You should know (if you don’t already) that you should never settle for less than what you deserve. Yet after many dating dry spells or even straight up relationship failures, you may think that you’re destined to a life of being forever alone. First of all, you’re wrong, and second of all, there is nothing wrong with being single and being picky about who you date and let into your heart, because it shouldn’t be wasted on someone who is undeserving of it.
As pointed out in Psychology Today, we adopt the fallacy that our worth is tied up in our ability to find a mate. Societal norms/cultural beliefs have made both men and women think that we aren’t complete until we find our other half, as well as that pesky biological clock that ticks just as loudly for men as it does for women. Taken all together, it’s not that surprising that we have a rushed tendency to settle before we find the right match. If you feel like you might be settling, here are 5 very convincing reasons why you shouldn’t settle with your relationships.
1).You feel pressure to settle down
When it comes to settling down, you probably want to settle down with someone you consider “right” — someone you deem compatible, whom you share the same morals and values, and anything else you deem important to have in a life partner. Unless you’re on a specific time frame, it doesn’t make sense to settle down with someone who is not right for you, or who you feel in your heart is not that right person. As every relationship expert or doctor would advise, hold out for someone that you find truly amazing and that you love deeply. Think of it along these lines: Why waste your time and precious years of life just to say you’re in a relationship? Take things slow and figure out what you want, focus on yourself and as that common aphorism states, your partner will come along when the time is right.
The need to rush to settle out of fear of being along can really skew your priorities in finding a mate. An article from Psychology Today cites a recent set of studies published in the Journal of Personality and Social Psychology, which found that people who had a fear of being single or ending up alone, were more likely to “prioritize being in a relationship over the quality of that relationship or a potential partner.” The article also references a longitudinal study, finding that those who feared being single were less likely to leave a relationship that wasn’t working anymore or that they weren’t truly happy in.
2. You think that comparatively, you don’t have it that bad
You seem to size up your relationship against other couples, and it’s usually not a healthy comparison. Maybe you just can’t help but notice how much happier other couples seem together, and you’re a little envious of the things they do together, seeming so compatible. That said, if you were with someone who you truly wanted to be with and cared about, then these things wouldn’t matter or you wouldn’t notice them as much on a grand scale. Rather, it would be more of an observation than a comparison. You may also remind yourself that your relationship is really not bad compared to others who possibly fight more — so you may stay in the relationship for that reason. According to Psychology Today, frequently comparing your partner unfavorably to other people, especially friends’ partners or spouses, is a sure sign of an unhealthy relationship.
No relationship is perfect, but you shouldn’t be making these unhealthy comparisons, it’s a possible sign that you’re settling, and unhappy.
3. You don’t want to be alone
Thanks to our society’s horrible stigma of being single, sometimes we may stay in a relationship that is not working just for the sake of not wanting to be alone. As pointed out in the Huffington Post, very few people know how to be alone and do it well. Being alone has such a harsh sound to it, doesn’t it? It’s important to learn how to embrace being alone without being lonely. Know your value and your worth, and don’t let someone else define that for you.
Here’s why some of us have a hard time being alone or single … if not for the constant “single” gifs all over social media: Psychology Today points out that the “single” stigma is perpetuated even more by the fact that single people are assumed to be “immature, maladjusted, and selfish,” even facing some forms of discrimination when it comes to living situations, like signing a lease for an apartment, that may be rejected in favor for a couple. Know that once you embrace your singlehood as a temporary situation or a life choice, the happier you’ll be, because not only will you have the time to open yourself up to new friendships, passions, and activities, but you’ll develop a sense of identity and self-worth that is truly priceless and not attached to a partner’s love or approval. What’s more, all of these fantastic qualities that you'll be developing (self-awareness) will serve you well in your next relationship for one very big reason: You’re less likely to feel dependent on your partner for happiness, and will not expect that they will be able to meet all you needs — you have the satisfaction from other parts of your life to take care of that.
Just remember — being with the wrong person for the wrong reasons is so much worse than just riding out the single wave.
4. You don’t think you can do any better
You may find yourself trapped in a situation that seems decent, but you’re pretty much only in it because you’re afraid to leave. You’re also afraid to leave because you fear you won’t find anything “better.” However, as suggested by Mark D. White Ph.D in Psychology Today, we shouldn’t evaluate partners on whether they’re good enough, but on whether they’re right for us. Tallying up a partner’s good and bad traits in the first place also sounds like another way you’re trying to convince yourself to stay in the relationship. If you’re really into the relationship or feel like you’re with the right person, you wouldn’t have to think about doing that.
5. You’ve already invested the time and energy and need to honor the commitment
Just because you’ve invested the time and energy, have memories together, a deep rooted history, and have taken all this time to get to know each other, it seems like it doesn’t make sense to break it off, right? The thing is, if you’ve already given it a chance, tried to work through whatever issues you have and still feel like things are not quite right, then this may be a sign that you’re lying to yourself in the relationship.
In an article for Psych Central, Darlene Lancer, JD, MFT, wrote that no one needs any consent to leave a relationship, millions of people remain in unhappy relationships that range from feelings of emptiness to abuse for many reasons. The feeling of suffocation or of having no choices stems from unconscious fears that lead to guilt. Lancer also pointed out that people give many explanations for staying in bad relationships, ranging from caring for young children to caring for a sick partner. Just remember, you don’t owe anybody anything other than honesty, to both your partner and yourself. There is no sense in settling in a relationship for the reason of investment.
Date Posted: Tuesday, May 30th, 2017 , Total Page Views: 1736
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