John Green once wrote, “I fell in love like you would fall asleep. Slowly, and then all at once.”
My bet is you’re probably going through the first part of the process – you’re slowly falling for someone but you don’t realize it just yet.
There is a hurricane of feelings inside you, from confusion and uncertainty to happiness and fear, but the one feeling you can’t quite put your finger on is…
Well, worry no more!
People who are in love but don’t realize it yet often display these 8 subtle behaviors. If you can relate to this article, there’s a high chance you are, indeed, in love.
1) They keep gravitating toward the person they’re falling for
Love makes us do strange things.
Things such as constantly looking for a way to be around a particular person, glancing at them a hundred times per day for no reason at all, and feeling a strange gravitational pull that’s becoming increasingly difficult to resist.
When you’re in a room full of people, do you have a keen awareness of where that one specific person is and who they’re talking to at all times?
Do you feel self-conscious when you think about how they might perceive you?
Do you feel like everything is so much better – so much richer – when they’re around?
This could be your intuition telling you that there is something more to your feelings for this person.
Something that smells of romantic potential.
2) They shuffle their plans around to make themselves available
When I was sixteen, I fell deeply in love. I felt such magnetic attraction to my crush that I simply couldn’t pass up the chance to be around him – even if it clashed with my initial plans.
I dragged my friend to a party just to see a glimpse of him. I challenged myself to go to events I would have otherwise been too scared to attend because I thought he could potentially be there, too.
Time and again, I went outside my comfort zone. Time and again, I subconsciously looked for him at every social event and party.
I rescheduled my plans and shuffled things around for the mere possibility of meeting him.
Was it crazy and obsessive? Yes.
But according to research, falling in love is quite literally like getting addicted to a drug. The object of your affection consumes you whole.
Therefore, having a specific person at the forefront of your thoughts and going out of your way to hang out with them isn’t all that strange when you realize that you’re actually in love with them.
3) They make up romantic scenarios in their heads to “pass the time”
When I was a teenager, I daydreamed every single day. I would daydream about my future plans, about an upcoming party, or about the house I’d hopefully get to live in one day.
Most of all, though, I daydreamed about my crushes.
When I spoke about it with my friends, I realized I wasn’t the only one. We were all making up fun and romantic scenarios in our heads to entertain ourselves and “pass the time”.
But when I dug deeper into the issue, it dawned on me that my mind never played with the possibility of dating people I had no romantic feelings for. It was only ever people with whom I could see romantic potential.
“Huh,” I thought. “This is quite a good way to recognize if I could have feelings for someone.”
You might think that you’re just creating stories in your head for fun, but the truth is… your gut feeling is trying to tell you something.
4) They remember all the small details
If a co-worker or an acquaintance tells you they don’t like coconut, you probably won’t think much of it.
Chances are, you might even forget because it’s such a small tidbit of information that your brain simply focuses on more important points covered in the conversation.
If there are romantic feelings involved, however…
Well, that’s a completely different story. Research shows that “infatuated individuals have increased attention for their beloved”, which means that every little thing they say is of the utmost importance to you.
Wow, they love strawberry cheesecake!
They’ve recently read a novel by Jane Austen. Okay, time to hit the library.
They’ve never been skiing. Noted.
They have three succulents at home. How fascinating!
If you file away the smallest details about a particular person, trying your hardest to remember everything…
You could be falling in love. Just saying.
5) They find excuses to be physically close to the object of their affection
Romance usually (not always) goes hand in hand with sexual attraction. And you know what that means.
You might find that you always want to be physically near this person so that you can lean toward them, share light touches, and simply exist in their presence.
Their scent is intoxicating, their hair looks luscious and soft, their eyes contain a universe you want to get lost in, and their skin is so warm that all you want is to give them a hug.
And not let go.
When you’re in a group, you try to stand or sit next to them without making it too obvious.
When you’re sitting across a table from each other, you’re leaning toward them, your attention focused solely on them.
When they make you laugh, you reach out and lightly touch their arm.
What’s more, being in their presence feels… safe. Comfortable. You just can’t help but feel some sort of a magnetic pull.
6) They act very giggly, playful, and nervous
Falling in love makes us nervous. That’s just a fact.
If you’ve been friends for some time and are now finding yourself in new territory, the new-found tension may make you feel strange, fuzzy, and uncomfortable.
If you’ve met in a romantic context, the nervousness may grow for a bit until you begin to feel comfortable and gain a sense of familiarity.
In general, though, there is always some sort of tension, which usually gives way to laughing, blushing, giggling, and acting playful around that one specific person.
If this sounds like you, don’t worry – research shows that it’s completely normal.
In fact, nervousness helps people gauge sexual attraction and establish positive rapport (when you’re nervous, you may try to lighten things up and make the other person laugh).
And while nervousness is definitely uncomfortable, it will slowly go away over time.
7) They often catch themselves staring
Remember that crush I had at sixteen?
I would glance at him constantly. Every time I thought he wasn’t looking, my eyes would just land on him – it was almost impossible to resist the impulse.
When you’re in love with someone, there are many factors at play, but sight definitely plays a major role. You just fancy this person so much that you basically can’t stop staring.
Being around them is basically like walking into an art gallery. You’re constantly in awe of what’s right in front of you.
8) They use rationalizations to explain their strange behavior
The reason many people who are in love don’t realize it is that they refuse to admit it to themselves.
And you know what?
I get it. Falling in love is terrifying. You’re basically offering your heart to someone and trusting them not to crush it while fully well knowing that plenty of relationships do end up in pieces.
It’s like betting in a lottery and knowing the odds are stacked against you.
And so you lie to yourself.
You’re only going to that event because you want to see your friends (not because your crush is going to be there).
You’re sitting next to this person because you like the view (not because their knee lightly touches yours).
You make up romantic scenarios about them because you’re bored (not because you want them to kiss you in the rain).
Again, I understand. But sooner or later, you’ll have to admit the truth. Falling in love is way too strong an emotion to hide from it forever.
Eventually, it will wash over you. And you won’t be able to ignore it any longer.