37 Idioms about Dreams and Ambitions

At the beginning of the new year, we always make plans and think what we want to achieve. I am teaching you some great phrases to help you discuss your ambitions.

<<Subscribe on iTunes>>   <<Watch on Youtube>>   <<Support us>>

Welcome to Season 3 of ‘Figure Out English’ podcast! Here you will expand your vocabulary and increase your confidence in English. I want you to help you feel good when you speak English.

If you want to speak about something you really want to achieve and what it takes to make your dreams come true, you could use the following idioms about dreams and ambitions.

Idioms about new beginnings

1. a clean slate (= to forget about past problems; to start from the beginning)

Phrases: to start with/on a clean slate

  • Let’s start on a clean slate. It’s all water under the bridge.
  • You can always start with a clean slate – it’s never too late.

2. to turn over a new leaf (= to start behaving in a better way)

  • I promise I will turn over a new leaf and will be more responsible.

3. to start from scratch (=to start from the beginning)

  • Mr. Khan built up his company from scratch and now employs more than 20 people.
  • It’s not working – let’s start from scratch.

How to say you are ready to work hard to achieve something

4. at all costs / at any cost (= ready for everything)

  • The journalist was determined to get that job at all costs.
  • He is a sore loser who wants to win at all costs, always and everywhere.

5. blood, sweat, and tears (= extremely hard work)

  • His success wasn’t due to luck; it was blood, sweat, and tears.
  • She’s going through all the blood, sweat, and tears trying to get her Ph.D.

6. eager beaver (= a person who is very excited and who is ready to work very hard)

  • The new accountant works all the time – first to arrive and last to leave. He’s a real eager beaver!
  • We are all eager beavers when we start our first job.

7. go the extra mile (= to work very hard to achieve something)

  • You can count on Tom; he’s always willing to go the extra mile.
  • Professionalism for the rest of us means being willing to go the extra mile and work the extra hours.

8. go to great lengths (= to try very hard, sometimes too much)

  • The two parties went to great lengths to reach an agreement.
  • Celebrities go to great lengths to hide from paparazzi.

9. move heaven and earth (= to do everything you can)

  • I promise I will move heaven and earth to get you this job.
  • If he had truly loved her, he would have moved heaven and earth to get her back.

Learn how to write your New Year Resolutions in English >>>

Idioms about dreams

10. beyond your wildest dreams (= much better than you expected)

  • Our team received a grant that was beyond their wildest dreams.
  • We live in an amazing world – a world where humans will soon achieve life expectancy beyond our wildest dreams.

11. dream come true (= something you really wanted has come true)

  • Making the Olympic team this year would be a dream come true.
  • I am in Paris! It’s a dream come true!

12. The sky is the limit! (= nothing is impossible)

  • “How successful do you think the project will be? Who knows… the sky’s the limit!”
  • He is so gifted – the sky is the limit for him.

Which idioms are new for you? Which ones do you think will be useful for you? Share your opinions in the comments!

More episodes about idioms

THINKING Phrasal Verbs and Idioms | Vocabulary Quiz

31 Phrasal Verbs and Idioms about Learning

06 ‘I didn’t mean to’ – apologising

25 Other ways to say ‘I don’t know’


  1. Why do you say “37 idioms about dreams and ambitions” and there are only 12?

    • Hello!
      Thank you for your question. 37 is the number of the episode in the ‘Figure Out English’ podcast – Episode 37. The title of the episode is ‘Idioms about dreams and ambitions’. Hope it makes sense.

Leave a Reply

Your email address will not be published. Required fields are marked *