Schedules and Planning Idioms

The following text will explore some common idioms about schedules and planning that you can use in your daily conversations. From “burning the midnight oil” to “crunch time,” these idioms offer colorful expressions that can help you convey your thoughts and feelings about scheduling and planning.

List of Expressions & Idioms about Schedules and Planning

  1. (Do Something) By the Book
  2. (In the) Fullness of Time
  3. After The Fact
  4. Against The Clock
  5. Ahead Of The Game
  6. Back to the Drawing Board
  7. Back to the Salt Mines
  8. Burn the Candle at Both Ends
  9. Burn the Midnight Oil
  10. Business as Usual
  11. Busman’s Holiday
  12. Call It a Day
  13. Crunch Time
  14. Cut It Fine
  15. Eleventh Hour
  16. In the Works
  17. Kick the Can Down the Road
  18. Pencil Something In
  19. Sit On (Something)
  20. Sneak Peek
  21. Take Five (Ten)
  22. Thank God It’s Friday (TGIF)
  23. You Snooze, You Lose

Phrases & Idioms about Schedules and Planning

Useful Business English Expressions and Idioms about Schedules

Idioms about Schedules

Phrases & Idioms about Schedules with Meaning & Examples

When it comes to scheduling and planning, there are many idiomatic expressions that we use in our everyday conversations. Here are some common idioms about schedules, along with their meanings and examples:

(Do Something) By the Book

  • Meaning: To follow the rules or instructions exactly as they are written.
  • Example: We need to do this project by the book to avoid any mistakes.

(In the) Fullness of Time

  • Meaning: In due course; eventually.
  • Example: We will get the results of the test in the fullness of time.

After The Fact

  • Meaning: After something has happened, especially when it is too late to do anything about it.
  • Example: We realized that we should have done things differently only after the fact.

Against The Clock

  • Meaning: To try to do something as quickly as possible because you only have a limited amount of time to do it.
  • Example: We had to finish the project against the clock because the deadline was approaching.

Ahead Of The Game

  • Meaning: To be in a position of advantage because you have done something earlier or better than others.
  • Example: We finished the report ahead of the game and impressed our boss.

Back to the Drawing Board

  • Meaning: To start over again because the previous attempt failed.
  • Example: Our plan didn’t work, so it’s back to the drawing board.

Back to the Salt Mines

  • Meaning: To return to work after a break or vacation.
  • Example: We had a great vacation, but now it’s back to the salt mines.

Burn the Candle at Both Ends

  • Meaning: To work long hours without enough rest.
  • Example: We burned the candle at both ends to finish the project on time.

Burn the Midnight Oil

  • Meaning: To work late into the night.
  • Example: We had to burn the midnight oil to meet the deadline.

Business as Usual

  • Meaning: To continue doing things in the usual way, even in difficult or unusual circumstances.
  • Example: Despite the pandemic, we had to continue business as usual.

Busman’s Holiday

  • Meaning: To spend your free time doing the same thing you do for work.
  • Example: As a chef, I spend my vacation cooking. It’s a busman’s holiday.

Call It a Day

  • Meaning: To stop working for the day.
  • Example: We worked hard all day, but now it’s time to call it a day.

Crunch Time

  • Meaning: A period of intense pressure or work.
  • Example: It’s crunch time, and we need to finish the project by tomorrow.

Cut It Fine

  • Meaning: To leave very little time to do something.
  • Example: We cut it fine, but we managed to catch the last train.

Eleventh Hour

  • Meaning: At the last possible moment.
  • Example: We finished the project at the eleventh hour, just before the deadline.

In the Works

  • Meaning: In the process of being planned or developed.
  • Example: We have a new product in the works that we hope will be a success.

Kick the Can Down the Road

  • Meaning: To postpone dealing with a problem or making a decision.
  • Example: We can’t just kick the can down the road. We need to address this issue now.

Pencil Something In

  • Meaning: To tentatively schedule something.
  • Example: Let’s pencil in the meeting for next Tuesday.

Sit On (Something)

  • Meaning: To delay making a decision or taking action on something.
  • Example: We can’t just sit on this issue. We need to address it now.

Sneak Peek

  • Meaning: A glimpse of something that is not yet finished or publicly available.
  • Example: We got a sneak peek of the new product before it was released.

Take Five (Ten)

  • Meaning: To take a short break.
  • Example: Let’s take five and grab a cup of coffee.

Thank God It’s Friday (TGIF)

  • Meaning: An expression of relief that the workweek is over.
  • Example: TGIF! I’m so glad the workweek is over.

You Snooze, You Lose

  • Meaning: If you don’t act quickly or take advantage of an opportunity, you will miss out.
  • Example: You snooze, you lose. We need to act quickly to secure the deal.

Using Idioms in Everyday Conversation

As we have seen, idioms about schedules and planning are a great way to express ourselves in a concise and colorful way. Here are a few tips on how to use these idioms in everyday conversation:

  • Be mindful of your audience: While idioms can be a great way to spice up your speech, it’s important to make sure that your audience understands them. If you’re speaking to someone who is not a native speaker of English, or who is unfamiliar with the idioms you’re using, it’s a good idea to explain them.
  • Use idioms in context: Idioms are most effective when they’re used in the right context. Make sure that the idiom you’re using is appropriate for the situation, and that it conveys the meaning you intend.
  • Practice using idioms: Like any other aspect of language, using idioms takes practice. Try using them in everyday conversation, and pay attention to how people react. If you find that people don’t understand what you’re saying, or that they’re confused by your use of idioms, take note and adjust your speech accordingly.
  • Don’t overuse idioms: While idioms can be a great way to add color and flavor to your speech, it’s important not to overdo it. If you use too many idioms, or if you use them inappropriately, you may come across as insincere or unprofessional.

Overall, idioms about schedules and planning can be a fun and effective way to express ourselves in everyday conversation. By following these tips, we can use them in a way that is both appropriate and effective.