Don't Let Them Get to You - But better phrasing?
July 10, 2014 6:49 AM   Subscribe

Trying to come up with inspirational sayings for boundary enforcement, something that can be embroidered or engraved. Some sort of physical embodiment of this saying will be created. The idea should be you can't save everyone, you need to not take on the pain of the world, everything is not on your shoulders, you can say no, et cetera.

So far, I have the fake Latin "nolite te bastardes carborundorum" (don't let the bastards grind you down) and the Polish "Nie mój cyrk, nie moje małpy" (not my circus, not my monkeys). Non-English is not a requirement, it's just happened to work out that way.

Apply your own oxygen mask first is still a little too focused on the other people involved. The self-sufficiency/distancing element is crucial here.

The Latin has been engraved on an Etsy bracelet as a physical touchstone/reminder. Looking for more to do the same with.

What else do you know of in this vein?
posted by RainyJay to Writing & Language (26 answers total) 26 users marked this as a favorite
"My feelings are *mine*. Indeed, they are the only things that truly are." (I don't know who said it -- it may well be original to some high-school classmate of mine.)
posted by Etrigan at 6:52 AM on July 10 [1 favorite]

Cliche for a reason:

Haters gonna hate.
posted by Tomorrowful at 6:58 AM on July 10 [3 favorites]

Tend your own garden
posted by Sweetie Darling at 6:58 AM on July 10 [7 favorites]

"It's not your problem. It happened outside your car." George Carlin's explanation for why you needn't stop after running someone over.
posted by DrGail at 7:00 AM on July 10

"I can't save you from you, but I can save me from you"
posted by Debaser626 at 7:06 AM on July 10 [9 favorites]

Bad planning on your part does not constitute an emergency on my part.
posted by emilyw at 7:12 AM on July 10 [12 favorites]

Don't let the turkeys get you down.
posted by Sublimity at 7:12 AM on July 10

Via Capt. Awkward: "‘No" is a complete sentence.
posted by MonkeyToes at 7:32 AM on July 10 [3 favorites]

The dogs bark, but the caravan moves on.
posted by 724A at 7:58 AM on July 10 [11 favorites]

Me first.
posted by amtho at 8:04 AM on July 10

Perhaps "To Thine Own Self Be True."
posted by jgirl at 8:11 AM on July 10 [3 favorites]

Don't wrestle with pigs, you get muddy and the pigs like it.
posted by SpaceWarp13 at 8:11 AM on July 10 [4 favorites]

I think "You're Not The Boss of Me" would look lovely embroidered
posted by Mchelly at 8:31 AM on July 10

Quod non est meae, or, "That's not my problem."
posted by MrMoonPie at 9:05 AM on July 10 [1 favorite]

You do you.
posted by AppleTurnover at 9:09 AM on July 10 [2 favorites]

Hike your own hike.
Change is good? Fine. You go first.
posted by LonnieK at 9:31 AM on July 10 [1 favorite]

Water off a ducks back.

For that matter I kinda like Bruce Lee's "be water, my friend" in face of difficulties that are hard to control.
posted by Iteki at 9:48 AM on July 10 [2 favorites]

"The sun will set without thy assistance." ~The Talmud
posted by The Wrong Kind of Cheese at 9:54 AM on July 10 [2 favorites]

I don't know much about Latin but someone sent me this once:

Illegitimi non carborundum.

I think it sounds better than your faux latin version of "Don't let the bastards grind you down." and google told me it means the same thing.

Also, when my oldest was little and I would let him have his tantrums and validate that he had a right to have Big Feels over his broken toy or whatever but, nope, I did not feel the same and it was not a crisis for me personally and I needed to go make dinner now, he tells me what he learned from that was: "You are you and I am me."

That is a very different framing from what I would have given it (which I no longer recall the framing I gave it when it came up in conversation after he was an adult) but I like how he viewed that as a small child.
posted by Michele in California at 10:03 AM on July 10

This is more about worrying over things that might, maybe, could possibly if you squint happen in the future maybe, but it works for me: don't borrow trouble.
posted by that's candlepin at 10:18 AM on July 10 [1 favorite]

You overestimate my interest.

I once had this saying taped to my cubicle computer. It was not well-recieved. Screw 'em.
posted by BostonTerrier at 10:49 AM on July 10 [1 favorite]

Don't meet trouble halfway.
posted by misseva at 11:56 AM on July 10 [2 favorites]

YARFY= You Are Responsible For Yourself.

Also, can't favourite the "can't save you from you, but can save me from you" line hard enough.
posted by rpfields at 1:15 PM on July 10 [1 favorite]

The Serenity Prayer:

God, grant me the serenity to accept the things I cannot change,
The courage to change the things I can,
And wisdom to know the difference.
posted by SemiSalt at 1:25 PM on July 10

Judge Judy has a good one that's close to what you're after: "No good deed goes unpunished".
posted by ZipRibbons at 2:12 PM on July 10

Put your trust in God and keep your powder dry.
posted by Mrs. Pterodactyl at 4:36 PM on July 10

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