What would this phrase possible mean "Leave everyone better than you found them"?


I listen to this self-improvement type of English podcast.
They always end the show with this phrase; Leave everyone/everything better than you found them.

I interpret it as; Now I have grown up or changed since I found the friends who I thought best for me at the time, it is time to move on from them graciously/ thankfully.

Do I get it right? I’d be happy if someone could rephrase what they say. Thanks.

To me it means it is more important to give than to take or receive.

I remember going to summer camps as a child, and at the end, our camp counselors would tell us all to leave the campsite “better than we found it”. That meant we had to help clean it up before leaving. But, not only did we clean up our mess, we actually made it cleaner than it was when we first arrived!

I’ve never heard of leaving “people” better than you found them, but I guess you can get the meaning from my example. Try to bring value to everyone you meet. Make their lives better in some way for having met you, even if it’s just by bringing a smile to someone’s face.


Leave everyone better than you found them = Have a positive impact on everyone you come in contact with. = Make a difference for the better for every person that comes into contact with you.

Oops, I misinterpreted it completely! This example is great. I get it now. Thanks, LFJ!

Thank you for rephrasing it perfectly, Nia!


My pleasure, Yukiko, anytime.

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