Are you looking for something to do to kill time? Well there are plenty of idiom examples here for you to learn! If you practise them regularly, soon you’ll be able to use them on a day to day basis and improve your English!
1. AROUND THE CLOCK
If something is open around the clock, it means it is open 24 hours a day.
“AROUND THE CLOCK”24小时不停歇。
The hotel’s service is great, there is always someone available to help you around the clock.
2. BEHIND THE TIMES
Used to describe someone who is old-fashioned and has ideas that are regarded as out-dated.
It’s a shame his parents don’t understand it from his point of view, they’re really behind the times.
3. AHEAD OF TIME
If something happens ahead of time, it happens early, before the set time, or with time to spare.
If you make the cakes ahead of time, then you’ll be able to focus on the decorations more.
4. CALL IT A DAY / NIGHT
To stop doing something for a while, normally at least until the following day. This can also be used as slang to say something has been ended completely.
Right guys, you’ve worked really hard. I think it’s time to call it a night, I’ll see you all again tomorrow.
Neither of us was happy in the relationship, so we decided to call it a day.
5. A MonTH OF SUNDAYS
This is a very long period of time.
It’s been a month of Sundays since I last. went to the theatre!
6. DWELL ON THE PAST
When someone thinks too much about the past.
I wish you’d stop dwelling on the past, she’s never going to come back. You need to move on with your life!
7. AGAINST THE CLOCK
Doing something against the clock means you are rushed and have very little time to do it.
I worked day and night against the clock to get this done on time, and you’re being so ungrateful!
8. CALL TIME
When you call time on something, you decide it is time to end it.
I think we should call time on this project. It is draining our resources, exhausting our manpower, and isn’t making any progress.
9. AFTER THE WATERSHED
In some countries, the watershed is the time limit after which, more TV programmes can be shown that include adult humour, bad language, or controversial subjects.
Why are the children still up watching TV? They should be in bed now, it’s after the watershed!
10. BETTER LATE THAN NEVER
This suggests that it is better to do something late than not do it at all.
I’ve finally managed to build my dream house. I know I’m nearly at retirement age, but it’s better late than never!
11. DAYS ARE NUMBERED
When someone’s days are numbered, they are expected to die soon.
The doctors say his days are numbered. They don’t have much hope of him surviving this illness.
12. DO TIME / SERVE TIME
Used to describe someone’s sentence in prison.
He is doing time for a crime he did not commit!
13. DON’T KNOW WHETHER TO WIND A WATCH OR BARK AT THE MOON
Used when someone just doesn’t know what to do
He has asked me to marry him and is still waiting for an answer, but I don’t know whether to wind a watch or bark at the moon!
14. ELEVENTH HOUR
When something happens at the very last minute.
Everyone thought he was going to lose when he had to stop to get a tyre changed, but at the eleventh hour, he came first and won the race!
15. CRUNCH TIME
When someone has to make an important decision that will affect not just their future, but those of others around them too.
As the Executive Director stepped out onto the podium, his clothes felt damp, and sweat beads were forming on his forehead. He knew it was crunch time.
16. CARRY THE DAY
If something carries the day, it defines a win that felt like a long battle and could have gone either way.
The Liverpool Football Club had carried the day well, they rejoiced as they held their prize, the League Cup, up high for all to see.
time flies idiom
17. TIME FLIES
A very common idiom that means time passes very quickly.
I can’t believe it’s almost time to go home. It’s funny how time flies when you’re having fun!
18. JUST IN TIME / IN THE NICK OF TIME
This means that you get somewhere or finish something just before it is too late. At the last possible moment.
She thought her husband was going to miss the birth of their first baby, but he arrived just in the nick of time.
19. ON TIME
This means to not be late, arrive at the right time.
The trains here are never on time, it’s so annoying!
20. SAVE TIME
[/en]This means to do something the quick way, in order to allow time for other things.[/en]
If we drive there instead of taking the bus, we’ll save time.
21. OUT OF TIME
This means there is no time left to do something. The time limit or deadline has been reached.
You’re out of time now. If you haven’t answered all the questions in the test, then that is your own problem.
22. AS TIME GOES BY
This means the passing of time. As time passes or moves on.
As time has gone by, I have become less interested in clubbing and partying.
23. TIME IS MONEY
This famous expression means that your time is a valuable commodity, and that you should put it to good use, otherwise you’ll lose more than you gain.
It’s not worth waiting to hear back from that company. Time is money, you should just start contacting other employees instead.
24. MAKE TIME
This means to find the time to do something that should take priority. Having to clear some time in your schedule to do something.
You should make more time for your children. They’re growing up so fast, and you’re missing all of it.
25. TIME FOR A CHANGE
To stop what you are doing and start doing something different with your life
After working in the same company for 15 years, I feel like it’s time for a change.
26. COME OF AGE
When something develops completely and reaches maturity. Also used for when a person reaches adulthood or fulfils their potential.
He has come of age now, and is wise enough to take the throne and become king.
27. CRACK OF DAWN
Very early in the morning. The very first moments of sunrise.
I wake up at the crack of dawn and go for a run every day.
28. HIT THE BIG TIME
This means to become successful.
After John hit the big time, he became very rich and forgot about all his old friends.
29. BIG TIME
This simply means ‘very much’ or ‘a lot’.
You owe me big time because I helped you with your school project.
30. DAY IN THE SUN
When you have your day in the sun, it means you get the attention you want and are appreciated.
It felt like a day in the sun today. My manager actually noticed me and praised my work. I was even able to put my feet up and have dinner cooked for me when I got home!