Figuring out how someone feels about you can be tricky.
Is this person interested, or are they just being friendly? We often look for hints, clues, and behaviors that suggest a crush, but these can be misleading. Fortunately, some tell-tale signs show one person’s romantic interest in another.
There are also some tell-tale signs that one person dislikes another, and it’s essential to know them too. Below we’ll explore some tell-tale signs that someone likes you, followed by signs that they don’t.
How to tell if someone likes you (clear indicators)
Body language, mentioning you to their friends, and engaging in physical contact are some signs that a person likes you.
Below we’ve explained these signs and more in greater detail. Bear in mind that these signs are not a one hundred percent guarantee that the person likes you, but they should give you a pretty good hint about how they feel.
1. Physical closeness
One of the tell-tale signs that someone likes you is that they want to be physically close to you.
On a psychological level, we tend toward proximity to those we like. So, if you’re in a social setting and you notice that this person always seems to sit beside you, or they lean close to you when you two talk, that’s a good sign that they like you.
The opposite is true when we don’t like someone. Consider that if this person didn’t like you, they probably wouldn’t choose to be physically close to you so often.
Of course, there are situations when that proximity is not a choice, such as in a classroom or office, but if it’s a social setting where you have free will, and they still choose to be near you, you can certainly be sure that they don’t dislike you.
2. They remember personal details about you
When one person truly likes another, they’ll remember important and subtle details about that person. Often, this is not a matter of making an effort to remember (though someone who likes you will probably make that effort.)
Often the remembering is effortless. It happens because we pay close attention to those we like, and by paying close attention, we remember seemingly insignificant things people tell us.
So, if this guy or girl remembers that your sister’s wedding is coming up, that your dog had to go to the vet, or that you’re reading a fascinating book right now, that’s an obvious sign that they’re interested in you.
3. They make an effort in conversation
Someone who likes you will make an effort in conversation so that it remains interesting and mutually beneficial. They’ll try to find common ground on which you two can talk and will ask open-ended questions in conversation.
They’ll express genuine interest in what you have to say, remember (most of) what you tell them, and be willing to share relevant details and experiences in their own life.
At the same time, someone who genuinely likes you (for you and not for what they can gain from you) will know when to let the conversation go.
Someone who wants something from you may push the conversation even when you clearly don’t want to engage in it. The person who likes you will attune to your energy and notice that you don’t feel like having a conversation, and take a step back.
4. They use open body language
One of the most significant tell-tale signs that a person is interested in you is your use of body language.
It’s believed that we communicate most of what we mean through body language and only a fraction through verbal language. That percentage includes our posture, eye contact, facial expression, tone of voice, and how open or closed we are (consider crossed arms vs. open arms).
Body language cues that indicate interest:
- Uncrossed arms, open torso
- Leaning the head to the side when talking
- Sustained eye contact
- Physical touch – touching an arm or leg
- Leaning toward you
- Paying attention to your lips and other parts of your face
5. They mirror your body language
We tend to mirror people we like. That means we copy their body language, facial expression, and tone of voice. Of course, we don’t copy them exactly, as that would be a strange experience for both.
Still, we take on the posture and expressions of the person when we’re speaking to them to engage ourselves and the other person deeper in the conversation.
A subtle way mirroring happens is when you touch your face or brush back your hair and notice the other person does it too.
So, if you notice that this person reclines in their seat after you do the same, crosses their legs, or raises their eyebrows, they’re incredibly interested in the conversation and may have a crush on you.
Mirroring is also helpful to understand if you want to let someone know that you like them.
Mirroring their body language will indicate to this person that you’re interested and will make it easier to approach them about how you feel.
Body language mirroring often happens subconsciously, but you can consciously direct it to indicate interest.
6. They maintain eye contact
Many of us are uncomfortable with maintaining eye contact. It can feel unnatural sometimes, even awkward, but holding eye contact is a great way to express interest.
If someone likes you, they’re likely to hold that eye contact because they want to really see you.
At the same time, liking someone and having a conversation can make us feel nervous, which can make us avert our eyes from time to time.
You’ll notice the difference between interest coupled with nervousness and disinterest by the direction in which a person averts their gaze.
Usually, if someone looks down to break eye contact, they’re nervous or shy. If they look away to the side and take a while to look back, that may be disinterest.
7. They talk to their friends about you
If you’ve heard from a mutual friend that this person has brought you up in conversation more than once, that may be a sign that they like you.
Of course, it’s not a sign of ‘like’ if the reason for bringing you up was gossip and slander. However, if they mention your name, ask about you, or try to include you in group plans, they may very well like you.
8. They get nervous around you
We tend to get a bit more self-conscious when we’re around the person we like. Even the most confident among us experience nervousness around our crush from time to time.
If you notice that they are stumbling over their words, experiencing clammy hands, or fidgeting when you two sit down together, they may feel the nervous excitement of a crush!
Signs your crush doesn’t like you
Knowing someone isn’t into you can help you move on and direct your energy elsewhere.
Below, we’ve outlined a few clear signs that they don’t like you that way, but remember that these are not guarantees that your girl or guy friend isn’t interested. They suggest a lack of interest in general.
Check out the signals that they are not into you.
1. No communication
Someone who likes you will be engaged. They’ll try to communicate with you, even if that’s to ask how you’re doing or how a recent life event is going.
If this person isn’t that into you, then communication will lack.
They probably won’t check in to see how you’re doing, and they won’t be so interested in what’s going on in your life.
Consider how they respond to texts and calls. Do they respond in a reasonable amount of time, or do they leave you on reading for days and even then only reply with one-word answers?
If the latter is their communication style, they’re probably not crushing on you as hard as you’re crushing on them.
Again, remember that if someone lies, they’ll make an effort in communication.
If this person only reaches out to you sometimes, perhaps from a late-night hookup or to get your attention after ghosting you for weeks, then it’s up to you to assess whether you want this person in your life in the first place.
2. Closed body language
As mentioned earlier, consider a person’s body language if you’re wondering whether or not they like you. If they want you, their body language will probably be open, where they orient themselves in your direction or sit beside you, keep a loose torso and allow for prolonged eye contact.
Conversely, if the person doesn’t have a crush on you, they probably won’t use such open body language. Instead, they’ll avoid getting too close. They might cross their arms or keep direct eye contact to a minimum.
3. They don’t open up to you
If this person keeps their private life private – reluctant to share details of their life with you – they probably don’t have a crush on you.
We tend to share personal details with people we like, even if those details are a little embarrassing. That initial embarrassment, though awkward at first, actually helps people bond.
If this person doesn’t like you, they won’t invest in the payoff of initial embarrassment and instead keep their stories to themselves.
4. They don’t laugh at your jokes
Laughing at a person’s jokes can make you like them more.
Also, when we like someone, we tend to find them funnier than when we don’t.
So, if you know you’re being funny but notice that this person doesn’t laugh much, they’re probably not interested.
Maybe your joke wasn’t that funny, or perhaps they’re not in a humorous mood, but there is still a gentle laugh or smile that goes along with a joke made by someone we like.
5. They’re reluctant to make plans
One of the signs that a relationship will not progress is that one partner stops making plans for the future. The same applies to crushes.
If you’ve asked this person to hang out a few times, such as going for dinner or seeing a movie, and they keep turning you down, that’s a sign that they’re not that interested in hanging out in general.
Of course, the person might like you and be interested, but someone interested may turn you down this time but arrange for other plans later. The person who doesn’t want you won’t bother to make alternative plans.
6. You’re always wondering but never sure
If you’re always wondering if this person likes you but they never seem to make it obvious, there could be two reasons.
One is that they’re too nervous about bringing it up. Maybe they’re afraid that mentioning that they like you will ruin the friendship, and they don’t want to take the risk.
However, if that doesn’t sound like this person, they may not make it obvious because they’re genuinely not interested. As mentioned, someone who likes you will eventually take that leap of faith and let you know, or at least give you some obvious hints.
If you’re wondering whether someone likes you or not, one of the most effective ways to find out is to engage in the ‘liking’ behaviors we mentioned in the first half of this article.
If you use open body language, look at the person’s eyes and lips, try physical touch, and be curious about them, you’ll soon figure out how they feel.
If both of you engage in these behaviors, you’ll notice the tension build, and your mutual crush will be almost undeniable. If they don’t return the behavior and instead seem to pull away when you engage in this behavior, then at least you know.
Spending time wondering and imagining without any clear answer is incredibly frustrating and can even wear away your mental health, so it’s best for someone to find out and be done with wondering!