I couldn't quite verbalize my dilemma but I finally figured it out.
When it comes to crushes, there are people who are paralyzed by their fears. Rather than doing something, they do nothing and let it slide. That's not my problem.
In the past, my problem has been the opposite: I act too forcefully. For example, I love to give gifts and I tend to go overboard when it comes to my crushes. And when they decline it, I used to figure a way to give it to them nonetheless. (i.e. leaving it in their bag, in their car, etc.) I've been learning to more restrained and less possessive (that's what it is).
Of course in the same scenario, I've also learned to keep my affections hidden. It's been my experience that once they think you have a crush on them, that's when they start rejecting you. But keeping it hidden doesn't work either. I tried to show affection to everyone equally and that only resulted in people thinking I had a crush on the wrong person. As for the person I was actually interested in, didn't really make a bleep in their radar since how are they supposed to know I liked them?
It's also too easy to make generalizations. One thing I have to remember that each person is different and unique. What might not have worked (or worked as the case may be) on one person may not apply to a different person. It leaves me just as clueless, but that's somehow more consoling than simply saying "I don't understand this entire courtship thing."