Q: I’ve liked this guy for over a year. I know he doesn’t like me, so I don’t want to like him either, but it seems my attraction to him just keeps growing and growing. What can I do to stop liking him?

adropEmotions are like wild animals, aren’t they? Very hard to tame. So… you know that having a crush on him isn’t good for you, so how can you learn to tame (i.e., get control over) your emotions? Great question.

Here’s the trick: Your emotions are formed by the thoughts you think, so the only way to stop crushin’ on him is to change your thoughts about him. If I think, “Wow, he’s sooo cute,” or “He’s, like, the perfect guy,” or “Maybe he really does like me, but just doesn’t know how to show it,” what sort of emotions are going to follow? Yep, you guessed it—my gut is going to be bursting with butterflies every time.

If you’re thinking about him 24/7, you’re not going to be able to get rid of those “crush” feelings. So how can you stop thinking about him? I’m not gonna lie—it’s going to take some serious discipline! But it is possible. I’d advise to steer clear of him whenever possible, at least until you get your emotions under control. If you’re tempted to check his Facebook status or day-dream about him before you go to sleep at night, pull out your Bible and spend some time fixing your thoughts on God instead. Definitely don’t text him, or follow him around, or “accidentally” sit next to him in class. (Not that we girls would ever do that, right?) Most importantly, spend the time you would have been thinking about him focusing on getting to know God more or serving the people around you. You can’t go wrong there! Or, grab a copy of Crushed: Why Guys Don’t Have to Make or Break You, and let’s dream together about what a God-honoring, healthy relationship might look like for you someday.

This passage from Philippians is a good one to slap on your binder, memorize and focus on when you feel your thoughts begin to wander toward him:

Don’t worry about anything; instead, pray about everything. Tell God what you need, and thank him for all he has done. Then you will experience God’s peace, which exceeds anything we can understand. His peace will guard your hearts and minds as you live in Christ Jesus.

And now, dear brothers and sisters, one final thing. Fix your thoughts on what is true, and honorable, and right, and pure, and lovely, and admirable. Think about things that are excellent and worthy of praise….Then the God of peace will be with you.

Philippians 4:6-9

I don’t want to give you the impression that ditching “crush” feelings is a simple 1-2-3, or that it’s possible to eliminate every unwanted feeling forever after. But I do 100 percent believe  that by changing your thought life, you can be in charge of your emotions—not the other way around!