Changes Super-cede Plans_计划不如变化_Chinese Idiom

cloud-2104829__480In today’s post, I’m introducing a Chinese idiom: 计划不如变化 jìhuà bùrú biànhuà. If at the beginner’s level in the leaning of Mandarin Chinese, you may be intimidated by the length of this saying. Well, there is absolutely no need to shrink back at the sight of this phrase. It’s not that difficult as it seems, if we break the words down. You will see (haha).

计划不如变化 jìhuà bùrú biànhuà is a term meaning that changes super-cede plans. In case you are wondering about its pronunciation, please refer to my Pinyin Lessons where you will find the general rule by which Chinese characters are pronounced, and make sure to check out the part demonstrating how the Chinese tones sound.

So, here is how it’s pronounced.

I think it’s alright to translate this Chinese saying in English as plans vs. changes too. This saying sounds catchy, if you give it a try. jìhuà means plans and biànhuà is understood as changes. bùrú is a way to say something is less good than something else.

This is a term that I had learned in my primary-school years. I remember we had a textbook that was covered with idioms and I would approach my teacher for the interesting words that I had not known of. 计划不如变化 jìhuà bùrú biànhuà caught my eye for some reason. After the brief conversing with my teacher —–conversations were always very short between me and my teacher, but I’m sure on my teacher’s mind, I must be a good student—-I kept repeating this saying in the back of my head.

Fast forward to today, when I look back, I find that over the course of past years, this saying has become a short version of my entire life story. I wanted my adulthood version of me to be a painter and writer when I was a kid, but that pursuit has never met my action. I planned to get married in my mid-20’s, but that didn’t happen until I started walking into the threshold of my 30’s. These are two examples from my career development and life aspect. Truth is this testimonial list goes on, and things always change in my life. Probably there is something to do with the fact that I’m a big planner and that I have made myself too many plans.

But am I sad when all these plans don’t go my way? Well, not at all! I’m perfectly happy with my life now, content with both my work and family life. I still plan a lot of things, most of which might not be necessary or become the reality. But life goes on. So, my conclusion is it’s good to make plans in life but that it’s also a great idea to embrace the occasions when our plans are not executed as the way expected. After all, Changes Super-cede Plans, 计划不如变化jìhuà bùrú biànhuà, right?


2 thoughts on “Changes Super-cede Plans_计划不如变化_Chinese Idiom

  1. It’s interesting to see “plans” and “changes” together this way. I understand it, and it makes sense, but it’s not what I would expect. I would think of “change” acting on “plans” as in “our plans have changed” not being used to describe the result “changes” – Regardless, the idiom is correct, our plans don’t matter once they’ve changed.

    Liked by 1 person

Leave a Reply

Fill in your details below or click an icon to log in: Logo

You are commenting using your account. Log Out /  Change )

Google+ photo

You are commenting using your Google+ account. Log Out /  Change )

Twitter picture

You are commenting using your Twitter account. Log Out /  Change )

Facebook photo

You are commenting using your Facebook account. Log Out /  Change )


Connecting to %s