Stop Doing THIS If You Want A Fulfilling, Happy Relationship

Photo: WeHeartIt

Enough with this, already!

So often when it comes to love, we compromise. And compromise, when done in a spirit of peacefully negotiating with a spouse (or trying to get the kids to school in one piece), is absolutely fine.

The real problem happens when we compromise with the important things like who we're with, what kind of treatment we should accept and who we're "good enough" to date. And we often compromise on the important things A LOT.

We tell ourselves that we'll date when we lose the last 10 pounds, we're not good enough because our past relationships sucked or because we made mistakes in the past.

We tell ourselves that we should settle for the person right in front of us, or we should take the first relationship that sort of works. We try to make it work when we suspect we should think about letting it go. We settle in when things are "OK" and we don't know what else to do. 

We give up, we fail and we compromise.

But this isn't mindful compromise with the goal of getting along with someone better or accepting that we're not 20 anymore  it's settling. And settling doesn't really earn you anything except potentially comfort but usually not for very long.

Why do we settle?

Most of the time we tell ourselves an elaborate story about what we can get (and what we deserve) when it comes to love. The problem is that, except for all but the most actualized among us, this story is mostly fictional with hints of truth.

Usually what we tell ourselves comes straight from our insecurities, past relationship or painful childhood experiences. And it's nowhere near the truth, yet we shut down promising relationships, evaluate people weirdly, act strange, get spooked — and we fail.

And we keep failing until we realize that it's OK to honor what we want and hold out for something better as long as we keep trying. Failure is normal. Failure is OK.

What isn't OK is compromising by staying out of the ring and telling ourselves that, with time, it'll get easier somehow.

Unfortunately, it doesn't get easier.

We do this because change is really hard, and we might get hurt. If we try our hardest and fail, we fear that we might find out that our greatest fear is true: There isn't anyone out there.

So we vacillate. We go about things half-a**ed. We get hurt or want something different.

Then that month off from dating (when we were going to "find ourselves") turns into a year, which stretches to a few years. The time since we can remember actually having fun in our relationship fades away. Then we look up and the time has flown — lost on embitterment and fear.

Then one day finally, after a lot of careful thought, planning and wound-licking, we shove ourselves outside and "go on the date" or "have the tough conversation."

Usually it's TERRIBLE! We feel awkward, choke on our word and the circumstances feel all wrong.

Then we retreat back to our cave and tell ourselves some version of our story like, "There are no good ones left" or "It's too late." And, like this, the insecurities keep piling up and the downward spiral continues.

This pain-related procrastination is a problem that happens all the time, and it's NOT your fault.

It's human nature to want to stop hurt — to do something different from last time and guard your heart. The problem putting a guard up is that we miss out. We internalize that love, which is dangerous and that merits caution because the danger lies in continuing the cycle of self destruction by letting yourself stay fallen. The real danger lies in giving up.

So if you're not getting what you want when it comes to love or you see yourself in any part of this, my challenge to you is this:

Do one small thing today that either gets you closer to meeting someone (if you're single) or improves your relationship. Just one small thing. Work on releasing all of those limiting ideas about who you are in all of this. Do some mindset spring cleaning.

I bet things will feel at least a little bit better. If you're already out there being happy and fabulous, then it's extra credit.

Do the guys you really like always seem to disappear? If you're struggling with uncertainty about why men continually pull away or dump you, get a free copy of my eBook, Why Men Lose Interest and daily (or close to it) email series. Sending you positive energy, always!

This article was originally published at Digital Romance Inc. Reprinted with permission from the author.