Thursday, May 16, 2013

Dealing with Infatuation: How to Stop Obsessing Over Someone

UPDATE: 02.09.17:
Hello everyone. Thanks for all your support. I'm venturing into video blogging about these topics that hold a special place in my heart. Here are two videos (part 1 and 2) that will help you on your path. 

**UPDATE: I have recently published a new eBook- "Before You Cheat: A Guide to Reclaiming Your Life from Infatuation, Obsession, and Infidelity." It is available for download on Amazon: Thank you so much for your support.**

Sometimes we meet certain people that cause such an explosion of emotions, feelings, questions, thoughts, and attraction in us that we find ourselves thinking about them all the time. Sometimes we just can not stop thinking about them- regardless of what we're doing or the last time we've seen them. The smallest of their actions leads us to over-analyze every tiny move they make. We find ourselves pondering over and over again about their intentions and how they possibly feel about us. The thought of them not wanting us back is soul crushing, even if in some cases it is true. We deny and over-think and obsess. At first, it can feel like a fresh rush- suddenly you feel alive and hyped up. You become extremely happy. Knowing and seeing this person makes you feel blissful. But then you begin to obsess and your mental workings start going downhill. Let's try to deal with that.

Why Are We Obsessing?
We obsess over that person because we are very, very attached to them.
We want to be with them, want to impress them, want to tell them all of these planned out, fine-tuned bits of witty dialogue that we've been tossing around in our brains for the past few days. We want to feel their presence again and again. That person is magical to us- a rarity, a unicorn that bleeds rainbow blood. We build them a comfortable home on a pedestal, even though we might deny it.
We're extremely attracted to them. Something about their eyes, the way they speak, the little spring in their step- speaks volumes to us, louder than anything else going on in our lives. We're very much infatuated and very much committed to being so.

When Does It Get Unhealthy?
The rush of a new potential love is undoubtedly enjoyable- you feel more alive. It also does not last, so try to enjoy it while you can, but within reason. Have you heard of the song "Lovefool?" If you haven't, listen to it and don't let the happy up-tempo, glittery beat fool you. The song is a perfect example of the destructive habits we can pick up when we're extremely into another person, and how that destructiveness can be oh so well hidden in a happy, fairy tale land kind of mood or viewpoint.

When you become love's fool, you stop living your own life. Your life starts revolving around the other person. When will you see them? Where do they hang out? You find yourself roaming their haunts, hanging around the places you've seen them at the times you've committed to memory. You change your appearance, or try to, wondering if it will get their attention or if they'll like it or if it will make them like you even more.

Basically, infatuation becomes destructive when you do everything for that person. You stop being yourself, you stop pursuing your own interests and doing what is important to you because you are so caught up in trying to impress them or trying to orchestrate magical ways of running into them that will lead to magical conversations that will magically have them falling head over heels in love with you. 

If there is anything I know about relationships, it is this: NEVER LIVE FOR ANOTHER PERSON.
People do not want to be with a codependent obsessive. People are attracted to independent individuals with their own things going on. And what attraction might have naturally risen between you two can be very easily squandered by your obsessive and hungry behavior. 

How Do You Stop Obsessing?
Obsession starts with thoughts. When dangerously infatuated, that person becomes all you think about. More easily said than done, the solution is to think about something else. Action is usually necessary- pick a way of spending your time that demands your full attention. Pick up a sport or a ridiculously interesting book (preferable one that isn't about love), watch a comedy or action move that inspires you to practice your ninja skills or perfect your zombie apocalypse survival plan. Do some chores, cook something elaborate, do yoga, go to the gym, do your homework, start a puzzle. DO SOMETHING THAT HELPS YOU IMPROVE.

By improving one of your skills, you will be focusing on something other than that person, and your self esteem will rise up a little bit so that their pedestal shrinks just a wee bit. Do this enough, and you won't glorify anyone- you will indeed cultivate great respect for their achievements, but you won't see them as a demigod anymore because you are also capable of hard work and progress. Mind boggling, right?

I also recommend that you try to surrender your obsession to the universe or any religious/spiritual entity you believe in. The point is to ask that your "burden" be taken off of your hands. You must state your intention to release the attachment. Meditate upon it. It helps to visualize- imagine ties or rope coming off of your body and going into the body of the object of your affection. Vividly imagine those ties being cut, and be grateful for it. They do say: if you love something, let it go, if it comes back to you, it is meant for you. You can't orchestrate the workings of the universe, so might as well surrender.

Besides focusing on something else and surrendering your problem, I suggest also analyzing why you feel so attracted to them

Do they certain traits you feel might complete you? If so, consider the possibility that you are just disowning those traits in yourself and projecting them onto the other person.

Do they treat you a certain way, maybe like your dad or father figure or first love treated you? What's familiar isn't what's always best, so use your judgement and think clearly about it. 

Do they fit your ideal mold for the perfect partner? If so, try to get to know them better before jumping to such conclusions. 

How To Stop Obsessing WHILE Still Interested
I'm definitely not telling you to stop being interesting- that would be silly. But just focus on you and other aspects of your life more, not them. Restore the balance of your attention, focus, and emotions. Trust your intuition, but also trust the timing of things and the generally ambiguous nature of the world we live in. 

Start writing your feelings about them or dreams about them and any interactions with them in a journal. Keep the descriptions of the interactions as factual as possible, as hard as that sounds. Later on as you progress from your obsessive nature, read back to the scenarios and your feelings. Don't judge yourself, but try to find patterns in your thinking. Are there certain triggers that cause you to feel strongly? Were you right about them? Wrong? Keep looking back as you get to know them and/or move on from them, and your future will be less likely to involve you pacing outside their usual hang out spots, seeing them, and shrinking away from nervousness, or worse, showing them that you're a nervous wreck.

Happy Loving
Attraction can definitely be a rush, so enjoy it within reason. Nothing knocks you off your feet like meeting someone really, really special. And usually, when you meet someone really, really, really special, you won't obsess because something inside of you just lets you know. The events work in your favor, the answer reveals itself, and everything falls into place without your obsessiveness. Just work on yourself and trust in the process.