The Battle of Our Favorite Clichés

cli-ché: \klē-ˈshā\ noun

a trite phrase or expression;  also : the idea expressed by it

The use of clichés give us a way to further what we are trying to express to others in conversation. On a daily basis, we are likely to hear clichés and let them roll off our own tongues without realizing. If you have a WordPress account, the grammar-check will even underline the cliché in blue when you are using one.

I can understand there is no clarity or depth in telling your newly single friend that “life is like a box of chocolates,” or that “there are plenty of fish in the sea.” However, there are some clichés that deserve more credit in their meaning.


Absence makes the heart grow fonder


Out of sight, out of mind

Each of these clichés has their share of believable aspects. Recently, I have brainstormed which is more accurate in relation to general failed relationships, as well as many of my own falling outs. Trying to find resolution in any ending is hard. A lot of the time we stuff our brains with false hope that will only temporarily heal pain, or hang on to empty promises of a happy reunion. While everyone has their ways of coping with change, these two clichés offer the opportunity to pick a route of recovery; moving on or hopefulness.

We are comforted by the idea of absence making the heart grow fonder, but if this is true, then it also applies to all bad situations, too, such as breakups.

So how can I tell anyone, including myself, with any conviction that one is more true over the other? Should I tell my emotionally unstable friend that as long as that two-timing scumbag is out of her life for long enough, the sadness will go away?

It is easy to sit back and reminisce on the good times, and in many cases I have seen first hand, this is usually how it works. People retreat to happier moments, and the loneliness and heartache never really go away. They actually become slightly more obsessive and in love with the person who is out of their life; thus, debunking ‘out of sight, out of mind’ (especially in an era where social networking is a form a legal stalking.)

I figure the only way to know is to simply ask people. I know these two clichés can be used in any circumstance, but there has to be a more correct one; one that is the more logical cliché to go by.

Take the poll (it doesn’t show your name or access any information) or leave a comment below. I am curious to know what you guys think.

10 thoughts on “The Battle of Our Favorite Clichés

      1. Oh – must’ve been a slight time delay. My ‘other’? Well, “Never mind, we all hated him, anyway.” got me a black eye but it worked in the long run…

  1. I’m not sure that either one of these is “better” just that they can both be used in different situations. I think absence makes the heart grow fonder is very true. When you love someone and don’t get to see them often you appreciate your time together even more so than if you saw them every single day. If you never talk to the person ever again and have no connection to them, then “absence makes the heart grow fonder” I think does not apply. I think it only works if you talk to them every now and then, becuase that small amount of communication gives you hope that you will be together again one time or that you will at least talk to them again in the future. If you cut them off completely that is when “out of sight out of mind” would apply. Because the longer you are out of contact with someone/something the easier it will be to move on. So, as far as getting over a failed relationship, I think it is best to stay out of contact with them either forever (depending on the way it ended) or for as long as it takes for you to completely get over them.

  2. I picked “out of sight out of mind” simply because I am quitting smoking. As long as I don’t see one or anything that reminds me of one, I am good. Too bad I work in an office where every time I step out the door someone is smoking. Sigh. I really enjoyed your post though!

  3. Personally, “out of sight, out of mind” doesn’t ring too true with me. For me, my memory can be triggered by seeing something that reminds me of something else, which reminds of something again, and again, etc., until I remember what I may/may not want to remember, if that makes sense. Absence to me does make the heart fonder; even more so when talking about travel.

  4. “Plenty of fish in the see!” But I think “out of sight, out of mind” probably rings more true than “absence makes the heart grow fonder.” The latter may have a hint of truth but over the long haul, all but the strongest of bonds fray without regular nurturing. Saying it may just be mostly an attempt to make us feel better when we’re away from someone we love.

  5. Heya outstanding website! Does running a blog like this require a great deal of work?
    I’ve no expertise in coding however I had been hoping to start my own blog in the near future. Anyways, if you have any ideas or tips for new blog owners please share. I know this is off topic however I just needed to ask. Thanks!

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