We often face tricky or complicated situations in our lives with no solution in sight. At times like these, we think of starting from the beginning with a fresh perspective. That’s how the idiom’s “Back to Basics” meaning came to be. It means focusing on simple, important activities, ideas, or details to get clarity on the bigger picture.
This phrase has been in use in the US since the 1970s. However, its use in the common language in the UK started with the then PM John Major’s speech in 1993. He emphasized the importance of “getting back to basics” by “obeying the rules, caring for others, taking charge of yourself and your family, and not relying on the government.”
Also Read: 150 Common: Difficult Idioms with Examples
Usage with Examples
Here’s how you can use the idiom “Back to Basics” in everyday language:
- You need to go back to the basics of Algebra to be able to solve these equations.
- The detective decided to get back to the basics after his latest theory met a dead end.
- He decided to go back to the basics, settle in his hometown after spending his entire life in the city.
Back to Basics: Synonyms and Similar Phrases
Some synonyms and phrases having the same meaning as this idiom are:
- Back to square one
- Back to ground zero
- Back to the drawing board
- Back to the fundamentals
- Back to the source
- Back to the roots
- From the scratch
- From the ground up
- Full circle
Back to Basics Meaning Quiz
Which of the following sentences uses the idiom “back to basics” correctly?
A) After the merger failed, the company decided to go back to basics and focus on its core products.
B) The teacher asked the students to go back to basics and review the grammar rules before writing their essays.
C) The coach told the players to go back to basics and practice their dribbling skills every day.
D) All of the above.
Correct answer: D) All of the above.
We hope this blog helped you understand the “Back to Basics” meaning and learn about the correct usage of this idiom. To learn more phrases like these, keep following our Learn English Page!