This is the Antifragile Summary By Nassim Taleb: Things That Gain from Disorder

Antifragile is a term coined by Nassim Taleb in his book Antifragile: Things That Gain from Disorder. He defines antifragility as “the property of being less fragile or robust under stress.” The concept was inspired by biological organisms such as viruses, bacteria, and plants that are able to survive even after facing extreme circumstances.

Today, companies are building their businesses around the principles of antifragility. They are taking advantage of the benefits of uncertainty and complexity to create resilient solutions. They are also using this concept to develop new ways of working together, creating innovative products and services.


antifragile summary by nassim taleb

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Nassim Taleb divided people into 3 categories

  1. Fragile people: those who give up early after the first loss 
  2. Resilient people: those who don’t affect by black events 
  3. Antifragile people: those who benefit from black events 

Everyone can be an antifragile person but in order to get there, you need to master three daily practices: 

You can lose it all

“When you become rich, the pain of losing your fortune exceed the emotional gain of getting additional wealth ” -Nassim Taleb 

The first step to antifragility is to make sure that when you take a big loss you won’t be emotionally crippled, and you do that by going every morning through the process of potentially losing everything you have.

Each morning you close your eyes and you imagine that you lost all of your belongings, your savings, job, and businesses, once you imagine that you reach your bottom of the day, you can open your eyes and experience the day with 100% upside, even if you had an unexpected loss it will be small comparing to what you have imagined in the morning. You will become less afraid of uncertainty and stress, also you will become more positive, grateful, and ambitious to start your day.

The barbell strategy

The second step to antifragility is mastering The barbell strategy, it is a strategy that was introduced by Nassim Taleb which means playing it safe in some areas and at the same time taking a lot of small risks in other areas, in other words, it means rather than just going with medium boring risks, you choose a backup option that will save you in the black events and you go for the extreme risks hoping for the positive black swan that will change everything (black swan = an unexpectable event).

Let’s take an example to understand more, let’s say you decided to apply this strategy in your career, you keep your 9 to 5 job that pays you a regular income to cover your monthly expenses and you use it as a backup, on the other hand, you start your own business or side hustle and take bigger risks, so if your business succeeds it will have a huge impact on your life and if it didn’t you do not have to worry much about it because you have your backup aka your full-time job.


Follow signals not noises

Finally, the last step to getting an antifragile personality is to learn the difference between signal and noise, not every piece of data is valuable, having so much data makes it hard for you to find what you looking for, which will lead you to make a decision based on noise rather than real signal as Warren Buffet says: “Most News is Noise, Not News”

When I first started my blog, I fell into this trap, I was amazed by the data that you can get from google analytics, so what I did is I started focusing too much on traffic rather than creating good quality content because I hated writing, every day I logged into my google analytics account just to see who visited my website, after that, I start searching for some hacks to get traffic quickly and easily, and none of them worked at all, I even considered quitting blogging, and all of that because I was focusing on useless information that misguided me, but when I shifted my main focus to create high-quality content and doing SEO, eventually, things started to move in a positive direction.

In every life perspective, whether in business, finance, career, or relationships, there are some signals that really help you in taking your decisions, and also there are many similar but useless signals, if you knew what types of signals are really helpful you will save yourself a lot of time


In the end, I want you to know that reading summaries is helpful (at least better than not reading at all). But, you will not get the full benefit unless you read the whole book. Remember: “reading a summary of a certain book is like watching a trailer of a movie while reading the whole book is like watching the whole movie.” 

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