The 2% Rule

For about 15 years now, I have followed what I call the 2% Rule. It’s something that will dramatically increase your happiness in life, and it has direct applications to your woman-life.
The 2% Rule is this:
If a particular negative result has a less than 2% chance of occurring, don’t worry about it. Don’t even think about it. Proceed.

Over the years of discussing dating and relationships with men, here is a random smattering of some of the statements I’ve seen men make:

I can’t finger a girl if I don’t know her well! I might get herpes on my finger!!! I saw it on Wikipedia!!!
You say to wait until you’re older to have kids, but that’s terrible advice! Your kids might have birth defects!!! Look at this article!!!
Even if I don’t cum, I still have to use a condom on my girlfriend! I could get her pregnant with my pre-cum!!! My doctor said!!!

You don’t understand! I HAVE to marry her! Her uncle is really rich! What if he dies and she inherits all his money??? I’ll never get any of that cash!!!
I can’t have sex with women on the second date! That’s way too soon! One of them might be a feminist and make a false rape accusation against me and I’ll go to jail!!! I read it on a forum!!!

You can’t soft next women like that! What if she shows up at your house and your work and becomes a psycho stalker???
It doesn’t matter if she got a clean STD test a week ago, she still might have an STD! What if she fucked ten other guys in the last five days and got an STD from one of them???
I’m not making any of this up. These are all real things real men have said.

It’s not just men doing this. I’ve seen mothers not allow their kids to go on beach field trips because “what if there’s a tsunami???”. I’ve also seen women say, “I have to leave the TV/radio blasting all day! What if there’s a tornado headed straight for my house??? I need to know!!!”

Are those above things possible? Yes, they’re possible. There is indeed a 0.06% chance or 1.2% chance of something like that happening.
Are they likely? No.
Are they even remotely likely? No.
The 2% Rule says if any action has a less than 2% chance of resulting in something horrible, then go for it. You’ll be fine.
Stressing out about things that have a less than a 2% chance of happening to you in real life damages your happiness, raises your stress, restricts your actions, limits your freedom, and makes you sound like a spazoid. Relax. Take a deep breath. It will be fine.

Conservatives, terrorists from Iran aren’t going to blow up your house and the government will never force you to marry someone of your own gender.
Progressives, global warming isn’t going to kill you. Neither will the Ten Commandments.
PUAs, she’s not going to get pregnant from your pre-cum.
Manosphere guys, feminists are not going to castrate you or turn you gay.
Ladies, he’s not going to put roofies in your drink on a first date.

All of you need to relax. Yes, these things are possible, but all of these things have a less than 2% chance of actually happening, therefore you shouldn’t even think about them. I don’t walk around worrying about these things for the same reason I don’t go around jumping with joy that I’ll win $500 million in the lottery next month.
Now if something bad has a higher than 2% chance of happening, then it’s time to actually consider it and take precautions.

Terrorists might not blow up your house, but there is a 90% chance (at least) that your government is going to try to rip you off by taxing you way too much, so you should take legal precautions against this.
Global warming isn’t going to kill you, but the odds are at least 60% that your lifespan will decrease significantly if you live your entire life in a downtown area where the air is bad, so you should consider moving out to the country eventually.
She’s not going to get pregnant from your pre-cum, but the odds are easily above 2% that you’ll get chlamydia or HSV-2 if you have sex with multiple stranger women without a condom, so you’d better put that condom on. (Later, after you’ve been seeing one particular woman many months and she clearly demonstrates responsible behavior, then maybe you can take the condom off with her.)

Feminists aren’t going to castrate you, but the odds are at least 60% that once a woman moves in with you (or even just gets very serious with you), she’ll attempt to start bossing you around because of Societal Programming originating with feminism, so you’d better think very carefully about doing this before you actually start making commitments.
That guy on that first date isn’t going to try to roofie you, but the odds are well beyond 2% that he’ll try to get you liquored up so he can get into your pants. (Of course, as a woman, you may want to drink to reduce your own ASD, but that’s another topic.)

I talk all the time about things like odds of divorce (60%+) and its solution (don’t get legally married or get an enforceable prenuptial agreement), or the odds of cheating (70%+) and its solution (always have open or semi-open relationships/marriage). I talk about maximizing your odds of getting to sex quickly and ways to do that (don’t cold approach women over age 33, don’t compliment a woman’s appearance, keep your first dates to under 1 hour, etc). You’ll notice that all of these things involve odds of much, much higher than 2%.

I’ll tell you to get a prenup (high probability prevention), but I won’t be advising you to run criminal background checks on every woman you have sex with because she might be a serial killer (low probability prevention). One prevents a 60%+ odds problem, the other prevents a 0.01% odds problem. See how this works?

Any time you’re considering a course of action, and see a negative possibly, research it and look dispassionately at the real odds of it and consider:

1. The actual mathematical odds of this actually happening in real life.

2. The actual mathematical odds of this actually happening to you personally, not to someone you’ve heard of ten years ago, or read about in a news article, or someone living in the 1700s or in some distant third-world country.
I’m not talking about general statements from a friend, family member, doctor, article, or even some asshole on a blog like this. I’m talking about real stats. I’m also not talking about the middle ages or Uganda. As always, I’m taking about the modern age and the western world.
Crunch the numbers, then ask yourself if the odds are 2% or less. If they are, then don’t worry about it. Proceed.

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  • Ken
    Posted at 07:31 am, 22nd December 2013

    In cold approach pickup, there is at least a 2% chance that the girl will like you even if you have horrible game. That means even if you are a newb and you cold approach without any skill, as long as you put enough numbers you will eventually get laid.

  • sd
    Posted at 10:44 am, 22nd December 2013

    I agree with your general point. Most people are way too risk averse (or simply fearful) too much of the time.

    However I disagree with your flat cut-off number. The risk MUST be weighed against the possible downside AND upside consequences. 2% = 49 to 1 odds against, which means if you engaged in the risky behavior every week for a year, you would face negative consequences. Some risks are worth that. Some arent. This is gambling 101.

    Here’s a clear, extreme example to illustrate the point: having unprotected sex with a woman who is HIV+. Your chances of contracting the virus are well below 2% (A quick google search says .04%) for one sexual encounter but obviously the downside risk is still too high.

    I know this is a little nit-picky and I do agree with the spirit of this rule but still think numbers need to be crunched for individual situations.

  • Alejandro
    Posted at 11:20 am, 22nd December 2013

    Ken: Thats exactly the opposite point of what blackdragon is arguing.

    I was going to make the exact same exaple sd made. By your logic you should not worry about contracting HIV from vaginal sex ever, since the odds are so low. You need to weight the potentiall consequences vs probability.

    I bet you also drive with your belt on, even when the odds of getting into a car accident that particular day are less than 2%.

  • Caleb Jones
    Posted at 11:52 am, 22nd December 2013

    In cold approach pickup, there is at least a 2% chance that the girl will like you even if you have horrible game.


    having unprotected sex with a woman who is HIV+. Your chances of contracting the virus are well below 2% (A quick google search says .04%) for one sexual encounter but obviously the downside risk is still too high


    I bet you also drive with your belt on, even when the odds of getting into a car accident that particular day are less than 2%

    All three of you guys are guilty of not crunching the REAL numbers.

    1. Your odds of dying in a car crash are WAY below 2%…if you only drive in a car once. However I believe the odds are over 95% that you will get in a car crash at some point in your life, but because you’re driving in a car so much. Therefore, I wear my seat belt.

    2. I have had sex, while wearing a condom, with a woman I knew was HSV-2 positive. GASP!!!!!! But here’s the deal…I’ve only done it about four times in my entire life, and even then it was with a woman who had a previous boyfriend who had sex with her without a condom often and never got anything. So my odds were kept well below 2%.

    Would I have sex with a woman like that every day for years on end? No. Then my odds would be shooting up past 2%. So I wouldn’t do that. But once or twice is fine.

    To repeat myself, you have to crunch the real life numbers, not the pure mathematical numbers.

  • JerryK
    Posted at 12:15 pm, 22nd December 2013

    BD you skipped commenting about the following blurb:

    “In cold approach pickup, there is at least a 2% chance that the girl will like you even if you have horrible game.”

    Were you about to say that is false or true?

    Also I’d be really interested to hear about your cold approach days. You mentioned on the forums you had some decent success walking around in malls and doing very indirect style of chat.

  • Caleb Jones
    Posted at 12:49 pm, 22nd December 2013

    Kendrick is right, there is a very low chance that a random girl you open at a grocery store will like you even if you’re an AFC. Let’s say it’s 2%. Hell, let’s say its 0.5%. But now let’s say you make 1000 approaches. Even as an AFC “nice guy”, your odds of getting laid are well above 2%. (Of course you want to increase those odds by improving your game.)

    This is why I would never recommend to anyone that they try to approach one girl and then never try again.

    In answer to your question, I have some big stuff on this blog coming up in the next few months about daygame. I realize I’ve been talking about it around the edges for a while, but for the first time my schedule and my weight are now conducive to do daygame again. More on this soon.

  • Jerrad
    Posted at 03:31 pm, 22nd December 2013

    If pre cum was less than 2%, so let’s say 1%, there’s still large odds of knocking a girl up if you often have sex. I have sex approx 100 times a year, so chances are I will impregnant a girl once. Evens if it’s 0.5% over years it likely will happen. My friend got some girl pregnant through pre-cum. It can definitely happen.

    Fantastic article though.

  • Skills
    Posted at 08:07 pm, 23rd December 2013

    I got about 5 abortions from pre-cum so, pre-cum and stds is were i draw the line…

  • Wolfgang
    Posted at 03:47 am, 24th December 2013

    @people saying that precum got someone pregnant, it’s far more likely the guy just didn’t pull out soon enough and unknowingly ejaculated a little bit. You can only impregnate a girl with precum if you haven’t gone pee since you last had sex.

    @BD and everyone else, keep in mind that std contraction percentages are usually based on a hundred couples engaging in unprotected sex for an entire year. So if you look up the odds of contracting HIV from an HIV+ woman and it’s 4% for example, this usually means over an entire year of unprotected sex, 4/100 men will have contracted the disease from their partner. You have to confirm the conditions of the experiments before basing your life on their results.

  • Locke stocke
    Posted at 06:45 pm, 24th November 2015

    I like to say, if your chance of something bad happening from an activity is less likely than dying in an auto accident, then go for it. Driving a car is relatively dangerous, but most people don’t think twice about doing that.

  • Han
    Posted at 12:55 pm, 15th March 2016

    Hi Blackdragon,

    Would this 2% rule also apply to being caught with a $1mm to $10mm fine for violating the very complicated and strict new CASL (Canadian Anti-Spam Legislation) laws? If you’re not familiar with it, basically, you need to document everything to prove that you have “express consent” to send marketing-related emails. If there are any complaints (or enough complaints to warrant an investigation), the onus is on you to prove that you were in compliance.

    This seems like just the kind of thing that would get Harry Browne mad about big government and cause him tell you not to fall into the “government traps” (thinking they’re more powerful and capable than they really are, and thinking that you can’t circumvent things that they do without consequence).

    Then, there’s always the Nassim Taleb “Black Swan” point of view, which basically amounts to: if you don’t consider and account for unlikely things that can go wrong, they’ll get you eventually.

    How do you square these ideas and what would you do?


  • Caleb Jones
    Posted at 01:09 pm, 15th March 2016

    Would this 2% rule also apply to being caught with a $1mm to $10mm fine for violating the very complicated and strict new CASL

    Of course. It applies to everything.

    Then, there’s always the Nassim Taleb “Black Swan” point of view, which basically amounts to: if you don’t consider and account for unlikely things that can go wrong, they’ll get you eventually.

    Correct and I agree. I consider “unlikely things that can go wrong” things at the 5% or 10% level, not at the 1% level. If you worry about the 1% level, you’ll spend the rest of your life worrying and doing little else, since there’s so many things that 1% encapsulates.

  • Han
    Posted at 01:41 pm, 15th March 2016

    That makes a lot of sense. Thanks for clearing that up!

  • Anon
    Posted at 04:53 pm, 9th May 2017

    I agree with the 2% rule for most one-time things in life.  I know someone who had a cancerous cyst on their kidney, and delayed surgery two years because of the 2% chance he would lose the entire kidney.  Fortunately, he eventually proceeded with surgery, and still has 1.8 kidneys left.


    The 2% chance of a false rape accusation is *per woman*.  If you end up having sex with 40 or 50 women or more, your overall risk becomes non-trivial.

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  • Marty McFly
    Posted at 12:16 am, 7th February 2018

    Here’s a slightly morbid little factoid for ya to crunch on: the HIV/AIDS rate in Haiti is a hair over 2%.

    From an opinion standpoint, Hatien girls are some of the sexiest dancers I’ve ever seen. Damn!

  • Anon
    Posted at 05:38 am, 7th February 2018

    That means it takes 2525 unprotected encounters with random Haitian women (provided HIV prevalence among them is also 2%; strangely, it appears their figure is a bit higher than that of men) to bring the overall chance of infection to 2%.

  • Marty McFly
    Posted at 02:58 pm, 7th February 2018

    ^^^ Pareto Principal in action, mon ami!

    Also, it’s a safe bet those odds you stated were accounting for girls of Haiti’s upper crust and not ones living below the poverty line.

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