By Bethany Heinesh of DatingAdvice.com

For thousands of years, women have sought to love and to be loved. Yet we have no greater answer to the age-old question “What is love?” than when we started. There have been many poems, books, songs and plays written about love, but no one has yet to truly capture its essence.

Even the world’s greatest philosophers have pondered the notion of love but have been unable to analyze its implications. I would venture to say there are as many definitions of love as there are people. After all, love is in the eye of the beholder.

Here are seven simple signs to look for so you’ll know what love looks like when it shows up and makes your heart skip a beat. You might be in love if…

1. You’re thinking about him 24/7.

When you’re in love with a man, he haunts you like the boogeyman. He lurks in the shadows of your mind and overpowers every independent thought you can muster. If he’s all you think about, you’ve got it bad, girl.

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2. You’re talking about him 24/7.

When your friends have to stage an intervention because you babble about him incessantly, you’re in over your head. You’ve passed the point of no return – you’re love struck.

3. Your co-workers notice something is “different.”

People may say you look younger, you’ve lost weight or you did something to your hair. When other people detect a radiance emanating from you, they may not be able to pinpoint exactly what’s going on, but they know something’s changed.

Related: How to Tell If He’s ‘The One’ After One Date

4. You catch yourself shopping for him.

There’s something about having a new man in your life that makes you want to fuss over him. I can’t tell you how many times I’ve had to leave a cart full of clothes I wanted to buy for my boyfriend in a department store. Once I realized he might not be ready for me to buy his underoos, I came to my senses.

“It gets even better once you

get past the lovey-dovey haze.”

5. You think every love song is being sung to you.

Oh, how I remember being love struck, singing at the top of my voice in my car to Mariah Carey songs while cruising down the freeway. There’s something about love that makes us say, “La,la,la!”

6. The seconds feel like hours when you’re apart.

I truly believe our perception of time gets contorted when we’re in love, a theory I believe will eventually be proven through the miracle of science. When you’re with the object of your affection, time seems to fly. When he leaves, it’s like agony until he returns. Somehow, life just goes at a different rate of speed when you’re in love.

7. You rearrange your life to accommodate his.

If he now has a drawer at your place, you’re saving your money so you can go to Spain together, and you spend every lunch hour talking to him on the phone, let’s just say you’ve shifted your focus from life as single woman to becoming a “we.”

Of course, these rules apply to the new and blossoming relationship, and love takes on a different form as it evolves. Unfortunately, the obsessively wonderful experience of falling in love eventually dissipates and routine usually takes its place.

So many women aren’t prepared for what happens when newly found romance wears off. We often think the relationship isn’t working and begin looking for someone else to rekindle those feelings with.

Take my advice – stick around for the next stage. It gets even better once you get past the lovey-dovey haze and get real.

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