10 February 2015 by Diane
About to (do something)
Planning to do something at the moment
I was just about to take a shower. Can I call you back?
Used to convey that something happening now should’ve happened earlier
It’s about time he got a job. He’s been unemployed for over a year!
After a while
After an unspecified amount of time
I’m sure you’ll get used to the cold weather after a while.
Ahead of time
We made sure to eat lunch ahead of time because we knew we wouldn’t have time to stop.
From the beginning
I can’t believe that he knew the information all along and didn’t tell us.
All day long
The entire day
He sits down all day long.
All of a sudden
Quickly and without warning
Then, all of a sudden, a car crashed into me from behind.
All in all
With everything considered; on the whole
All in all, I’d say it was a success.
All the while
At the same time
Here I was thinking that you were downstairs working, and you were upstairs in bed all the while!
As if / as though
As would be the case if
She behaved as if he weren’t there.
Any day now
Sometime in the near future; very soon
The package should be arriving any day now.
As far as I know
Based on the information I know
As far as I know, she’s at home. That’s what she told me.
At a moment’s notice
With little warning or time for preparation
I can be ready at a moment’s notice.
At a time
We can only take one person at a time.
We made it to the top of the mountain, at last!
She takes her anger out on her boyfriend at times.
Be better off
To be in a better position
You’re better off without him!
Be into (something)
Have an interest in (something)
He’s really into football.
Be up in the air
To be undecided
Our plans are still up in the air at the moment.
Benefit of the doubt
Believe what someone tells you when you are doubtful
I’m not sure if he’s telling the truth, but I’m going to give him the benefit of the doubt.
By all means
Of course; certainly
May I make a suggestion? By all means.
By the way
Used to introduce new information, not related to what is being discussed
By the way, I saw Marie at the store today.
Something bad that almost happened
We almost missed the flight. It was a very close call.
Cross one’s mind
Think about something
It never once crossed my mind that she might be unhappy.
In both situations
I know that it might rain, but I’m going to go to the game either way.
Every so often
I go out to dinner every so often.
Feel like it
Have the desire to do something
Why are you headed to the city today? I’m not sure, I just feel like it.
For a change
Contrary to how things are usually done
I’ll drive this time for a change.
For the time being
Temporarily; until another arrangement is made
She’s working two jobs for the time being until her husband can get back on his feet.
At the age of thirty, he left home for good.
For the best
A bad situation has some positives
Thomas and Susan broke up, but I think it’s for the best. They were arguing all the time.
From now on
From this moment until the future
From now on, I will no longer tolerate lateness.
Starting from the beginning with only the basic ingredients
After the business failed, they decided to start again from scratch.
From time to time
He stops by from time to time to say hello.
Good for nothing
His parents told him that he was good for nothing.
Go for it
Take a chance
There’s an audition for a new TV series. I think I’m going to go for it!
Have a hard time with
To have difficulty doing something
I’m having a hard time with the new computer software. Can you help me?
In the event that something happens
Bring an umbrella in case it rains.
In reality; really; actually
This is a really good computer. In fact, many people say it’s the best.
In other words
Another way to say something
I’m really tired. In other words, I think it’s time to go home.
In the way
Acting as an obstacle in achieving a goal
Nothing would get in the way of achieving his dreams.
It’s beside the point
Irrelevant; not important
That’s very interesting, but beside the point.
In the meantime
The period of time between now and when something is supposed to happen
The flight leaves at 7pm. In the meantime, let’s grab dinner.
It’s a matter of time
Sure to happen at sometime in the future
He’s going to apologize. It’s only a matter of time.
Keep in mind
Remember and think about someone or something
If any jobs open up at your company, please keep me in mind.
Make a long story short
To leave out parts of a story to make it shorter and bring it to an end
To make a long story short, Thomas is in town this weekend and we made dinner plans for tomorrow night.
To be understandable
None of the things that he said made any sense to me.
Might as well
It’s probably better to do something than not to do it
We might as well leave now. There’s no harm in being early.
More often than not
He remembers my birthday more often than not.
No matter what
Regardless; it makes no difference
We’ll be at your show, no matter what.
On the spot
At the moment without much time for thought
She decided to join them on the spot.
On the way
Moving towards a place
I was on my way to the café when I ran into an old friend.
I think he stepped on my foot on purpose.
Out of the question
Not allowed or permitted
I’m sorry, but you can’t take our car. It’s out of the question.
Run out of time
Not have enough time to complete something
Hurry up! We’re running out of time before the deadline.
Since day one
From the beginning
I’ve loved him since day one.
Sleep on (something)
Think about something as you sleep
Can you give me tonight to sleep on it? I’ll have an answer by tomorrow.
Up until this point
They’ve made very little progress so far.
Take one’s time
Take your time! We have a lot of time to spare.
Take it easy
On Sundays, he likes to take it easy.
Time is up
There is no more time
Time is up. Everyone please put their pencil down and close the test booklet.
To one’s face
He told me to my face that he couldn’t trust me.
Let’s touch base sometime next week.
Up to date
With the most recent information
I was out last week. Can you bring me up to date?
Up to you
It’s your decision
I don’t care what we do. It’s up to you.
I know you’re in London, but what for?
Do you have any recent news?
Hi Bob. What’s new?
Word for word
In the exact words
I memorized the speech, word for word.
Sufficiently good to repay any effort, trouble or expense
All of the extra time I devoted to studying was worth it. I scored the highest in the class!