Mathematicians suggest the “37% rule” for your life’s biggest decisions

Relationships aren’t like that

"The problem is that the world of interpersonal relations is hard to put a number on. Probabilities and game theory do funny things when you input the wobbly, fuzzy variables at play in human behavior.

Take the 37% rule, for instance. As a general principle, it makes sense to experience a variety of different dates and familiarize yourself with a range of personality types before you settle down.

But who’s to say that date one isn’t the love of your life — the person you click with instantly and who could make you no happier? Who’s to say you won’t return to a past date or relationship, realizing later they were the best all along? And let’s not forget that it’s not just you deciding this — you have to be accepted in turn!

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But the biggest problem with the 37% rule, or the idea of “exploring,” when applied to dating is that one date is never enough. Sometimes 10 or 100 dates is not enough to reveal someone’s true character.

As a general rule, though, 37% is a good one. When it comes to buying things or making life decisions, it’s a mathematically safe starting point. There’s a lot of wisdom to be had in sampling the field before settling down. It’s about doing research and calibrating expectations. It’s all about learning what makes something good or bad, and just what you want in a thing.

When will you use it first?"