What are the most annoying platitudes?

There are things people say when they’re trying to help but because they use a platitude it only make you feel worse. Here’s a list of the most annoying platitudes people say. What phrases and sayings do you hear in that only make you feel worse despite the person’s intentions? Or sayings that are patently false, despite the encouraging tone they are often said with.

The one platitude that applies to most of these platitudes is that talk is cheap. Sincerity requires more than simply lifting something from a greeting card. Some of these are cliches, others are aphorisms, it’s true, but they’re all used for similar reasons and can be equally irritating. It’s also interesting to note how many of them conflict with each other.

Here’s a list from the comments so far:

  • There’s no I in Team (what about healthy teams that appreciate constructive individuality?)
  • Good things come to those who wait
  • It was meant to be (then why did we bother trying to make it not be?)
  • The definition of insanity is doing the same thing and expecting different results (sometimes you have to do the same exact thing many times to get the result you want – it’s called practice)
  • Time heals all wounds (how about losing a limb?)
  • Such is life
  • Forgive and forget
  • Everything happens for a reason (including suffering and early death?)
  • People are our most important asset
  • It is what it is
  • What the mind can conceive, it can achieve
  • Winners never quit
  • What doesn’t kill me will only make me stronger
  • I don’t want a team of champions, I want a champion team. (Note that there is an I in “champion team”)
  • Teamwork to make the Dream work
  • “C’est la vie”
  • Hard work always pays off
  • God has a plan for you
  • Great minds think alike
  • Money can’t buy happiness
  • Live each moment like it’s your last (not very pleasant)
  • If at first you don’t succeed, try try again (maybe you should try elsewhere)
  • Follow your passion
  • Follow your bliss (what if mine is cocaine?)
  • That’s just my personal opinion
  • Let’s not reinvent the wheel
  • It’s not rocket science
  • It’s all good
  • What goes up, goes down
  • After the storm the sun will shine
  • Don’t assume – it makes an ASS out of U and ME
  • Don’t be sad because it’s over, be glad that it happened
  • Love means never having to say you’re sorry (Then please don’t love me)
  • We are where we are
  • What goes around comes around
  • What’s done is done
  • Waste not want not
  • It has to be somewhere (as if this helps you find something that’s lost)
  • Nice guys finish last
  • Go with the flow
  • Only dead fish go with the flow
  • No offense, but…
  • Rome wasn’t built in a day
  • Work smarter, not harder
  • There’s no I in team
  • Life doesn’t give you things you can’t handle (depends on what life gives you, doesn’t it?)
  • You’re as young as you feel
  • Age is just a number
  • It’s just software
  • We’re all in this together
  • Everything always works out in the end
  • Time heals all wounds
  • We’ll all be laughing about this soon
  • It’s doesn’t matter if you win or lose, only that you try
  • Tomorrow is another day
  • It could be worse
  • You are what you eat
  • It’s neither here nor there
  • Think outside the box
  • It will all look better in the morning
  • Take the lemons and make lemonade
  • The best things in life are free
  • It wasn’t meant to be
  • Better to have loved and lost…
  • That’s for me to know and you to find out
  • Better late than never
  • With all due respect
  • The road to hell is paved with good intentions (so I should have bad intentions then? is that how the road to heaven is paved?)
  • Gossip is the devil’s radio
  • Laugh and the world laughs with you
  • People regret the things they didn’t do
  • Beauty is only skin deep
  • You can’t judge a book by it’s cover
  • Work hard, play hard
  • Only the good die young
  • All’s fair in love and war
  • All men are created equal
  • There are plenty more fish in the sea
  • The more things change, the more they stay the same
  • It’s the darkest just before dawn (have you seen a dawn?)
  • Fail harder
  • Perception is reality (except when your perception is very bad)
  • you can be anything that you want to be
  • Patience is a virtue
  • I’m sorry that’s not what you want to hear
  • This will hurt me more than it hurts you (well lets switch places and find out)
  • The customer is always right
  • If you can’t stand the heat, get out of the kitchen (maybe we can make the kitchen better?)
  • Success is the ability to go from one failure to another with no loss of enthusiasm
  • Be careful what you wish for
  • With great power comes great responsibility
  • Just think about how much worse other people have it
  • God never gives us more than we can bear (see death, misery, history of suffering)

What comes to mind? Leave a comment (240+ already have below). Thanks.

314 Responses to “What are the most annoying platitudes?”

  1. Gordon

    “They are in a better place.”

    My child died and people said this to me. Better than being with me?

  2. Bish

    “Time heals all wounds (how about losing a limb)?”

    Well, the wound would eventually heal. The platitude doesn’t say anything about getting back what you lost.

    On a side note, the “customer is always right” one is my least favorite on the list D: D: D: jbaeja;ifaj;lkeja; whoever came up with that one clearly has never worked retail XD

  3. Tim_S

    “Computers never make mistakes.” (So…. if a computer glitch changes the expected output, how is that different from a person who makes a mistake due to a short-term brain malfunction?)
    “History Repeats Itself” (An illogical variation of “Those who forget history are doomed to repeat it.”)
    “It says so in the bible” (especially annoying when the quote preceding this comes from Shakespeare or some other philosophical work other than the bible)


    It could be worse
    At least you’re not dead
    God doesn’t give you more than you can handle

  5. Vicki Tait

    Yes Kim you are correct in saying that “God doesn’t give you more than you can handles” is a platitude. That is not biblical. I Corinthians 10:13 states “There hath no temptation taken you but such as is common to man: but God is faithful, who not suffer you to be tempted above that ye are able: but will with the temptation also make a way to escape, that ye may be able to bear it.” This has everything to do with temptation and not with what you can handle.



Leave a Reply

* Required