With English dominating the global landscape across the digital spectrum, it is important for individuals who are non-native speakers to pick up, understand and learn English expressions used in daily conversations.

In my current blog, I’m sharing the most widely used English expressions in today’s world.

English Expressions Used in Daily Conversations

103 English Expressions Used in Daily Conversations That You Must Learn

Here are a few popular informal English expressions used by native speakers that are part of everyday conversations.

1. Are you kidding me?

The expression is used when someone says something that is surprising or seems less likely to be serious or true.

Examples

Our Drama is supposed to open to the audience in a week! Are you kidding me? We aren’t prepared for that.


Harry: “Are you sure you can manage this report all by yourself?”

Joseph: Are you kidding me? I can manage this in less than an hour.

2. Swamped

“Swamped” refers to a situation when someone has too much work to do or finish.

Examples

After the firm announced that they were hiring, the office was swamped with resumes.


Sally won’t be making it to the party tonight, she is swamped with office files.

3. Hit the sack

Hit the sack implies going to bed and sleeping.

Examples

“I’ve had a long day today. I am going to hit the sack early.”


“That lecture was very long and tiring. I am gonna hit the sack as soon as I reach home.”

4. Call it a day

The expression “Call it a day” is used when someone decides to stop doing something because they have done enough.

Examples

“Rita, we’ve been driving around town in search of your perfect apartment. Let’s call it a day!”


I think we’ve tried enough to convince our boss to help us on the assignment. But since he doesn’t have time, let’s call it a day.

5. Lose your touch

When someone “loses their touch” they are said to not have a special skill or ability anymore.

Examples

“If you don’t practice hip hop dancing daily for an hour Meghana, you will lose your touch.”


“Don’t you think Sham that you will lose your touch for meditating if you continue with your lazy lifestyle?”

6. I couldn’t agree more

The expression, “I couldn’t agree more” is used when you share the exact mindset or opinion with someone.

Examples

Ryan: “I feel the quality of this restaurant has degraded over time.”

Mac: “I couldn’t agree more.”


I couldn’t agree more with Tom when he said that George Clooney is a brilliant actor.”

7. Put Off

To “put off” something means delaying something for a later date. 

Examples

I will put off getting married to 30 years because my immediate focus is my career.


I will put off going on a trip till the world becomes COVID free.

8. Cut me some slack

The expression,”cut me some slack” is used when you expect people to be less hard on you.

Examples

“I am new at this job Sir. You will have to cut me some slack.”


Rick: “Why haven’t you been attending my calls Polly.”

Polly: “I have been working for 14 hours a day. Cut me some slack.”

9. Down in the dumps

When someone is “down in the dumps,” he/she is usually feeling sad or gloomy. 

Examples

Having been rejected in three consecutive interviews, Sally felt down in the dumps.


Since Rohan’s dog died, he has been down in the dumps.” 

10. Sit tight

The expression “sit tight” is used when you intend for someone not to change their position or situation and wait for something to happen. 

Examples

All that hard work you are putting into your body by maintaining good dietary habits is going to pay off. Just sit tight!


You are handling this office politics quite well, sit tight.

11. Getting cold feet

When someone has “cold feet” they have a string doubt or fear of doing something.

Examples

Briana had cold feet just before her final guitar performance.


“Don’t get cold feet now Rex. This is your time to prove yourself.”

12. Cut to the chase

“Cut to the Chase” means getting straight to the point.

Examples

We only have a few hours to finish the report, so let’s cut to the chase.


The new Manager believes in cutting to the chase right away.

13. Midas touch

Someone with a “Midas touch” is said to be capable of making money in whatever she/he undertakes.

Examples

The company has seen a huge spike in profits since Patrick joined. He seems to have a Midas touch.


The man they considered to have a Midas touch, turned out to be a fraud. 

14. Keep your chin up

The expression “Keep your chin up ” means staying cheerful and happy in difficult times.

Examples

Ray lost his job last month but he is trying hard to keep his chin up.


“Hey Mona, keep your chin up. We are going to get through this difficult time together.”

15. Comparing apples and oranges

Comparing apples and oranges implies finding similarity in two completely opposite things.

Examples

To seek oneness in Mexican and Thai food is like comparing apples and oranges.


Trisha seems to be comparing apples and oranges because she is overlapping cricket and baseball.

16. Getting a second wind

The expression “getting a second wind” means finding energy after being exhausted to finish a task.

Examples

It’s amazing to observe Kathakali performers getting a second wind despite spending hours putting on make up.


Sipping coffee at work helps me in a getting a second wind even on hectic days.

17. Speak of the devil

“Speak of the Devil” as an expression is used  when someone you are talking about appears in front of you.

Examples

Speak of the devil! Hi, Davis, we were just talking about you.”


Speak of the devil! Look, Fiona just entered.”

18. Last straw

“Last straw” refers to the last of a succession of unpleasant incidents before the disaster strikes.

Examples

He was late for the meeting again, and that turned out to be the last straw


The family was already in a lot of debt and their son losing his job was the last straw

19. Your guess is as good as mine

The expression “your guess is as good as mine” means that you do not have the answer to the question asked.

Examples

Jake: “Why is your roommate packing all his stuff?”

Sia: “Your guess is as good as mine.”


Riya: “How many more steps do we need to walk to finish the hike?”

Sam” “Your guess is as good as mine.”

20. Down the line

When the expression, “down the line” is used, it means that something was bound to happen.

Examples

Ramesh has just started out his job as a salesman. Therefore he should give himself more credit because he will become a better salesman down the line.


Down the line, she will understand what’s good for her.

21. Rip off

“Rip off” is an expression used to indicate that something costs way more than it should..

Examples

I am not paying 50 USD for that lip balm. It’s a rip off. 


The organic products they sell at this store are a complete rip off!

22. As good as it gets

When someone uses the expression “as good as it gets,” it means that nothing better is available or possible.

Examples

This is the best area to live in the city Roy. It is as good as it gets.


This is the prime of your life. Enjoy it while you can. This is as good as it gets

23. My way or the highway

If you use the phrase “my way or the highway,” you assert that there is no alternative and the listener must accept your opinion.

Examples

Kavita: “Please, let’s meet on Friday for Lunch.”

Elisa: “No, let’s meet on Thursday. Think about it, it’s my way or the highway.”


My way or the highway” seems to be our boss’s motto.

24. Thin ice

The expression means being in a risky position.  

Examples

After skipping the previous tests, he was on thin ice with his teacher. 


The company is on thin ice and on the verge of bankruptcy. 

25. At it again

“At it again” means that someone is doing something again. 

Examples

I saw him in a bar yesterday. He is at it again.


Kylie’s been interfering with her brother’s life. She seems to be at it again.

26.  Never mind

Saying “Never mind” means that you aren’t concerned or worried about something. 

Examples

Jasmine: “You forgot to buy the tomatoes for Pasta Tom.”

Tom: “Never mind, I will cook the pasta some other time Jasmine.”


Never mind his comments, he is joking most of the time.

27. Hands full 

Hands full implies being very busy.

Examples

She has her hands full with the new baby and the job promotion.


The children have their hands full with tuitions, practice sessions and school. 

28. Having second thoughts

“Having second thoughts” means having doubt about something. 

Examples

Are you having second thoughts about going to the party tonight?


After the business slowed down, the management is having second thoughts about expanding the business. 

29. Talk up 

To talk up implies discussing something or someone favourably.

Examples

I saw the team of Netflix’s latest show talk up about the series on every platform.


I am not going to talk up a product that I haven’t used myself. 

30. Top it all 

The expression, “top it all” is used to indicate the last thing to happen for a good or a bad turn. 

Examples

I was late for the play as it is and to top it all my Uber Driver cancelled on me. 


Veronica was having a good day. She met her friends after a long time, she found a new apartment in the nice neighbourhood and top it all, she also got a promotion she had been anticipating for half a year.  

31. Hooked on 

to be, “hooked on” something means being addicted to something. 

Examples

He has been hooked on to Sudoku for quite some time now.


I was hooked on to the show after watching the first episode itself.

32. Gotta run

“Gotta run” is used when someone is in a hurry and has to leave immediately.

Examples

I gotta run to the store to grab some toiletries. 


Do you mind watching my dog? I gotta run for urgent office work. 

33. Clear the air 

Doing something to “clear the air” means resolving an issue or problem.

Examples

Before we start today’s meeting, let’s clear the air about the issues the team has been facing.

It’s important to clear the air before you start a new chapter with your partner.

34. Elephant in the room

The expression “elephant in the room” stands for an important issue or controversial topic that everyone is aware of but no one wants to discuss. 

Examples

While the politicians have been discussing a multitude of topics, poverty still remains the biggest elephant in the room.


Silvia has been fired from the last three jobs and no one is taking that seriously. Seems no one is ready to acknowledge the elephant in the room.

35. Keeping an eye

The expression “keep an eye” on something means to watch them carefully. 

Examples

Keeping an eye on Ria is important for she is known to steal things.


“Do you mind keeping an eye on the baby? I need to pick up a few things from the pharmacy nearby.”

36. Jumping to conclusions

The expression “means arriving at a conclusion without considering all the information.  

Examples

“Let her put her points forward, don’t just jump to conclusions.”


Kritika is always jumping to conclusions, panicking and doesn’t need the feel to listen.

37. Red Flag

The expression “red flag” is used to indicate dangerous signs in something or someone.

Examples

Peter’s temper is a red flag to all his potential relationships. 


Ramsey’s failure to follow orders is a serious red flag for job recruiters. 

38. Bend over backwards

It means to try very hard to please someone.

Examples

Mira bend over backwards to help her brother secure a job at one of the top firms.


The local police had to bend over backwards while making arrangements for the MLA’s speech.

39. Foot the bill

To foot the bill means to pay for something expensive.

Examples

“You damaged my car – Please foot the bill so that I can get it repaired.”


Dad has clearly told me that he will not foot the bill for internet this month.

40. Have a ball

To have a ball means to enjoy yourself greatly.

Examples

“Hey John, have a ball at your friend’s wedding.”


“I am going to have a ball at my school’s annual function.”

41. I’m worn out

“I’m worn out” means I’m exhausted.

Examples

I’m worn out from working late nights at office.


I’m worn out from doing all the house work all by myself.

42. I get it

“I get it” means that, “I understand.”

Examples

I get it how Ralph maintains his weight. He exercises for an hour daily.


I get it finally” exclaimed the student after solving the arithmetic problem.

43. No biggie 

No biggie means to not worry about something because it isn’t really of consequence.

Examples

“Thank you so much for helping with me the art work,” said Shelley.

No biggie” said Joan


It was no biggie for the chef to slice ten onions in just a few minutes.

44. Laid back

To be laid back implies to relax in manner or character or style.

Examples

Tom: “How are you so laid back with studying history Jim? You failed your history exam.”


A laid back attitude is helping cure my heart problems.

45. A bummer

“A bummer” implies great disappointment.

Examples

It was such a bummer to see our dance team lose the competition despite working so hard.


The local MLA is such a bummer. He doesn’t want to take responsibility for anything.

46. Have a crush

To have a crush means to be romantically attracted to somebody.

Examples

“I have a crush on Rohit. I think I should tell him now.”


“Hey do you have a crush on Tia? ” Each time you see her, you start blushing.”

47. Stand my ground

“Stand my ground” means to maintain your firm position.

Examples

“I am a devout believer in the goodness of the universe. And I will always stand my ground in that regard.”


“I will stand my ground for my boys in the military” shouted a Major of the battalion.

48. Couch potato

A couch potato is a lazy person.

Examples

“Don’t be a couch potato son. Get up and clean your room.”


Rohan is putting on so much weight lately because he is a couch potato.

49. Have a blast

When you have a blast, it means you’re having a very good time.

Examples

“Hey did you have a blast at the college concert last evening?”


“Until the Author came to sign my book himself at the event, I did not know that I will have a blast.

50. Pig out

To pig out means to eat a lot.

Examples

People who pig out all the time damage their health.


It isn’t good to pig out that often at a dinner party.

51. Lighten up

To lighten up implies being less serious and rather be more relaxed.

Examples

“You’ve been stressing at work lately. Why don’t you lighten up a little?”


“Our boss gets angry at minor things easily. He needs to lighten up.”

52. Screw you

The expression, “screw you” is used when you are annoyed with someone.

Examples

Screw you Tony. You are such a bad friend.”


Nina was so upset with her husband this morning that she shouted, “screw you” at him.

53. Wrap up

To wrap up something means to finish it or sum it up.

Examples

“I’ll wrap up this discussion with the panel today.”


Sudha always ensures to wrap up emails politely.

54. Bail out

To bail out on someone implies leaving them in a difficult situation.

Note” This is different from ‘bailout’ – used as a single word.Bailout means to help a company financially when it faces bankruptcy.

Examples

“Are you going to bail out on me this evening despite knowing that I have my dance practice?”


“I am so grateful to have a teacher like Mrs. Das. She doesn’t bail out on me ever.

55. Busted

Busted implies an act of being caught doing something inappropriate.

Examples

The local village authorities busted an illegal liquor manufacturing unit.


Two students of Class X were busted for smoking on campus.

56. Rip off

Rip off implies an act of dishonesty where a person ends up paying more money than required.

Examples

Shopping at the local sports merchandise was such a rip off for us.


Health insurance is becoming a rip off in COVID cases. 

57. Chill out

Chill out means to calm down.

Examples

“Stop panicking about the Maths exam. Just chill out.


“If you don’t chill out right now, you’ll destroy your mental peace.”

58. Down to Earth

Down to Earth means to be very humble.

Examples

Mr. Narayana Murthy – the Founder of Infosys is a very down to Earth man.


People who are down to Earth progress really ahead in life.

59. Off the hook

“Off the hook” implies to escape from a difficult or unpleasant situation.

Examples

The accused of now off the hook because his layer fought the case well.


“I don’t think you’ll get off the hook this time. Your mom saw you smoking the other day.

60. Going bananas

Going bananas implies a crazy state in mind.

Examples

The coach is going bananas over his team’s poor performance.


Kim’s parents are going bananas over their missing dog.

61. Hang Tight

To hang tight means to wait with utmost patience.

Examples

The doctor asked the expecting mother to hang tight until childbirth.


The teacher asked the students to hang tight until the exam results were announced.

62. Fancy a cuppa

To say, “fancy a cuppa” means to ask someone whether they would like a cup of tea with you.

Examples

“It’s a cold windy day outside Lidia. Would you fancy a cuppa with me indoors?”


“You just drenched yourself in the rain. Would you come indoors and fancy a cuppa?”

 63. I’m knackered

You use the expression, “I’m knackered” when you feel tired.

Examples

“After working in the garden all day, I’m knackered by evening.”


“I had a hard day at school mom. I’m knackered.”

64. Very lush

“Very lush” implies being attractive.

Examples

Claudine was looking gorgeous at the party last night. She is a very lush young woman.


The warriors in ancient Greek plays were always played by very lush men.

65. Hunky dory

The expression, “hunky dory” implies a condition when everything is going well.

Examples

“I was so anxious before my wedding. However, everything was so hunky dory.”


“I want my interview to go hunky dory today.”

66. Have a chinwag

To have a chinwag means to chat casually. 

Examples

“It’s been such a long time Chloe. Let’s have a chinwag sometime.


COVID has forced people to stay indoors. I want to have a chinwag with my buddies in the garden like before.

67. Don’t get your knickers in a twist

The expression, “don’t get your knickers in a twist” means to not get so upset.

Examples

“Hey Greg, why are you so tensed about the Biology test? Please don’t get your knickers in a twist.”


Don’t get your knickers in a twist just because your teammates under appreciate your hard work.

68. All to pot

The expression, “all to pot” is used when a situation goes completely out of control.

Examples

There was a street fight this morning and no bystanders could help because it was all to pot.


The French seaport of Dunkirk was all to pot during the battle.

69. Oh bollocks

“Oh bollocks” is an expression denoting annoyance.

Examples

“Oh bollocks! I’ve been working very hard on this painting the entire day and you’ve spilled ink on it.”


 “Oh bollocks Tommy! Did you eat all the cake yourself?”

70. Lost the plot

“Lost the plot” as an expression is used when a person doesn’t know how to deal with a situation anymore.

Examples

I think our investors have lost the plot and are leading us astray as a company.


The Germans lost the plot during World War – I and suffered terrible economic disruption.

71. Pork pies

Pork pies implies lying.

Examples

“Enough of your pork pies Zayne. I will not have you as a business partner anymore.


“I’ve been listening to your pork pies since two years Ronnie. Why can’t you just tell the truth?”

72. Throwing a wobbly

Throwing a wobbly means to be in a fit of rage and throwing a tantrum.

Examples

The child is often seeing throwing a wobbly in the playground. His parents should counsel him politely. 


It was sad to see my colleague throwing a wobbly at our boss.

73. My bad

“My bad” as an expression implies, “I’m at fault.”

Examples

Were these clothes not meant to be thrown away? My bad, I did not realise it and dumped them in the bin.

My bad that I couldn’t sense Tony’s cheating habits before this incident.”

74. Kudos

The expression, “kudos” is used to congratulate for performing well.

Examples

Kudos to military personnel for always protecting our nation no matter how grave the threat from outside.


Kudos to animal right activists who always try their best to protect endangered wildlife.

75. Twenty four seven

“Twenty four seven” implies something that is non-stop or all the time.

Examples

“We were taken care of by the selfless doctors at the hospital twenty four seven.”


The armed forces in Kashmir watch out against radicalism twenty four seven.

76. It’s not rocket science

“It’s not rocket science” means “it’s not difficult.”

Examples

“Hey it’s not rocket science to solve algebra.”


It’s not rocket science to understand that gender discrimination has done so much harm in this world.

77. Hot potato

The expression, “hot potato” implies a controversial or an unpleasant situation that is difficult to handle.

Examples

Atheism as a practice is a hot potato in all of the Middle Eastern countries.


Discussing the murdered celebrity case has become a political hot potato in this country.

78. Call the shots

To call the shots means to be in a position to make powerful decisions.

Examples

“I call the shots around here” said the Dance Master to his pupils.


The management team call the shots in every Corporate office. 

79. Knock it off

The expression, “knock it off means to stop doing something because it is annoying. 

Examples

“Could you three knock it off? You’ve been arguing since the past one hour.”


My landlord told the tenants to knock it off with the midnight parties.

80. All along

All along means to be present for a period of time

Examples

The love between the couple has lasted all along. It’s beautiful.


I’ve had faith in the establishment all along despite all the criticism by people.

81. Acting up

Acting up implies behaving badly.

Examples

Ramesh started acting up with his parents after the party.


The toddler started acting up when his mother refused him ice-cream.

82. No sweat

The expression, “no sweat” implies no difficulty at all.

Examples

Tina: “Will you please the upper shelf of my book closet?”

Arman:”Sure Tina. No sweat.”


“Hey it is no sweat to me for waking up early and watering the garden roses.

83. Know it all

Any person who thinks that he/she knows more than other people is a know it all.

Examples

Rashi is a know it all and gets offended with inputs by others.


Nikhil’s know it all nature distances himself from friends.

84. Fed up

When you’ve had enough of something it implies you’re fed up.

Examples

I’m fed up of working long office shifts.


I’m fed up all the negativity on social media.

85. What’s the catch

To use, “What’s the catch” in a sentence implies that you’re pointing towards some hidden problems or disadvantage in an ideal looking scenario.

Examples

The deal with the broker seems too good to be true. “What’s the catch” in there?


You never bother to ask me about my well being on ordinary days but since you’re being different today, I want to know, “what’s the catch?”

86. Getting hitched

Getting hitched means to get married.

Examples

Neha is getting hitched on the first Sunday of May.


Rohit is getting hitched to his college sweetheart. 

87. Under the weather

When you don’t feel well that means you are under the weather.

Examples

I got soaked in the rain last evening and now I’m under the weather.


I’ll have to apply for a sick leave today because I’m under the weather.

89. You bet

You bet” is a informal way of saying ‘”certainly.”

Examples

Children are the most pure souls in the world. You bet they will go to any length to show compassion.


You bet Jimmy will be at the party tonight.

90. I feel you

I feel you” implies that you completely empathise with somebody.

Examples

“I see you sitting in office after working hours. I feel you sister.”


Lex: “The Mathematics exam was so difficult this time.”

Lisa: “I feel you Lex.”

91. Piece of cake 

When doing something is easy, we say, “it’s a piece of cake.”

Examples

Using Facebook is a piece of cake for the elders in my family.


Blogging is a piece of cake for Chris because he’s been doing it for 2 years.

92. Break a leg

The expression, “Break a leg” is used for wishing someone good luck so that the person performs well.

Examples

Hey Ronnie break a leg in the art competition today.


Break a leg,” shouted Tina’s husband just before her performance on stage.

93. Out of shape

Out of shape implies being physically unfit.

Examples

The modern sedentary lifestyle is making people go out of shape.


I do yoga everyday at 5 am to avoid being out of shape.

94. Not in my book

When a person uses the expression, “Not in my book” it means, “Not according to my opinion.”

Examples

John: “I think it’s ok to smoke pot.”

Kylie: “Not in my book.”


Zelda: “The murder mystery got solved ethically under law.”

Tim: ““Not in my book because there are many lose strings in the case till today.”

95. Dig in

To dig in means to immediately start eating.

Examples

Don’t feel shy to try the smoked salmon. Just dig in now.


Dig in the hot pizza before the cheese becomes hard.

96. Beats me

The expression,”Beats me” is used when a person has absolutely no idea about something.

EXAMPLES

It beats me how people claim they’re religious and yet never show compassion towards the poor.


Millions of people have died because of COVID 19. Yet people don’t wear masks. It beats me how people can be so frivolous about life.

97. Get off my tail

Stop following me

Getting off someone’s tails means to stop following them.

Examples

Get off my tail Jake; I’m not interested to speak with you.


I asked the rowdy boys to get off my tail during my evening walk.

98. Hang out

Spending time with someone implies that you’re hanging out with them.

Examples

“Hey Jasmine – It’s been a long time since we saw each other. Let’s hang out this Saturday.”


No matter how many times I hang out with you, I always end up learning something new.

99. I’m all ears

To say, “I’m all ears” means that you’re paying utmost attention to somebody.

Examples

I’m all ears during Mr. Lombock’s Geography class at school.


Please begin with your recital. I’m all ears now.

100. In the heat of the moment

Saying something or acting a certain way without thinking implies that you’re doing it in the heat of the moment.

Examples

I didn’t meant to provoke the management. It happened in the heat of the moment.


No judgement can ever be passed in the heat of the moment. The law requires both sides to prove facts based on evidence.

101. Call it quits

You call it quits when you stop doing something permanently

Examples

 I think it’s time to call it quits on this assignment.


While performing in his last play, Joe knew it was time to call it quits on stage performances.

102. Dibs

To make the first claim is to call dibs on something or someone.

Examples

I call dibs on the last piece of the chocolate cake.


Kevin needed the promotion badly but the employees with experience had dibs on it.

103. What’s Cooking

When you ask, “what’s cooking to somebody” it means interested in knowing that what is going on with them.

Examples

“Hi Tom. You haven’t played football all week. What’s cooking?”


As soon as Ron’s mother smelled a whiff of cigarette smoke from his room, she immediately asked him, “Ron – What’s Cooking?”

I hope you have a better understanding of all of these 103 English expressions used in daily conversations. In case of any questions or doubts, use the comments section below or the BE. Community to discuss possible solutions.

Akriti Mattu
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