Why ‘mum really does know best’: Mothers pass on an average of 41 pearls of wisdom to their children


By South West News Service

PUBLISHED: 07:32 EST, 10 March 2012 | UPDATED: 10:26 EST, 10 March 2012

The average mother will pass on 41 ‘pearls of wisdom’ to her children, it was revealed yesterday.

Most commonly heard tips include ‘Always try your best’ and ‘If you can’t say something nice, don’t say anything at all.’

Mums are also likely to encourage their children to do well in life, by encouraging them to ‘get an education because no-one can take that away from you’ and also advising them ‘you only get out of life what you put into it’.

Life-long: Nuggets of advice passed on from mothers stay with children into adulthoodLife-long: Nuggets of advice passed on from mothers stay with children into adulthood. Most of the tips were words of encouragement or reminders to behave well

Additionally, mums are likely to pass tips along the lines of ‘smile’ and ‘life’s too short to be unhappy’.

The findings emerged following a study of 2,000 adults by Clinton’s Cards.

Tim Fairs, a spokesman for the firm said: ‘Even as adults we continue to go back to mum for her wisdom and advice on daily scenarios, because as she says herself “Mum knows best”.’

‘And it’s these little nuggets of information which we hold dear, and which get passed down from generation to generation. These pieces of advice might be small, but the very fact they stay with us for years on end prove they hold great weight.’

The survey shows mothers regularly display prudence when it comes to food – with some of her more memorable tips including ‘never take sweets from strangers’, ‘never swim on a full stomach’, ‘always eat breakfast’ and ‘don’t eat cheese before bedtime’.

Good manners cost nothing according to the nation’s mothers, who regularly tell their young to ‘eat with your mouth closed’, ‘never stare at people’, and to ‘mind your p’s and q’s’.

Adult confidante: Half of respondents said they thought their mother's advice was still the best even once they had grown upAdult confidante: Half of respondents said they thought their mother’s advice was still the best even once they had grown up

Other words of wisdom mothers give to encourage good etiquette include ‘treat people with respect’, ‘treat others how you wish to be treated yourself’ and ‘manners maketh the man’.

Mothers also try to be encouraging towards their offspring, saying things like ‘there’s no such word as ‘can’t’, ‘practice makes perfect’ and ‘look up things you don’t know the answer to’.

The study also revealed the majority of kids always remember the advice their mothers passes down to them over the years. In fact, advice from mothers is so precious seven out of ten adults regularly pass it on to their own children.

And 48 per cent of respondents continue to think their mother offer the best advice despite being grown up.

Tim Fairs added: ‘In an age where we’re bombarded with rules, guidance and expert advice, it can often be the little things that our mums say that prove to be the most memorable and help guide us through life.’

Furthermore the study found two thirds of people often catch themselves mid-sentence and think ‘I sound like my mum’ and 43 per cent often think they are turning into their mothers.

But more than three quarters of those people who have their own children hope these ‘pearls of wisdom’ continue to be remembered and pass on to future generations.


1. Always try your best
2. If you can’t say something nice don’t say anything at all
3. Get an education – no-one can take that away from you
4. Eat with your mouth closed
5. If you don’t ask you don’t get
6. Never spend money you don’t have
7. Never take sweets from strangers
8. Smile
9. Never swim on a full stomach
10. Treat people with respect
11. Always wear clean underwear
12. You never get something for nothing
13. I want never gets
14. Save money aside for a rainy day
15. Treat others how you wish to be treated yourself
16. There’s no such word as ‘can’t’
17. Practice makes perfect
18. Mind your p’s and q’s
19. Never stare at people it’s rude
20. Watching too much TV will make your eyes go square
21. Mum knows best


22. Look after your pennies and the pennies will look after you
23. Be true to yourself
24. Always eat breakfast
25. You only get out of life what you put into it
26. Never drink on an empty stomach
27. Courtesy and compassion cost nothing
28. Never leave the house with wet hair
29. Look up things you don’t know the answer to
30. Never go to bed on an argument
31. Receive compliments gracefully
32. Life’s too short to be unhappy
33. Don’t eat cheese before bed
34. Always hold the door open
35. Never give up
36. Manners maketh the man
37. The grass is never greener
38. Give compliments easily
39. Never offer lifts to strangers
40. Always have two months’ rent / mortgage saved
41. Men are very different creatures to women

Read more: http://www.dailymail.co.uk/news/article-2113044/Why-mum-really-does-know-best-Mothers-pass-average-41-pearls-wisdom-children.html#ixzz1nqCdAW92


Posted on March 10, 2012, in Health / Medicine, Science / Technology and tagged , , , , , , , , , , , . Bookmark the permalink. 2 Comments.

  1. Wow… I got nostalgic when I was reading your list. I thought because my mom was Salvadoran she would have different advice, but it seems like some advice is simply international.

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