If you want to communicate with confidence, you need to speak like a native does. Today I will show you 5 common British expressions that you can use to speak more like a native. They will also help you understand native speakers in more situations so it is a win-win.

How to use these British expressions

Got the lurgy

This British expression is about an undefined illness. It’s not a real illness but when people have flu like symptoms or a cold or something, we use this.

For example:

  • I’m sorry mate but I’m not coming out tonight. I think I’ve got the lurgy
  • Looks like Steve has come down with the dreaded lurgy.

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Full of beans

This phrase means to be energetic and lively. I guess it comes from coffee beans. Like if you drink a lot of coffee, you have loads of energy I guess.

For example:

  • You’re full of beans this morning, aren’t you?
  • He’s always full of beans. Hanging out with him really knackers me out.

On the mend

This one basically means that something or someone is recovering and getting back to normal.

You can say things like:

  • The economy is showing signs of being on the mend.
  • They had some problems recently, but their relationship looks like it is on the mend.

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Throw a spanner in the works

This British expression is great when something happens that ruins your plans or stops something from happening as expected.

For example:

  • The project was going really well until my PC died. It really threw a spanner in the works.
  • He really threw a spanner in the works when he told everyone he was going to leave the company.

As right as rain

This means that someone or something is perfectly fine and healthy. It is quite similar to the idiom “as good as new”


  • I had the lurgy last week, but now I’m as right as rain.
  • I’m sure she will be as right as rain in no time, she just needs to get some rest.


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