choose (one's) battles (wisely)

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choose (one's) battles (wisely)

To actively choose not to participate in minor, unimportant, or overly difficult arguments, contests, or confrontations, saving one's strength instead for those that will be of greater importance or in which one has a greater chance of success. As a parent, you learn to choose your battles with your kids so you don't run yourself ragged nagging them. The best politicians choose their battles wisely: if one becomes too embroiled in petty debates, one never gets anything done.
See also: battle, choose
References in periodicals archive ?
Karen Goggin, my old supervisor at NAA, always told me some things are out of your control and you have to choose your battles.
The first is to choose your battles wisely, and the second is to adapt your hunting style to take advantage of the dog's strengths.
Lennon knows from his own experiences as a combative central midfielder that you must choose your battles carefully because you will never get the better of officialdom in the long run.
Lennon knows from his own experiences as a combative central midfielder you must choose your battles carefully because you will never get the better of officialdom in the long run.
In football, he explained, you choose your battles.
I think the best thing to do would be to choose your battles.
You have to choose your battles and decide where you can make a difference," he says.
A very intense, almost explosive opposition could see you dig those heels of yours in today, but do choose your battles carefully, you can't win them all.
Even if you do not fully agree with the reviewers on some points, you need to choose your battles wisely.
I think we can make a difference by putting pressure on the government -- you need to choose your battles.
Sometimes you have to choose your battles and let IKEA take care of the rest.
The fact is; there are only so many winnable points in any negotiation, so it's important to choose your battles, and just as important to time your battles, carefully.
Choose your battles wisely, as it's unwise to tackle large groups and people who are clearly insane.
It's also important to choose your battles carefully and evaluate the cost of managing the audit process.
He has to have some limits, make sure he knows what these are and be firm about them, but sometimes you have to choose your battles.