Idea for a "Stop and Think" tattoo
February 14, 2012 8:52 AM   Subscribe

My friend would like ideas for a tattoo that would remind him to stop and think before acting and to remain calm. I've found this image which comes close. Any other ideas?
posted by Hubajube to Clothing, Beauty, & Fashion (19 answers total) 9 users marked this as a favorite
Don't Panic
posted by Jon_Evil at 8:59 AM on February 14, 2012 [4 favorites]

I sometimes write a focus symbol like on a camera on things to remind myself to focus.

Unfortunately I can't find a good image, but it's just basically two brackets with a dot in the center:

[*] but with the dot being centered and not an asterisk.

Or maybe his dot could be a snail or a clock to remind him to slow down. Or a stop sign.
posted by hansbrough at 9:00 AM on February 14, 2012

Best answer: How about some variation of pause?
posted by mazola at 9:12 AM on February 14, 2012

WW[initials of someone he admires]D?
posted by (Arsenio) Hall and (Warren) Oates at 9:13 AM on February 14, 2012

How about the "CAREFUL NOW" sign from Father Ted?
posted by 2bucksplus at 9:17 AM on February 14, 2012 [1 favorite]

Best answer: If the idea of a pause appeals but the design of the traditional pause button doesn't, the fermata might be another option.
posted by BlooPen at 9:19 AM on February 14, 2012 [1 favorite]

An outline of Gold 5's Y-wing fighter and the text "Stay On Target".
posted by Aquaman at 9:22 AM on February 14, 2012 [1 favorite]

Keep Calm and Carry On?
posted by workerant at 9:27 AM on February 14, 2012 [2 favorites]

I have long wanted to get "Erleichda!" tattooed on my inner wrist.

according to Tom Robbin's translation of this ostensibly medieval Bavarian term, it means "Lighten Up!"
posted by supermedusa at 9:28 AM on February 14, 2012 [1 favorite]

from Jitterbug Perfume I meant to say
posted by supermedusa at 9:29 AM on February 14, 2012

Kinda obvious but 'think' inside a stop sign (hexagon) might fit the bill. Or even just an empty hexagon with nothing in it.....
posted by therubettes at 9:30 AM on February 14, 2012

Be careful if you go with "Pause" since it could easily be confused with "Equality" if you don't take steps to make it very clear. I'm not saying that's a bad thing (and I stand firmly on the side of equality), but it might not be the message he wants to convey and might invite comments that cause the exact opposite effect from what he desires.
posted by JJtheJetPlane at 9:41 AM on February 14, 2012

Best answer: It needs to be somewhere on his body that he cannot hide from his own view and that he is likely to notice regularly without trying, particularly in situations where he may not want to notice it.

And it doesn't really matter what the tattoo actually looks like, since he will know its significance and since its meaning is relevant only to him, and not to other people. In fact, he probably should not get something that others will be able to figure out is a message to himself not to be impulsive, since a tattoo for that purpose is, let's say, ironic.

So, location: The back of his hand. He'll see it all the time, whether he likes it or not.

And what to get? A tiny blue dot or a tiny blue line, to look like he has been inadvertently marked by a blue pen. Only he will know its meaning, and it will be effective and unobtrusive.

Relevant personal anecdote: When I was in, I think, 4th Grade, I was running through my school library carrying a very sharp pencil. Predictably, I ended up stabbing myself in the center of the palm of my hand with the pencil. That was a couple few decades ago. I still have a black dot in the center of the palm of my hand. I notice it every time I see my hand. Nobody else has ever noticed it. And I don't run with pencils anymore.
posted by The World Famous at 9:41 AM on February 14, 2012 [2 favorites]

I'm dating myself, but "Poor Impulse Control" and not on the forehead.
posted by Sphinx at 9:45 AM on February 14, 2012 [3 favorites]

A friend of mine with certain personality...quirks...he struggles against has "Stop Telling Lies" tattooed in elegant cursive on the inside of his left wrist. Wears a watch when it doesn't need to show. Looks at it all the time, otherwise.
posted by Theodore Sign at 10:24 AM on February 14, 2012 [1 favorite]

I have a friend with a "Mind the Gap" tattoo, for this very reason. Inside of the wrist is the perfect spot.
posted by dizziest at 11:13 AM on February 14, 2012

A meditation labyrinth that he can trace with his finger?
posted by sugarbomb at 2:12 PM on February 14, 2012 [4 favorites]

Maybe a bit more nerdy than you're thinking, but any of the common "Festina Lente" symbols might work, especially if he's a Renaissance and/or humanism nerd (and who isn't, really?) and familiar with the adage the symbols are derived from.
Here is the Wiki article on "Festina Lente"
and Here is the text from Erasmus' "Adages" (starting p 132)
posted by Dorinda at 7:59 PM on February 14, 2012 [2 favorites]

Lindsay Lohan has the word "Breathe" tattooed on her wrist, which is possibly the single best thing she's done since "Parent Trap." I think Miley and a couple other child stars have some version of "Om". Hey, just because the kiddos are doing it doesn't make it a bad idea.

How about a symbol on the inside of his wrist, like an anchor (for stability) or a bird (as a reminder to step out of the situation for a moment), or an owl (for wisdom), or even a silhouette of Rodin's Thinker. Or even a clock face?
posted by elizeh at 8:10 PM on February 14, 2012

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