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  1. Newbie
    • Member Info
      • Native Language:
      • Chinese
      • Home Country:
      • Taiwan
      • Current Location:
      • UK

    • Join Date: Nov 2007
    • Posts: 24

    leave well enough alone

    Hi there,

    Can someone tell me whether "leave well enough alone" can be used to refer to someone who is drifting along in life without seeking to better himself? Thanks!


  2. Neillythere's Avatar
    Senior Member
    Interested in Language
    • Member Info
      • Native Language:
      • British English
      • Home Country:
      • England
      • Current Location:
      • Thailand

    • Join Date: Mar 2008
    • Posts: 537

    Re: leave well enough alone

    Hi yuanmingqing

    As a Brit, but not a teacher, "leave well enough alone" means, to me, "don't interfere, in case you make things worse".

    As such, it could be used in the case that you quote, but, beware of making things worse.

    You may suggest that a person goes on a training course, that costs them money and doesn't bring in any wage/salary.

    If he fails the course, he has not only had to fund the course, but has not had a wage coming in. He is therefore potentially far worse off (i.e. in greater debt) than he would have been if he had tried for a job rather than taking the course.

    Hope this helps.

    PS see also

    leave well enough alone: Information from

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