Ah, falling in love. Since there’s probably no crescendo of romantic music every time you run into each other’s arms or forest creatures humming love songs during your dates, we understand that it may be hard to know for sure if what you’re feeling is actually love.
Though it happens to people around the world every second of every day, falling in love remains one of the most undefinable experiences that the human race strives for. We always think we’ll know it when we feel it, but how can we really know this person is “the one” unless Cupid himself pings us on Slack and says so? Well, it’s not an exact science, but we have 11 telltale signs to help you figure it out!
1. You’re prioritizing them.
“We make time for what — or who — we love,” says the chief dating expert for Match, Rachel DeAlto. “If you’re rearranging, reprioritizing, and reimagining your life, you may be falling in love.”
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It’s probably getting a little difficult to imagine any plans you’d prefer over spending time with your special someone.
2. You don’t just tolerate their quirks — you adore them.
It’s amazing how quickly a laugh-snort or a 20-disc “Friends” DVD set on display in their room suddenly becomes the most adorable thing ever.
The reason you find their quirks so irresistible could be due to the fact that you’re getting to know the ins and outs of who they really are — what they’ve been through, their biggest hopes and dreams. All of those major things about them are what make you appreciate the small things so much more.
3. You miss them. All. The. Time.
Six months ago, you barely even enjoyed taking calls from your best friend, but suddenly you’re rereading your person’s texts over and over again and wanting to call them up three minutes after you’ve said goodbye. Why is that?
It’s because you want to share with them as much as you possibly can, your highs, your lows — and you want the same from them, too.
4. You’re becoming like them, too.
“Individuals feel real pride for their partner’s achievements … and can mistake their partner’s characteristics for their own,” says Dr. Theresa E. DiDonato, an associate professor of psychology at Loyola University Maryland.
The more you share with each other, the more intertwined your lives — and sometimes even your personalities and your lingo — will become.
5. You are on top of the world.
DiDonato also says that falling in love makes people feel like they know more and are capable of doing more. You’re sharing new experiences and conversations, and are the recipient of the self-esteem boost that comes from someone laughing at your jokes and loving who you are at your core. All of these combine to grow our overall sense of self.
6. Your lives are intersecting.
Suddenly you want someone else’s opinion before you take a long vacation or make a big career move because your decisions now include them — and because you truly respect their opinion. You want to know how your life choices fit into what you already have with them, not the other way around.
7. You’re making plans.
It might start with making travel plans a month in advance. Soon, it could turn into an invite to a wedding in the fall, and then suddenly, you can see your whole future play out: your future home, maybe a couple of kids, your golden anniversary, even some retirement plans. The whole nine yards, and you want it all!
8. Your “singles” radar is deactivated.
A telling sign of falling in love: You don’t notice that anyone else exists in the room, let alone people you previously might have found attractive. You have done away with your prior habits of swiping right and looking around the room for other potential singles.
Yep, you’re locked in now. And you can’t imagine having it any other way.
9. You’re giddy.
There is a new feeling you find quite familiar: butterflies. Your heart actually skips a beat when you see them walk into the room and your dopamine levels are at an all-time high, leaving you flat-out giddy. Sometimes you’re so happy that, quite honestly, it freaks you out a little.
10. You’re all about the feelings.
All at once, you’re hanging on every word they say, especially when those words are about you. You can’t get enough of their thoughts, their emotions, their feelings — and you’re constantly holding your breath for those three powerful little words.
11. Your life is a rom-com.
Whether you’re an all-out rom-com fan or a realist to the core, when you’re falling in love, suddenly you’re a believer. You celebrate love while watching a cheesy movie or seeing a couple holding hands in the park because it’s a reflection of all the love you have bursting out of your own heart.
All in all, when you’re falling for someone, everything begins to line up and, well, it does just feel right. Even though our heart’s compass doesn’t always point due north when it comes to good decisions, it can often be a pretty good indicator of when something could be the real deal.
If these 11 signs have you ticking the checkboxes left and right, it might be pretty solid evidence that you’re well on your way to l-o-v-e. Share the joy with a friend to see if they’re in the same boat!
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