Crush Right: 7 steps to living your *best* love life

After an amazing few months of freedom, summer is over and school is back in session. And while you may be bummed about being at your desk (not to mention the endless hours of HW), we’ve got some good news for you: With that fresh school sched comes a new slew of crush-worthy cuties.

So how should you go about finding—and flirting with—a potential bae? Here’s *exactly* how to give off good vibes and show that sweetie just how amazing you really are...

1. Shed your shell.
It’s time to kiss the shy goodbye. While it’s normal to feel self-conscious around someone you like, the goal is to push past those nerves with some cool, confident moves.

On Monday, make eye contact when you see him in the hall. Tuesday? Make eye contact again, and add a smile (bet he smiles back!). Wednesday: Wave casually and smile again when you see him before class. Thursday: Give an even bigger smile and say hi. And on Friday? Well, chances are he’ll get the clue and start chatting you up.

If he doesn’t bite? Just walk right up to him and ask how his week is going. Then, let the convo flow naturally from there.

2. Branch out.
We know, we know: You only dig soccer stars. Or student council presidents. Or someone who has perfectly mastered Bach’s piano concerto in D minor. Whatever it is, you’ve got a type—and you’re intent on sticking to it.

Only problem? If you go for just one kind of crush, you may be passing by a ton of truly amazing people. So forget scoping yet another player type, and turn your attention to a different pick—like that way-funny guy in your gym class. Yeah, he may be a little dorky, but would Mr. Piano literally do backflips for you? Didn’t think so!

3. Nix the do-over.
That dreamy guy you met at the pool in June turned out to be a dud, so you ended things by August.

But now? He’s texting all the time, trying to get back together. The thought may be tempting, but rooting through the relationship recycling bin only sets you back. First, it’s almost a sure thing that what went wrong the first time around will happen again.

And if you weren’t totally crazy about him to begin with, you’re just going to end up with forced feelings. So tell that former fling you’d like to continue kicking it as friends only...and hold out for a crush you’re absolutely crazy about. It’ll be worth the wait, trust.

4. Find some space.
Super tight with your BGF? You may be making yourself off-limits to other guys without even realizing it. Think about it: If you’re always around one boy—even if he’s just a friend—it may give off a totally taken vibe. Not to mention, guys may be intimidated to approach you.

What to do? Above all, be upfront with your best guy friend so he knows you’re interested in other dudes, and explain that you need some space whenever you’re trying to get to know a new one.

But also? Don’t be afraid to ask him for a little assistance, like putting in a good word for you the next time he plays pickup basketball with your crush. You’d do the same for him, right?

5. Be picky.
You know your lab partner likes you and, yeah, you think he’s OK. So when he drops a hint about going to homecoming together, the big question is, should you? While it would be great to lock down a date already, don’t settle. Not only is it unfair to your smitten sweetie, but coupling up too soon could close you off from a true match.

The right way to go? Be honest and kind all the way around by never getting too tight if it doesn’t feel right.

6. Get over your ex.
Your last boyfriend cheated on you, but all you can think about is his amazing smile and the sweet things he did for you. Well, stop. Lingering over filtered memories of a fizzled relation- ship isn’t really healthy, and no one will be able to compete with the ghost of a “perfect” bae.

Next time you find yourself daydreaming about your ex’s gor- geous green eyes, grab a piece of paper and write down 10 reasons you’re glad the relationship ended. Read that list every time you start getting all gushy about the past. In no time, your oldie won’t seem like such a goodie—and you’ll be *so* ready for someone better in your life.

7. Stand out.
Some- times getting what you want—whether it’s achieving a goal or getting a guy you’re crushing on to notice you—is all about your mindset. The secret? By radiating happiness and doing everything in life with enthusiasm, you’ll attract all sorts of people who’ll want a piece of your sincere positivity.

So go ahead: Volunteer to head up the homecoming spirit committee or cheer your brains out for your football team at every home game. Soon, you just may find a special someone alongside you who’s loving life just as much as you are.

A verision of this story appeared in the August/September 2018 issue of Girls' Life.

by GL | 9/27/2018