5 Red Flags You're Wasting Your Time On Someone Who Won't Ever Like You Back 

Over the years, I wasted a lot of time chasing people who were never going feel the same way I did. There was some part of me that kept believing that eventually, if I stuck with it, they would come around and realize I was amazing and the one for them. It never happened. Don't be like me, because wasting your time on someone who doesn’t like you back isn't just a bummer, but it’s actually holding you back. Every minute you pine for someone who doesn't appreciate you is a moment you could be out there finding someone who can appreciate you and make you happy.

If this sounds familiar, then good news: Today is the day we are going to set you free from this trap. Yep, it’s time for you to quit spending your precious time pining when you should be out there shining. The first step is to start getting real about the red flags someone is waving that tell you they're not into you the way you deserve. I contacted relationship experts to help identify the most common behaviors of people who aren't that into you, and who you need to drop — or at least friend zone — immediately. Here's what they say to watch out for.

They Always Dry Text You

Now, I realize it’s not everyone’s style to send long-winded texts, but, as Damona Hoffman, host of the Dates & Mates podcast explains, if the person you're crushing on always responds to your texts with “one word answers or basic emojis,” it’s a red flag that they're not interested in putting in the work of communicating with you. And wouldn’t you rather be with someone who has a little more to say?

They Never Casually Touch You

Hoffman says another way you can get a clear indication of how someone feels about you is how they touch you. “If someone sees you as a potential partner, they will make efforts to casually touch you,” Hoffman tells Elite Daily.

Dating coach John Keegan agrees. “If he's not being physical in any way; he's not putting his hands on you when making jokes or important points; if he's not leaning in to go for a kiss,” they aren’t feeling it, Keegan tells Elite Daily. While it never feels good to not have your feelings returned, recognizing that someone isn't reciprocating that kind of contact lets you know you’re free to move on to a person who can’t wait to be affectionate with you.

They Don’t Look At You

Do you ever catch them staring at you? Or is it always the other way around? Well, if it’s the latter, Hoffman says you’re dealing with someone who probably isn't interested in you the way you hope. “When you are attracted to someone, you tend to stare or fixate on them, whether you realize it or not," says Hoffman. "If you don't catch your crush gazing at you when they think you're not looking or making an effort to get close to you in a group setting, it's probably not going to happen."

You should also consider how much eye contact you have when you're talking one-on-one. Are they making an effort to hold your eyes with theirs, or are they looking just about every where else? That’s a red flag. Keegan explains, “if he is being physical, flirting, but avoiding deep eye contact, that's a [guy] that only wants to know you on a surface level… it's sign that he's [only into you for something] physical or a friend.”

And mixed signals? Keegan says it all amounts to the same thing. “If it feels like he's giving you mixed signals and he's playing games, that's a big sign [they’re] not that into you,” he says. Anyone who would play games with your heart needs to be cut loose immediately. Not cool.

They Don't Interact With You On Social Media

How often do they interact with you on social media, unprompted? Hoffman says that if “they never like or comment on any of your social media posts,” it’s a clear red flag. Listen, it’s 2018. If they aren’t creeping on your Insta and at the very least accidentally double tapping, then they're probably not going to give you what you need. Find someone who doesn’t just want to check out your social media, but be featured in it, too.

They Don't Initiate Dates Or Make Time To Spend With You

While you may be able to chalk some of the other signs up to something like shyness, there is one more red flag to watch for. Dating coach Erika Ettin says it's important to note how much effort they put into spending time with you. “If someone makes time for you, he or she is into you," Ettin tells Elite Daily. "If that person is always ‘too busy,’ that's an excuse, and it's time to move on. People make time for the things they want to do and see." If someone is not making you a priority, then it’s time to find someone who does.

It’s hard to hear that someone you care about feels differently than you — I won’t sugar coat that — but in a weird way, they're doing you a favor. They are letting you know that you can do better and you should never settle for less. You deserve it all.

Check out the entire Gen Why series and other videos on Facebook and the Bustle app across Apple TV, Roku, and Amazon Fire TV.

Check out the “Best of Elite Daily” stream in the Bustle App for more stories just like this!