Take the plunge

To “take the plunge” is to do something after a period of hesitation or uncertainty.

Lesson #
June 9, 2022

Transcript

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Take the plunge

Today I’m going to show you how to use the English expression, “take the plunge.” To take the plunge is to do something after a period of hesitation or uncertainty. Here’s the image I want you to have in your mind. Imagine you’re about to go swimming in a cold swimming pool. There are two ways to approach it. You can dip your toe in the shallow end, then put your full foot in, then go up to your knees, your waist, and then get fully in the water.

Is that you? Or do you take the other approach? Do you just jump into the deep end? Jumping into the deep end is taking the plunge: you commit yourself to something. Once you jump, once you push off the edge of the pool with your back foot, there’s no going back: you’re going to get in that cold water.

So we use “take the plunge” when you’re hesitant to do something, maybe you’re a little worried about it, you’ve delayed it, but now you’ve committed to doing it. That was like me with hard seltzers. I’ve seen ads for hard seltzers for a few years. I’ve seen people drinking White Claw for a few years, too. I’m in my comfort zone drinking beer, so I’ve never wanted to try hard seltzer.

Sure, I was curious about it. But then, I had people over to my house and they left a few hard seltzers in my fridge. Over the next few days, I kept eyeing them in there, wondering what to do about it. But then I decided to take the plunge and try all five of those seltzers —three brands, five flavors. There’s no going back.

A few weeks ago, we talked about the quest to find meaning at work . And a lot of people, during the pandemic, were stuck at jobs that they didn’t like and didn’t value. And a lot of them decided to quit their jobs and do something that has more meaning to them, whether it’s working in a smaller business, starting their own business, or volunteering for a while. It’s not easy to quit a job, so a lot of people probably felt some hesitation. But then many of them took the plunge: they left their jobs to do something more meaningful to them.

My phone is almost four years old—an eternity. The screen is fine, but let’s just say it’s not performing at its peak. I hesitate to get one of the new iPhones because I hate the notch. The notch is the design feature at the top that covers the camera. The screen otherwise covers the entire front section of the phone, except for the oddly-shaped notch at the top. I hate it; I don’t want to look at it every day.

This is irrational. I’m sure that after just a few days, I would get used to it, and after a few weeks I wouldn’t even notice it anymore. So should I take the plunge? I don’t know. I’m holding out hope that they’ll release a version this year without the notch. But if all the phones they release this year have the notch, then I guess I’ll have to take the plunge. I’ll have to commit to getting one of these phones after a long—and I mean a long—period of hesitation.

Would you go on a cruise today? The cruise industry—more than any other—was hammered by the pandemic. Early in the COVID-19 pandemic, you might remember, there was a cruise ship stuck off the coast of Japan. Seven hundred people on board were infected with COVID-19. A cruise ship is a terrible place to be during an outbreak of disease. Everyone is in confined spaces, there’s limited medical equipment on board, and obviously no hospital. The ships are often far from major cities where medical care can be delivered.

Still, many people are ready to take the plunge and get back on a cruise ship. Bookings are strong ahead of the peak summer season, and prices to the Caribbean and Europe are five to ten percent higher than they were even before the pandemic. So after years of hesitation, many vacationers want to cruise; they’re ready to take the plunge.

JR’s song of the week

JR, in addition to producing the lessons, in addition to serving as the celebrity guest bartender for my taste test, JR also chooses one song of the week for every Thursday lesson, and English song at that. And this week he has selected “As It Was” by Harry Styles.

“As It Was” is a high-energy, upbeat song. The lyrics are about embracing change. He said he was inspired by the pause he took during the pandemic to think about what kind of music he truly wanted to make in the future. And “As It Was” by Harry Styles is about that personal reflection.

See you next time!

And that brings us to the end of today’s Plain English, wrapping up another successful week. Remember this was lesson number 475, so you can find the full lesson resources at PlainEnglish.com/475.

In today’s video lesson, I’m going to show you how you can express that something is one hundred percent certain, by giving a specific example. It’s not easy to describe in the audio, which is why I made it the video lesson today. So you can see that at PlainEnglish.com/475. And if you’re not yet a member of Plain English Plus+ , you can join and access our full library of step-by-step video lessons by visiting PlainEnglish.com/Plus .

¿Hablas español?

The transcript of this lesson is available with interactive translations into Spanish. In each lesson transcript, we select about one hundred difficult words, phrases , and expressions for translation.

How is this different than simply using a translation engine?

Translation engines are powerful tools for communicating in the modern world . However, they often miss the context and can either mislead you or leave you confused . Our human translators are here to make sure that you’re getting not only the correct definition, but also the full context .

How can I use the translations in my studies?

Most members use the translations as they are listening to the lesson and reading along . When you come across a word you don’t understand, you don’t have to press pause to discover the meaning . You can simply hover your mouse over the highlighted word . This lets you learn the definition of the word without having to press pause on the audio.

Do the translations work on mobile?

Yes! Instead of hovering over a highlighted word, just tap on it .

How can I access the translations?

Translations are included in two memberships: Plain English Plus+ and Starter. Choose a plan and get started today!

你说中国话?

The transcript of this lesson is available with interactive translations into your language. In each lesson transcript, we select about one hundred difficult words, phrases , and expressions for translation.

How is this different than simply using a translation engine?

Translation engines are powerful tools for communicating in the modern world . However, they often miss the context and can either mislead you or leave you confused . Our human translators are here to make sure that you’re getting not only the correct definition, but also the full context .

How can I use the translations in my studies?

Most members use the translations as they are listening to the lesson and reading along . When you come across a word you don’t understand, you don’t have to press pause to discover the meaning . You can simply hover your mouse over the highlighted word . This lets you learn the definition of the word without having to press pause on the audio.

Do the translations work on mobile?

Yes! Instead of hovering over a highlighted word, just tap on it .

How can I access the translations?

Translations are included in two memberships: Plain English Plus+ and Starter. Choose a plan and get started today!

Parlez-vous français?

The transcript of this lesson is available with interactive translations into your language. In each lesson transcript, we select about one hundred difficult words, phrases , and expressions for translation.

How is this different than simply using a translation engine?

Translation engines are powerful tools for communicating in the modern world . However, they often miss the context and can either mislead you or leave you confused . Our human translators are here to make sure that you’re getting not only the correct definition, but also the full context .

How can I use the translations in my studies?

Most members use the translations as they are listening to the lesson and reading along . When you come across a word you don’t understand, you don’t have to press pause to discover the meaning . You can simply hover your mouse over the highlighted word . This lets you learn the definition of the word without having to press pause on the audio.

Do the translations work on mobile?

Yes! Instead of hovering over a highlighted word, just tap on it .

Can I see a sample?

Yes, please visit PlainEnglish.com/sample to see a sample episode with the Spanish translations.

How can I access the translations?

Translations are included in two memberships: Plain English Plus+ and Starter. Choose a plan and get started today!

Você fala português?

The transcript of this lesson is available with interactive translations into your language. In each lesson transcript, we select about one hundred difficult words, phrases , and expressions for translation.

How is this different than simply using a translation engine?

Translation engines are powerful tools for communicating in the modern world . However, they often miss the context and can either mislead you or leave you confused . Our human translators are here to make sure that you’re getting not only the correct definition, but also the full context .

How can I use the translations in my studies?

Most members use the translations as they are listening to the lesson and reading along . When you come across a word you don’t understand, you don’t have to press pause to discover the meaning . You can simply hover your mouse over the highlighted word . This lets you learn the definition of the word without having to press pause on the audio.

Do the translations work on mobile?

Yes! Instead of hovering over a highlighted word, just tap on it .

Can I see a sample?

Yes, please visit PlainEnglish.com/sample to see a sample episode with the Spanish translations.

How can I access the translations?

Translations are included in two memberships: Plain English Plus+ and Starter. Choose a plan and get started today!

日本語は話せますか?

The transcript of this lesson is available with interactive translations into your language. In each lesson transcript, we select about one hundred difficult words, phrases , and expressions for translation.

How is this different than simply using a translation engine?

Translation engines are powerful tools for communicating in the modern world . However, they often miss the context and can either mislead you or leave you confused . Our human translators are here to make sure that you’re getting not only the correct definition, but also the full context .

How can I use the translations in my studies?

Most members use the translations as they are listening to the lesson and reading along . When you come across a word you don’t understand, you don’t have to press pause to discover the meaning . You can simply hover your mouse over the highlighted word . This lets you learn the definition of the word without having to press pause on the audio.

Do the translations work on mobile?

Yes! Instead of hovering over a highlighted word, just tap on it .

Can I see a sample?

Yes, please visit PlainEnglish.com/sample to see a sample episode with the Spanish translations.

How can I access the translations?

Translations are included in two memberships: Plain English Plus+ and Starter. Choose a plan and get started today!

Parli italiano?

The transcript of this lesson is available with interactive translations into your language. In each lesson transcript, we select about one hundred difficult words, phrases , and expressions for translation.

How is this different than simply using a translation engine?

Translation engines are powerful tools for communicating in the modern world . However, they often miss the context and can either mislead you or leave you confused . Our human translators are here to make sure that you’re getting not only the correct definition, but also the full context .

How can I use the translations in my studies?

Most members use the translations as they are listening to the lesson and reading along . When you come across a word you don’t understand, you don’t have to press pause to discover the meaning . You can simply hover your mouse over the highlighted word . This lets you learn the definition of the word without having to press pause on the audio.

Do the translations work on mobile?

Yes! Instead of hovering over a highlighted word, just tap on it .

Can I see a sample?

Yes, please visit PlainEnglish.com/sample to see a sample episode with the Spanish translations.

How can I access the translations?

Translations are included in two memberships: Plain English Plus+ and Starter. Choose a plan and get started today!

Sprechen Sie Deutsch?

The transcript of this lesson is available with interactive translations into your language. In each lesson transcript, we select about one hundred difficult words, phrases , and expressions for translation.

How is this different than simply using a translation engine?

Translation engines are powerful tools for communicating in the modern world . However, they often miss the context and can either mislead you or leave you confused . Our human translators are here to make sure that you’re getting not only the correct definition, but also the full context .

How can I use the translations in my studies?

Most members use the translations as they are listening to the lesson and reading along . When you come across a word you don’t understand, you don’t have to press pause to discover the meaning . You can simply hover your mouse over the highlighted word . This lets you learn the definition of the word without having to press pause on the audio.

Do the translations work on mobile?

Yes! Instead of hovering over a highlighted word, just tap on it .

Can I see a sample?

Yes, please visit PlainEnglish.com/sample to see a sample episode with the Spanish translations.

How can I access the translations?

Translations are included in two memberships: Plain English Plus+ and Starter. Choose a plan and get started today!

Sen Türkçe konuşmayı biliyor musun?

The transcripts of Plain English lessons are available with interactive translations into your language. In each lesson transcript, we select about one hundred difficult words, phrases , and expressions for translation. Turkish translations are available starting at Lesson 278.

How is this different than simply using a translation engine?

Translation engines are powerful tools for communicating in the modern world . However, they often miss the context and can either mislead you or leave you confused . Our human translators are here to make sure that you’re getting not only the correct definition, but also the full context .

How can I use the translations in my studies?

Most members use the translations as they are listening to the lesson and reading along . When you come across a word you don’t understand, you don’t have to press pause to discover the meaning . You can simply hover your mouse over the highlighted word . This lets you learn the definition of the word without having to press pause on the audio.

Do the translations work on mobile?

Yes! Instead of hovering over a highlighted word, just tap on it .

Can I see a sample?

Yes, please visit PlainEnglish.com/sample to see a sample episode with the Spanish translations.

How can I access the translations?

Translations are included in two memberships: Plain English Plus+ and Starter. Choose a plan and get started today!

Mówisz po polsku?

The transcript of Plain English lessons are available with interactive translations into your language. In each lesson transcript, we select about one hundred difficult words, phrases , and expressions for translation. Polish translations are available starting at Lesson 278.

How is this different than simply using a translation engine?

Translation engines are powerful tools for communicating in the modern world . However, they often miss the context and can either mislead you or leave you confused . Our human translators are here to make sure that you’re getting not only the correct definition, but also the full context .

How can I use the translations in my studies?

Most members use the translations as they are listening to the lesson and reading along . When you come across a word you don’t understand, you don’t have to press pause to discover the meaning . You can simply hover your mouse over the highlighted word . This lets you learn the definition of the word without having to press pause on the audio.

Do the translations work on mobile?

Yes! Instead of hovering over a highlighted word, just tap on it .

Can I see a sample?

Yes, please visit PlainEnglish.com/sample to see a sample episode with the Spanish translations.

How can I access the translations?

Translations are included in two memberships: Plain English Plus+ and Starter. Choose a plan and get started today!

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