What Having A Crush Is Doing To Your Dating Life

When you have a crush you are thinking thoughts about someone. Those thoughts are making you feel amazing.

You might be thinking, he’s amazing. He’s cute. He’s everything that I want. He would be such a great boyfriend. I could totally marry him. You think thoughts like I want to be with him. You might even allow your thoughts to trail off to what life would be like in the future together.

And your brain likes feeling that. Also your brain doesn’t know that when you think this way it is not reciprocated or real. It just takes the thoughts you give it and processes those thoughts and from those thoughts you get a dopamine hit.
When your brain gets a dopamine hit it likes to remember what you were thinking about so that at a later time when you aren’t feeling so grand your brain can remind you of the dopamine hit you got earlier and repeat that.

So if you got a hit earlier, it will offer up, “Let’s think about that guy again, that was fun!”

And then you start thinking about him, going over those same thoughts and making those bike paths deeper and deeper. And that continues as long as you allow it, and for as many years as you find yourself thinking about that guy in this way. 

Now when you see your crush your brain has books of thoughts about him and it looks at him through the lens of your thoughts. So any actions he takes runs through the filters that you have already thought about and really your crush can do no wrong. You have set him up to succeed in every way because of your thinking. 

You might ponder if he likes you and your brain goes to work processing his actions but you have so many thoughts around him that it is not a neutral set of circumstances anymore. It is hard to see reality because of the fog of amazing thoughts you have. 

This poses a problem because in all of your real life relationships, not just the ones in your mind, you have loads of amazing thoughts that create positive emotions, but you also have some actual experiences that have some negative thoughts and negative emotions. You have both, and you are okay with them because you have learned how to balance them out. 

You only have positive thoughts around your crush. It is especially hard to look at the other side of things because if you do, you might have to give up all those other amazing thoughts. You come to realize that it is just your thinking that is creating this amazing relationship and if it becomes a relationship that has actual experiences, conversations, actions and interactions, it may not be what you think it is.

So what is this kind of thinking doing to your dating life?

Well, this relationship in your mind is very important to you. You can’t let this one go. You have to fight for it and hold out for it to work. Therefore you may actually be holding yourself back from other guys that are out there. You might be keeping yourself off the market, because honestly who can compete with Mr. Perfect in your mind. He is the perfect guy… well, the way you think about him seems perfect. You don’t know if your thoughts are even true. You don’t know what he would be like with you. You have no idea a lot of things, but most importantly you don’t know if he is interested in you and if your book of thoughts are worth holding onto, or letting go.

There are a couple options here. 

  1. He likes you and just hasn’t told you.
  2. He doesn’t like you.
  3. He hasn’t thought of you in that way.

But you have decided you like him, or you like the version of him in your head and you don’t know what to do about it.

Here are your options.

  1. Tell him. Let him know that you are interested in getting to know him more.
  2. Don’t tell him and keep writing the book of amazing thoughts of him in your mind.
  3. Don’t tell him and drop the book of amazing thoughts, and move on.

So if you want to drop the book you get to do the work of retraining your brain in this way.

You have a bunch of thoughts that you believe are true. You like thinking that they are true because they feel so good to you when you think them. But they may not be true. You have to think about him differently. You have to take each thought that you have and decide if you want to keep that thought or not. Only when you examine your thinking can you see where you really are with him. 

Here is a great exercise. Answer these questions:

If he got married today to someone else what would your new book about him be?

What would you think about him? What would happen to your book of thoughts about him?Would you make this mean something about you? Would you wish you would have told him?

If he wasn’t interested in you, would you still want him to know that you were interested in him?
If you went into your future and see that you marry someone else what would you want to think about him?

How much time would you think about him? Would you want to get your dopamine hits from your amazing thoughts about him? Would you still want to tell him? Would you wish that you would have never created a book of thoughts about him? Would you want to drop your crush quicker than you did? 

If you knew that the two of you get married, what would you want to think about him?

Would you wish you would have told him sooner, so you two could get started on a real relationship and not just the one in your mind? Would you be willing to wait until he is ready to tell you, or do you want to tell him how you feel? 

Ask yourself why you don’t want to own your feelings and share your feelings with him?

Ask yourself why you want to keep fostering this made up relationship in your brain?

Is this crush keeping you safe from having to face negative emotions that come with opening up to dating and putting yourself out there?

How this affects dating

If you open yourself up to dating other people, while you still have this book of thoughts about your crush, it will be really hard for a real person to compete with a fake person. You have a ton of amazing thoughts and this new guy has a lot of unknowns. You might go on a date and struggle because it will feel hard, confusing, and scary. The thoughts about your crush will be lingering and will want to draw you back in. This can create a struggle between what you really want and actually taking the action to get it. Your brain is afraid of what this real relationship could be like. It could be dangerous. This guy could hurt you. You might start to like this guy and go out for awhile and he might reject you. So, again your brain doesn’t like any of this. This needs to be brought to your attention immediately. So your brain looks for all the red flags about this new guy. Which is actually very normal for your brain but because you have an amazing guy sitting in the wings, it makes all of these red flags seem really important and confusing. 

Note, your lower brain’s goal in all of this would be to get you away from the unknown scary guy that you went on a date with to sitting in bed with ice cream thinking about amazing crush and your amazing life together. That would be much safer and better for your brain in the long run. It doesn’t know that it isn’t real. It just seems much less dangerous. But your brains tactics will keep you from ever getting over your crush and really moving onto a real life relationship that could actually end up with a wedding, honeymoon, and maybe someday babies. Your brain will punt all of that to feel good in the moment. 

You my friend, want to do the work to get to the real wedding. You my friend, must man up on your crush. You either have to tell him or let it go. You can’t walk in between. The dopamine hit withdrawal when you let him go, will feel awful. You might have a few days of actual real life despair.
But it is worth it, because once you let him go you can get onto what you most want in life. A real relationship with someone who wants you. The guy that is out there dying to meet you. He is looking for a woman just like you. He has been praying for you and has been trying to figure out how to meet you. He is almost ready to give up.

Don’t let a crush keep you from the life you most want.

Cheering you on,