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Savvy Singles
by dating expert Tonja Evetts Weimer

What Are You Putting Up With That Keeps You From Finding Love?

Do you feel like you are putting up with a lot of stress and unsolvable problems?  Are you unhappy with your life the way it is and can’t understand how you let it get so bad?  Do you feel like you are worn out, both emotionally and physically?  Your difficult times are probably centered on either your work or your relationships. 


If you find yourself dealing with an issue where you feel stuck consider the following questions: 

    • What were your top five needs at the time you got in the place you are in? 
    • Were you frightened, so you settled for where you are out of desperation? 
    • Did you think you didn’t really have any other choices?
    • Have you currently outgrown those needs?  
    • Or do you need to find better coping strategies if you must stay where you are? 


    Think about the following ideas to help you resolve your situation:

    1. What you think you need isn’t necessarily the truth
    Every time you have a bad situation, it’s usually because you had a need or value that has now become too expensive in your life.  For example, you may have had a need to marry someone who could take care of you financially because you thought you couldn’t survive.  However, after living with this person, you may find that the cost has been too high to your mental and emotional health, and that in fact, it would be easier to learn how to take care of yourself. 

    2. Some promises cost way too much
    Sometimes we have an unrealistic commitment to a value, which causes life to be hard.  For example, you feel you must be loyal to a friend, or a relationship, no matter what they do or say to you.  You’re loyal because you promised you would be.  You may be so committed to the value of being loyal, you have forgotten how to be kind to yourself.  Your health and happiness therefore suffer.   

    3. Picture the future
    How long can your intolerable situation continue in your life?  Can you picture what your life will be in 2009 if you continue being where you are?  How about 2008?  Sometimes picturing the future helps us let go of what is not working now because we know that it will only get worse. 

    4. You have choices. 
    When you’re in difficult situations, it’s hard to find the energy and resources to turn things around.  What are your methods and patterns for coping with stress?  Can you consider a different way to deal with this situation?  You can get access to your own solutions by understanding that you always have choices. 

    5. Take one action; change one thing. 
    Go back and look at your life in the past. When was it as bad as it is now?  How did you deal with the stress then?  What one thing could you change that you did not do in the past that would have made your situation easier?  For example, perhaps in your former breakups with boy/girl friends, you waited until the situation was so bad, it became ugly.  Then you told everyone who would listen all the terrible things this person did to you.  (This helped you not feel so guilty about leaving.)  What recognized the end of the relationship before it got ugly, left with grace, and did not need to badmouth anyone? 

    False, unrealistic hope can make fools out of us all.  Lots of people commit to a relationship (or a job) because they have an illusion of what they want, rather than being able to see what really exists. 

    After you make a list of all the possible choices you have, and the actions you can take, make a list of people you can talk to about them.  Ask your friends for insight into your patterns, history, and reactions to stress.  From this information, look to see if you can identify recurring behavior that has not served you. 

    For instance, if you have always been known to yell at people when you were upset, see if you can hold your temper and watch your words the next time the circumstances get crunchy where you are.  Look to see where you can change just one act of behavior that has caused you to become more upset in the past. 

    Once you get yourself unstuck, you can look right around the corner for the one who looks for you.  Because once you stop putting up with misery, you will become more available, more identifiable, and more alive with possibility.  Remember...the way to find the perfect person for you is to become the person you are looking for.

    Tonja Evetts Weimer, M.A., is an award-winning author and Master Certified Single’s Coach and Personal Life Coach. Her Savvy Singles column appears every Friday in Online Dating Magazine. You can email Tonja at, visit her website a or, or call 864-294-9494.

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