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Idioms and expressions with lose

The following idioms and expressions are formed with the word lose. Each idiom is followed by its meaning / definition and example sentences.

Have a lot/too much to lose

When you have a lot to lose you are in a position where something bad might happen to you if you do not manage to do something successfully.

  • At this point we donít want to get involved in a controversy like this; we have a lot to lose.
Have nothing to lose

When you have nothing to lose you are in a position to try something because even if you fail, you are not going to lose anything.

  • I had little chances of getting that job, nonetheless I applied for it. I had nothing to lose after all.
  • Figuring they had nothing to lose, they decided to place a bid.
Lose the battle but win the war

When you lose the battle but win the war you fail to achieve a minor victory but at the same time succeed in achieving something much more important.

Lose face

To lose face is to fail to impress people because you are not in control of the situation.

  • The government will lose face if they fail to pass this bill.
Lose ground

To lose ground is to fall into a position where your chances of success are slim.

  • Our team was leading in the first half but lost ground in the second half.

Lose your head

To lose your head is to become so worried that you fail to think or act in a sensible way.

  • Donít lose your head. Now is the time to act sensibly.
Lose heart

To lose heart is to become dejected.

  • Although we knew that our chances of success were slim, we never lost heart.
Lose it

When you lose it, you suddenly become unable to think in a sensible way.

  • I donít know what happened to me, I just lost it.
Lose your marbles

To lose your marbles is to become crazy.

  • She must have lost her marbles. Otherwise, why should anyone want to quit such a high-paying job?
Lose your nerve

To suddenly become too frightened to do something that you intended to do

Lose no time in doing something

to do something immediately

  • She lost no time in calling the police.
Lose someone to something

If you lose someone to something such as a disease, they die as a result of it.

  • She lost her father to cancer.
Lose your temper

To lose your temper is to become angry suddenly.

  • He needs no reason to lose his temper.
Lose your touch

When you lose your touch, you become less successful at doing something.

  • Has the maestro lost his touch? His latest album is not even half as good as his previous ones.
Lose touch (with something)

When you lose touch with something, you do not know the most recent information about it.

  • I have been living in Britain for ten years, so I have somewhat lost touch with India.
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