Ignoring Risk Aversion

In decision-making processes, particularly in the context of finance and investments, risk aversion is a critical factor that influences how individuals and organizations approach uncertainty. Risk aversion is the tendency to prefer certainty over uncertainty, even if the uncertain option might lead to a better outcome. It is an inherent trait found in many people; however, in certain situations, deliberately ignoring risk aversion can potentially lead to significant benefits. This article will explore why and how one might choose to ignore risk aversion and share some tips for doing so cautiously.

Understanding the Benefits of Taking Risks

The main argument for ignoring risk aversion lies in the potential for higher returns. Investments with higher risks often come with the possibility of higher rewards. For instance, venture capital investments or high-growth stocks tend to be much riskier than government bonds, but they also offer the potential for substantial gains. Moreover, by taking calculated risks, businesses and entrepreneurs often find themselves capitalizing on opportunities that more risk-averse competitors might overlook.

Societal and Technological Advancements

From a societal perspective, many of the technological advancements and innovations we enjoy today are the results of individuals and companies who chose to ignore their risk aversion. Groundbreaking projects like space travel, electric cars, and various start-ups began as high-risk ventures. The willingness to take risks can foster creativity and drive progress.

Tips for Ignoring Risk Aversion

  1. Educate Yourself: Knowledge is power when it comes to making risky decisions. Understand the market, the factors at play, and potential outcomes. This can help you distinguish between a calculated risk and a reckless gamble.
  2. Diversification: This classic investment strategy involves spreading your investments across different asset classes and sectors to mitigate risks. Diversifying allows you to ignore risk aversion in certain aspects of your portfolio while maintaining an overall balance.
  3. Risk Assessment: Before diving into a risky endeavor, conduct a thorough risk assessment. Weigh the pros and cons, assess the potential downside, and determine whether you can afford the loss if things don’t go as planned.
  4. Set Clear Goals and Limits: Know what you’re aiming to achieve by taking a particular risk and set limits on how far you’re willing to go. Having clear goals can keep you focused, and setting limits can prevent catastrophic losses.
  5. Develop a Risk Management Plan: Even if you’re leaning towards risk-taking, having a plan in place to manage and contain those risks is essential. This could include stop-loss orders in trading or contingency plans in business ventures.
  6. Psychological Preparation: Emotionally prepare yourself for the outcomes of risk-taking. Hope for the best but be mentally and financially prepared for less favorable results.
  7. Review and Learn: After any risk-taking endeavor, whether successful or not, review the process and outcome. Learning from experience is invaluable and will guide you in future decision-making scenarios.


Choosing to ignore risk aversion is not about recklessness; it’s about strategically embracing uncertainty for the chance of greater rewards. It requires education, preparation, and a balanced approach. With thoughtful consideration and effective risk management, taking calculated risks can serve as a powerful tool for achieving exceptional outcomes in both personal and professional realms.