Are you feeling confused in your current relationship? Are you questioning if you are settling or just being realistic? This is such a common dilemma people get into. All relationships have conflict. It can be a very fine line between being realistic and settling.
Settling in a relationship can come from having unrealistic expectations. It can also be rooted in low self-esteem and worry that this is the best you will get. It can be really hard to find clarity. It is important that you first identify what your concerns are. Get clear on what your red flags are and what worries you. Then think about where you fall on the spectrum of expectations; are they too high or too low? Once you establish that foundation, follow the below tips to help determine if you are settling or being realistic.
HOW TO DETERMINE IF YOU ARE SETTLING:
- Make sure to be confident that you deserve an amazing relationship. Often, people settle because they think things like “I can’t get anything better than this,” or “I don’t deserve more.” Those things are 100% false! Everyone deserves to be happy; it’s just about finding what exactly it is that you need in a relationship. If you find that you struggle with this, do things to remind yourself that you are operating on a false belief. Remind yourself that you do deserve a satisfying, meaningful relationship. It can also be beneficial to do things to build self-esteem and confidence. Set yourself up in the mindset that will help you not settle.
- Be willing to go outside your original expectation. Generally, people have an idea of the type of person they will end up with. Included in this are things about their personality, looks, career, etc. The trouble is, when you date someone who doesn’t fit into that, you likely start questioning “am I settling?” Often, these things that differ from your expectations are not problems. They only become concerns because it’s not what you pictured or what you thought you wanted. Therefore, it is important not be too rigid in what you are looking for. In these cases, ask yourself if in reality this difference creates problems. You might be surprised to see that much of the time the answer is no. The most amazing relationship can be different from your expectations. Make sure you are willing to be open-minded and not closed off to this.
- Consider both the good and the bad. Remember perfection does not exist. Even the healthiest, most satisfying relationships will have some problems. Too many times, people strive for perfection, but that is unrealistic. Make sure not to hold yourself back by doing this. Give equal thought to what you like about the relationship as you do the problems. This will help you more easily tap into what is best for you. Obsessing over the negatives is stressful and doesn’t accomplish anything. It just leads to feeling unhappy in the relationship. At the same time, pushing out your concerns and only focusing on the good things gives a skewed perception. That mindset can lead to settling. Making sure to think about both ends of the spectrum will give you the perspective needed to make an informed decision about if you are being realistic or settling.
- Communicate with your partner. All relationships take work. As mentioned above, all will have conflict at one point or another. Communication is key; you can’t solve problems without it. Giving the relationship your best shot by communicating and working on the conflict allows you to see if things can really work or not. It gets very blurry if you just get in your own head and spend time questioning if you are settling. You get answers by acting. One of the most informative signs about a relationship’s sustainability is how you communicate and solve conflict. Therefore, it is important to try and communicate to see how that impacts things.
- Trust your gut. Everyone has an innate intuition that guides what is best for them. The trouble is that it can be very hard to tap into it. So many things color over our intuition, such as other people’s comments, low self-esteem, and our emotions. The above tips will help you better hear what your gut is telling you, but then you have to make sure you are listening. Trust yourself; know that you have answers and clarity will come.
Make sure you really give the abovementioned tips some thought.
Give the relationship some time and try not to make rash decisions. People often get caught up in “not wasting my time,” if the relationship is not right. Thinking about things in this way runs the risk of too quickly writing things off. A relationship takes time to build. Allow yourself this time. It’s never a waste of time. If the relationship ends, you can always learn something that will help you on your journey to finding a romantic partner. On the other hand, giving it time can lead to an amazing, long-term relationship.