Five Tips On How To Stop Obsessing Over a Crush by Toni Hoy

Updated January 14, 2023by BetterHelp Editorial Team

Managing the negative feelings that can pop up when someone doesn't love you back can be challenging and take your focus off more important things. To stop obsessing over a crush who may or may not like you back, you may need to do a bit of digging into why you find yourself doing so. Many times, obsession with another person stems from a lack of self-esteem or feeling like your needs are important. The good news is that as hard as it seems now, things can get better.

Are You Struggling To Move On From A Crush?

It Happens To The Best Of Us

In life, it is entirely normal to find yourself crushing on someone else. It may seem that you can’t go five minutes without thinking about your crush. Sometimes, our crushes don't seem to like us back. Maybe they has indicated that they might be interested but aren't ready to make a commitment to you. It's easy to slide down the slippery slope of obsession when this is the case. 

When you feel obsessed with a crush, it's not uncommon to feel anxieties and insecurities start to creep up. It can be helpful to try to recognize them for what they are and deal with them directly rather than focusing on what isn't yours. Try finding other things to occupy your mind rather than focusing on whether they are calling you, if they’re seeing someone else, etc. In the end, pursuing a one-sided sided relationship is probably more likely to push your crush away and make you feel worse. 

Nearly anyone can find themselves obsessing over someone who may or may not feel the same way. In fact, a study published in Psychological Science reveals that some people tend to obsess more over love interests who indicate they might, or might not, be interested in a relationship than those who indicate they are definitely interested in a relationship. This study shows that there may be a natural instinct to want that which we can't have in life.

However, this study also highlights that the tendency to be obsessed with an unattainable crush may reflect personal insecurity in the individual doing the obsessing. It is quite possible that if you find yourself obsessing over a crush who isn't ready to fully commit, you may be acting based on deep-seated insecurities and fear of stepping into a relationship of mutual interest.

Another interesting thing to realize is that intense feelings of rejection can stimulate the same regions of the brain associated with addiction, cravings, and motivation. In other words, when the crush you are obsessing over rejects you or seems to show a lack of interest, it can trigger a part in your brain that makes you want them even more. This might explain why it is so difficult to move on when you find yourself stuck obsessing over someone you can't have.

One of the main issues that can accompany continuing to obsess over a crush is a lack of focus on yourself. Daydreaming and wondering about a crush constantly can suck up precious mental energy that might otherwise be spent on self-care, pursuing your passions, and more. While it’s okay to have and be interested in a crush and even to spend time thinking about them, these sorts of behaviors shouldn’t take over your daily life or make it hard for you to find balance. When things start to tip-toe into an unhealthy territory marked by ignoring your own needs or desires, it may be time to take a step back.

Are You Struggling To Move On From A Crush?

Ways To Help You Get Over A Crush

It's almost never easy moving on from someone you care about, but continuing to obsess over them is not fair to yourself. Make it a point to make yourself a priority. Here are five ways to help yourself get over a crush.

  1. Distance Yourself

Giving yourself distance may be what you need if you want to stop obsessing over a crush. Consider unfollowing the person in question or removing them from your social media accounts, choosing to spend less time together, ceasing any texting or calling, or whatever else helps give you some space. This may give you an opportunity to clear your mind and re-evaluate your feelings without the presence of your crush interfering. 

  1. Have A Good Cry

It's normal to feel a sense of loss and other negative emotions when moving on from someone you cared about, even if they didn't feel the same way. Let yourself feel those emotions, cry them out, and then get ready to get back out there.

  1. Surround Yourself With Friends And Family

Having emotional support when you're feeling down can help lift your spirits and take your mind off of your crush. It can help to make sure your support system knows your goals so they can best support you. 

Practice Self-Love

Taking care of yourself can be one of the best ways to move on and overcome the negative emotions you may be feeling. Going to get a new haircut, taking a new gym class, or learning something new can help you feel better about yourself and help you forget about your crush.

  1. Identify What Qualities You Liked In Your Crush

Take some time and reflect on what qualities you like about the person you're obsessing over. This can help you understand what qualities you are attracted to, and you can look for a potential partner who has these same qualities.

Healthier Relationships With Professional Help

When it seems that nothing is helping you stop obsessing over a crush, it can be helpful to consider speaking with a mental health professional, like a therapist or a counselor. If traditional therapy just isn't your thing, consider online therapy as an option. When you speak with a professional through the web, you can save yourself time, money, and energy, all of which can be repurposed to support your goal of moving on.

Research shows that online therapy is a useful means of addressing feelings of rejection, sadness, and other emotions related to unreciprocated love.  One study about treatment addressed the effectiveness of internet-based cognitive-behavioral therapy in treating sadness and depression. The study states that internet-based CBT decreased depression and anxiety symptoms, noting that 64% of participants reported satisfaction with the program, and concluding that this particular form of online therapy is an efficient mode of providing counseling.

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Having a crush can be harmless fun, but when we start to worry more about the person we like than ourselves, we may neglect our needs or believe that we are less important than other people. To stop obsessing over a crush, then, it may first be beneficial to understand the underlying concerns that may be contributing to the behavior. Boosting self-esteem, taking good care of your mental health, and working with a licensed professional are all great ways that you can help yourself move on and feel like the best version of yourself. 

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