Business English idioms – heart

Learn new expressions in English with these exercises:

If you get discouraged, you ‘lose heart’.

  • When I saw how good the other contestants were I began to lose heart a bit.
  • Don’t lose heart. We can still do well.

At the moment you feel disappointed or discouraged your ‘heart sinks’.

  • My heart sank when I saw how much work was left to do.
  • Her heart sank when she heard the bad news.

If you really really want to do or have something, you ‘set your heart on’ it.

  • I’ve set my heart on getting a Ferrari before I am thirty.
  • She set her heart on getting that job so she’s very disappointed.

If you find encouragement from something, you ‘take heart’.

  • I took heart from your words of encouragement.
  • We should take heart from our improved performance in Italy.

If you cannot refuse somebody something, even though you know it is not a good idea, you ‘didn’t have the heart to say no’.

  • She really wanted to borrow it and I didn’t have the heart to say no.
  • When he pleaded with me, I didn’t have the heart to say no.

If something will make you very sad, it will ‘break your heart’.

  • It breaks my heart to sell my car but it’s become too unreliable.
  • It breaks my heart to leave here. I’ve really enjoyed it.

If you care a lot about something, it is ‘a subject close to your heart’.

  • Fighting world hunger is a subject close to my heart.
  • Punctuality is a subject close to my heart.

If somebody is very kind and generous to others, they have ‘a heart of gold’.

  • He appears bad –tempered but he’s got a heart of gold.
  • Under that gruff exterior lurks a heart of gold.

If you are no longer motivated to do something, your ‘heart is not in it’.

  • I’m going to give up this job. My heart is not in it any more.
  • She went through the motions but her heart just wasn’t in it.

Your truest inner feelings are your ‘heart of hearts’.

  • In my heart of hearts, I never really wanted to leave here.
  • I’m happy in my management job but in my heart of hearts I’d rather still be a researcher.

If you change your mind, you ‘have a change of heart’.

  • We weren’t going to give him the promotion but then we had a change of heart.
  • After a change of heart, she finally agreed to move to Berlin.

If you are well-intentioned, your ‘heart is in the right place’.

  • He is a bit rude sometimes but his heart is in the right place.
  • She makes a lot of mistakes but her heart is in the right place and she always does her best.

If you memorize something word by word you learn them ‘by heart’.

  • I’ve decided to learn the English irregular verbs by heart.
  • There is no need to tell me about it. I’ve read so much about it that I know all the details by heart.

If you have an intimate discussion about your true feelings, you have a ‘heart-to-heart’ talk.

  • Something is bothering him. I’m going to have a heart-to-heart talk with him and find out what it is.
  • We need to have a heart-to-heart discussion and clear the air between us.

‘At heart’ can mean fundamentally, in one’s deepest feelings.

  • He is a good all-round manager but at heart he’s an engineer.
  • I want you to know that we have your best interests at heart in sending you to Berlin for a year.

exercise 1

exercise 2
exercise 3

exercise 4

exercise 5

2 thoughts on “Business English idioms – heart”

  1. I am really extremely grateful to you for this great help to me in developing my English.

  2. i should be grateful of what you have sent for me because i feel the difference that is my english is in progress. Could you send of some southern english idioms.

Comments are closed.