Learning common word combinations in an essential part of becoming confident and fluent in any language. By mastering the short phrases that every English speaker uses, for example, you will be able to understand more and participate more in English conversations. This blog post is about four phrases that use the word "for."
Why four? Mostly because I like the sound of four "for" phrases.
If you enjoy learning this way, check out my book, 300 Practical English Words and Phrases. The phrases in this post are also covered in the book.
Here we go.
1. for good
"Barbara quit today. She's gone for good."
"Do you think we'll ever end discrimination for good?"
"We need to eliminate this policy for good."
You can stay somewhere for good, leave somewhere for good, be done for good, or be gone for good. If you decide to do something and the decision is permanent, it means you decide something for good. A person who quits their job and never comes back is gone for good.
Practice: What is a city you could see yourself living in for good?
2. for the most part
mostly; for the majority of the case; overall; in general
"Did you have a good vacation?" "For the most part."
"We get along well for the most part."
"For the most part, I agree with you."
If something is more than 50% the case, it is the case for the most part. For example, if you have a job and the job has more positives than negatives, you can say "I enjoy my job for the most part." You can also put this phrase at the beginning of the sentence and say "For the most part, I enjoy my job." If you use this phrase in writing, pay attention to the punctuation when the phrase comes at the start of a sentence.
Practice: For the most part, how do you feel today?
3. for now
for the moment; temporarily; for the current period of time until the next event happens or until there are further developments
"I'll be ready in a few minutes. Could you just wait here for now?"
"Would you like something to drink?" "No, thank you. I'm fine for now."
"For now, the employees are satisfied with their working conditions."
"For now" is not forever. It simply refers to the present moment, which is why it's not used in the past tenses. You can wait somewhere for now, be fine for now, or ask someone to do something for now. For instance, if you are waiting for your turn at the dentist's office, you might be told the following: "I'll be with you in a moment. Feel free to look at the magazines for now."
Practice: Finish the sentence with a declarative or imperative statement: "For now..."
4. for sure
"Definitely"; "Absolutely"; "Without a doubt"; Used when one is certain of something, or when one can definitely do something
"Are we going to arrive at the theatre in time to see the trailers?" "For sure."
"They're going to win today." "Oh, for sure."
"Don't worry. You can count on me. I'll be there tomorrow for sure."
Use "for sure" when you are certain or very confident about something. If someone asks if you can help them with something, you can respond with "sure," to mean "yes," or "for sure" to mean "definitely" or "absolutely." As you can see in example 3 above, you can also use it at the end of a sentence to express high confidence or certainty.
Practice: What is something that you'll do today for sure?
I hope you have found this article useful. Remember: Knowing a phrase and using a phrase confidently are two different things. I hope you will practice using these phrases in contexts that make sense to you. Until next time, good luck with your studies. For now, I hope you review this blog post and continue developing your speaking confidence.