What a silly phrase, “don’t put all your eggs in one basket.” But, like most popular proverbs, it has a deeper meaning and serves as a good warning to live your life by. I’ll explain what it means, where it came from, and how you can apply it to everyday life.
Meaning of ‘Don’t Put All Your Eggs in One Basket’
The idiomatic phrase “do not put all your eggs in one basket” is an old cautionary tale in the form of a single statement. It means you should never rely too heavily on a single source of income or investment. It’s a gentle reminder to diversify your portfolio and spread the risk across different assets.
The perfect example from my world as an author is Kindle Unlimited. As a reader, you can pay a small monthly fee to have Kindle Unlimited and read countless eBooks found in the program without paying for them.
However, as an author, you must sign an exclusivity agreement with Amazon to put your book in Kindle Unlimited. This means you can’t have your books available for sale anywhere else. That is, to the core, the whole idea of putting all your eggs in a single basket.
While you can reach a plethora of KU readers, you’re missing out on people who prefer Kobo, Barnes & Noble, etc., to Amazon. Plus, the fine print states that Amazon can choose to close your publishing account at a moment’s notice without any reason.
That’s a huge risk if you ask me, aka putting all your eggs in one basket.
Do Not Put All Your Eggs in One Basket: Is It ‘Do Not Put’ or ‘Do Not Pull’?
For the most part, we all say the common proverb as “don’t put all your eggs in one basket.” But I’ve heard some people say, “don’t pull all your eggs in one basket.” But the correct version of the idiom to use is with the word put.
Origin of the Phrase ‘Do Not Put All Your Eggs in One Basket’
The idea originates from the concept of collecting chicken eggs each day. Eggs are highly fragile, and if you had all your eggs in the same basket, you risk dropping the basket and breaking all the eggs. But if you had spaced out the eggs over a couple of baskets and dropped one, you’d still have at least one other basket of eggs.
You can find the use of this common phrase dating back as far as the 1500s in a well-known text called Don Quixote, where the author says, “It is part of a wise man to keep himself today for tomorrow, and not venture all his eggs in one basket.”
Another Way to Say Don’t Put All Your Eggs in One Basket
There are surprisingly several other ways to say this phrase or at least get the same intent across.
- Don’t bet the farm
- Broaden your horizons
- Do not lay all your cards on the table
- Don’t put all your chips in one pile
- Stop focusing on one area
- Do not hitch your wagon to one star
- Spread your wings
Don’t Put All Your Eggs in One Basket: Expansion of the Idea
The simple idea behind the common phrase isn’t limited to just financial situations. You can also apply it to other areas of your life, like relationships, careers, and even personal goals. Relying solely on one person for emotional support or putting all your effort into one job opportunity can be super risky.
Diversifying your investments, not getting too serious too fast in relationships, and other experiences can lead to a more balanced and fulfilling life without so much risk.
Sentence Examples Using ‘Don’t Put All Your Eggs in One Basket’
- I’m going to invest in a mix of stocks and bonds so that I don’t put all my eggs in one basket.
- I’m considering multiple job offers, so I’m not putting all my eggs in a single basket.
- My mother always told me not to put all my eggs in one basket when it comes to guys, so I date casually.
- As an author, I won’t put all my eggs in one basket and have my books only available on Kindle Unlimited.
Don’t Risk It
You should have a much clearer picture when it comes to using the phrase “don’t put all your eggs in one basket” after reading my helpful little guide. Just remember that underneath it all, it simply means don’t bank everything you got on one person or thing.