Note: This blog originally published in August 2011.
We all know that women are finally reaching parity with men in the workplace, and even surpassing them in terms of education. As women become more successful and educated, finding a good man who is at least close to equal becomes a challenge for the single gal, particularly for the woman who is trying to become the very best version of herself.
However, when it comes to dating, some tend to still think being with any man is better than being with no man at all. But, despite the widening gap between men and women professionally, I say, ladies: continue to work on the me before the he, and don’t settle for mediocrity.
Allow me to explain.
Refusing to settle for “just because”
How many times as a single woman have you gone out with a man “just because?” Just because you didn’t have another date, just because he’s the only one who asked lately, just because he’s seemingly the only one who will put up with your schedule and lifestyle? How many of us have put up with those men “just because” if we have one more date with them, we think they’ll miraculously change, pick up their socks, ask us what we’d like to do on Friday night, or just LISTEN to what we have to say for once?
Ladies, I’m here to suggest that we all as a gender must stop lowering our standards “just because” we want to be with a man. Allowing mediocre behavior into our lives simply invites more mediocrity. It also shows society (and ourselves) that it is OK to be mediocre. Instead, we need to dump the mediocre men (and for that matter, people) in our lives who tear us down, who hold us back, who keep us from being our very best selves. Why put up with it?
There is no one size fits all
Also, in a society that is obsessed with the white dress, I’m here to support you in letting that idea go–that societal need or pressure to be married by age X and have 2.2 kids by age Y and a chauffeur to soccer camp by age Z. I’m here to give you the permission to take that pressure off of yourself and quit using that as the excuse to welcome mediocrity into your life.
There is no one best size that fits all when it comes to relationships anymore, and the beautiful thing about living in a society where equality is promoted now is that we don’t HAVE to have marriage, family and the mini-van in order to be happy anymore, “just because.”
Pursue your passions without Mr. Mediocre
I say, ladies, that we all focus on what we can change, improve and fix while awaiting the man who DOES bring out our best selves: that is, ourselves! We can focus on getting a better job, going back to school, pursuing our wildest dreams and passions without Mr. Mediocre. If we keep putting our energy into Mr. Mediocre…? That’s going to just lead to more mediocrity, and maybe even unhappiness and outright disappointment when it comes to having a significant other relationship. If we keep putting up with the Mr. Mediocres, we are sending the men a signal that it’s OK to be mediocre. Really? Is it OK to be mediocre?
Ladies: be fierce. Be fabulous! And if you have a man who can’t allow you and challenge you to be the very best fierce and fabulous you that you can be, then dump him! Be alone. It’s OK! In fact, it is GREAT! Why? Because it is going to leave you open to focus on the me instead of the he, and when the right he comes along, you’ll already be on your way to fierce, fabulous, and open to inviting him to the amazing privilege of sharing your awesome life. (And yes, it IS a privilege for him to be part of your life!)
And if he never comes along? So what! At least you didn’t settle for “just because.” Being happy alone is a far, far better thing than being coupled up and miserable. You only have one life, so maximize it to the fullest, and focus on the best gift of all: being the very best you that you can become. Stop allowing mediocrity to be part of your life. You deserve better. Seriously!