The only thing better than being in love is falling in love. Everything feels new, you aren’t quite sure if it’s really love yet, and you start waiting to see who’s finally going to say it out loud first. It’s the best.
1. Thinking this one’s special
When you’re in love, you begin to think your beloved is unique. The belief is coupled with an inability to feel romantic passion for anyone else.
2. Focusing on the positive
People who are truly in love tend to focus on the positive qualities of their beloved, while overlooking his or her negative traits. They also focus on trivial events and objects that remind them of their loved one, daydreaming about these precious little moments and mementos.
3. Emotional instability
As is well known, falling in love often leads to emotional and physiological instability. You bounce between exhilaration, euphoria, increased energy, sleeplessness, loss of appetite, trembling, a racing heart and accelerated breathing, as well as anxiety, panic and feelings of despair when your relationship suffers even the smallest setback.
4. Intensifying attraction
Central dopamine may be responsible for this reaction, too, because research shows that when a reward is delayed, dopamine-producing neurons in the mid-brain region become more productive.
5. You want to do things you’ve already done again so he can be there with you this time.
Time to take a return trip to the Grand Canyon so you can kiss while the sun goes down and not care how cute or gross you look — you’re in love, dammit! And you don’t care who knows
6. You’d rather stay in and do nothing with him than go out
“Started staying in and going out less” is your new mantra, and it’s totally OK with you.
7. Little things, like going to the grocery store, are better when he’s around.
A walk down the cereal aisle can be a very romantic date if you’re with the right person.
8. You’re not worried about “scaring him off.
ou’re comfortable enough to cry in front of him or show him huge, slightly embarrassing collection of Beanie Babies (that you swear could be worth a fortune one day), because you feel
9. You’re comfortable with making little sacrifices for him.
You wouldn’t put off your responsibilities for him, but if he’s sick and needs you to help take care of him instead of going to brunch one morning, you’re totally cool with that.
10. You talk about things you’ll do together in the future, without realizing you’re talking about the future.
It’s not weird to talk about that concert that’s in three months or the trip you want to take to the beach this summer around him, because he’ll be around to go with you.
11. Are you tempted to say, “I love you”?
A sure sign of romantic interest, some people are more hesitant to utter these three words than others. Although people might imagine that women are the first to utter it, though, research on heterosexual couples again indicates that it’s men who are more apt to say “I love you” first
12. How intense are your emotions?
If that’s not you, a lack of intense feeling isn’t necessarily a sign that Cupid hasn’t struck—not everyone experiences falling in love the same way.
13. Are you highly motivated to be with this person?
Transitioning from a casual relationship to falling in love may have a chemical underpinning: Evidence shows that dopamine-rich areas of the brain are involved in the beginning stages of love (Fisher, Aron, & Brown, 2005); these areas are considered part of the brain’s “reward system” and serve as highly motivational.
14. Are you suddenly doing new things?
You might find yourself trying new foods, watching new shows, or attempting new activities like running, fishing, or gambling. People who fall in love tend to report growth in the content and diversity of their own self-concepts .
15. Have you been especially stressed lately?
As welcome as falling in love might be, evidence links the experience with higher levels of the stress hormone cortisol (Marazziti & Canale, 2004). So if you’re anxious, tense, or just plain jittery, it might be a normal response to the strain of repeated social encounters with someone whose impression matters deeply to you.