Relationship folklore teaches us to be wary of settling. Simply put, a person is thought to be settling with their partner when they accept less than they want or less than they deserve. There is a whole bunch of reasons why settling in a relationship isn’t a great thing, but to get yourself out of a settling situation, you have to be able to identify when you’re in one in the first place!
Though it sounds simple, it’s not always easy to tell when you’re settling and when you’re not. Many people confuse settling with accepting their partner’s flaws or committing to someone who makes them happy even though that person doesn’t have as much money as they’d like or a career they admire. By the same token, others believe they’re not settling with that person they don’t actually love, just because he (or she) is attractive, rich and polite. It can be pretty confusing to truly know when you are settling, but thankfully, there are some clear signs.
It’s often said that each sign of the zodiac has a distinct personality, perspective and thinking process. And when it comes to settling, each sign will typically react in a different way, to subconsciously let themselves know that they’re not at their happy ending just yet.
Settling doesn’t work out for a lot of people, but the fire signs in particular—Aries, Leo, and Sagittarius—really don’t find happiness this way.
These signs are charged by passion and fire, and they don’t like anything in their lives to be boring, especially not love!
When they do settle into relationships with people they don’t really love, they can act in a number of ways, but the common factor is all these actions will be fueled by the battles inside them. Their inner-voice tells them that they’re not following the path they’re meant to follow, but they try to persist with it because they don’t like giving up. The result? Strong feelings of anger and frustration, embarrassment and even suffocation, making them feel like they want to drop everything and run away
We all know that Aries is prone to a little bit of aggression every now and then. Though she makes an excellent leader, this sign has an itsy bitsy temper that tends to ignite when she’s not at peace, and that’s exactly what happens when she settles in a relationship.
Deep down, Aries will know that she’s with someone who doesn’t bring out the best in her and who doesn’t make her truly happy, and while others might react to that with sadness, she’s more likely to react with anger. She might be mad at herself for committing to someone she shouldn’t have committed to, or for not being able to love someone who’s perfect on paper, or even at the world, just because the situation sucks.
Leo is the life of the party, the superstar of the zodiac, and the queen of the social scene. This is a very proud sign who lives to hold her head up high, and who is usually bursting with confidence, though she does take into account what other people think of her.
When Leo is happy with her relationship, she wants to show it off. But when she’s not, she can end up feeling embarrassed about it.
The Lion can feel disappointed in herself for allowing herself to settle, particularly when she craves a fast-paced, action-packed life of fun and excitement, and feeling that out of touch with herself can lead her to want to just hide under her bed. Certainly, she won’t be posting endless pictures of herself with her partner if she feels like she’s settling.
Like her fiery sisters, Sagittarius is idealistic and doesn’t naturally settle. So when she does find herself in a relationship that’s not serving her, she has a feeling in the pit of her stomach that something isn’t right. Rather than getting mad or feeling embarrassed about it, her first reaction is to run away.
Committing to someone she doesn’t love is a very scary prospect for this sign—she has to deal with all the relationship elements that she doesn’t naturally care for, like consistency, hard work, and rules, but she doesn’t get the elements that make it worth it in return, like the wonderful feeling of true love. This will make her feel like she’s losing control, and she might find herself heading for the hills.
The earth signs are typically less emotional than other signs. Taurus, Virgo, and Capricorn don’t spend all day dreaming about stumbling across a true love or soulmate the way other signs might, but make no mistake—they’re still incredibly idealistic.
These signs might not have a hunger for passionate love, but they are hungry for perfection.
Settling in a relationship doesn’t usually fit into these signs’ version of perfection. They plan out their lives in detail and when they don’t get something that they intended to get—like a healthy and happy relationship—they tend to freak out a little bit. That can be anything from getting an attitude to crumbling under stress to compensating for that missing happiness with huge amounts of work.
Taurus happens to be one of the easiest signs of the zodiac to get along with, most of the time. But seeing as she is a Ram, she can be hard-headed. When she doesn’t feel happy within herself because the plan she carved out isn’t working the way she wanted it to, she can react by being moody, and challenge the person she’s settling with.
Though it might not be fair or reasonable, she could hold the fact that she’s settling against him. She’ll feel an urge to argue with him for the sake of it, to challenge him on every little thing he says, and to generally be as difficult as possible. This could come down to resentment with her, that she doesn’t realize she’s built up against herself.
As much as she’d like to change it, Virgo gets the honor of being the stress-ball of the zodiac. Panicking is a natural reaction to her, and seeing as she’s more of a perfectionist than all of the other signs put together, this happens often.
Being tied to someone who doesn’t make her happy, or more importantly for Virgo, who doesn’t bring out the best in her or benefit her life, can cause some serious anxiety.
Anxiety manifests differently in everyone, and Virgo can experience anything from restless nights to a lack of appetite to full-blown panic attacks. This sign is very hard on herself, and she won’t interpret settling into a relationship as a mistake to learn from, but as a failure that she let herself down with.
At the best of times, Capricorn is a workaholic. This sign typically puts work before relationships, even when they look promising, because she tends to favor career success over all other success. If Capricorn does put all of herself into a relationship and cuts back on the work, you know that she’s found someone she can see herself ending up with. And if she later realizes that she doesn’t actually want to end up with that person, she’ll be annoyed with herself and will try to make up for lost time.
She doesn’t like to lose, and she interprets being in a loveless or unhappy relationship as losing. Being another earth sign, Capricorn wants everything to be flawless, and if she can’t have a flawless relationship, she’s going to make darn sure she has perfection in her job.
Gemini, Libra, and Aquarius, or the air signs, also don’t fare very well when they’re just settling. These ladies can be as passionate as the fire signs and tend to want even more fun and excitement in their lives. There are so many parts of settling that don’t do right with them, and they’re probably among the least likely to do it in the first place. Once they do settle, they almost never stay that way for very long.
Before they leave their relationships or get dumped, they tend to struggle with some serious feelings that can lead them to act out in a number of ways.
They might experience a little denial, and try to distract themselves until they can come to terms with the fact that the relationship isn’t serving them, or they might even react with hostility.
Gemini by nature doesn’t like to think deeply about things. If she can subconsciously sense that she’s not happy in her relationship because she’s settling, she’s less likely to spend a long time thinking about those feelings (and eventually do something about it) than other signs. Instead, she’ll try to stay positive and focus her mind on other areas so it doesn’t eat her up.
Being Gemini, this sign has at her disposal a range of things to keep her occupied. She has endless friends and acquaintances who love her company and would be happy to see her whenever. She’s involved in clubs and hobbies, and she’s an active member of the community, so all of this will temporarily distract her from dealing with her relationship issues.
Just the word settling brings Libra’s mood down. This sign is often called the lover of the zodiac thanks to her undying belief in true love, her affinity for public displays of affection, and her idealistic nature.
There are many things about settling that upset Libra, but most of all she hates the fact that if you’re committed to the wrong person you could miss your chance of falling in love with the right person.
It’s very out of character for Libra to settle, but if she does, there’s a high possibility that she’ll feel down. Over a long period of time, she might even develop depression symptoms. Basically, she feels like she was put on this earth to love properly, and settling means she’s not fulfilling her purpose, which worries her to the core.
Aquarius is another sign who’s incredibly unlikely to settle in the first place. This sign is similar to Sagittarius in that she doesn’t crave relationships the way others do, and if she allows herself to commit to one, she does it for the benefit of true love. In the event that she’s tied to a relationship she’s not emotionally invested in, she’s likely to just leave. But if she stays, she might feel like she’s lost control over what she wants in life.
Acting out in aggressive ways or breaking the rules is a common way of dealing with a loss of control. There are endless things Aquarius could do to break the rules in the context of a relationship, which might include lying to her partner just because, or even cheating.
A loveless or unhappy relationship can really mess around with the minds of Cancer, Scorpio, and Pisces, the water signs. Generally, the pressure and stress of trying to maintain a relationship which doesn’t serve them can lead them to lose touch with who they are and act in ways that are totally out of character for them.
Love, intimacy, and connection are usually very important to them, so having a relationship without those things leaves the water signs feeling confused and stressed out.
This can then have an effect on their thoughts and change the way they see the world. They might go from strong women to nervous wrecks and from being inspired to losing hope. Their passion could also lead them to try and change the situation so they’re not settling anymore, but this doesn’t always work.
Emotions tend to flow through Cancer at a much faster rate than they do with other signs, which is what makes the Crab one of the most sensitive and fragile signs of the zodiac. Though she has a hard outer shell, it really doesn’t take a lot for this sign to come undone. Something like a relationship that offers her no love or happiness could strike a nerve and really get to Cancer, leaving her feeling frustrated and stuck.
Unlike other signs, Cancer can’t just ignore her feelings. If she’s feeling frustrated or unsettled, she probably won’t function at her best in any area of life. So if she stays in a relationship like this, everything from her work life to her family life could suffer.
Scorpio is another water sign who’s sensitive and emotional, though she tends to be a little more proactive. When something’s bothering her, of course, she’s overwhelmed with feelings, but then she does what she can to deal with it. In the case of settling in a relationship, it’s possible that Scorpio could take an aggressive approach and try to change her partner into somebody she actually does love.
She might really analyze what it is she doesn’t love, and either change the way she sees it or change that quality in the person.
Changing other people never works out quite like you think it will, and you also can’t force feelings or chemistry that aren’t there, so a lot of the time, Scorpio ends up feeling pretty disappointed.
Accepting a relationship that isn’t really what she wants is guaranteed to bother Pisces, who is all about passion, honesty, and intimacy when it comes to relationships. If she does end up settling, she won’t feel like herself, simply because it’s such an out-of-character thing to do. And when she doesn’t feel like herself, she’ll start to lose some of that intuition she’s known for.
Pisces is also known to be the most creative and artistic sign in the zodiac, but she’ll find it hard to draw inspiration and experience a flow of creative ideas when she’s not feeling like herself. Rather, she’ll experience blockages in every area of her life until she sorts out the problem that is causing her to feel like a stranger in her skin.