Find the right balance of distance and self-control.

How to Control Physical Attraction to a Guy Friend

by Lauren Vork

Sometimes, attraction to another person is less than convenient. If you have strong, unwanted feelings of attraction to a friend, the feelings may be an uncomfortable distraction. You may worry about making him feel awkward or live in fear that you might act on the attraction in a moment of weakness. You also may wonder what the attraction means and what you can do with the feelings. Learn to process your feelings and get help if you need it.

1. Enjoy It

Give yourself permission to enjoy the attraction rather than trying to keep yourself from feeling it. Work on keeping your external behavior in check but let your internal thoughts and feelings flow and subside naturally. Try expressing your feelings in a diary. Because these feelings are involuntary, don't judge or shame yourself for them because doing so will only cause them to build up and then come out later in powerful and uncontrollable ways.

2. Stick to Safe Situations

Avoid social situations that could make it too easy or tempting to act on your attraction in ways you might regret. Make it a habit to keep some physical distance between you and him at all times and socialize with other friends instead of spending time alone together. This has the advantage of helping to keep your feelings of attraction out of the spotlight. Avoid indulging in too much alcohol when he's around if you think you might be likely to say or do something while intoxicated that you could regret later.

3. Comiserate

Confide in friends you trust about your attraction. Being able to talk with friends about what you feel will give you an outlet for your feelings and make them less overwhelming. In addition, friends may be able to offer insight and advice. If they're in the same social circle as the guy you're attracted to, they can help you avoid potentially tempting situations.

4. Find Other Attractions

Take some of the edge off the attraction by reminding yourself of other men you're attracted to. If you have, or have had, crushes on celebrities or fictional characters, indulge yourself in books, movies or music that will remind you of this. Spend time thinking about other people in your life whom you've been strongly attracted to. Not only will this serve as a distraction, it will take your mind off the object of attraction.

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