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4 Signs You Are Settling for Less Than You Are Capable Of

I see it time and time again—women desiring and dreaming big, only to accept second, or even third, best when they feel as if their high hopes will fall flat. They settle in relationships, jobs, friends, even their own potential.

Our most frequent battle is not between good and bad–it’s between good and great.

Good is all around us. Great, we need to reach for. Good takes little effort and has almost an immediate payoff. But if you are like most, regardless of how often you try to settle for good, the desire for great always burns in your soul.

Why do we settle, then, when we long for more? Is it a desperate attempt to gain what little we think we can? Do we lack the necessary patience to wait and hold out for the great? Or is it fortitude or skill we lack?

There are 4 signs that show you are a settler:

  1. You don’t get your hopes up. You’ve likely heard the saying, “If you don’t get your hopes up you will never be disappointed.” While this may be true according to logic, it kills the dreamer in you. When you allow your hopes to get built up, you will be surprised at how much more creative you will become in your quest to achieve. Will you get disappointed sometimes? Yes, but likely no more than you were before you got your hopes up.
  2. You use the words “just” a lot. “I just want a little house to call my own.” “If he would just hug me sometimes.” All of your ‘justs’ are justifications for settling. If you truly want more than just a little house or a few hugs, reach for more than just ‘just.’
  3. You make excuses. Settlers are classic excuse-makers. They will find a thousand and one reasons not to venture out into the unknown and reach for the great.  If you recognize yourself as a settler, I want to challenge you with the same thing I tell my employees and my kids: Don’t make excuses, make an effort. You’ll be surprised at how fast you come out of your funk.
  4. You complain about what you don’t have. You would think that those who settle are grateful for whatever they have. The opposite is actually true. Deep down in their souls they want so much more out of life, but for one reason or another–fear of rejection, consistent disappointment, lack of relationship with God–they lack the motivation to go for it.  Instead of applying all that energy to complaining about what you don’t have, channel it toward your desires. It doesn’t have to be a big step, it just has to be in the direction of your goals.

When you settle, you actually stop the hand of God from working in your life.

Once you stop settling, you will move towards your desires instead running away from them. You will reach for more instead of letting fear stop you. You will appreciate the waiting for more, instead of rushing to get what little you can.

Our God is the God of the impossible. Our God is the God who longs to give you the desires of your heart. Our God is the God who can do exceedingly, abundantly, above what we could ask, hope or think (Ephesians 3:20). When you stop habitually settling, He will help you find the great.


Kris Reece

Counselor, Coach, Speaker