language resources Learn English life skills Live English pragmatics

Life skills tip of the week: persuasion

Express-Yourself-MEDO-Web-232x300pxAs part of this year’s pragmatics series, we bring more useful content and tips from the Macmillan Dictionary on expressing yourself.

The previous language tip looked at ways of using understatement.

This week’s tip gives some ways of persuading someone to do something.

It might be a good idea if/It might be better if: a polite way of persuading someone:
You know, it might be better if you let Maggie drive from now on. You’re looking tired.

Why don’t you think about/Have you ever thought about: a polite and indirect way of persuading someone:
Why don’t you think about taking three weeks’ holiday instead of two? It might do you good.

Please: an informal way of persuading someone when you really want them to do something:
Oh, go on, please come to the party! I don’t want to go without you.

Go on/Go for it:an informal way of persuading someone to make an effort to achieve something:
Go on, try again. You nearly did it that time.
Look, it’s a great opportunity and you may not get another chance – go for it!

I’d/We’d really like you to: a strong but polite way of persuading someone:
We’d really like you to come with us to France.

I think you should: a strong and direct way of persuading someone:
I think you should forget about the whole thing and just get on with doing your job.

I’d prefer it if you didn’t: a polite but forceful way of persuading someone not to do something:
I’d really prefer it if you didn’t put your feet on the sofa.

I/We would appreciate it if: a polite way of persuading someone to do or not do something, usually when you are slightly annoyed with them:
I would appreciate it if you would stop putting your rubbish in our bin.

Would you like to learn more about pragmatics? Keep a close eye on our pragmatics page where the eighth of our life skills lesson plans was published recently. For more information about Life Skills, visit the Macmillan Life Skills page.

Email this Post Email this Post

About the author

Liz Potter

Liz Potter

Leave a Comment