Catch Phrase | 乘风破浪(chéngfēng pòlàng)

Writer: Debra Li  |  Editor: Stephanie Yang  |  From: Shenzhen Daily  |  Updated: 2020-09-08


“乘风” literally means “to ride the wind,” and “破浪” means “to beat the waves.” A Chinese idiom having existed for more than a millennium, this term uses the image of sailing through a storm as a metaphor for overcoming difficulty to accomplish great things. It recently became a catchphrase after a song and dance competition show produced by Mango TV with the title “Sisters Who Make Waves” (乘风破浪的姐姐) turned out to be a hit among viewers. Although the show, more true to its English title, started heated debate and roused a lot of controversy, people tend to use the Chinese term more in its original sense of “beating hardships and accomplishing things.”


A: 你弟弟的公司发展很顺利啊。

Nǐ dìdi de gōngsī fāzhǎn hěn shùnlì a。

Your younger brother’s company is really doing great.

B: 一方面他很努力,另一方面运气也不错,这一路乘风破浪,终于要上市了。

Yī fāngmiàn tā hěn nǔlì,lìng yī fāngmiàn yùnqì yě búcuò,zhè yīlù chéngfēng pòlàng,zhōngyú yào shàngshì le。

For one thing, he’s industrious, for another, he’s also lucky. After sailing through some hardships, he’s finally able to set up his company for an IPO.