How to get over a crush
Learning how to get over a crush is not an easy path to tread. Crushes are not the same as falling in love. Love is a stronger and more consistent emotion. Crushes are variable and more of an idealized version of the kind of partner you want. Despite their frivolous nature, crushes can dominate your mind space excessively.
When that’s the case, it can be a real challenge to get over someone who does not have feelings for you. With some hurdles and setbacks along the way, this journey will keep you stumbling. However, in most cases, it is just the right track to take if you see no real future or potential relationship with this person.
Counseling psychologist Amjad Ali Mohammad (MSc Psychology, PG Diploma in Guidance and Counseling and Diploma in Community Mental Health for Psychologists), who specializes in innovative, scientific, and systematic approaches in areas of health, education, relationship, and occupational counseling, is here to help us understand some important tricks of the trade in this regard.
18 Practical Tips To Get Over A Crush
Typically, you develop a crush on someone you find attractive. It can be exciting in the early days where you’ve already imagined the perfect relationship, but when that person feels differently about you, it can quickly turn into a mental menace. If you, for a second, stop idealizing them and see the full picture from a realistic point of view, you may realize that an unrequited attraction is best to let go.
On the other hand, you could also be dealing with a crush who hurt you badly or someone who already has a partner. Maybe you found a crush on social media and confessed your feelings, but they ghosted you instead. Think about it, the amount of time you spend daydreaming about someone who may or may not reciprocate your feelings, is it really worth it?
Like the author, Kevin Darné, once said, “Rejection is the friend you never knew you needed. It usually saves you time and money.” So, before you catch more intense feelings for this person, we’ve got you covered with these 18 coping skills to help you move forward:
1. Remind yourself that this is not love
Having a crush on someone is barely one of the first stages of a relationship. It is more about lust and attraction. Attachment is still a long way to go. You meet someone new. The way they walk, talk, laugh, it simply blows your mind away and the fluttering butterfly is back in your stomach.
However, it takes time to process your feelings, setting aside the initial euphoria. That’s what you should remind yourself of. That even though it feels like love at the moment, it is probably just another infatuation resulting from a heady mix of excitement and hormones – both of which you can influence. Here’s how Amjad explains the difference between crush and love:
- A crush is a brief and intense infatuation with someone and mostly offers fleeting pleasure
- On the other hand, love is an intense feeling of deep affection that persists for the long term
- A crush is solely based on physical attraction and excitement
- Love is based on mutual respect, care, trust, understanding, and affection
Bono tip: If they cared, they would have reciprocated, but if they haven’t, then there’s no love involved. Isn’t that red flag big enough for you to walk away?
2. How to stop crushing on a guy/girl? Be logical
Let’s be brutally honest, we often form crushes so easily because we do not know enough about them. According to the psychology of crushes, we develop a crush on someone when we project our own ideas and values onto them and expect them to possess certain qualities.
Their perfect aura wraps itself around our heads, keeping us so hooked that we are unable to pay attention to any dubious details. I’m not saying that you must look into their negative traits. But if you think about it smartly, you’ll realize that there is no point in flattering someone you barely even know. You are better off without them if they take your mind away from the more important things in life.
Bono tip: Watch them for some time and once you know them better, warts and all, use logic to find the best way to move forward. Be honest with yourself and resist falling in love with someone just because you feel bored or they look nice.
3. Start dating other people
A little distance and investing yourself emotionally into someone or something else might be one way to get over your crush. Why worry about someone who never glances at you at a party and ends up making you feel worse? This is especially a good thing to do if you are wondering, “How to get over a crush on a friend who wants to stay friends and nothing more?”
The more you see them, the more you might be drawn to them. But if your energy and mind are occupied elsewhere, you will eventually stop noticing them. So, quit staring at your crush during class and go find other ways to meet men/women! There are plenty of fish in the sea. If there is someone else interested in you and makes you feel special, don’t ignore them.
Bono tip: Don’t date others to make your crush feel jealous. Do it for your happiness and mental well-being. Be open to exploring your options and accept the attention you truly deserve.
4. Use the no-contact rule
If your curious case of crushing is getting completely out of hand, it might be time to rein things in a little and be tough with yourself. We know it’s hard to get over someone you have doted upon. But to save you further misery, we suggest you give the no-contact rule a shot. Just embrace it as a way of life. Soon, you will realize that the ‘out of sight, out of mind’ adage truly works.
- The first step is to sever all contact and communication with your crush until your feelings die down
- No phone calls, no text messages, no communicating via mutual friends, and no running into them intentionally
- During this time, try to avoid abusing alcohol or obsessing over your crush all day long
- Stay busy, make space for all the things you love, and perhaps meet new people online
Amjad says, “Ignoring a crush can go either way. After giving them too much attention, if you suddenly stop giving that same importance to your crush and instead start ignoring them, they will try to come close to you to figure out why you are walking away from them. On the other hand, they might think that you are not interested in them anymore and will go away from you too. Either way, you need to be headstrong.”
Bono tip: If you feel okay after not interacting with them for some time, it could mean that it was just an infatuation. Soon enough, you’d realize that you don’t miss them after all and feel ready to get back in the field.
5. Ramble away to your loved ones
“How to get over a crush?” you wonder. When you have feelings for someone who’s just not that into you, it can hurt your self-esteem and cause immense frustration. So, you need a venting ground to release all the pent-up emotions and let your thoughts spill. This is when you turn to your best friends who have always been a strong support system or to someone who might have gone through similar issues in their own life.
Trust me, sometimes this helps no less than seeing a therapist or counselor. Spend time with your close friends or go and barge into your mom’s house – whatever seems best to you. Express with complete honesty how you’ve felt neglected, unworthy, and ignored, and how badly you feel like erasing this person from your head.
Bono tip: Talking your heart out helps immensely. Speak to someone you trust and watch the pain slowly drift away.
Related Reading: Have A Crush When Married – 7 Ways To Handle This Situation
6. Listen to happy music if you feel stuck
Sad songs are meant for the suffering of heartbreaks. If you treat this situation like a full-fledged heartbreak by listening to melancholic music, you might get stuck in that mindset for longer than you planned. Mix it up. If you’re corny like me, you can even make a ‘getting over a crush’ playlist. Or just put on some rap to keep yourself pumped!
Bono tip: Music has healing powers. Some feel-good music can lead to some quality thinking. This, in turn, can help you forget someone who does not have feelings for you.
7. “What’s my worth?” Focus on yourself in the first place
Shift your gaze from your constant idolatry of another person and start spending time thinking about yourself. We often forget the concept of self-love when we are preoccupied with the thoughts of someone else. It’s the perfect time you take over the reins and give your self-esteem a solid boost.
Do you remember that most-quoted line by Stephen Chbosky, “We accept the love we think we deserve”? That is what lack of confidence does to your judgment – you settle for less. Even research has shown that self-esteem has a high impact on both relationship satisfaction and your partner’s happiness. So, to get your crushes to chase you in the future, you should:
- Make a list of the qualities you have that you admire dearly
- Be more rigid with your boundaries in romantic and other relationships; learn to say ‘no’
- Push your limits, take new challenges, and be proud of your progress
- Strictly stop comparing yourself with others
- Practice positive affirmation techniques every day
Bono tip: Meet new people; make new friends. But keep your self-worth in mind before you start pursuing someone. Sometimes, to get over a crush on a friend without telling them, you need to remind yourself of all the reasons you like about yourself.
8. How to get over a crush who rejected you? Exercise
Crazy, right? That some regular exercising can help you get over this one-sided love fantasy? When we don’t exercise enough, we often feel groggy and dull. Sometimes, getting over someone who already has a girlfriend/boyfriend can be as easy as releasing those endorphins.
A workout will pep up your happy hormones, making you energetic and enthusiastic. So, to stop feeling sorry for yourself, get out of your head and into a workout routine, get into shape, and feel awesome.
Bono tip: Exercise does not have to be intensive or draining. Just do something to get your heart racing so that your mind can be free. Who knew dumbbells could be the answer.
Related Reading: How To Manifest Your Crush In 10 Simple Ways
8. Think of this as a learning experience
To recall the inspiring words of Steve Maraboli, the author, “Cry. Forgive. Learn. Move on. Let your tears water the seeds of your future happiness.” When we find ourselves in a situation with a learning outcome, we should lean toward a positive interpretation of the said situation. To learn constantly is to grow.
If you feel like an invisible entity, then know that you’re not entitled to you crush’s time and space. It’s okay if they don’t like you back. If you have been treated unfairly, then the experience will teach you invite the love you truly deserve, and to not trust so easily in the future. Do not ruminate over the injustice to yourself. Don’t badger yourself with the “Why me?” question. Instead, learn and become a better version of yourself.
Bono tip: Life lessons help you grow as a person. To get over a crush on a friend without telling them or move on without closure from a crush who used you, think of it as a stepping stone in life and nothing more.
10. Do your own thing
Focusing on yourself and spending all your time doing your own thing can be surprisingly therapeutic. This is not just one of the ways of getting over a crush, but to overcome any setback that life throws your way. Whether it is some online shopping or repainting a boring wall in your room – there is so much you can probably do. Learn a new skill, fight for that long-due promotion. To stop crushing on a friend, go out there and start crushing it at work!
Bono tip: Motivate yourself to do things that will have positive results so you have very little space for overthinking about your crush.
11. Don’t be bitter toward your crush
If your crush is egotistical and selfish, they might take advantage of your lovelorn state of mind. When you feel cheated and used, it can be really difficult to get over your crush on someone, especially if you went out with them or if you see them often.
It might make you hostile. You’d want them to pay for all the ill-treatment. It is evident from research that there is a close connection between revenge and emotional satisfaction or relief. But it’s never an ideal move as it leaves a door open for retaliation, which can hurt you further. And your conscience might come back to bite you later too. Our expert offers some good advice for such a time:
- Try to be emotionally and mentally strong, and consult a relationship expert if you think that might help
- Be confident and remember that you are so much better than this one challenging situation
- Don’t forget that being vindictive or trying to get revenge on an ex-crush is not going to make your pain go away; rather, it would overcomplicate the matter
Bono tip: There’s no point being bitter about someone with whom you don’t have a future. It might take longer than usual to forget them, but harboring negative feelings forever should not be on your list.
Related Reading: How To Get Your Crush To Like You – 15 Helpful Tips
12. Change your mindset about wanting a relationship
A lot of times, we hop from one crush to the other because of the faults in our thought process. We want relationships and love so much that the moment we find someone even remotely worthy of our time, we invest our energies into that person. Wanting a relationship and love is beautiful. But do not let it become desperation that causes you to run amok.
Amjad says, “If you haven’t mutually agreed that a relationship is possible, then your obsessive nature can completely break your connection with that crush. If you two have similar intentions about dating, that might be a good thing. But if your crush only sees you as a friend, you need to change your mindset and walk away.”
Bono tip: Everyone has a right person waiting for them in the wings. Wait until you find them. Don’t force things before their time.
13. Get them out of your social media
Social media tends to imprint the things we view while scrolling into the database of our minds. By constantly looking at their pictures, you will keep being drawn to them. In order to prevent that, block, delete, or unfollow – do whatever you have to do to politely remove them from your social media feeds. This is especially important if you have been struggling with the dilemma of how to get over a crush you see every day online. You’ll be much better off, trust us.
Bono tip: It’s best to erase any possibility of seeing your crush by detoxifying your feed. This way, you minimize your own tendency to see what they are doing.
14. Don’t do things to grab their attention
One of the regressive ways our mournful hearts get over crushes is by indulging in attention-seeking behaviors. We do this not to bask in that delayed attention, but to make them crave us just when we have stopped craving them. That sense of superiority stems from unresolved feelings and will negatively hamper your growth. Do not parade around trying to be an unattainable diva to make them want you.
Bono tip: Don’t end up doing silly, regrettable things just because a crush ignored you. Have some self-respect, and walk away.
15. Bring perspective to your worries
Stressing about a person that you don’t even admire as much as you think you do is a terrible waste of energy. Sadly, we fall into this worry trap easily. It’s insane how someone who does not mean that much to us can cause us so much anxiety. It is important to consciously weed out these unwanted feelings. Instead of lying in bed with a heavy heart, remind yourself how unimportant this temporary phase will be, and how important you are and always will be.
Bono tip: Reserve your thoughts for the bigger issues out there. Will this matter to you as much after a month? After 6 months? After a year? Two years?
Related Reading: How To Cope If You Have A Crush On Someone Who Is In A Relationship
16. How to get over a crush on a friend? Do not incite jealousy
Making an old crush jealous by flashing a new one is not going to make them want you more. Counter-productively, it will only make you fall deeper into the rabbit hole by constantly thinking about what they think. So just because Alan was your crush at work earlier, it doesn’t mean that you start laughing too much with Steve at all the work meetings where Alan is also present. Remember, it doesn’t matter what they think or what they do. Trying to influence their thoughts is a futile endeavor.
Bono tip: You can’t make a person who has no feelings for you jealous. Resist those tendencies and do better things with your life. You won’t need to work hard to make the right person like you.
17. Say goodbye to the imagined scenarios in your mind
Having a huge crush can lead to some major daydreaming tendencies. You may start imagining a future with them. Or picturing cute scenarios where your affection is reciprocated and they are head over heels in love with you. Stop right there and try to understand how you are stuck in this phase of limerence. Because none of that is true or good for you.
Amjad explains, “Daydreaming to some extent is okay to feel pleasure and to feel happy about your crush. But when it becomes excessive and happens all the time, that can cause some serious trouble. It can distract you from your life goals and daily important activities such as your job, career, education, family, etc. Having limits and boundaries is important.”
Bono tip: Keep the celluloid romance in your life at bay for a while. Come back to reality – it’s a small change really, but can go a very long way in keeping you sane.
18. Seek professional help
Research shows that people who are lonely in regard to family situations or unfulfilling romantic relationships tend to achieve a sense of contentment from having a crush. Now, is that a good thing or a cry for help? Makes one think. Such emotional predicaments are hard to deal with on your own. It would be wise of you to book an appointment with a clinical psychologist without further delay.
Bono tip: There is no shame in asking for help. So, don’t resist it when you feel the need to seek professional guidance. FYI, our counselors from Bonobology’s panel are always here to lend you a helping hand.
- To get over your crush on someone, you’ll need to think logically and quit idealizing them
- Cut ties with them in person and on social media if required
- Focus on yourself, your passion, and working on your self-esteem and well-being
- Try not to be desperate or vindictive if they are not into you
- Try spending less time daydreaming about your crush and being more productive in other areas of your life
So, what are your final thoughts on how to get over a crush? Maybe you are already re-evaluating how you actually feel about that someone. You might realize that even if the feelings are still there, you will be just fine. They’re just another attractive (and maybe even compatible) person. But there will be a new one, one who reciprocates your feelings, don’t you worry.
This article has been updated in June 2023.
Yes, despite their frivolous nature, crushes can dominate your mind space excessively.
No, a crush is the feeling of being attracted to someone whereas love is a deeper, more consistent emotion.
If you dwell on your feelings for too long and the other person doesn’t reciprocate, it can be heartbreaking. However, that heartbreak will not last for too long as crushes are not permanent.
Unless you act on your feelings and the other person also feels the same way about you, crushes are almost always one-sided.
Yes, if you’re continuously obsessing over the other person and engaging in unhealthy behavior to grab their attention.