7 Idioms You Should Know

Today, we’re diving into some interesting idioms that will enrich your vocabulary and make your conversations more colorful. We are going to explore “bend over backwards,” “under the gun,” “in under the wire,” “a bee in one’s bonnet,” “split hairs,” “stick to your guns,” and “a sight for sore eyes.

First up, we have the idiom “bend over backwards.” This means to make a great effort to help someone or to do something, often going beyond what is normally expected. Imagine someone literally bending over backwards to reach or achieve something—it’s a metaphor for going above and beyond.

Example Sentence: “The customer service team bent over backwards to resolve the issue and ensure the customer was satisfied.”

This idiom highlights a high level of dedication and willingness to help. So, next time you see someone putting in extra effort to assist others, you can say they are bending over backwards.

Next, we have “under the gun.” This idiom means to be under pressure or in a stressful situation, often because of a looming deadline. Picture someone feeling the intense pressure of having a gun pointed at them.

Example Sentence: “She was under the gun to finish the project before the deadline.”

This idiom is perfect for those moments when you’re feeling the heat and need to get something done quickly. Many people work best, under the gun. Me? I do not!

Now let’s talk about “in under the wire.” What if you don’t have a wire?  What wire, Sarah?  No worries, no wires necessary.  This means to do something at the last possible moment, just before a deadline or cutoff. Imagine a race where you cross the finish line just as the time runs out.

Example Sentence: “Bill  submitted his application just in under the wire.”  I remember turning in a lot of assignments in under the wire, when I was in college!  What about you?

This idiom is great for describing those last-minute efforts that just make it in time. Do you like to get things done in under the wire?

Next up, we have “a bee in one’s bonnet.” This idiom means to be preoccupied or obsessed with an idea, often one that seems trivial to others. Imagine a bee buzzing around inside your hat, constantly distracting you. You know this one makes sense when you think about it. A bee. buzzing around in your bonnet would definitely have one’s attention!

Example Sentence: “She’s got a bee in her bonnet about organizing the garage this weekend.”

This idiom is useful for describing someone who can’t stop thinking about something specific.


 You guessed it! Our next idiom is“split hairs.” This idiom means to argue or worry about very small, insignificant details. Think of someone meticulously splitting a single hair into tiny pieces.

Example Sentence: “Stop splitting hairs and focus on the bigger picture.”

This idiom is handy when you want to tell someone to stop being overly precise about minor details.


WHAT? Don’t have a gun? No worries. Neither do I. You don’t have to. It is our next idiom, “stick to your guns. This means to maintain your position or opinion, even when others disagree or pressure you to change. Picture someone standing firm, holding onto their guns despite opposition.

Example Sentence: “Even though everyone else wanted to go in a different direction, she stuck to her guns.”

This idiom is all about perseverance and confidence in your beliefs.


Finally, we have “a sight for sore eyes.” This idiom means something or someone you are very happy to see, often because it provides relief or joy. Imagine something so pleasant that it soothes your metaphorically sore eyes.

Example Sentence: “After a long day at work, my cozy bed was a sight for sore eyes.”

This idiom is perfect for expressing relief and happiness at seeing someone or something. Can you think of someone or something?

Don’t worry if you can’t but try and use these idioms throughout your days. Seven idioms that can add color and expression to your English conversations: bend over backwards, under the gun, in under the wire, a bee in one’s bonnet, split hairs, stick to your guns, and a sight for sore eyes. Try using them in your daily life and see how they can enhance your communication.