Authors / Writers

106 Inspirational Nassim Nicholas Taleb Quotes (WISDOM)

Top 10 Most Famous Nassim Nicholas Taleb Quotes (BEST)

“If you want to get an idea of a friend’s temperament, ethics, and personal elegance, you need to look at him under the tests of severe circumstances, not under the regular rosy glow of daily life.”

Nassim Nicholas Taleb
You are rich if and only if you refuse tastes better than money you accept.
You are rich if and only if you refuse tastes better than money you accept.
Never take investment advice from someone who has to work for a living.
Never take investment advice from someone who has to work for a living.
Avoid losers. If you hear someone use the words ‘impossible’, ‘never’, ‘too difficult’ too often, drop him or her from your social network.
Avoid losers. If you hear someone use the words ‘impossible’, ‘never’, ‘too difficult’ too often, drop him or her from your social network.
We should reward people, not ridicule them, for thinking the impossible.
We should reward people, not ridicule them, for thinking the impossible.
We are hunters; we are only truly alive in those moments when we improvise; no schedule, just small surprises and stimuli from the environment.
We are hunters; we are only truly alive in those moments when we improvise; no schedule, just small surprises and stimuli from the environment.
A Stoic is someone who transforms fear into prudence, pain into transformation, mistakes into initiation, and desire into undertaking.
A Stoic is someone who transforms fear into prudence, pain into transformation, mistakes into initiation, and desire into undertaking.
People focus on role models; it is more effective to find antimodels - people you don't want to resemble when you grow up.
People focus on role models; it is more effective to find antimodels – people you don’t want to resemble when you grow up.
When people say, 'I am investing for the long term,' it means they are losing money.
When people say, ‘I am investing for the long term,’ it means they are losing money.
Comfort makes you weaker. We need some variability, some stressors. Not too much, but just enough.
Comfort makes you weaker. We need some variability, some stressors. Not too much, but just enough.

4 Nassim Nicholas Taleb Quotes on Success

Success is about honour, feeling morally calibrated, absence of shame, not what some newspaper defines from an external metric.
Success is about honour, feeling morally calibrated, absence of shame, not what some newspaper defines from an external metric.
They will envy you for your success, your wealth, for your intelligence, for your looks, for your status - but rarely for your wisdom.
They will envy you for your success, your wealth, for your intelligence, for your looks, for your status – but rarely for your wisdom.
Missing a train is only painful if you run after it! Likewise, not matching the idea of success others expect from you is only painful if that’s what you are seeking.
Missing a train is only painful if you run after it! Likewise, not matching the idea of success others expect from you is only painful if that’s what you are seeking.
Failure-resistant is achievable; failure-free is not.
Failure-resistant is achievable; failure-free is not.

4 Nassim Nicholas Taleb Quotes on Intelligence

When people call you intelligent it is almost always because they agree with you. Otherwise they just call you arrogant.
When people call you intelligent it is almost always because they agree with you. Otherwise they just call you arrogant.
They think that intelligence is about noticing things are relevant (detecting patterns); in a complex world, intelligence consists in ignoring things that are irrelevant.
They think that intelligence is about noticing things are relevant (detecting patterns); in a complex world, intelligence consists in ignoring things that are irrelevant.
It takes a lot of intellect and confidence to accept that what makes sense doesn’t really make sense.
It takes a lot of intellect and confidence to accept that what makes sense doesn’t really make sense.
To understand how something works, figure out how to break it.
To understand how something works, figure out how to break it.

11 Nassim Nicholas Taleb Quotes About Life

“For many people, commuting is the worst part of the day, and policies that can make commuting shorter and more convenient would be a straightforward way to reduce minor but widespread suffering.”

Nassim Nicholas Taleb
A country's assets reside in the tinkerers, the hobbyists, and the risk-takers.
A country’s assets reside in the tinkerers, the hobbyists, and the risk-takers.
Much of modern life is preventable chronic stress injury.
Much of modern life is preventable chronic stress injury.
Never ask the doctor what you should do. Ask him what he would do if he were in your place. You would be surprised at the difference.
Never ask the doctor what you should do. Ask him what he would do if he were in your place. You would be surprised at the difference.
This is the central illusion in life: that randomness is a risk, that it is a bad thing.
This is the central illusion in life: that randomness is a risk, that it is a bad thing.
Don’t cross a river if it is four feet deep on average.
Don’t cross a river if it is four feet deep on average.
The world we live in is vastly different from the world we think we live in.
The world we live in is vastly different from the world we think we live in.
You find peace by coming to terms with what you don’t know.
You find peace by coming to terms with what you don’t know.
What matters isn’t what a person has or doesn’t have; it is what he or she is afraid of losing.
What matters isn’t what a person has or doesn’t have; it is what he or she is afraid of losing.
Remember that you are a Black Swan.
Remember that you are a Black Swan.

4 Nassim Nicholas Taleb Quotes on Antifragility

“Few understand that procrastination is our natural defense, letting things take care of themselves and exercise their antifragility; it results from some ecological or naturalistic wisdom, and is not always bad – at an existential level, it is my body rebelling against its entrapment. It is my soul fighting the Procrustean bed of modernity.”

Nassim Nicholas Taleb
Anything that has more upside than downside from random events (or certain shocks) is antifragile; the reverse is fragile.
Anything that has more upside than downside from random events (or certain shocks) is antifragile; the reverse is fragile.
Antifragility is beyond resilience or robustness. The resilient resists shocks and stays the same; the antifragile gets better.
Antifragility is beyond resilience or robustness. The resilient resists shocks and stays the same; the antifragile gets better.
The fragile wants tranquility, the antifragile grows from disorder, and the robust doesn’t care too much.
The fragile wants tranquility, the antifragile grows from disorder, and the robust doesn’t care too much.

4 Nassim Nicholas Taleb Quotes on Learning and Education

Steve Jobs, Bill Gates and Mark Zuckerberg didn’t finish college. Too much emphasis is placed on formal education – I told my children not to worry about their grades but to enjoy learning.”

Nassim Nicholas Taleb
I hated school because I liked to daydream and the system tried to stop me from that.
I hated school because I liked to daydream and the system tried to stop me from that.
Academia is to knowledge what prostitution is to love.
Academia is to knowledge what prostitution is to love.
Studying neurobiology to understand humans is like studying ink to understand literature.
Studying neurobiology to understand humans is like studying ink to understand literature.

4 Inspirational Nassim Nicholas Taleb Quotes

Difficulty is what wakes up the genius.
Difficulty is what wakes up the genius.
Heroes are heroes because they are heroic in behavior, not because they won or lost.
Heroes are heroes because they are heroic in behavior, not because they won or lost.
If you take risks and face your fate with dignity, there is nothing you can do that makes you small; if you don't take risks, there is nothing you can do that makes you grand, nothing.
If you take risks and face your fate with dignity, there is nothing you can do that makes you small; if you don’t take risks, there is nothing you can do that makes you grand, nothing.
A man is morally free when… he judges the world, and judges other men, with uncompromising sincerity. This is not just an aim but an obligation.
A man is morally free when… he judges the world, and judges other men, with uncompromising sincerity. This is not just an aim but an obligation.

2 Nassim Nicholas Taleb Quotes on Volatility

Fragility is the quality of things that are vulnerable to volatility.
Fragility is the quality of things that are vulnerable to volatility.
Never think that lack of variability is stability. Don't confuse lack of volatility with stability, ever.
Never think that lack of variability is stability. Don’t confuse lack of volatility with stability, ever.

2 Nassim Nicholas Taleb Quotes About Wealth

The key to wealth is that it doesn't matter. Once you've had it, you don't think anything of it; you can wear cheap watches.
The key to wealth is that it doesn’t matter. Once you’ve had it, you don’t think anything of it; you can wear cheap watches.
Inequalities of wealth lead to a dispersion in wealth for all.
Inequalities of wealth lead to a dispersion in wealth for all.

3 Funny Nassim Nicholas Taleb Quotes on Economists’ Predictions

Years ago, I noticed one thing about economics, and that is that economists didn't get anything right.
Years ago, I noticed one thing about economics, and that is that economists didn’t get anything right.
The track record of economists in predicting events is monstrously bad. It is beyond simplification; it is like medieval medicine.
The track record of economists in predicting events is monstrously bad. It is beyond simplification; it is like medieval medicine.
Being an economist is the least ethical profession, closer to charlatanism than any science.
Being an economist is the least ethical profession, closer to charlatanism than any science.

9 Nassim Nicholas Taleb Quotes on Money and Investing

“Unlike a well-defined, precise game like Russian roulette, where the risks are visible to anyone capable of multiplying and dividing by six, one does not observe the barrel of reality.”

Nassim Nicholas Taleb
Never take advice from anyone in a tie. They'll bankrupt you. Don't ask a general for advice on war, and don't ask a broker for advice on money.
Never take advice from anyone in a tie. They’ll bankrupt you. Don’t ask a general for advice on war, and don’t ask a broker for advice on money.
When I trade, I don't have an agency problem; I have my neck on the line. When a bank or banker trades, it's not his neck on the line.
When I trade, I don’t have an agency problem; I have my neck on the line. When a bank or banker trades, it’s not his neck on the line.
Trust those who are greedy for money a thousand times more than those who are greedy for credentials.
Trust those who are greedy for money a thousand times more than those who are greedy for credentials.
Money corrupts those who talk (and write) about it more than those who earn it.
Money corrupts those who talk (and write) about it more than those who earn it.

“Individuals should think about the worst-case scenarios and plan for them. The world will be crazier than you think it will be. Put money away, and then you can live with much more freedom.”

Nassim Nicholas Taleb
The mortgage crisis is a clear instance of consumers who needed protection. There was predatory lending to people who didn't know what they were doing.
The mortgage crisis is a clear instance of consumers who needed protection. There was predatory lending to people who didn’t know what they were doing.
Poverty is clearly one source of emotional suffering, but there are others, like loneliness.
Poverty is clearly one source of emotional suffering, but there are others, like loneliness.
The American people will eventually get hurt by this accumulated deficit. That's the problem. We have too much deficit. We have to find a solution.
The American people will eventually get hurt by this accumulated deficit. That’s the problem. We have too much deficit. We have to find a solution.

4 Nassim Nicholas Taleb Quotes on Capitalism

I'm a capitalist but one who is smallist and localist, and who favours businesses where owners are still in charge.
I’m a capitalist but one who is smallist and localist, and who favours businesses where owners are still in charge.
Capitalism has forced everyone to overoptimize in order to compete.
Capitalism has forced everyone to overoptimize in order to compete.
Capitalism is about adventurers who get harmed by their mistakes, not people who harm others with their mistakes.
Capitalism is about adventurers who get harmed by their mistakes, not people who harm others with their mistakes.
What we do today has nothing to do with capitalism or socialism. It is a crony type of system that transfers money to the coffers of bureaucrats.
What we do today has nothing to do with capitalism or socialism. It is a crony type of system that transfers money to the coffers of bureaucrats.

7 Nassim Nicholas Taleb Quotes on Decision-making

“If you have more than one reason to do something (choose a doctor or veterinarian, hire a gardener or an employee, marry a person, go on a trip), just don’t do it. It does not mean that one reason is better than two, just that by invoking more than one reason you are trying to convince yourself to do something. Obvious decisions (robust to error) require no more than a single reason.”

Nassim Nicholas Taleb
Things always become obvious after the fact.
Things always become obvious after the fact.
It is my great hope someday, to see science and decision makers rediscover what the ancients have always known. Namely that our highest currency is respect.
It is my great hope someday, to see science and decision makers rediscover what the ancients have always known. Namely that our highest currency is respect.

“When you develop your opinions on the basis of weak evidence, you will have difficulty interpreting subsequent information that contradicts these opinions, even if this new information is obviously more accurate.”

Nassim Nicholas Taleb

“We know from chaos theory that even if you had a perfect model of the world, you’d need infinite precision in order to predict future events. With sociopolitical or economic phenomena, we don’t have anything like that.”

Nassim Nicholas Taleb

“People have the problem of denial. This is one of the things I learned in Lebanon. Everybody who left Beirut when the war started, including my parents, said, ‘Oh, it’s temporary.’ It lasted 17 years! People tend to underestimate the gravity of these situations. That’s how they work.”

Nassim Nicholas Taleb

“If I ask you to write down the last 4 digits of your social security number, and then take you out to lunch and ask you how many dentists there are in Manhattan, there’s going to be a high correlation between those two numbers. What happens is that the number psychologically makes you feel confident.”

Nassim Nicholas Taleb

2 Nassim Nicholas Taleb Quotes on Nature

Nature builds things that are antifragile. In the case of evolution, nature uses disorder to grow stronger. Occasional starvation or going to the gym also makes you stronger, because you subject your body to stressors and gain from them.”

Nassim Nicholas Taleb

“If there is something in nature you don’t understand, odds are it makes sense in a deeper way that is beyond your understanding. So there is a logic to natural things that is much superior to our own. Just as there is a dichotomy in law: ‘innocent until proven guilty’ as opposed to ‘guilty until proven innocent’, let me express my rule as follows: what Mother Nature does is rigorous until proven otherwise; what humans and science do is flawed until proven otherwise.”

Nassim Nicholas Taleb

12 Wise Nassim Nicholas Taleb Quotes that Will Make You Think

“Simply, people need to be blinded by knowledge — we are made to follow leaders who can gather people together because the advantages of being in groups trump the disadvantages of being alone. It has been more profitable for us to bind together in the wrong direction than to be alone in the right one. Those who have followed the assertive idiot rather than the introspective wise person have passed us some of their genes. This is apparent from a social pathology: psychopaths rally followers.”

Nassim Nicholas Taleb
Injecting some confusion stabilizes the system.
Injecting some confusion stabilizes the system.
But it remains the case that you know what is wrong with a lot more confidence than you know what is right.
But it remains the case that you know what is wrong with a lot more confidence than you know what is right.
The best philosophers were not academics, but had another job, so their philosophy was not corrupted by careerism.
The best philosophers were not academics, but had another job, so their philosophy was not corrupted by careerism.

Failure saves lives. In the airline industry, every time a plane crashes the probability of the next crash is lowered by that. The Titanic saved lives because we’re building bigger and bigger ships. So these people died, but we have effectively improved the safety of the system, and nothing failed in vain.”

Nassim Nicholas Taleb
We humans lack imagination, to the point of not even knowing what tomorrow's important things will look like.
We humans lack imagination, to the point of not even knowing what tomorrow’s important things will look like.
You will never fully convince someone that he is wrong; only reality can.
You will never fully convince someone that he is wrong; only reality can.
What America does best is produce the ability to accept failure.
What America does best is produce the ability to accept failure.

“When you ask people, ‘What’s the opposite of fragile?,’ they tend to say robust, resilient, adaptable, solid, strong. That’s not it. The opposite of fragile is something that gains from disorder.”

Nassim Nicholas Taleb
Charm is the ability to insult people without offending them; nerdiness the reverse.
Charm is the ability to insult people without offending them; nerdiness the reverse.
A good maxim allows you to have the last word without even starting a conversation.
A good maxim allows you to have the last word without even starting a conversation.
If you see fraud and do not say fraud, you are a fraud.
If you see fraud and do not say fraud, you are a fraud.

3 Nassim Nicholas Taleb Quotes on Technology

“The Internet allows the small guy a global marketplace. But technology is harmful in the sense that we get too much information from it. Because of the web we get 10 times the amount of noise we ever got, which makes harmful fallacies far more likely.”

Nassim Nicholas Taleb
The difference between technology and slavery is that slaves are fully aware that they are not free.
The difference between technology and slavery is that slaves are fully aware that they are not free.
All of technology, really, is about maximizing free options.
All of technology, really, is about maximizing free options.

2 Nassim Nicholas Taleb Quotes About Love and Relationships

Love without sacrifice is like theft.
Love without sacrifice is like theft.
There are two types of people those who try to win and those who try to win arguments. They are never the same.
There are two types of people: those who try to win and those who try to win arguments. They are never the same.

3 Nassim Nicholas Taleb Quotes About Writing

Most so-called writers keep writing and writing with the hope, someday, to find something to say.
Most so-called writers keep writing and writing with the hope, someday, to find something to say.
Writing is sacred, other activities are profane, and I don't want them to corrupt my writing.
Writing is sacred, other activities are profane, and I don’t want them to corrupt my writing.
When you write, you don't have the social constraints of having people in front of you, so you talk about abstract matters.
When you write, you don’t have the social constraints of having people in front of you, so you talk about abstract matters.

2 Nassim Nicholas Taleb Quotes on False Experts

My major hobby is teasing people who take themselves and the quality of their knowledge too seriously.
My major hobby is teasing people who take themselves and the quality of their knowledge too seriously.
The people I go after are the false experts, those who do not accept the limits of their knowledge.
The people I go after are the false experts, those who do not accept the limits of their knowledge.

14 Funny Yet Thought-provoking Nassim Nicholas Taleb Quotes

Those who do not think that employment is systemic slavery are either blind or employed.
Those who do not think that employment is systemic slavery are either blind or employed.
The three most harmful addictions are heroin, carbohydrates, and a monthly salary.
The three most harmful addictions are heroin, carbohydrates, and a monthly salary.
Half of the people lie with their lips; the other half with their tears.
Half of the people lie with their lips; the other half with their tears.
The rules you explain are less convincing than the ones you don’t explain—or have to explain.
The rules you explain are less convincing than the ones you don’t explain—or have to explain.
To bankrupt a fool, give him information.
To bankrupt a fool, give him information.
If you want to annoy a poet, explain his poetry.
If you want to annoy a poet, explain his poetry.
A prophet is not someone with special visions, just someone blind to most of what others see.
A prophet is not someone with special visions, just someone blind to most of what others see.
I lift heavy weights and sprint, but I am so bad at it that I develop severe injuries.
I lift heavy weights and sprint, but I am so bad at it that I develop severe injuries.
I drive a hybrid, moving into an electric car. I only drink tap water, never consume food that's travelled.
I drive a hybrid, moving into an electric car. I only drink tap water, never consume food that’s travelled.
The next time you experience a blackout, take some solace by looking at the sky. You will not recognize it.
The next time you experience a blackout, take some solace by looking at the sky. You will not recognize it.
Alan Greenspan is unskilled; you don't take the unskilled seriously.
Alan Greenspan is unskilled; you don’t take the unskilled seriously.
I am happy everywhere except in places where I see glitz and rich farts. I am happiest in Brooklyn, where the concentration of rich farts is minimal.
I am happy everywhere except in places where I see glitz and rich farts. I am happiest in Brooklyn, where the concentration of rich farts is minimal.
Over the long term, you are more likely to fool yourself than others.
Over the long term, you are more likely to fool yourself than others.
Prediction, not narration, is the real test of our understanding of the world.
Prediction, not narration, is the real test of our understanding of the world.

(MUST READ) Antifragile: Things That Gain from Disorder

Also read:

Inspirational Nassim Nicholas Taleb Quotes (WISDOM) - Gracious Quotes

Explore More Quotes

Top 46 Walt Whitman Quotes (LEAVES OF GRASS)

Jeremiah Say

45 Best Jack Kornfield Quotes (WISE HEART)

Jeremiah Say

36 Elbert Hubbard Quotes About Life (WORK)

Jeremiah Say

50 Charlotte Brontë Quotes About Life (LOVE)

Erwin Morillo

43 Laura Ingalls Wilder Quotes About Life (NATURE)

Jeremiah Say

28 Inspirational Matsuo Basho Quotes (HAIKU)

Jeremiah Say