It should all be relatively simple: you're definitely a catch of sorts – reasonably good-looking, with a 2:1 degree in your back-pocket and a dry sense of humour that you're particularly proud of.
OK; you're not everyone's cup of tea (no one can please everyone) but you've plenty of great friends and your major flaws are relatively limited (a-jar-of-Nutella-in-one-sitting habit aside).
So why are you still single? Why are so many guys out there a serious let-down?
It's not that you're DYING to do the whole wedding and babies and mortgage thing any time soon. And granted, your mam heralding the arrival of your 26th birthday with cries of 'I'll never have any grandkids,' was embarrassingly OTT.
But somewhere at the back of your mind you know it's probably a good idea to start keeping an eye out for your lucky chosen one (lest Zac Efron not be available for marriage circa 2023).
Now US author Jon Birger has released a no-nonsense, full breakdown of why you're single: Date-onomics: How Dating Became A Lopsided Numbers Game.
He says he was compelled to research and write the book after noticing his single gal pals were always complaining that “guys were ignoring them or were toying with them”.
New York resident Jon is a financial writer for the likes of Fortune and TIME. He crunched demographic, census and other data to show that you're not just imagining it: it really is historically rough out there for the ladies.
In conclusion, and after much investigation, Mr Birger reckons there are eight reasons why women can’t find a man.
The book is definitely directed more specifically at an American readership, AND while we're don't necessarily agree with everything he says, here at SHEmazing! we also reckon there's a lot us Irish gals can learn from Jon's observations…
So, without further ado, here's why you're single…
1) You live in Dublin
The divorce rate is higher than anywhere else; you’re more likely to be single in your 30s, AND there are just more women knocking around. In fact, in all urban areas in Ireland, men are outnumbered – meaning you want to consider a day-trip to the countryside (if not an actual change of address) to meet that special guy.
2) You do the wrong college course
When it comes to education, females trump the boys pretty much every time: last year girls did better in 50 out of 59 Leaving Cert papers.
That means our third-level colleges and universities are disproportionately full of women – by a ratio of 57:43, in fact.
“Facebook did a study a few years ago on how couples met, and it turned out that 25 percent met their significant others in college or grad school,” Mr Birger says.
So, you want to increase your chances of finding The One? Opt for courses such as computer science, engineering and agriculture – which are still male-dominated.
3) The men are playing you
As reported by numerous publications, Jon highlights that dating is out with younger people and hookup culture is in. He also reckons that with the gender imbalance on college campuses, men are “having a field day”.
And so he issues a warning: the longer a girl settles for casual sex as opposed to a long-term relationship, the more chance she has of ending up alone.
4) You’re not issuing an ultimatum
“Ultimatums work in business and politics,” Mr Birger reckons. “This notion that the only area of life you shouldn’t issue an ultimatum in is romance doesn’t make sense.”
Indeed, researcher John Molloy interviewed 3,000 couples right after they got married and found that 60 percent of the women were prepared to walk away if their guy suddenly declared he wasn’t ready.
5) You’re not making the first move
Go-get-em women are the ones more likely to get the guy. Mr Birger cites a premarital counsellor who told him that “of the nine couples he had in counselling, seven of them shared a similar story: the guys all had several options, but they married the women who pursued them the most”.
And ladies, don’t worry about turning off guys by being too pushy. “It’s a myth that men enjoy the chase,” the author adds.
6) You’re working in the wrong job
Slaving away in PR, education, nursing, event planning or other female-dominant fields? Time to get a new job!
That’s because around one in ten of us meet our spouse at work.
Some careers to consider instead: mechanical engineering, IT, and financial advising.
7) You’re too religious
“People who leave organised religion are disproportionately male,” Mr Birger reckons. “Atheists and agnostics are also disproportionately male.”
8) You’re too picky
“For the women who wait [to settle down], the dating pool gets much, much worse,” Jon warns.
He likens it to a game of musical chairs. In the first round, fresh into the dating market, nearly every woman gets a chair. By the final round, the chances of losing soar to 50 percent.
The author actually says if we were all more “open-minded about who we dated,” it would be less of an issue, but these days “both men and women have become more rigid about dating across socioeconomic boundaries”.
So to find a mate, women with a Masters degree should consider dating someone from a working-class background with limited formal education.