Last night I read a short article that asked the question: How do you know when you’re settling for less? Have you ever settled somewhere in your life? I know I have.  

The article provided ways to tell if you’re settling:

  • When you have to work yourself into a state of excitement rather than naturally feeling joy about what you’re doing, then you are settling.
  • When you have to negotiate with yourself about doing something, rather than actually wanting to do it without forcing yourself, then you are settling.
  • When you’re making excuses about why you are staying in the same (relationship, job) spot, then you are settling.
  • When you spend more time complaining about what you have, rather than appreciating it, you are definitely settling.

Why do we settle? What is it about continuing on the same path that feels better than trying something that quite likely could feel better?  Why don’t we change jobs or relationships or other situations when we know they’re not the right fit?

I don’t think its laziness. I don’t think its lack of desire. I think its fear.

Fear — the grandfather of all reasons that we settle.  It’s the choice between the devil we know versus the devil we don’t know. It’s fear of failure, fear of success and fear that we’re not worthy.

I know fear. It’s one of my oldest and dearest friends. Fear has driven my life for many, many years. In fact, fear has a key to my cave – where I actually thought I went to hide from my fear!

How do we manage our fears to ensure we’re not living our life by settling? We do it by understanding and actually accepting that it’s okay to have good things in our life. That some times good things may come with a few hiccups, but that you are worth good things.   And, that fear is only created in our minds – we have control over our fears. Shocking, I know!

Once we understand and accept these truths, we learn that fear can actually stop us from settling! It can help motivate us to do better, to try new experiences and to break out from those unfulfilling situations.  Fear is really just a distorted and out of touch belief – one that we can choose to release and instead experience life through love and joy.

I’m working on this – letting go of fear thing.  It’s not easy.  Those tapes are super engrained.  But, I know one thing for sure — when I don’t settle I find myself moving toward more peaceful and joyful moments in my life.

So, let’s not settle.  Let’s make choices based on love, not fear.  When we love ourselves, there is absolutely no reason to settle.

Have a great weekend!