The 90% Rule

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Look at the above picture. You won’t find a better picture that represents life. It represents your body, your relationships, your business life, everything. It perfectly describes one of the concepts I follow called the 90% Rule.

-By Caleb Jones

Longtime readers are already aware of the 2% Rule, and how silly I think people look when they don’t follow it. (Latest version - “I can’t fly to Europe! A terrorist might shoot me!”)

90% Rule is very different and much more complex. It states this:

You can never have anything in your life be perfect, and you’re a moron if try to find or create such a thing. However, with some work and effort, you can get it to 90% perfect. There are two types of chronically unhappy people who violate this rule on a regular basis.

“Perfect or Nothing” People
Throughout my life, I have encountered people, men and women both, you think they deserve perfect. Literally, 100% perfect. They will deny this, and say that of course they don’t expect anyone or anything to be “perfect.” However, if you watch their actions, it’s quite clear that 100% perfect is what they want.

If they don’t get perfect, they get extremely uncomfortable at best, angry at worst.
These are women (usually Dominants, but not always) who get indignant and offended when they have a relationship with a man and he does anything wrong. I don’t mean getting temporarily pissed or frustrated when your partner (or partners) does something wrong; that’s human and normal. I mean they actually take things personally when anything goes wrong, and feel violated, let down, and often like they’re wasting their time. “Why can’t he just do what I say??? Ughhh!!”

These are also men (usually Alpha Male 1.0s, but not always) who get instantly pissed off any time the woman (or women) in their lives do anything wrong. They feel disrespected and start bitching and yelling. “Why doesn’t she just fucking do what she says she’ll do???”

Another type of “Perfect or Nothing” Person is a growing group of men and women who are taking themselves off the dating market altogether. They just stop dating, and often stop having sex. When men do this, they go extreme MGTOW and retreat to video games, internet blogs, porn, and other distractions. When women do this, they absorb themselves into their children, parents, or sisters.

In both cases, they want a PERFECT partner or a PERFECT relationship. And dammit, if they can’t find one, then fuck it! I’ll just be alone! “Today’s women are gold-digging bitches anyway!” or “I don’t need a man to be happy! I’m a strong independent woman!”

Most of us are familiar with the angry men online who do this, but I have noticed, in the last five years in particular, many women starting to do this too. Usually these are women over the age of 35, who already have a kid or two, and who are still decently attractive. After their divorce (or equivalent) they do serial monogamy for a while, quickly realize men aren’t perfect, and that the Disney fairytale their mom told them about probably isn’t possible (which of course it isn’t, as I’ve discussed in my podcasts.)

Their reaction to this is to throw their arms in the air and decide to write off men completely. They start to over-focus on their kid(s), and when they grow old and their kids grow up, they plan to move in with their sisters, parents, or close female friends. Any real hopes of a marriage or long-term boyfriend are gone. Sometimes they may grab a nearby guy for a brief FB relationship so they can get some sex, but that’s the extent of their dating life, likely for the rest of their lives.

It’s important to realize that I’m not talking about fat or hopelessly ugly women here. Usually fat/ugly women get laid a lot and like it. No, I’m talking about women who are still trim and decently attractive, what most men would consider 7s or even 8s, at least for their age. It’s not that they can’t get a quality guy. They can. They just choose not to. They want perfect, or nothing. They’re directly ignoring the 90% Rule. 90% isn’t good enough, dammit. I’m A Strong Woman™. I Work Hard™. I Deserve The Best™.

Every man or woman I have seen choose this path suffers from reduced levels of happiness, for reasons I hope are obvious. Perfect or Nothing is not a path to happiness; it’s a path to bitterness.

On the other side of the spectrum are the Tolerators, whom I've mentioned before. These are people (men and women both) who have longer relationships, but tend to have constant, never-ending problems in those relationships. The exact problems depend on the person, but they include things like:

1. Constant drama
2. Constant, semi-regular cheating (which causes constant drama)
3. Constant problems with children that negatively affect the relationship
4. Long-term buried feelings of resentment
5. Zero or near-zero sex
6. Abuse (physical or emotional)

When you point out the constant drama (or other constant problem) in their relationship to a Tolerator, he/she will respond with irrational, defensive comments like this:

“Well, no one is perfect!”
“Well, no relationship is perfect!”
“Well, c’mon, you can't NEVER have any drama!”
“Relationships aren’t about being happy.”
“Relationships are about compromise.”
"What doesn't kill you makes you stronger!"

Then they go right back to their near-constant problems and frequent unhappiness.
While “Perfect or Nothing” People demand 100% perfection and suffer constant unhappiness when they can’t get it, Tolerators put up with relationships that are 10% or 20% of perfection, and suffer regular unhappiness because their relationships suck.
In both cases, you have people suffering long-term unhappiness because of their direct violation of the 90% Rule.
Getting to 90%
A better way to long-term, consistent happiness is work towards a relationship (or a career, or a body, or a life) that is not perfect, but as close as you can get to it within reasonable, real-life constraints. In my experience, 90% is quite achievable, given time and effort.

My life is 90% perfect. I’m tempted to say that these days it’s almost 95% perfect. Seriously. My life is awesome, though imperfect. Will it ever be 100% perfect? Nope. But that’s not my objective, because I’m not a moron. Knowing there will always be around 10% of my life that sucks to some degree, I accept this. The things that bother me I shrug off and let slide.

My relationship life, or my woman life as I call it in my book, is 90% perfect. It’s amazing. Granted, it took me several years of hard work to get it to 90%. When I was a married, monogamous beta male, my woman life was at about 40%. When I got divorced, and I started having sex more often and spending time with happy women, it shot up to 65%. 65% isn’t bad, and a hell of a lot better than 45%, but that’s not good enough for me, because I like to be really happy. Yet I always knew that 100% was impossible. 100% is Disney, and Disney is a fairy tale.

So I put in the time and effort, and pushed it to 70%, then 75%, and onward. It took me a few years, but today it’s at 90%. Some days it temporarily pops up to 93% or so, but that’s as far as it’s ever going to get. Thinking you can get your woman life, or any other part of your life, to 100% perfect is delusional in the extreme. (Many people get married because of this delusion.) But 90% is achievable. And 90% is amazingly awesome, believe me.

The only possible variable is your desire to put in the work and effort. You might view 70% as good enough, because you’re lazy and/or you don’t have the motivation to put in the work and time necessary to get that 70% to 90%. As I always say, that’s fine and it’s your life. I just better not hear you complain about your problems if you choose to live with them. I’ll be over here being happy.

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