不要在一棵树上吊死 – bu2yao4 zai4 yi1 ke1 shu4 shang4 diao4si3
Literal translation : don’t at one (measure word) tree on hang oneself
Actual translation : Don’t hang yourself on one tree
Meaning : this proverb can be used when someone is overly upset over losing a boyfriend or girlfriend. In this proverb the “tree” is the person you are mourning over. This wouldn’t be too appropriate to use with the death of a boyfriend or girlfriend but merely the breaking up. In English we might say something like “there are plenty of fish in the sea” in an effort to comfort our friend. This is when someone is under the impression that there is no one else out there for them, so they are essentially “hanging themself upon 1 tree” when in reality the forest has many trees.
This expression could also be used if someone has lost their job. No need to feel like there are no other jobs out there (trees). Don’t get hung up with grief on the job you lost, pick yourself up and move on.