How to Stop Yourself from Having a Crush

Click here to go straight to the methods.

For those of you who have read my posts all the way back to several years ago, you’ll recall that I wrote about how not to lose yourself when having a crush.

My personal belief is that a crush should be fun and harmless.  It should provide pleasing moments as you navigate through your daily life.  It’s a nice little distraction; something–or rather, someone–who makes you smile when you see him/her across the way or when he/she randomly pops into your mind.

via GIPHY

(And don’t even lie–you know you’ve made that face before.)

But what happens when you develop a crush on someone, and it starts to consume more of your thoughts–and time–than you want it to?

via GIPHY

It’s annoying, innit?

Why Should I Stop a Crush?

Is it Me…?

Your frustration at having the crush may have nothing to do with the actual person you’re crushing on. The guy/gal could be one of the sweetest, friendliest, coolest people you know.

Or, maybe not. Maybe they suck the big one, and you are honest-to-goodness frustrated that this person, off all people, is the one who makes your heart go all doki-doki.

Regardless, we’ve all experienced what happens when we become infatuated with someone:

  • We blush profusely.
  • We fidget noticeably.
  • We literally get stupider.
  • We stare at them too much.
  • We don’t look at them at all.
  • The ability to form sentences fails miserably.
  • We babble like the possessed.
  • We show off excessively.
  • We become as still as a mouse.
  • We get way too close.
  • We run.

Bottom line: we lose the ability to act normal.

What’s worse, despite the staggering amounts of online lore that clearly give these behaviors as signs of interest, we might think one of several (or a combination of) things if someone behaved this way towards us:

  • Creep.
  • Shy.
  • Showoff.
  • Guess he doesn’t like me.
  • Guess he really doesn’t like me.
  • Couldn’t care less that I exist. But why not? I’m awesome.

Thus, we think they’re thinking this because we think they’d think this about us.

(Y’all got that, right?)

…Or is it You?

Maybe there’s a more external reason that you don’t want to have a crush.

  • The person is already involved in a committed relationship.
  • The person has already told you that they do not want a relationship with you.
  • The person is in a certain professional/religious/authoritative/etc standing that makes the crush embarrassing or annoying (e.g. your boss, your priest, your teacher).
  • Heck, maybe you actually hate this person, yet your pure, raw, biochemical makeup has determined that you and them are supremely sexually compatible and would make excellent pro-creators to continue on the legacy of the human race!

Regardless of the reason, you want to abolish these feelings and move on. Sooo, it’s time to employ measures to crush the crush before it goes any further. I would like to share some ways that you can stop–or at the least, reduce–your latest infatuation.

Disclaimer: I am not a dating coach. I have had plenty of experience in the crush department (pity me later–let’s keep this about you for now 😁). I offer these recommendations based on my own experiences, and hope that they can offer some insight into your own situation.

I will be even more honest–not all of these methods are quick fixes. Nor are they “easy” fixes. But they might at least give you a better idea as to why you have a crush on someone you don’t want to have a crush on. Speaking of which…

The Six Crush Crushers

1. Understand WHY You Like Them

If you have a crush on someone and your first reaction is to be annoyed or frustrated by the crush, chances are you’ve also asked yourself this question:

It is a question, unfortunately, that only you can answer.

What was the moment when everything changed? Did he/she say something that flattered you or do something that put him/her into a beauteous, glorifying light? Did s/he display a unique skill or a hobby that added intrigue to their personality?

Uncovering the reason or moment when you did start liking them can help compartmentalize that moment separately from them as a person. You can learn to appreciate the moment for what it was–and then move on.

2. Get to Know the Crush

I know, I know. Why don’t I just tell you to walk into the sun?

The problem with a crush is that it’s often an idealization. We use most of the time building up crushes with daydreams and fantasies of what we would love to do with them. Forget his/her actual personality; in the safety of our own minds, we can imagine them saying, behaving, or doing anything we want.

So, how to stop fantasy?

Bring in the reality!

Remember: your crush really is just another human being. And there isn’t a single human being on earth that is perfect.

Now, you don’t have to corner your crush and interrogate them until you’ve got a nice ‘n’ proper dossier on their daily activities. Just be more observant of his/her personality whenever natural moments to interact arise. When he/she approaches you to talk…just talk. Make an appropriate joke; see if they respond to your satisfaction.

After enough interaction has happened, one of three results will hopefully occur:

  1. You’ll realize that there is nothing really spectacular about them. They’re a nice person, just…maybe not as much of what you initially thought.
  2. You’ll discover that they’re actually a horrible person. Verbally abusive, toxic, annoying, unforgivably flaky–what were you thinking?
  3. You’ll get to know them for who they are, and you like them for that–not for what you imagined them to be. What’s more, your jittery, idealized nerves will settle, and you’ll sincerely enjoy their company when you seem them. They may even become–gasp–a real friend.

The main point is that, you’re no longer putting them on a pedestal–and honestly, whether they knew you were crushing or not, I think they’ll appreciate that.

Note: If your crush has a significant other, this method may be a little difficult to execute or handle (see crush crusher #4 on why). In that case, I wouldn’t recommend this as the best choice, if it makes you (or them/their SOs) uncomfortable.

3. Block the Crush

This one is difficult to apply if you have daily interaction with your crush (ah, the boss/coworker or roommate conundrum). However, if you can do it without it affecting your daily life, it might be worth trying.

To apply this tactic, you need to be fully disciplined and absolutely airtight.

Avoid them at all costs. Do not communicate with them. Remove them on all your social media. If you can’t bring yourself to remove, at least hide/block them so they don’t appear on your feed.

Stop talking about them to friends and colleagues–not even a casual “you know who” is allowed. If someone starts to mention them while in your presence, plug your ears and sing the hook of VITAS’s “Opera #2” as loud as you can.

AS LOUD. AS YOU CAN.

(Hi-sterical as that may be, probably don’t wanna do this for reals until you’re around people that really, truly understand you. And will forgive you later.)

The rationale behind this method is 100% out of sight, out of mind. Like trash in a computer’s recycle bin, your crush can hang around for a while after you’ve made the choice to dump it. You’ll need a substantial amount of time to pass to give your brain a chance to forget what you adored about them.

A week’s not gonna cut it. Maybe three. A month is safer. Several months, even more so.

And the moment you think to yourself, “Ah, I feel great–like I’ve got my own mind back! I guess I can unblock them and talk to them again.”…

DON'T.

That faux confidence is your mind playing tricks on you. If you are thinking “I’m over them”–you are not over them. Continue to apply all aversion tactics for the next, oh…three to six months. Heck, make it year, just to be sure.

Do you know the only time you should unblock them or talk to them?

…wait. Talk to who?

Exactly.

4. Watch Your Crush Have a Crush on Someone Else

This one…can be painful. And I certainly don’t recommend this method if you can avoid it. That being said, it will certainly dampen any idealizations you may have had.

It is never fun to realize that there is someone else who makes your crush feel the way you feel about them–and it’s not you. It’s human nature to want to be special, let alone be special to your crush.

But life is not like a TV show or film where the imperfect protagonist will, after an hour and a half of watching their love interest cuddle with their SO, magically convince the LI that the protagonist is the one for them all along!

Does it happen?

Well, sure. Sometimes.

But how long do you want to wait for that so-called revelation while, week in and week out, you watch your crush sidle up to their crush to make their own dreams come true?

5. Start a New Crush

What better way to deflect one crush than with the power of another?

By choosing a secondary crush, you diminish the amount of nerve-wracking power the primary crush has over your nervous system. Having multiple crushes can also help remind you that there is no single ideal who completes everything.

Are you attracted to the Black Irish look?

What about a tall guy with a swimmer’s build?

Or a redhead with wide hips and a giggle like a bell?

Welp–why not all of them?

Beauty comes in all forms, and it doesn’t hurt to appreciate them. Besides, the new person you crush on may be a better fit for you in the potential of friendship or even a relationship.

6. Do…Nothing.

Let me explain this one with a story.

A couple of years ago, I met a guy who was–you know, a guy. Let’s call him John. Didn’t have a thought about him, one way or another. Since he hung in some of the same circles, I saw him every now and then. The few times I tried to engage him, he seemed like he…didn’t want to. Okay, fine, I thought, and happily stopped trying.

Then, one day, a girlfriend and I were talking about guys we thought were cute. We threw a few back and forth, and suddenly, she blurted out, “I mean, I think John’s hot.”

I just stared at her, positive she was talking about someone other than the John I was imagining. “John John?”

“Yeah!” she chirped. Just then, as if summoned from a dream, the John in question happen to walk by, but out of earshot. It gave me the ideal opportunity to see him through fresh eyes…

Aaaand still feel nothing.

It took another couple of months, a five o’clock shadow, and a snug turtleneck (when I begrudgingly and absentmindedly checked out his pecs) to develop my crush. However, had my friend never made the comment and planted that seed of thought into my mind, I would have never, ever considered John anything other than…John.

Time passed, and I got to know him organically. Some days I’m sure I made a fool of myself as I wore cute skirts or sat next to him when we all met for lunch. Other times, I stared at him and thought, “Well…he’s not the most parked car in the lot.”

By simply letting time pass as it normally would (and after several random giggle-fests with my GF over John’s forearms or voice), something interesting happened.

The crush faded away naturally.

I didn’t have to go out of my way to do anything. As I progressed through my life and John progressed through his, my choices changed in what made someone crushable in my eyes. His crush model became obsolete; still not bad to look at occasionally, but no longer my ideal.

To Crush or Not to Crush?

Regardless of which method you try, the main point is that having a crush should not be taking over your life or keeping you from enjoying yourself. If thinking about the crush is stressing you out in any way, maybe it’s not the healthiest option for you. And your health is the most important part of everything you do.

Not only that, but the healthier and happier you are, the more you can look forward to someone of quality having a crush on you. 🙂

Reasons Why I Write

In my last major post, I discussed my fears to pursue my lifelong sleeping desire to be a novelist. I call it a sleeping desire because, although I have literally been writing, illustrating, and narrating stories since I was in the single digits, I didn’t have the confidence to believe that I deserved to be a published author until about five years ago.

Even now, as I sit on a “completed” novel that I still hold fondly (and securely) to my heart, I still struggle with believing that my work will be enjoyed by the mass public. But that internal struggle isn’t getting me anywhere–and it sure isn’t getting my novel anywhere closer to publication.

I lost my way in the fear.

Heck, I lost myself in my fear.

A few days after posting “I am Afraid to Write,” I was reminded of something very important, something that encouraged me to look beyond my fears. Not just beyond, but across the grander expanse in which my fear was not far-reaching enough to extend. For someone who has been writing nearly her entire life, I know that fear is not the reason nor the catalyst as to why I started writing in the first place.

So, then, what was? What is?

In summary–why do I write?

I write this post to reflect my own writing journey, but the questions that serve as headings below hopefully also serve as signposts for any writer who may have also lost their way in the landscape of fear and insecurity.

(On a side note…d’you see that extended metaphor up there?? D’you see it?? That’s some durn sexy metaphor work right chere! 🙌 I’m gettin’ my creative mojo back, baby!)

(Ahem…sorry.)

Why Do You Write?

Believe it or not, but in my 30-something years of writing fiction…I never really thought about why I do it. Throughout the M.o.B blog, I’ve sprinkled my enjoyment of writing in my lessons, analogies, and explanations.

A few notable posts:

I won’t reinvent the wheel in what I’ve already shared. However, the primary, easiest, and obvious answer is this:

I write because it’s a part of me.

When I move through extended periods of time without writing something, I begin to grow irritable and annoyed with…well, everything. When it first happened, I couldn’t understand why everything was suddenly ticking me off.

Then, I had a weekend to write in a novel I had put on hold for a few months. For the following week afterward, my productivity at work improved. I became more aware, intuitive, and even more spiritually in tune. The world made sense. I was content.

Then again, as the weeks passed without a chance to write, my irritability returned. And 2 and 2 made 4.

Writing is the most gentle, calmest way to release what’s bound up inside you. When you write your innermost self down, whether it’s in the form of a poem, a story, a blog post, or even stream of consciousness, no one can negate those words. They exist, and you watch them come to life as your pen scratches paper, or your fingertips tap keys.

I write because it’s an escape.

In the post “Writing Is…” I tell the story of the moment when I consciously began writing to free myself from the tyranny that was my parents’ attention and love. As I grew older and experienced the hills and valleys of life, I met each obstacle with varying amounts of success. By the time I reached college, bouts of depression were prevalent. I graduated, got a job, had a breakdown or two, moved to a new city, got another job, got fired, and juggled around until I ended up where I am today.

No matter what happened, though, even if I couldn’t physically will myself to leave my dorm room, my apartment, or my house, writing was always an option to get away from it all. The characters that I’ve developed over the years were fully formed. The worlds they inhabited were rich with problems, but they were problems that I’d manifested and therefore could also resolve.

I could write for hours and become pillowed in depths of imagination. There wasn’t a concern of good or bad writing; it was just writing. Here, not even depression could find me. For just a few hours (maybe more), I was safe. I was needed.

I was home.

I write better than I speak.

The other day, I was chatting with a friend about communication. I came to a revelation just as I was telling her my truth:

“I hate talking,” I said. “I feel like I’m always stumbling over my words; I miss a lot of the social cues of when to start talking and when to stop. And when I do talk, I feel like I’m being normal; but people just stare at me after I’m done. I feel like a freak!

“I would rather write, sing, dance, touch, eye contact, gesture, or pantomime to express myself than to talk,” I concluded. The irony that I was talking when I said this was not lost on me.

I feel like my innermost strengths lie more in expressing myself through my work than engaging in small talk. And it is no secret that verbal cues play a very small part in actually communicating with others.

Writing gives me a moment to collect my thoughts before I respond. As an introvert, I need time to process many of my thoughts, especially if the question reflected to me is multi-faceted. That’s not saying that I can’t talk; I just know that a truer form of myself is better replicated in the written word. Usually.

Or, you know what? Just cuddle me. That should work, too.

Additional “Why I Write” Questions

A few other questions came my way as I was contemplating the big WHY, and I thought I should share them here and at least touch on them for a moment.

What do you want to get out of writing your work?

Many authors and writing “experts” claim that, once you publish a book, you should detach from it, let it go. That way, any attention you receive (or don’t receive) won’t affect you as hard. I don’t agree with that philosophy.

A quote from one of my favorite movies said it best, I think:

Joe Fox:
It wasn’t… personal.

Kathleen Kelly:
What is that supposed to mean? I am so sick of that. All that means is that it wasn’t personal to you. But it was personal to me. It’s personal to a lot of people. And what’s so wrong with being personal, anyway?

Joe Fox:
Uh, nothing.

Kathleen Kelly:
Whatever else anything is, it ought to begin by being personal.

–You’ve Got Mail

After all, that’s why we read.

Isn’t it?

We read to find the personal. We read to be personal with someone–even if that someone is a fictional boy who avenges his wizard parents and defends his magical school and friends. Or that someone is a young woman who, despite her lack of dowry and poor upbringing, asserts her presence as an intellectual equal to that of a handsome, well-endowed, yet seemingly standoffish man. Or that someone is a little hobbit whom no one expected anything from, yet endured almost more than anyone.

The gifts that writers selflessly offer to the world, they give because it is the story that only they can tell. Though I’m sure all of them will have different answers, a story is told because it must be told.

In college, I took a specialized, one-on-one course with a professor while I developed a fantasy novella. Though I rushed a bit on the writing, I was quite proud of the story and submitted it for her scrutiny. I also gave a copy of the story to a counselor that I used to see but had become friends with.

When I met the professor for her unbiased feedback, she didn’t hold back. “It’s under-written and unrealized,” she told me, tossing my manuscript onto her desk. “It reads like something a child would write.” The feedback stunned me silent for so long and so hard that the notoriously hardened instructor finally amended that perhaps she’d “read it too fast.”

For weeks, I moved devastated throughout my days, unsure of how to proceed with other books that I’d had in my mind for years. Not only that, but English was the fourth major that I had switched to since being in college. If I, a lover of the written word and grammarphile since 5 years old couldn’t make it as a writer of any sort, what was I good for?

Then, as if by cue, I received an email from my counselor in the middle of her vacation. Apparently, she hadn’t been able to wait until she’d returned from her time off at the beach before she could tell me how much she’d loved my story. From the moment she’d finally begun reading, she’d taken my manuscript everywhere, breaking it open whenever she had a free moment.

So, what do I want to “get” from writing?

Nothing.

What I want, however, is to give others the same sense of pleasure and peace that I feel when I read a good book. Knowing that I helped contribute to someone else’s positive state of mind means that I shared an intimate piece of myself–and it was happily received. Perhaps even welcomed.

What do you expect to happen from writing and publishing your work(s)?

Honestly? Not a clue.

I hope that I can make enough income from published books to allow me more time, freedom, and security to write fiction and nonfiction on a full-time basis. This would also allow me more time to dedicate to other areas of my life. Tend to my family. Travel. Goodwill. Love. Life.

I could go on, but the focus for the sake of this post is writing.

The goal isn’t to be rich, but to have enough energy and time before I’m decrepit and senile to record all of the stories that have crossed my mind. And there are a lot of stories in my mind.

Since last year, I’m even realizing that some of my stories would do better in screenplay form. So I want to have enough time to see those to fruition on the big screen and the Netflix stream. I want creative control to see my vision in the format that I always envisioned it.

I’ve begun writing like I’m running out of time, because I don’t know what tomorrow will bring.

Are you looking to see how your work is received or viewed by others (impact)? Are you looking for fame and fortune?

I’m not going to lie–would it be cool to win a Nobel Prize for Literature? A Pulitzer for Fiction? A Hugo Award? A Nebula Award?

Would I be ecstatic to disover that I’ve made the New York Times Best Seller list? #1 for more weeks than anyone ever?

Would I stare, speechless, from receiving an invitation to meet Oprah as she unveils me as her latest top addition to Oprah’s Book Club?

…Why yes. It would all be quite lovely.

But, that’s not why I write. If I wrote with that mindset all the time, I’d be scared excrement-less.

When I was in high school and my friends would peer at me as I bent over my journal, scratching away, I got a sick sense of superiority from my seemingly unique stance. There were not many kids that I knew who were writing at the “uber-cool” level that I was.

Them? They were doing generic teenager things like dating and going to parties with friends and shopping and…and hanging out n chilln.

Me? I was 15, listening to smooth jazz on a Friday night while burning sticks of sandalwood incense, scribbling pages upon pages of character profiles for my fantasy/science fiction magnum opus.

You couldn’t think of anyone cooler than me.

There have been times when I’ve shared my writing with people whose opinion I valued highly, only for them to come back and tell me, “Actually, I got a little bored, so I stopped.” The feedback was devastating, and I would throw the story at the bottom of the pile for it to collect its proverbial dust.

And yet…the stories never left me.

It’s only by writing this now, do I remember that

  1. One person’s opinion is one person’s opinion. Just because she/he didn’t like it doesn’t mean the rest of the world won’t.
  2. It’s not my place to determine the rest of the world’s likes and dislikes. Let them read and decide for themselves.

I don’t write to make masterpieces. I don’t write to prompt a room full of English majors to debate the significance of a green bottle in Chapter 3.

If I write for anyone, it’s for the readers who pick up my book to help them detach, relax, unwind, escape.

I’m writing for the introverted outcast who always feels like they are too “them” to belong anywhere.

I’m writing for the reader who is trying to find that one “perfect” novel that makes them laugh, cry, and scream at the same time.

Does that make me a writer who isn’t reaching high enough?

Who the flip cares.

This world has enough crap happening for people to not be able to just enjoy a good book.

I write to write. And I must write.

Because, at this stage in my life, to not write is to deny me of myself.

And I’ve wasted enough time doing that already.


Why do you write? I would love to hear your thoughts.