5 Symptoms Of Fear Of Settling
When you’re a single, career-driven woman, it can be challenging to find the right man to build a beautiful family and relationship with.
You may have a fear of settling down with the wrong man and this fear may be keeping you single for years…
In this post, I’m gonna help you understand:
- What exactly this fear is
- How this fear reflects in the way you date
- Why this fear can keep you single for a long time
- The top 5 symptoms of fear of settling
Once you know all of this, you can move on to this post on How To Overcome Fear Of Settling.
But first –
What Is Fear Of Settling?
In dating, especially for career-driven women like you, the concept of settling is the idea that you’re accepting a man who’s not exactly what you want in a partner. You accept him even though you feel like you could ‘do better’.
You believe you could be attracting a higher quality man, but you settle for the one in front of you.
That brings up an uneasy feeling inside us women… We feel like we’re settling for something less than what we deserve, and it makes us wonder whether there’s more.
But here’s the thing –
There’s a huge difference between having standards in the kind of partner that we want to attract, and having a fear of settling.
When we date with fear of settling, we’re constantly experiencing anxiety around that fear, even when there is a great man in front of us.
We’re afraid of committing to the man that we’re dating because in the back of our minds, no matter how greatly the man treats us, we’re always asking ourselves:
‘Could I do better? Am I settling?!’
The tricky thing about this fear is that it may not always be a reality. It can be a self-created anxiety. Us high-achieving women are always looking to do better, have better, optimize…
And the fear of settling means dating with that constant anxiety.
So, to save you time, energy, and inefficient dating, here are the top 5 symptoms of fear of settling that I see in most of my clients (we’re talking over 13,000 women here!):
1. No Man Is Good Enough
You attract men easily. You’re gorgeous, amazing, successful, attractive. You have a great personality!
But whenever you start dating men, it always feels like they’re less than you or simply not good enough…
Even if they’re good men and they represent solid qualities that you want in a partner, your mind is always wondering ‘Could I do better than this?’
And because you think about it that way, you are most likely rejecting a lot of good men.
So this fear itself keeps you from moving forward with any man… And you feed your own idea that no man is ever good enough.
2. There’s Something Wrong With All Of Them
Often, the initial chemistry phase where you do like guys and you do see what’s good about them, fades away quickly.
Your default habit of nitpicking and finding fault with the guys shows up.
You may have initial honeymoon phases where you see what’s great about this guy, you get hopeful, feeling like maybe this is the one…
But as the relationship gets more intimate and you observe him in different circumstances, you start to go back into nitpicking and have thoughts like:
Maybe he’s not that handsome after all…
Maybe he’s not that rich…
Maybe he’s not even as hot as I thought…
I mean, there’s always George Clooney and Brad Pitt that we can compare our partners to, right?
You can fill in the blanks but it basically follows with: ‘I can get a man who is…’
- Sexier than him
- Younger than him
- More ambitious than him
- More growth-oriented than him
- More evolved than him
And so on.
You end up jumping from one man to the next and dumping some really good men along the way. Fear of settling actually makes you reject potentially great matches.
3. Fear-Based Dating
Symptom #3 of fear of settling is when you find yourself repeating fear-based statements like ‘I will never ever go with a man again who makes less money than me’ or ‘I will never ever go with a man again who doesn’t like to travel’.
So, is there something wrong with having standards? NOT AT ALL.
In fact, I am all for standards! Trust me, my clients get treated like queens inside their relationships.
And yet, there’s a difference in energy when we’re coming at something from a place of fear vs. a place of desire.
Desire statements are more positive energetically, like ‘I would love to have a man who makes as much money or more than I do.’ or ‘I would love to have a man who enjoys travel.’
The energy of fear is when you block men out by creating ‘rules’. Then you tell yourself that you can NEVER be with a man who breaks those rules. For instance:
‘I will NEVER be with a man who makes less than me.’
So, what’s the problem with those rules? A great man could make 1k less than you and break your rule… Even while being a healthy, empowered man.
When we have fear of settling, we have all these rules and regulations that a man has to meet in order to be our partner, and most of the time they don’t come from a positive, excited space of desire and preference.
They come from an energy of ‘I made that mistake in the past and I don’t want to repeat that mistake again…’
We’re afraid to make a mistake – and we end up missing out.
4. Protection & Defensiveness
As high-achieving, successful women, we tend to be really proud of the amazing lives we’ve built for ourselves. It’s often hard not to be really careful about getting into the ‘wrong’ relationship because we know how hard it can be to get out of it.
Now, there is nothing wrong with knowing that you’ve built the life you wanted, you’re in control of your money, your schedule, your travels, you drive a great car and built a dream house…
But when your entire energy is focused around ‘What if a relationship pulls me down?’ you’re defaulting to an energy of protection, defensiveness, and wall-building that keeps you watching out for the worst all the time.
You tend to assume the worst outcome when a man is not doing exactly what you want him to do or behaving exactly like you’d want him to behave.
There’s no room for giving men the benefit of the doubt or letting them make a mistake (we’re all human in the end…)
All you can think about is: ‘If he screwed up once, he’s not the right person, and I’d rather be careful than get into the wrong relationship.’
And that makes it easy to find flaws in virtually EVERY man you meet.
5. Fantasy Men
The last symptom of fear of settling is when you have this fantasy man in your head and you compare almost every man you meet with him. You revert back to point #1 – no man feels good enough.
Because no man can live up to the image of the fantasy man in your head!
I can speak for myself and a lot of my clients inside Elevate on this one…
When I was a single woman dating, I had the exact image of who I wanted my future husband to be:
A wall street banker, high on testosterone, an alpha male that made so much money…
What I didn’t realize was, yes, I could have that if I wanted to – but that also meant he might come with some very toxic alpha male qualities, like:
- Not being available to form a family
- Not being supportive of my career
- Putting his own career before mine as the norm
So when I started doing the inner work on myself, I actually trained myself to let go of the fantasy image in my head of who I thought my husband should be, so that the right fit for me could enter my life.
And then I met my husband Chris.
My husband has the most amazing, empowered, masculine energy.
But what is amazing about him is that he’s so devoted, so committed, so loyal, so loving, such a great dad and a great lover… and he does not look anything like I had envisioned.
Long story short: sometimes that fantasy image in our heads is not even good for us!
And it can make us push away incredible men that have potential to become our incredible husbands.
The Good News
Have you ever experienced any of these 5 symptoms of fear of settling?
They are WAY more common than you’d think.
And while looking out for any red flags is a good thing in dating… Fear of setting is always about looking for the worst.
This puts you in an extremely guarded position where you’re so careful, that you’re constantly focusing on finding evidence that something is wrong.
It can feel tiring, trigger anxiety, and delay your way to your dream man heavily.
The good news is that there are SO many other ways to show up healthily in your dating life, where you know when you’re looking at a red flag without having to walk around in this fear of being trapped and suffocated in a relationship.
That’s why it’s so important to get coaching and learn skills that help you understand where you need to watch out and where you can actually relax, open your heart and let intimacy develop.
Inside Elevate, my 6-month live coaching program, you can learn these skills and get personalized support to fasttrack your way to forever love.
If any of these symptoms is delaying your love life… Check out this post on How To Overcome Fear Of Settling.