Have you ever had the strange feeling that your heart is racing when you see a person at a train station, for example? It’s a magical moment when we are intoxicated by a sensation that is hard to describe. Some people feel like butterflies in their stomach. It may be that we are facing a fleeting love .

And the person in front of you is a complete stranger. The love at first sight or crush describes this moment, and the scientific community and academics do not agree on whether this phenomenon really exists or is rather an illusion. Either way, many people report feeling this, even several times a day.

But, what psychological mechanisms are behind the romantic flirtations?

Recommended article: “Types of Love: What Kinds of Love Are There?”

What characterizes love at first sight or crush?

Well, above all, what its name indicates: it is a love at first sight, a crush . When a friend introduces us to a person who attracts us instantly, or we cross paths with someone at the bus station and quickly feel that we must know him or her in any way. It can also happen in a fleeting exchange of glances in a music bar… at any moment the romantic crush can occur.

Although many people confuse it, a love at first sight is not exactly a platonic love. They may have some small points in common, but Plato’s romantic idea refers to a perfect idea of love , not necessarily unrequited, which exceeds the limits of the carnal and involves enormous difficulty.

The idea of platonic love may have a connection with that of love at first sight in that it seems extremely complicated for two people who have just met to end up consummating their passion. However, Plato’s idea referred to an absolutely pure and unselfish love, in which nothing of the material world had any weight, and in which the intellectual and moral facets are the basis of the common feeling.

In other words, romantic love is not based on the mere attraction of one individual to another, this love is focused on goodness and something more spiritual.

Physical signs of love at first sight

It is public and notorious that when we feel a love affair, our body secretes a hormone called oxytocin that makes us more sensitive, compassionate and a state of exaltation of emotions ensues.

In addition to this, there are several clues and signals that can help you identify whether you have fallen in love at first sight .

  • Body sweat . Especially if you are close to the person you want, you feel your body temperature rise, your hands sweat, you blush and consequently a warmth sets in. This can lead to you feeling a little more insecure than usual, or perhaps a little overwhelmed by the situation.
  • Nervousness . You may get a bit stuck in conversation, you may not get the words out, and you may not show how fluent you would be in a more everyday situation. You may even have trouble spinning your sentences and may even say something that doesn’t make much sense. This may happen because you are trying to impress the person you like and, by thinking too much about your words, the result is the opposite of what you want.
  • Rise in blood pressure . In relation to the other two points we have already described, another characteristic point of the crush or love at first sight, is that blood pressure rises. It is like an injection of adrenaline for having coincided with someone you like so much.
  • If for any reason you don’t talk to him or her , when you get home you will constantly think: what will be the name of that woman and man I have come across? Why haven’t I had the courage to go and talk to him or her? Will I ever come across this person again?
  • After several days thinking about the same thing, you start to feel a little “silly” , because that love at first sight may be nothing more than an attraction for someone you don’t know, and true love is born when you connect with a person not only on a physical level, but also emotionally. You may realize at that moment that it was not worth obsessing about.

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More about love and falling in love

Science and psychology continue to investigate in the field of love and the feelings that the brain provokes in people, since many of the chemical and neuronal reactions that provoke this behavior are unknown.

In the article “The chemistry of love, a very powerful drug”, psychologist Jonathan García-Allen explains how our body and our mind process love.

Also, if you want to know some curiosities about love and falling in love, we invite you to read the post “Love and falling in love: 7 surprising discoveries”.