What does the idiom "take one's time" mean?

The phrase take one's time is often used in English, but what does this idiom mean? When idioms are used in the right situations, they strengthen communication and enrich the language. You can communicate more effectively by learning the meaning of take one's time.

Meaning of "take one's time"


The phrase “take one's time” is often used to suggest taking your time to do something, rather than rushing it and potentially making mistakes. It suggests that it is better to take the extra time to do something right than to do it quickly and risk errors. This phrase can be used to suggest that taking extra time in a task can create a better outcome, or at least provide an extra level of thoughtful consideration to a situation. Taking one's time implies taking a more deliberate approach to a task, allowing for more time to consider options, anticipate potential problems and mistakes, and think about the eventual results.


The phrase “take one's time” has been used for centuries. The first known use of the phrase in written form dates back to the 15th century, when it was used as a phrase meaning “to take much time in doing something.” This written record provides evidence that the phrase has been used for hundreds of years and is deeply rooted in English language and culture. The phrase, however, may have originated in spoken language long before it was ever written down.


The phrase can be used in many different contexts. For example, it can be used in everyday conversations such as telling someone to “take their time” when they are trying to finish a task or make a decision. It can also be used to encourage someone to slow down when they are in a hurry. It can be used to remind someone to be patient and not rush into decisions, or to be more deliberate about their actions. Additionally, the phrase can be used to give someone a heads-up about a situation, such as the potential for getting things wrong if they don’t take their time.

Example Sentences

  • "Take your time when you're writing that report. I'd rather you take extra time to make sure it's perfect than rush it and risk mistakes."
  • "She had to take her time in making the decision. She knew if she rushed it, she would likely regret it down the line."
  • "I'm in a

The meanings of the words in the "take one's time" idiom

The universal role of idioms

"Kill two birds with one stone" is an English idiom that means to accomplish two things with a single action. In French, the similar idiom is "Faire d'une pierre deux coups," which translates to "To kill two birds with one stone." This idiom highlights the efficiency of completing two tasks with one action.


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