Relationship Success Strategies: Are You Accepting or Settling?

Relationship Success Strategies: Are You Accepting or Settling?

by Ken Donaldson

When you know what you have to have in a relationship, not only are you going to feel more fulfilled when you have it, you’ll also find the relationship more sustainable. As a result, the relationship will have a higher likelihood of lasting and it’ll be less stressful because your relational needs are met at a much higher level.

It is of the utmost importance to put a high emphasis on the deal-breakers.

Again, these are the characteristics of relationships which are absolutely, positively non-acceptable. All too often I’ve seen people make exceptions even when they know a certain behavior or set of behaviors wouldn’t be tolerable for them in a relationship. They set themselves up for disappointment because they imagine, even though they know better, people are going to change as a result of the relationship. This is a true set-up for unnecessary heartache.

I can’t stress it enough – Know and live by your deal-makers and deal-breakers.

Where does acceptance end and settling begin? This is a very good question, and it’s a very important distinction to understand. When you settle, you’re allowing situations to occur in your life which are below your standards. In fact, when you settle, you actually sell-out a piece of your own integrity as well as create an energy drain.

If you’re not aware of your deal-makers and deal-breakers, then you are unconscious to your relationship needs, but responsible for them none-the-less. In other words, when you’re not living in alignment with your deal-makers and deal-breakers, then you’re settling.

When you settle for less, there is one sure guarantee; you will always get less.

Acceptance, on the other hand, is having the knowledge, understanding and conscious awareness of the characteristics, components and/or dynamics of another person, possession and/or activity in which you may not find complete satisfaction, but are willing to accept because your core needs are being met.

In other words, some of your wishes, or even desirables, may not be there, but all of the requirements of your deal-makers and deal-breakers are there. You’re accepting because you know your highest priority and core needs are being met.

Accepting also means you take what is, as is. You won’t try or hope to change what is into what you want it to be. Acceptance is not trying to change what is, but rather, accepting the reality of what is.

It’s easy to see how confusing this could be if you’re not careful to be absolutely clear. Again, if you don’t know exactly what it is that you’re looking for, what is acceptable and what is not, then you’re much more likely to end up with unhealthy, dysfunctional and/or inappropriate situations or people in your life.

I have one final note to say about acceptance versus settling, and you can quote me. In fact, I have this printed in very large type in my office: Never, never, never, never, never settle. NeverFeature Articles, not even once!

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Ken Donaldson has been offering counseling, coaching, and educational programs since 1987. His programs are focused on empowering people to have more successful lives, businesses and relationships. Ken is the author of Marry YourSelf First! Saying “I DO” to a Life of Passion, Power and Purpose. Claim your FREE Relationship Success Special Report at

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