Aggressive Versus Defensive Strategies in Personal Finance

There are two types of strategies in personal finances: aggressive and defensive.  It’s important to know which type of strategy do you feel comfortable with.  Like with almost everything in life, in finance you need to make decisions and once you make a decision you must be comfortable with it, stick with it and never regret about it.  This is why it is very important to know when you prefer the aggressive strategy or the defensive strategy.  Now let’s look closer at the difference between these two strategies to find out which one you can play and when.


The Aggressive Strategy

With this strategy your focus is on generating more money, more revenue and more earnings and you don’t care too much about how much money you are spending to achieve your goal.  This is the strategy of successful entrepreneurs, these people are okay with taking some risks and probably lose a lot of money but they are also very confident that they can exponentially increase their revenues.  So they don’t waste much time worrying about saving a couple of dollars when they know almost for sure that they can double their income in a short period of time.

The Defensive Strategy

With this strategy your focus is on saving money, reduce inefficient expenses, and eliminate unnecessary expenditures.  This should be the strategy of employees with a steady job where they get a minimal raise once a year if they are lucky.  When you can’t find a way to increase your income the best thing you can do is to eliminate unnecessary expenses to save money while you wait for an opportunity to change your strategy to aggressive.

As mentioned in the last paragraph you don’t need to choose one strategy and stick with it forever.  Like in sports, games and war you need to know when to play defensive and when to play offensive.  If you have a lot of money like venture capitalists then you can have the advantage of playing offensive more often but if you are a regular human being then you should be more careful when to play aggressive because you have less trials to fail.


The Grey Zone and Time Management

Again, like almost anything in life, there are black and white things but 99% of things are in grayscale.  Your strategy can be some combination of the two strategies, aggressive and defensive, but in different times of the day.  For example, you can have a steady job and then work on your own projects when you go back home.  Here your time and skills play a very important role.  Time and personal skills are the two more important and valuable things that you have, especially when you don’t have much money, which is the third more important thing.  Due this fact, if you are not playing aggressive you should always be investing your time into improving your personal skills.



You must always be thinking how to increase your income.  While you can’t find a way to increase your income you should play defensive and wait and look for the opportunity to switch to an aggressive strategy.  While playing defensive it’s important to invest your time into improving your personal skills.


Engineer Hernan Amiune, CEO of in Argentina and in Brazil.

This article is a guest post. If you would like to write for Money Soldiers, you may visit the Write for Us menu for details.

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  1. The best strategy for me is an aggressive one. I’m a known risk taker, and saving money for me isn’t the wisest bet.

    • Hi, Ardine. You’re very pretty, are you single? :) Wow, I wish I was as bold as you when it comes to money. I am beginning to adopt the aggressive strategy. I am leaning towards working for myself, being an entrepreneur. It’s such a shame to study in the best university in my country, excel academically and end up in a 9-5 with a meager salary.

      • Hello Arnel, fortunately yes, I’m single. I’m enjoying all the nice things in life without commitment.
        On the other hand, I do understand where you’re coming from. For one, spending time studying and enrolling in different schools have garnered a lot of expenses, so being money wise is the best thing to do. Meanwhile, adopting an aggressive strategy might take some time. Spend what you can afford to lose, and have an emergency fund for yourself.
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        • Hi, Ardine. You’re back! I’m pleased. I am in a crossroad with my finances. I am about to take on a mortgage for a condominium unit that I bought two years ago. At the same time, my day job took a turn for worse. I am a Planning Engineer but now my job responsibilities were redefined to include responsibilities which are normally beyond the scope of a typical planning engineer. Management says it is called multi-tasking. I say it is called crap. I am in the process of searching for a new job.

          • Well, for what purpose did you buy that condo? I don’t mean to offend you, but I really figured out that owning a condo isn’t a wise investment; maintenance fees cost too much than owning a house. That’s why instead of buying a condo unit, I’m looking forward to buy a lot or a house at the end of the year.

            Did they offer you added compensation for work? Or did you already resign from that company? I suppose they’re making the most out of your abilities, but seeing that you’re looking for a new job means you’re not properly compensated for the “multi-tasking” part.

          • Hi, Ardine. I bought the condo because I wanted to have my own place that is in the city and near my workplace. I think it’s true that a house and lot might be a better investment but here in my place, the available house and lots tend be located outside the city.
            I am not well-compensated for the additional work. Another reason why I hate the additional work is it does not align with my personal career goals. I want to specialize in planning and asking me to do things not related to planning will just waste my time and hinder me from accumulating solid experience in planning. Wow, good luck with your future house purchase. I hope things go well for you.

  2. I liked what you said about If you have a lot of money like venture capitalists then you can have the advantage of playing offensive more often but if you are a regular human being then you should be more careful when to play aggressive because you have less trials to fail.
    Continue this kind of articles because they are very good and useful, congratulations.
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