stretch your arm no further than your sleeve (will reach)

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stretch your arm no further than your sleeve (will reach)

To not spend more money than one earns or possesses; to live or operate within one's financial means. The image is of one positioning oneself as best as possible in a bed that is too small. This new job doesn't pay as well as my old one, so I'll really have to start stretching my arm no longer than my sleeve will reach. It's important to learn as early as possible not to stretch your arm any further than your sleeve, or you're going to spend a lot of your life in debt.
See also: arm, further, no, sleeve, stretch

stretch your arm no further than your sleeve will reach

Prov. Do not spend more money than you have. Sue: I can get enough money for college if I take out several loans. Bill: I'd advise against it. Stretch your arm no further than your sleeve will reach.
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