Don’t put all your effort into a single course of action, venture, investment, goal, or the like, because if it doesn’t work, you lose everything.
Example: Almost entire revenue of the Company comes from the Facebook platform. If Facebook tweaks its policies in future, the Company may sink. They shouldn’t put all their eggs in the same basket.
Do things in proper order. ‘Horse before the cart’ is the proper order, and not ‘cart before the horse’.
Example: Don’t put the cart before the horse by finalizing the house you want to buy before you arrange the funds for down payment.
Don’t discard something valuable while getting rid of something worthless.
Example: We shouldn’t scrap the entire project for a subpart not planned well. Let’s not throw the baby with the bathwater.
One who starts early on the work has higher chance of success.
Example: X: Why have you come so early for the season-ending sale? Y: So that I can choose from a wider selection and get a better piece. Early bird catches the worm, after all.
You say this when you get something easily and then lose it as easily.
Example: I found fifty dollars while on my morning walk, but I frittered it away foolishly by the afternoon – easy come, easy go.
Every bad or negative situation can result in some benefit to you. (The presence of silver lining means that the sun is behind the cloud and will eventually emerge.)
Example: I know your business has suffered few setbacks this season. But remember, every cloud has a silver lining.
Even the unluckiest or the most unfortunate will taste success at some point.
Example: Are you surprised that John, the laggard, has got 92 percent marks in math? Well, every dog has his day.
Example: You don’t need to order that much food. She eats like a bird.
Anyone can be swayed to do something. It’s just that some may demand high price, some low. This proverb is also used in the sense of bribing people.
Example: X: He has declined our offer to join the company. Y: Sweeten the offer. Raise the compensation. Every man has his price.
Be resilient and try despite failures. That’s how you succeed.
Example: Abraham Lincoln lost so many elections, but he kept trying. Eventually he became the President of United States. It’s rightly said: Fall seven times. Stand up eight.
Those who arrive first will receive first.
Example: The first 100 subscribers will receive an Amazon gift card. It’s first come, first served.
Fools or inexperienced persons get involved in situations or pursue goals without much thought. In contrast, wise are thoughtful about such situations or goals.
Example: He sent an angry email without going into the background of the matter – fools rush in where angels fear to tread.
If you carry out your plans boldly, the luck is more likely to favor you.
Example: I know you’re hesitant to accept the overseas position in your Company because the ground realities there are different from what you’ve faced so far, but remember fortune favors the brave.
To leave a place or situation before conditions worsen and it becomes difficult to leave.
Example: With the stock market at an all-time high and further upside looking difficult, we decided sell our shares and get out while the going was good.
If you give someone a small amount of power or freedom to do something, they may try to get a lot more.
Example: He borrowed my car for a day, but hasn’t returned even after four days. Well, give them an inch and they’ll take a mile.
God doesn’t help those who don’t try. You’ve to make effort if you want to succeed.
Example: You’ve to take the bull by horns and try getting a new job. God helps those who help themselves.
If something you hear goes in one ear and out the other, you quickly forget it.
Example: Their advice to her went in one ear and out the other.
Patience is often rewarded.
Example: The best investors in the world have made their fortunes by investing for the long term. Good things come to those who wait.
If you share your grief, it’ll get easier to bear.
Example: You shouldn’t hold back the news of financial loss you’ve incurred in your business. Grief divided is made lighter.
Getting less than what one wants is better than not getting anything.
Example: X: Did you get the compensation for damage to your vehicle? Y: I was hoping for $2,000, but the judge awarded only $800. X: Well, half a loaf is better than none.
It’s always better to be truthful and honest, even if the opposite may get you the benefits.
Example: I think you should just explain what happened, rather than trying to cover your tracks. Honesty is the best policy, after all.
Be optimistic, but be prepared for a scenario where things can go wrong.
Example: We’re hoping to raise capital from investors, but it may not come so soon. Therefore, it’s imperative to look for alternatives as well. Let’s hope for the best, but prepare for the worst.
If something is working fine, don’t change it unnecessarily.
Example: X: Why do you want to change this component in the machine when everything is working fine? Y: OK. I agree. If it ain’t broke, don’t fix it.
If things don’t turn the way you want them to, then adjust your way to suit those things.
Example: I need that book for completing my assignment. If you aren’t coming to the college tomorrow, I’ll come to your place to take it – if the mountain won’t come to Muhammad, Muhammad must go to the mountain.
If you can’t beat your opponent, then work alongside them for mutual benefit.
Example: ABC Pvt. Ltd. has struck partnership with its competitor after it failed to gain market share despite aggressive marketing. If you can’t beat them, join them.
If you do something dangerous or adventurous, you may get harmed.
Example: Enacting the stunts of movie superheroes in real life is playing with fire. You may get burned.
If you don’t know about something, you don’t need to bother about it. In other words, if you’re unaware of something, it won’t cause you stress. This proverb, however, is often used in negative way – ignorance is not bliss.
Example: I didn’t know that the neighbor next door was involved in criminal activities. Sometimes, ignorance is bliss.
It’s better to be cautious than regret later.
Example: One shouldn’t complain about the inconvenience of security check each time you enter the building. It’s better to be safe than sorry.
It is easy to understand what you could have done to prevent something bad from happening after it has happened.
Example: I would have never bought an apartment if I had known that the land on which it has been built is disputed. Well, it’s easy to be wise after the event.
It’s never too late to change your wrong ways or habits.
Example: X: I still miss my best friend, but it’s been a year since our fight and we haven’t spoken to each other since. Y: Well, it’s never too late to mend; why don’t you call him up and apologize?
There is no point in staying upset over a mistake because you can’t undo what has happened.
Example: X: He is feeling terrible for accidently elbowing the flower pot from the window. Y: It’s broken now. It’s no use crying over spilt milk.
If you say something is tip of the iceberg, you mean that thing is just a small part of the entire thing.
Example: The flooding is bad, but we’re dealing with just the tip of the iceberg – water-borne diseases are waiting to break out.
An argument of quarrel is not one person’s fault.
Example: X: Why are you always so quarrelsome? Y: I’m not the only person involved. It takes two to make a quarrel.
Where two parties are involved in a situation, fault usually lies with both if things go wrong. Rarely can one party be blamed entirely.
Example: This deal won’t go through unless you too are willing to compromise. It takes two to tango, after all.
Speak only when necessary and remain alert and observant at all times.
Example: We’re in a hostile territory. So, to avoid problems, keep your mouth shut and your eyes open.
Solve two problems with the same action.
Example: He killed two birds with one stone by buying the grocery and visiting the museum on the same route.
Thinking positively and laughing will help you to feel better.
Example: I think the best thing for you right now would be to spend some time with people you can joke around with. Laughter is the best medicine, after all.
Learn basic skills first before venturing into complex things.
Example: X: I want to submit my first article to Fortune magazine for publication. Y: I think I you should aim for smaller publications to start with. You should learn to walk before you run.
Don’t talk about a bad situation people have forgotten and that could unnecessarily create problem in the present.
Example: X: Should I ask the professor if he is upset about my late submission of the assignment? Y: If he hasn’t said anything, then don’t bring forth the topic – let sleeping dogs lie.
Misfortune does not occur twice in the same way to the same person.
Example: X: I don’t want to take this route, because I was robbed the last time I traveled on this route. Y: Don’t worry, lightning never strikes twice in the same place.
To feel awkward because you are in a situation that you have not experienced before.
Example: I felt like a fish out of water during my first week in the college, as I hardly knew anyone there.
Consider all consequences before taking an action, especially when you can’t retract.
Example: X: I’m planning to pursue an MBA. Y: It’s an expensive degree and, moreover, you’ll be out of work for two years. I would say look before you leap.
Make such an attractive proposition that it would be foolhardy for anyone to refuse it.
Example: The competitor offered $6 billion for our company. It was an offer we couldn’t refuse.
Make the most of favorable conditions till they last.
Example: I got plenty of referral traffic to my website from Facebook in its initial years. I made hay while the sun shone. Later on they changed their algorithm, after which the traffic dried.
Spend money carefully because it’s limited. You can’t grow it on trees and replenish.
Example: I’m surprised that you spent your entire month’s salary on a frivolous gadget. Well, money doesn’t grow on trees.
Money gives one power and influence.
Example: I don’t have access to many people like he has, after all he is a scion of a rich family. Money talks, you know.
A need or problem forces people to come up with innovative solutions.
Example: In some parts of the world, farmers use washing machine to clean potatoes in large volumes. Necessity, after all, is the mother of invention.
Don’t delay doing something if you can do it immediately.
Example: X: I’m done with most of my assignment, but I’ll pick the remaining part on Monday. Y: Why don’t you complete it now? You’ll be more relieved and in a better state of mind. You shouldn’t put off until tomorrow what you can do today.
It is necessary to suffer or work hard in order to succeed or make progress.
Example: You’ve to drastically reduce the time you spend on video games and TV if you want to get admission in a good college. No gain without pain.
If you don’t receive any news about someone or something, it means that everything is fine and going normally.
Example: My daughter has been working in Australia for nearly five years now. At first I used to get worried when I didn’t hear from her, but now I know that no news is good news.