What are people's thought on settling?
Are you interested only in finding someone you have chemistry with?
Personally I want the chemistry because if I date someone and there's no chemistry I feel that I am being unfair to them (they could meet someone who finds them amazing).
I think it is *essential* not to "settle" on the must-haves or the dealbreakers. Some are structural: if one person is set on a big family (something I will editorially note that none of us should be set on in an overpopulated world) and the other is set on having no kids at all, it's going to be hard to compromise. Others are preferences, but really, really strong ones: I, for example, will not try living with someone who smokes indoors. I have trouble imagining being happy in the long term when the really *big* things are not as you want them to be.
But you have to ask yourself: "What can I live with?" Can you live with your partner's having curly hair? Can you live with your partner's folding the newspaper "the wrong way"? What can you live with? What just isn't a big deal? Never make mountains out of molehills if you can help it.
To me, it seems that loving is the *easy* part. *Liking* is the hard part. Loving is just a matter of *permitting yourself to love*. But *liking*--that requires more. That requires things like enjoying the other person's sense of humor, approving of the other person's sense of values, and simply enjoying spending time with the other person. (For a highly sexual person--like me--being involved with another highly sexual person ensures enjoying spending lots of time together, so perhaps for a highly sexual person liking isn't as important as for someone who, like a friend of mine, just isn't a very sexual creature. But you still really want to be involved with someone whom you do, in fact, like as well as love.)
(Please recognize, too, that it's OK to be two different people. The one woman I've been involved with who seemed like a really good match to me left when she noticed differences between us--including, of all things, liking different things to eat--and apparently decided that that meant we were doomed. [I say "apparently" because she left and cut off all communication.] She left when we had had no fights at all and seemed very compatible. But there will always be differences.)
I think settling is the ability to will yourself to see a future against the odds. There are no guarantees. Sometimes people are not able to continue a relationship by the nature of their circumstances.