10 Scottish sayings ideal for helping you get through tough times

Scottish proverbs and sayings are filled with great advice.
-Credit: (Image: Jeff J Mitchell/Getty Images)

Scotland has long been home to excellent wordsmiths, boasting top authors and poets down the years. In the modern day, many have turned their quick wit - and sharp tongue - to comedy, with many brilliant stand-ups hailing from our shores.

Through the centuries, a huge number of incredibly insightful and helpful phrases have been produced to help people struggling with just about any tricky situation. Many of us will have heard an older relative offer advice that has been passed down through the generations.

But with many of our best proverbs being in the Scots language, they can be difficult for some people to understand. So we have picked 10 of our favourites for getting through hard times, as well as explaining what they mean.

1. Keep the heid/Dinnae fash yersel'

Meaning: Keep your head/Don't worry yourself

Two for the price of one to kick us off. These age-old phrases urge people to remain calm in tough times.

2. We're a' Jock Tamson's bairns

Meaning: We are all human and we are all facing similar challenges

This saying is reported to have come from a much-loved minister in the 19th Century; Reverend John Thomson (Jock Tamson), who was fond of describing his congregation as his 'bairns'.

It encourages people to have respect and sympathy for people who may be struggling, as everyone is human and we will all face issues at some point, even if everything is rosy at the moment.

3. Mony a mickle maks a muckle

Meaning: Lots of little amounts make a large one.

With the cost of living crisis still continuing to bite hard, it can be extremely difficult to save money. But if you are able to put small amounts away regularly, they will eventually add up to something much more substantial.

It can also be applied to relationships and friendships, with little acts of love and kindness showing people how important they are. The old Scots proverb was famously used by America's founding father George Washington.

America's first president, George Washington, famously used a popular Scots proverb
America's first president, George Washington, famously used a popular Scots proverb -Credit:Getty Images

4. Whit's fur ye'll no go by ye

Meaning: If something is meant for you, it will happen

A favourite of the Scottish grannies, especially when someone has missed out on an opportunity. Although it can seem like the end of the world at the time, other things that are meant for you won't pass you by.

5. There's always time for a wee blether

Meaning: There's always time for that wee chat

Even if you feel like you are busy all the time at the moment, there's always time to stop for a chat with the people you love. It'll make you - and them - feel so much better. There's a reason 'blether' is regularly voted one of our best words.

You should always make time for a blether with your pals
You should always make time for a blether with your pals -Credit:Getty Images/iStockphoto

6. A nod's as guid as a wink tae a blind horse

Meaning: No matter how hard you try, some people are just not going to get the message.

If you are getting stressed out trying to get your point across to someone - especially online - and they are not budging, it's best to move on. Working yourself up over someone who won't accept what you are saying is not worth the hassle.

7. Up to high doh

Meaning: At one's limit

If someone looks like they are struggling, offer to give them some help if they need it. Or if they ask for some space to clear their head, let them have it - but make sure they know you are there if needed.

8. It's a lang road that's no goat a turnin'

Meaning: Don't lose heart in dark times

It's important to remember that life is a marathon, not a sprint, so keep going and good times will come around again.

9. A lie is half-way roon' Scotland afore the truth has even goat its boots oan

Meaning: News travels fast, so be careful with what you are saying

Now more than ever, this is true. Misinformation can spread like wildfire on social media, so make sure you don't just blindly accept or repeat everything you are told, as it can easily cause harm.

10. It's goin' tae be awricht ance the pain has gane awa'

Meaning: Everything is going to be ok.

While things can seem painful, difficult, and dark right now, things will soon settle themselves.

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