to not rebuke there perpetrator, publicly? This is why women and men don’t tell, don’t snitch, this is why we cower in fear of retribution. Jesus got angry when he saw those doing evil things, he called our the demons, he didn’t say here kitty kitty you have been bad now say your sorry and all will be right in the world, thats the problem this world is sick!


Amen Vici!!! Tell this crap to people that may have had a hurricane destroy their home, or a drunk driver kills a relative or gets sexual assaulted Tell those people they attracted those things into their life!!! I could go on and on with examples of bad things happening to GOOD people. Shame on this women for trying to sell BS to people all in the name of making money off them! May God have mercy on her soul!!!