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Bite Off More than You Can Chew Meaning, Examples, Synonyms 

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The phrase “bite off more than you can chew” is an idiomatic expression that means taking on more responsibilities or tasks than one can handle or manage effectively. 

The phrase ‘bite off more than you can chew’ originated from the concept of attempting to consume a portion of food that is larger than one can comfortably manage in their mouth. Although warnings about not taking on excessive tasks have been mentioned in medieval texts, the actual metaphor of the phrase emerged around 1870.

It suggests attempting or committing to something that is beyond one’s capacity or abilities, leading to difficulties or problems in fulfilling those commitments. It emphasizes the importance of being realistic and aware of one’s limitations before taking on additional obligations.

Also Read: What Does Playing Devil’s Advocate Mean, Example, Synonyms

Usage with Examples

The idiom “bite off more than you can chew” means to do something that is too difficult or to make a commitment that you can even keep up with. 

Mentioned below are some examples where you can use the idiom “bite off more than you can chew”:

  • By accepting three part-time jobs, Jack is clearly biting off more than he can chew. 
  • Jessica feels like she bit off more than she could chew when she promised to complete the entire worksheet in one sitting. 
  • Ryan advised her that she should not bite off more than she can chew by accepting the night shift as well. 

Also Read: Useful Idioms with Examples, Sentences, and Meanings

Synonyms and Similar Words to Bite Off More than You Can Chew

Mentioned below are some synonyms and related words to bite off more than you can chew:

  • Go to extremes
  • Take on too much 
  • Overdo
  • Work like a horse
  • Run yourself into the ground

Bite Off More than You Can Chew Meaning Quiz 

Sarah feels like she is biting off more than she can chew as:

  • She has to work overtime
  • She finishes off her work on time 
  • She wants to please her boss

Answer: She has to work overtime

This was all about the idiom bite off more than you can chew meaning and examples. Hope you understood the concept where it’s used. For more such blogs, follow Leverage Edu.

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