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A quick glance at your Facebook feed in your mid-20s and you’ll likely note some pretty contrasting lifestyles: While some men tie the knot and start a family early, others enjoy the bachelor-type of existence as long as they can possibly squeeze it. Some men are willing to update their status publicly and post selfies with their girlfriend, while others may avoid the ‘g-word’ at all costs. If you’re a little sensitive to the idea of commitment and you’re not sure why, it doesn’t mean you have a problem settling in, it just may be an imbalance on your timeline and the girl you’re seeing.

“In general, women desire to be in relationships more than men because women are assessed by and valued for relationships, whereas men are valued for their career status and income. So women often want to commit more quickly than men and want to stay in relationships longer (even when the relationships aren't working all that well) because compared to men, a woman's status diminishes more (in the eyes of society) when she's single,” love and sex therapist Dr. Karin Anderson Abrell says. “Think of the pejorative terms we use for single women — spinster, old maid — but a single man is simply a bachelor — a term with no negative connotation.”

But here’s the kicker: If you can’t even fathom the idea of sticking with one girl for any period of time, you may be holding yourself back from many experiences that can often be better when you’re in a relationship: Sex often gets better over time, you have more security, you can be more vulnerable and allow yourself to have more healthy, fun, passionate emotions — to name a few. Doesn’t sound so scary, right?

If it does and you want to overcome that fear of commitment, here are some pro tips on how to finally call that girl you’ve been seeing for six months your freaking girlfriend:

1. Understand It’s Never Going To Be The 'Perfect' Time

Dr. Abrell says most men want all of their so-called financial ducks in a row before they consider adding a swan to their lake. “When a man believes he's on track toward his career aspirations, he feels more confident in himself and what he can bring to a relationship,” she says. “He then can begin to open up to the idea of commitment and marriage. Before then, he will certainly enjoy the companionship his relationships provide but he won't yet feel compelled to commit.”

RELATED READING: Check Out The Best Online Dating Websites The Internet Has To Offer

Especially in a volatile economy — or frankly, just life in general – there are always going to be bright times and tough ones. But the right person might only come along once and you don’t want to turn your head because you’re too busy crunching numbers to see her. Abrell suggests taking a step back and looking at your career path: “If you’re stuck in a dead-end job, get your résumé together and find a new one. 

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