When you fall in love with someone, you begin to imagine your life and future with them. But what if things don’t go as planned? If our love isn’t reciprocated, we may need to learn how to stop liking someone, as difficult as it may be.
Being in love with someone who is romantically unavailable is distressing. On top of that, seeing them with someone else can take a toll on you. Now that you’re here looking for a solution to what feels like hell on earth, the first thing you need to know is this emotional turmoil doesn’t last forever.
It takes a lot of courage to be able to remove yourself from an unhappy situation. We’re glad that you have already taken the first step toward your well-being, by recognizing the need to move on.
How To Stop Liking Someone You Can’t Have – 12 Ways
Do you find yourself thinking about someone you can’t be with all the time? It’s not necessary to completely and immediately let go of someone, but you can do it eventually. Make room for yourself in your head and heart – this could be the time for you to rediscover and retain your individuality as you move forward.
How to stop liking your crush when they’re committed to someone? How to stop liking someone and just be friends instead? These questions started to perplex us at high school and manage to follow us into our adulthoods as well. Most of the time, we learn something new about ourselves in the process of moving on, and the other times we end up repeating the cycle of falling for the same kind of people.
Since you are here and clearly want to know how to stop liking someone you can’t have, it means you’ve accepted the fact (to some extent) that they don’t like you back. It’s a huge step forward. Whether you’re in love with your best friend or attracted to a coworker, we’re going to show you how to stop liking someone without avoiding them altogether.
1. No more living rent-free in your head
We’re all guilty of this at some point. The nature versus nurture theory suggests that we’re attracted to people who are off-limits because of an innate survival trait that tells us they’re of a high value.
Fantasizing about your crush when you can’t be with them is tantalizing. Sexual and romantic attraction are the culprits behind the rosy scenarios that play in your head before you go to bed. That’s until you’re snapped back to reality during the day.
Having to go through this rollercoaster on a regular basis will take a toll on your emotional well-being. If you observe your thoughts carefully you’ll see how vicious this cycle is. Your first step to learning how to stop liking your crush is to stop letting them live rent-free in your head.
2. Acceptance is key
You’re probably thinking to yourself, “Not this advice again”. If the internet, your best friend, and your mom, all of them are handing out the same advice, it’s because it works. Getting over your crush does not have to be a herculean task, it can be gentle and simple. One that does not leave any emotional baggage or resentment behind.
You could go out every weekend and get wasted in clubs for months and still not make progress. However, just one evening where you sit with yourself, away from external noise, can be enough to start accepting and grieving the fact that you can’t have your crush.
There are just a few things you need to accept to know how to stop having feelings for someone you can’t date. Firstly, know that this has nothing to do with you. Secondly, accept that you can’t force someone to like you back because there are people you don’t like back as well.
Related Reading: 8 Steps To Win Over A Girl Who Rejected You
3. Stalking is self-sabotaging
*Sighs* This is just as bad as stalking an ex on a regular basis. At least when it comes to your ex, you’ll stop stalking them because you know you don’t wish to get back together with them. But in the case of a crush, you have hope – as little as it may be.
The temptation to constantly check their Instagram stories is real, but it’s also painful and detrimental to your health. Ask yourself, do you really want to see their stories of going out on dates with their partner?
Here’s how to stop liking someone you can’t have – sign up on a dating site and replace the habit of stalking them with swiping left and right. If you’re not ready to date other people, that’s okay too. You can replace it with any activity of your choice, just make sure it is easy and fun to do for it to stick.
4. Use humor as a coping tool
This may sound odd to some but it is true that humor goes a long way in uplifting your spirits and overall well-being. A research published in 2021 revealed the role of perspective-changing skills using humor to deal with psychological burdens.
Humor creates a buffer between you and the sadness that unrequited love brings into a person’s life. We have been using humor as a way to cope for centuries; you know what they say about laughter being the best medicine.
The quickest way to get onto this is by watching stand-up comedy, or even better, going for one in person. I once did this after a breakup and purposely sat on the front row, hoping for it to help. I was made fun of, it was a good laugh for everyone (including me), and I was able to look at my life with a non-serious and non-grumpy eye.
5. How to stop liking someone you see everyday? By journaling the sad and ugly
Do you wish things were different and your crush wasn’t taken? Then write about it in your journal. Do you wish you didn’t have to find out how to stop liking someone you see everyday? Write it in your journal.
Speaking on the subject, psychologist Devaleena Ghosh previously told Bonobology, “A habit of regular journaling is known to reduce a significant amount of emotional distress for people. There are a lot of benefits to journaling with consistency, especially when you’re down in the dumps.”
Treat your journal like a safe space where you can speak your mind in the tone that you want without having to worry about offending anyone. You can brood over your emotions, express your love for your crush, and talk about their shortcomings too (trust me, it helps).
As psychosomatic beings, what we create in our minds and feel strongly in our emotions manifests in our bodies. Use this to your advantage, as journaling your feelings openly will help relieve your pain. A few weeks of reflection about your situation in a journal will hasten your process to fall out of love. And that’s our note on how to stop liking someone and just be friends with them. It’s a good start so far, isn’t it?
6. Keep reminding yourself that this is temporary
When we go through any emotional upheaval in our lives, we tend to lose sight of the big picture. It is important to remind yourself every now and then that it’s not always going to be this way. You will find the love you’re looking for. At Bonobology, we believe in a happy and imperfect love.
Your feelings may not be reciprocated this one time from this one individual, but that is no reason to get pessimistic about your love life. There truly are plenty of fish in the sea. Focus on eventually starting to see other people. If you’ve been in love with your best friend for a while, then it’s going to be difficult compared to a fleeting crush. But it’s still temporary.
Even if you’re someone who currently feels they’re destined for failed relationships or dying alone, remind yourself that your luck can change in an instant. No matter what situation you find yourself in, wake up every morning and consciously remind yourself that this is temporary and you’ll get over them. When you feel better, you attract better.
7. Limit your interaction with the crush
It’s only logical, isn’t it? You can’t expect to learn how to stop liking someone and just be friends while also hanging out with them all the time. It doesn’t work that way. If you’re constantly bumping into your crush at work, it’s like a walking reminder of the fact that you cannot date them.
There are many ways to maintain boundaries in a social setting without making anything glaringly obvious and awkward. Depending on how deeply you feel for them and the pain it causes you, set a new tone of friendship with them. If needed, bring it down to the bare minimum interaction.
At the same time be civil with them, don’t shut them out entirely. If at a certain point you do feel like putting the connection to rest, talk to them about it before you pull the plug. If that seems too much, prepare a reasonable excuse for your change in behavior.
Related Reading: How To Cope If You Have A Crush On Someone Who Is In A Relationship
8. To know how to stop liking your crush, get professional help
Unrequited love makes for an interesting story for a book but in real life, it makes one miserable. Have there been a few instances where you haven’t felt like coming out of your bed? If you find it difficult to function on a daily basis and are isolating yourself from social connections, then it’s time you get professional help. Don’t wait for rock bottom to reach out for help, pick up on the early signs of depression.
At Bonobology, we have the best experts available for you to seek help during this turbulent time in your dating life. Our panel of experts has you covered and will be more than happy to share their insight on how to stop liking someone you can’t have .
Apart from learning how to stop having feelings for someone, you can even address the other serious issues you may have been ignoring. Maybe you have a fear of rejection that has been rampant in your dating life? Therapy is a safe space for you to talk about any insecurity you may have and it’s always good to have a professional draw up a holistic picture of your life.
9. Break away from physical contact
We’re specifically referring to the flirtatious kind of friendship. Yes, they are fun, as long as feelings don’t come into the picture. But when you want to know how to stop liking someone you can’t have, continuing a friendship like this is problematic.
Friends-with-benefits is not an option either. Want to know how to stop liking someone and just be friends? Don’t confess your feelings and definitely don’t start a “casual”, sexual relationship with them. And stop waiting for them to break up with their partner in order to make a well-timed move.
It may feel great at the moment, but be honest with yourself, doesn’t that leave you with a void when you have to see them with their partner? Not being able to love your love is a wound, don’t scratch it every now and then. That’s not how healing works. Believe me, you don’t want to be breadcrumbed by settling for something less.
10. Snooze your feelings from time to time
If you spend a lot of time wallowing about not being with your crush, that’s just as problematic as avoiding the pain altogether. A healthy balance is required between the two. It’s impossible for us to always make time for our emotions as they arise. We live in the real world, where responsibilities demand our attention.
If you catch yourself avoiding important tasks, then it’s time for you to take a break from feeling things. Avoid spiraling down into a negative pool of emotions. It won’t do you any good. Grounding is a simple yet effective way to regulate yourself during this time. The key to knowing how to stop liking someone without avoiding them, lies in your acceptance of this moment. For the times you can’t practice grounding physically, close your eyes and create a visual and sensory stimulus as close to the real one as possible.
Related Reading: 9 Tips To Stop Loving Someone Who Doesn’t Love You
11. Indulge in the pleasures of life
At the start of this article, we talked about distracting yourself from your feelings and from the fact that your crush is taken. To reach a point where you can look them in the eye without a hole in your stomach, indulge in pleasures like hanging out with friends, meeting new people, traveling, and taking up a new hobby.
Also, here’s how to stop liking someone you can’t have: go have sex with someone you’re physically attracted to. Now we’re not asking you to go and have rebound sex. But as they say – when you can’t get over someone, get under someone new. Do this when you are ready and are seeking intimacy. A summer fling can do you good, just like in high school.
These activities don’t have to be so extra and exotic, it can be as simple as reading a book you like or even watching the sunset. We have crushes from the past we’re now glad didn’t work out, maybe this was another addition to the same lot.
12. Channel this clarity to catapult into your best version
Start by giving yourself credit for the little things and the progress you’ve made so far. Knowing how to stop liking someone in theory is different than acting on it and being a part of the process. Acknowledge the emotional challenges you’ve been through over the last few weeks or months. Celebrate the little wins of overcoming the obstacles with self-love.
Next, use this newfound stability and space to improve your overall health. For most of us, there is always room for improvement when it comes to our physical or mental health. So move your body more often, do a few workout sessions in a week, meditate, or join a yoga class.
This can be one of the best times of your life if you use it constructively. If you want our advice, then spend time setting life goals, and do a life review to understand how far you’ve come in your life.
And with that, we have reached the end of this article. This is all there is to know on how to stop liking someone you can’t have. We wish you all the intrinsic motivation that is needed to get over your crush. We’re always wishing you a warm dating life, may you love well and be loved in return.
There are several ways for you to stop liking your crush, it is always a good idea to start with the basics. Get comfortable with the idea that you cannot have them. Grieve the loss of what you hoped for by talking about it to your friends and give it time.
The simplest way to get over your crush is by looking at your crush through your best friend’s lens. Reconsider your crush based on your friend’s opinion and truly consider their input. When we don’t know what’s best for us, our friends always do. Everyone has shortcomings, look for your crush’s shortcomings and you’re halfway there.
It’s difficult to get over someone if you see them on a daily basis, but it’s not impossible. To get over your crush you see everyday, start by venting about it to your best friend in moderation. When you see them in person, remind yourself they’re just one person in a sea of available candidates. If nothing else works, lean into the heartache and try asking out your crush.