Spanish Sayings (DICHOS) To Live By

spanish sayings to live byMy family is famous for talking in code, at least that’s how I took Spanish sayings. As a kid I use to hear these rhymes or funny sayings all the time. They were used to explain an event, to teach a lesson, and even to cause someone to think about their actions. In the end the intention was good but there were a few that were just a little vulgar.

Still as an adult, I find myself making these same Spanish saying references when I speak to my parents.  There are still times I have to ask my parents to decipher a saying because it can be a little too complicated for me to understand.

I find that my favorite ones are pretty self-explanatory. Often times Spanish sayings can set the mood to a conversation I have with my family. They even get the point across without having to go into details about how I am feeling.

There are many Spanish sayings. These 13 sayings  are classics in our home.

  • Spanish Sayings To Live By 1 of 14
    spanish-sayings-to-live-by

    Scroll through to the Spanish sayings and learn what they mean.

  • Full belly happy heart 2 of 14
    panza-llena-corazon-contento1

    This is a saying used for relationships or for kids to eat. If you feed those you love then you keep them happy.

  • He who does not interfere helps a lot 3 of 14
    mucho-ayuda-el-que-no-estorba1

    My grandmother use to use this one when we were in her way in the kitchen. She would tell us how we help her even more by being out of her way. 

  • With force not even shoes slip on 4 of 14
    a-fuerza1

    Putting our parents in a position of discomfort usually resulted in a reply with a saying like this. My parents especially my dad isn't the type to act fast if put under pressure. He made me realize that asking before demanding him for help would gave me better results. 

  • You look more beautiful quiet 5 of 14
    calladita1

    When someone you love is offering advice or speaking when they weren't asked to contribute to the conversation they are usually told that they look prettier when they are quiet. This one would always make us laugh at kids because it usually meant someone was going to get into trouble. 

  • Do not complain that the wind is against you, better yet learn to fly 6 of 14
    no-te-quejes1

    My grandfather use to tell us that we gain more by learning to do things on our own rather than depending on everything and everyone else. This is the perfect saying to tell someone who is depending on everything else to take matters in to their own hands. Events in life don't always go as planned so it's better to prepare and accommodate accordingly. 

  • Everything fits in a jug knowing how to accommodate/organize it 7 of 14
    todo-cabe-en-jarrito1

    Learning to do things around the house my mom always said things have their place. We needed to learn where and how things are to be organized because everything has it's place if we pay attention to how things need to be put away. 

  • A horse that is given, you shouldnâ��t look at its fangs 8 of 14
    un-caballo-dado1

    When someone gives you something you don't analyze it or say oh i'd rather have something else. You accept the gift with a thank you. This saying is perfect for kids. There's no need to be picky when someone is offering something to you. 

  • Clear arrangements long friendships 9 of 14
    cuentas-claras1

    It's best to be clear on arrangements especially with friends it makes a friendship last longer. 

    My parent's always used this when a friend wanted to borrow something of our or the other way around. It's important to be clear on the arrangements. 

  • Tell me who your friends are and I will tell you who you are 10 of 14
    dime-con-quien-andas1

    Growing up my grandfather would tell us we needed to be careful who we hung out with. He'd tell us show me who you are friends with and I will tell you who you are. While I don't like to believe this, people do stereotype and I'd hate to be guilty by association. 

  • Do good without looking at who it benefits 11 of 14
    haz-el-bien-sn-mirar-a-quien1

    My family, especially my parents, are givers. They go above and beyond for someone in need. My mother is very involved in her community and she's always been a clear example of what it is to do good without looking for who it benefits. 

  • Son of a tiger, baby tiger 12 of 14
    hijo-de-tigre1

    When my kids do things like I did as a kid my parents reply "hijo de tigre, tigrito" meaning my kids are so much like me just smaller. I love the saying it's cute and let's me know that my parents remember how I use to be as a kid. 

  • Cheap is expensive 13 of 14
    lo-barato-cuesta-caro1

    This saying is used when someone doesn't research or invest in their purchase. Buying something cheap will cause you to keep spending money if it keeps breaking down. 

    This saying is also used to describe a fast relationships saying that someone who is easy will end up costing you because you never know what it will lead to. 

  • Better late than never 14 of 14
    mas-vale-tarde-que-nunca1

    This is a saying I still use today in English more than Spanish-- Better late than never. It's true especially when my Father would show up late to pick us up at school. It was better to have him show up late than to walk the mile ad a half home. 

Are there any classic sayings your family says? 

Read more of Ruby’s writing at Growing Up Blackxican

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