Looking for a potential partner in life can be daunting and overwhelming. This is particularly true for those who feel pressured by others to find love. (Like being single is the worst thing in the world! Did you know that it can even be good for your health?) All these criticisms is why some women tend to settle for less – they compromise even when there's a better solution, they give in regardless of what they're giving up, and they accept things against their better judgment. These actions, when they happen too often, result in unhappiness and dissatisfaction in their current relationships.

To avoid having problems in the long run, it’s essential to address some non-negotiable issues early on. Here are a few of them:

1. Relationship Goals
It’s not something you have to talk about on the first date, but when things start to get serious, you two have to discuss what you want to get out of the relationship. This way, there won’t be any disappointments when one cannot meet the other’s idea of #relationshipgoals.

2. Finances
What if you have different financial priorities? What will you do if one has a strict 5-year plan while the other is okay with living from paycheck to paycheck? According to life coach and relationship expert Marni Battista, you and your partner should talk about money issues especially if you two plan to move in together. “Money is the number one cause of divorce in modern times, so getting it out of the way early will help make it less sticky in the future.”

3. Values
Everyone has their own set of values that they have established growing up – and you shouldn't have to change them just to keep the peace in your relationship. Likewise, it’s not healthy to change your partner’s values to satisfy yours. If you two have opposing perspectives, either you agree to disagree, or accept the fact that you two may not be meant for each other. If you're lucky, you can learn from each other over time, but that requires a lot of hard work so make sure you're up for the challenge.

4. Intimacy
Knowing when and how you will be intimate with your other half can be a touchy (and awkward) topic, but it’s something both of you have to discuss openly. Sit down with your partner and lay down rules or boundaries that need to be followed. Also, don’t forget that no means no, so you have the right to decline and take your time if you’re not ready yet.

5. Independence
Just because you’re now a couple doesn't mean that he can take control of your life. Both of you still need to maintain your individuality. He shouldn’t tell you who to talk to or what to wear. It’s still your call. You have the right to your freedom, and if he can’t grasp the idea of needing to spend time away from each other, then you’ll end up feeling trapped. Remember, any decision to be made that concerns you, your body, and your well-being should be entirely up to you.

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