I’d Rather Be Single Than Settle!
If you’ve ever said, “I’d rather be single than settle”, you must check out my interview with David Steele, CEO of the Relationship Coaching Institute.
Yesterday’s Last First Date radio show was off the chain (as Guy Fieri would say). I interviewed David Steele and his lovely wife, Darlene about not settling in a relationship. David is a California-based Marriage and Family Therapist who founded the Relationship Coaching Institute, the first and largest international relationship coach training organization. He’s the author of the ground-breaking book for singles Conscious Dating- Finding the love of your life and the life that you love . Be sure to visit his website at www.consciousdating.com for free access to his audio program “Using Conscious Dating to Find Your Soulmate.” David and his wife Darlene are a great example of what happens when you make up your mind not to settle. Their love is palpable! I’ve loosely transcribed the highlights of the show for you. To listen to the whole inspiring show, click here.
I’d rather be single than settle!
Welcome David and Darlene! Tell us a little about your relationship history.
David: I was married and divorced twice, and I felt bad about myself. The last relationship I was in, what I call the 80% relationship (20% was missing), I finally got that I’d been settling. I thought to myself, ‘there’s so much alignment, we have so much fun, but it’s not the whole package. But it’s better than nothing, so let’s see how it goes.’ Three months into the relationship, I tried to break it off. She convinced me to give it a chance. I knew it wasn’t going to be 100%. A year later, I finally had the courage to break it off. After that, I became a bit evangelistic in the belief that I’d rather be single than settle.
How do you define ‘settling’?
David: Being in a relationship where all requirements and needs and wants are not met.
One of the biggest requirements for me was someone who fully accepts me and doesn’t try to change me. I longed to be loved fully for who I am. When I decided I would not settle again, and I got crystal clear with my needs/requirements, two months later I met Darlene. She was a 100% fit. It felt scary. Was I fooling myself?
Darlene: I didn’t write the book on Conscious Dating! After my divorce, I wanted to start dating again. It was a bit of a confusing journey. I needed a new pair of sandals, shoes that were comfortable to walk in. I walked into a shoe store and put on a pair of Keen sandals, started walking, and realized I’d never find a man if I wore them, even though they are ‘me’. And then I realized I wouldn’t want a man who wasn’t attracted to those sandals. I realized it would be settling if someone didn’t love me for who I really was.
Darlene, how did you know David was ‘the one’?
Darlene: I was driving over to David’s house after a few week’s dating, and I realized that this was my vision for what I was looking for all my life. I just felt it.
David: We had been on two dates. I had Darlene over for dinner. In the first five minutes, I thought this woman is adorable. It became stronger with time. It kind of scared me. I wanted to be cautious, not jump into anything. I walked her to her car after dinner. We hugged for the first time. I experienced a full body tingling and couldn’t sleep that night, I was so wound up!
Why is it so hard for singles to find lasting love?
David: Most are not clear about who they are and what they need and want in a relationship.
Exercise to create your list of relationship requirements
Write your list as long as you can. Don’t do it in one sitting. Do it in a week. Keep adding to your list. When you’re satisfied that your list has everything, identify your requirements. Identify the non-negotiable deal breakers. These are the things that you would rather get a divorce over than put up with those things. How many are left to your list? Most people have between 8-12 requirements. Apply a few test questions to the things on your list: if you fell in love and you really wanted it to work and everything was perfect, but this one thing was missing, would you have to break it off? (Example: having children. You want kids. You should pick a partner who also wants kids). The things that pass your test questions will be the things that meet your requirements.
The requirement that you’re not aware of can trip you up. Once you have your list, that’s probably 90% of the way. The other 10% is to review your relationship history. Chances are, those past relationship patterns are contributing to your relationship issues. Make sure to work those things out before searching for a life-long partner.
Once you have your list, you choose your partner based on your requirements. Say no to anyone who doesn’t have those things. You might be alone for a while. It’s okay. You won’t be settling! When you do find him/her, you will get bonuses that you never dreamed of!
I wanted a partner that was service-oriented and they could share my life’s purpose to make a difference in the world. This became a requirement for me. Darlene is a nurse. This fit my requirements. The bonus is that she decided to leave her profession and join me in RCI in my mission to help people with their relationships!
Singles tend to get discouraged. Think of dating this way: Imagine a big multi-story barn filled with hay. You’re trying to find a small needle. It seems impossible. But let’s say you have a huge magnet. You’ll eventually find the needle! Being clear about who you are and what you want will help you find it.
Wasn’t that a great interview? Listen to the radio show for more exciting relationship tips, and to hear a couple who truly love and respect each other. You really don’t have to settle. And you don’t have to be alone and single forever. Find out more here.
For more midlife dating advice and a copy of my FREE report, “The Top Three Mistakes Midlife Daters Make (and how to turn them around to find love now)” please click here.
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