9 mistakes women with high standards make in relationships

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Let’s get something straight:

High-value women have high standards in a relationship, and that’s a very good thing.

They make it clear how they expect to be treated and they create healthy boundaries to enforce that.

So far, so good.

But sometimes even women with high standards can slip up.

Let’s look at some of the common mistakes to watch out for.

1) Confusing high standards with impossible standards

Top of our list has to be the very definition of high standards.

Because high standards are great, impossible standards on the other hand are far from it.

High standards also need to be realistic.

We’re talking about healthy expectations like:

  • Trust
  • Honesty
  • Kindness
  • Respect

But creating a shopping list and expecting someone to tick off everything on there isn’t the same thing.

At the end of the day, nobody is perfect.

Perfectionism can quickly ruin our relationships and put them under incredible strain.

When a woman confuses high standards with impossible standards, her partner never measures up.

2) Looking for a fairytale rather than real love

Growing up I noticed something quite striking:

That I liked the idea of love far more than the reality of it.

And who could blame me?

We are sold rom-com romances and happy endings from such a young age. 

It gives us the false hope that the missing piece to our puzzle is a partner who will “complete us” and be our “other half”.

So what a disappointment it can feel when you meet someone and they don’t fulfill your happily ever after.

It turns out they are only human after all.

The promise of love is all butterflies and excitement. But the day-to-day realities of love always become less thrilling.

Women with high standards can mistake real love for inadequate love because it doesn’t live up to the Hollywood hype.

When actually, real love is far more down to earth than the movies have us hoping.

Which, as we’ll see next, is why we shouldn’t be too quick to overlook it.

3) Being too quick to make a judgment about someone

I’ll be honest, I’ve turned up on dates before and thought within the first 30 seconds:

“No, way, this guy is not for me”.

For sure, sometimes our gut feelings can be right. But not always.

Because it’s not necessarily our high standards that are speaking to us, sometimes it’s our biases and conditioned responses.

Women with high standards might find they are too quick to decide rather than give people a chance.

They might judge a book by its cover or make speedy assumptions about someone.

They may have a preconceived idea of what they are looking for, and if someone doesn’t seem to match up they dismiss them.

But actually, love is complicated, just like people are. It can also grow on us.

I’m not suggesting anyone should “settle”. But when we stay open-minded people can surprise us.

What we think we’re looking for on paper isn’t always the best fit for us.

Avoiding the temptation to make snap decisions allows us to get to know people without us putting up unhelpful obstacles and barriers.

Maybe it can also help us to avoid the next mistake on the list — accepting someone for who they are, rather than what you want them to be.

4) Expecting people to change and thinking you can “fix” them

I’ve lost count of the number of girlfriends who have taken on a guy who is a bit of a project.

Heck, let’s face it, we’ve all done it, right?

We see plenty that we do like, and the bits that we don’t we secretly assume we can change about him.

But people aren’t house renovations.

We cannot fix them up.

It’s not only tricky to do, but it’s also not fair.

Yes, people can and do change. But they have to do it for themselves, not to meet someone else’s exacting standards.

Whether it’s the way they dress, the job they do, or certain habits that drive you nuts — expecting someone to change to meet your high standards always ends in tears.

That’s not to say we shouldn’t have basic expectations.

But expecting someone to adapt to our own personal preferences is never going to work.

Instead, it can simply turn us into stubborn partners who insist things are done their own way.

5) Taking a “my way or the high way” approach

I’m a really strong-willed woman for sure.

I’m far from meek and if I’m not careful, I can steamroller over a guy.

I’ll be honest, it can be tempting at times. Because I strongly suspect most of us like to get our own way.

Why wouldn’t we?!

But compromise is an essential part of any relationship.

Women with incredibly high standards aren’t always as keen on the idea of compromise.

They can see it as accepting less than they deserve.

Sometimes they may lay down the law, and expect others to toe the line.

We may not like it when things aren’t done how we would do them. But it all goes back again to the big difference between standards and expectations.

In a relationship, we all have needs that are non-negotiables, but others are simply wants.

These wants have to be compromised from time to time in order to accommodate the wants of our partner too.

It’s all about give and take so that we ensure we’re giving our significant others just as much as we expect from them.

6) Taking someone for granted

If we don’t stop and consciously consider the needs and wants of others, we can end up taking them for granted.

We forget to show them gratitude for everything they are and what they may do for us.

This often happens when we expect things from people.

We fail to remember that what they do for us or give us is a gift, not an obligation.

It’s easy for complacency to set in within relationships.

But when you already expect a lot, you may find it easier to overlook the efforts, energy, and contributions of your partner.

Showing our appreciation is key to cultivating strong connections.

7) Holding grudges

Woe betide the person who dares to cross a woman with high standards.

Her firm boundaries will quickly put you in your place.

They help her to draw a clear line in the sand that cannot be crossed.

But sometimes they also mean she isn’t so quick to forgive and forget.

Whilst that might sound like a good thing for creating high standards in your relationship, it can stand against you.

Sure there are red flags we should not tolerate.

Things like:

  • Emotional or physical abuse
  • Controlling behavior
  • Extreme jealousy
  • Gaslighting and manipulation
  • Lies and dishonesty

But the reality is that people also make mistakes.

We get it wrong sometimes. And for the sake of saving a relationship, we have to let forgivable errors go.

If your standards are set too high, you may hold on to self-destructive grudges rather than letting sh*t go.

Much like the next mistake on our list, the antidote is better communication.

8) Expecting their partner to always know how they are feeling and what they are thinking

If you’ve got very high standards, when they are not met you might end up feeling pretty frustrated, sad, or mad.

But rather than have an honest talk about what we’re feeling, we expect our partner to mind read.

We may feel disappointed or misunderstood when they fail to see what they’ve done wrong.

If they haven’t instantly guessed what’s going on, we may seek to “punish” them by:

  • Sulking
  • Snapping at them
  • Giving the silent treatment
  • Withholding affection

But these passive-aggressive techniques do more harm than good.

We need to remember that we are not in fact two halves of the same whole. We are two individuals who see things and feel things differently.

The only way to create better understanding is by explaining how we feel and talking through our issues.

9) Putting too much pressure on themselves

Up until now, most of the mistakes women with high standards make in relationships that we’ve looked at focus on the other person in the relationship.

But it’s important to highlight that having too high standards can also be just as much of a burden on you too.

If you always expect yourself to do and say the right thing in your relationships it creates a lot of stress and anxiety.

It’s hard to show vulnerability and be your true self.

You might end up stretching yourself too thin to try to create the perfect relationship and be the perfect partner.

But we have to cut ourselves some slack.

That means forgiving our own imperfections, flaws, and errors rather than dwelling on them.

High standards should always be used to enhance your life, support yourself and nurture healthy relationships.

They should never be used to exert unrealistic or unreasonable pressure on either yourself or others.

Louise Jackson

My passion in life is communication in all its many forms. I enjoy nothing more than deep chats about life, love and the Universe. With a masters degree in Journalism, I’m a former BBC news reporter and newsreader. But around 8 years ago I swapped the studio for a life on the open road. Lisbon, Portugal is currently where I call home. My personal development articles have featured in Huffington Post, Elite Daily, Thought Catalog, Thrive Global and more.

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