Why You Shouldn't Settle in Life

Are you chasing your dreams?  Are you holding out for what you know you deserve and what will truly bring you happiness?  I hope so! But, most of us tend to take the safer route...we settle.  It's easier! But, today, I want to talk to you about why you shouldn't settle in life.

There are numerous articles that have been written about why you shouldn’t settle for a partner or a relationship.  I agree wholeheartedly with that, but I think it should extend beyond that. 

Yes, there are times when settling is necessary and not even a big deal. Trying to save money for a down payment? Then you might have to settle for the budget vacation (or no vacation at all!).  But that’s not really the kind of ‘settling’ I want to talk about today.

I want to talk about the areas of your life where you should never settle. These are the important parts of life that deserve holding out for the what you want and deserve.

Don't Settle in Your Career

For the 40+ years after you graduate from college, you will spend the vast majority of those waking hours working.  It’s a fact of life and for most of us, something we can’t avoid. Since the majority of our waking hours are spent working, we best choose something that not only interests us, but fulfills us, challenges us, and ultimately makes us happy.

Yes, there are circumstances that might require you to settle for a job you don’t really enjoy temporarily and that’s fine.  What’s important to remember is to use those situations as stepping stones to what you are meant to do.  Don’t settle in just because it’s easier than working towards the job or career that will give you that sense of satisfaction and enjoyment.


Don't Settle with Your Dreams

If you do settle, you will get to the point later in life when you will not only regret your {lack of} choice, but you’ll feel you wasted your life. This is somewhat in the same vein as the job/career, but expands beyond just that category.  So many people forget to chase their dreams (I’ve been guilty of this myself!).  It’s easy to fall into that trap…life, work, etc. keeps you busy and finding the time to chase your dreams just seems unattainable.

But, I encourage you to not settle into a life where your dreams are delegated to the ‘I don’t have time for this’ pile. 

MAKE time for it! 


Don't Settle with Love

Your dreams define who you are and, if you listen to them, they will give you a road map to follow to reach a life that will bring you fulfillment and happiness. Like I said…there are SO many articles out there on not settling in a relationship, but I think this is a big one that happens more than it should. 

I don’t believe in fairy tales and I don’t believe there is only ONE single person that is our ‘soul mate’.  I think there is a type of person that is ideal for each of us, but there are many people that will fit into that type.  The trick is finding one of those people at the right time for both of you.

Society likes to paint a stigma on single people (fortunately, this is starting to fade some!).  It’s like you’re less of a person if you’re single.  While this couldn’t be farther from the truth (and basically a whole load of crap!), it’s one of those concepts that seems to be ingrained in people. 

People are terrified of being alone!

I find this heartbreaking, because that fear leads people to make choices that aren’t always in the best interest of their dreams or their lives. 

Being afraid to be alone, will more often than not, land you in a relationship that isn’t ideal for you (or both of you)

Too many people will choose to stay in an ‘okay’ relationship because they’re afraid they'll never find someone else.  In other words, they SETTLE.

Why is this bad?

Well, besides preventing you from being in a relationship that is better suited for you, what I think is worse, is that you are preventing the other person from being in relationship that is right for them.  Everybody deserves to be with someone that loves them fully and wouldn’t want to be with anyone else.

By giving into the fear of being single and staying in a relationship that is just ‘okay’, you are preventing your partner from finding a person that truly wants to be with them and no one else (and not just because they don’t want to be alone!).  Personally, I feel this is incredibly selfish.

I could go on and on with this topic, but I’ll sum it up by saying this.  You may feel like you’ll be less happy on your own than in a relationship where you are settling.  If you have interests, hobbies, and confidence in yourself, I can promise you that won’t be the case.  If the relationship is the only thing that defines you, then yes, you might be happier in a dead-end relationship than on your own.  If that’s you, I encourage you to start digging deep and working on you.  You and your partner deserve better!

Where do I fall in each of these areas?

I'm not any different from you...I'm not perfect and I have definitely 'settled' for things in my past.  But, recognizing this behavior is the key.  Sometimes settling is one of those things you don't really realize you're doing until it's too late!

Personally, I’m good on the relationship front.  I have broken off relationships because I knew if I stayed I’d be settling.  It’s very hard to walk away from those types of relationships, but I still know it was the right thing to do.  I'm not afraid to be alone and in fact I enjoy being on my own!  I would never want to be with someone that is settling for me, so that isn't something I can do to someone else.  I deserve better and so does he.

As for dreams…I’ve started realizing more and more as I get older that I need to invest more time in achieving my dreams and that’s what I’m working on now.  You could say I’m in major planning mode right now!

And for my job/career…I like my job.  I’ve been doing it for years and I work with amazing people at a wonderful company.  But, it’s not my passion.  I can’t say too much now, but as I plan out my dreams, I’m also planning out some other possible opportunities for myself in a few years and that excites me!

So…the next time you are journaling, or working on your personal goals, I encourage you to take bit of extra time to think about these areas of your life.  Really and truly think about them.  If you sense you might be settling, assess it and start making plans to change things!

You deserve the life you want, but sometimes, you have to make changes and make some tough decisions to make that happen!

Your turn, friends!  Where do you fall on the ‘settling’ spectrum?  Have you ever recognized that pattern in your life?  What did you do about it?  Leave me a comment and let me know! And if you’d like me to explore this topic further in future posts…just let me know!  Tell me where I can help you!