Language and Metaphor

Daniel Brint Language Leave a Comment

Progress is a Path

The idea of successfully moving towards or reaching a desired destination is an obvious metaphor for progress.

Good work Miriam – you’re definitely on the right track.

         We have made great strides towards implementing a more effective system.

         It’s slow progress but we’re getting there.

         OK, it’s not much but it’s a first step.

         You’ve almost finished the book? I’m on chapter one – you’re streets ahead of me!

Paths will sometimes involve traversing difficult terrain or man-made features.

         Luckily, we found our way through the bureaucracy in time.

        I think we can finally see the light at the end of the tunnel.

 Sometimes a choice has to made as to one’s aims and objectives.

After finishing my studies I was at a crossroads – what should I do next?

One answer to this question is model your aims on someone’s example.

She followed in her mother’s footsteps by becoming a doctor.

If you are calm and confident, your progress might be easy.

She never panics – she just takes things in her stride.

         He tends to follow his instinct and it seems to work.

Successfully achieving something could be simple.

That exam was a stroll in the park!

         We won 7-0! We walked it.

On the other hand, our path to success may encounter obstacles or lead nowhere.

The police investigated the accountant but it was a blind alley.

         I think we’re wasting our time – we’ve been down this road before.

         They tried a different approach but it didn’t lead anywhere.

         I’ve repeated the experiment but I keep coming up against a brick

         wall – the results don’t make sense.

On some occasions however, completing a journey might not be positive.

This relationship isn’t working – I think we’ve come to the end of the road.

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