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Life skills tip of the week: ways of giving advice

Macmillan Life Skills: language is a life skillLearning about pragmatics and how to express yourself successfully is a useful life skillsaid Michael Rundell in January when he introduced the new pragmatics series on Macmillan Dictionary. The series is part of the Macmillan Life Skills campaign, offering free resources for English language students and teachers each month.

As part of the series, we’ll bring more useful content and tips from the Macmillan Dictionary on expressing yourself.



This week’s language tip helps with ways of giving advice:

You should/You ought to/If I were you/Why don’t you/It’s a good idea to: used when giving friendly advice:
I think you ought to see the doctor about that lump.
If I were you I’d stick with your job until something better comes along.
Why don’t you just tell her the truth?
It’s a good idea to check the weather forecast before you leave.

You’d better: used when giving stronger advice:
You’d better hear her side of the story before you decide.
You’d better not drive if you’re feeling tired.

Take it from me: used when giving advice that is based on your own experience:
Take it from me, it’s not worth using one of those cheap car-hire companies.

If you want my advice: used when offering advice to someone, even though they may not want to hear what you are telling them:
If you want my advice, you should stay away from men like that.

You would be well/better advised: used when giving advice in very formal and serious contexts:
You would be well advised to consult a lawyer before committing yourself.

Would you like to learn more about pragmatics? Keep a close eye on our pragmatics page; you can find the eighth life skills lesson plan there. For more information about Life Skills, visit the Macmillan Life Skills page.

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Liz Potter

1 Comment

  • REALLY NICE!! I FIND IT VERY USEFUL AND I USE THESE EXPRESSIONS IN CLASS WITH MY STUDENTS, GREAT!

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