take for granted: meaning and explanation

to take someone/something for granted = to not appreciate someone/something good in your life because it is so normal.

If you take something for granted, you never think it or about how lucky you are to have it, and you probably assume that you will never lose it.

If you are generally a healthy person, then you probably don’t wake up every day thinking about how lucky you are to be healthy, or how wonderful it is to feel good or even just normal. You take your health for granted.

Most of us are probably also guilty of taking our loved ones for granted – they are such a normal part of our lives that it is easy to forget how lucky we are to have them and how, one day, they won’t be here.

Have a go at this dictation exercise to hear this expression being used in context – how much can you understand?

Dictation #1

Accent: Northern England

Don't health when you .
Don't your health for – you never when you might sick.

…you never know...

You never know when/how/what/whether etc is used to say that something is possible or might happen at some point in the future. e.g. I always take a multitool with me wherever I go. You never know when it might be needed.

Discussion questions

Write your answers to these questions in the comments section, and I’ll get back to you with some feedback:

  • The photo on this post is an example of something that I think we all probably take for granted. What am I thinking of? Do you take this for granted?
  • What else do you take for granted?
  • Have you ever experienced anything which stopped you taking someone or something for granted?

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