Author Topic: symbolically or literally  (Read 6312 times)

Offline longman3575

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symbolically or literally
« on: September 16, 2013, 12:18:48 am »
What's the meaning of the underlined part? Would you paraphrase it?

In our efforts to be the good child, the uncomplaining employee, or the cooperative patient, many of us fall into the trap of trying to please people by going along with whatever they want us to do. At times we lose track of our own boundaries and needs, and the cost of this could be our life, both symbolically and literally. When we are unable to set healthy limits, it causes distress in our relationships. But when we learn to say no about what we don't feel like doing in order to say yes to our true self, we feel empowered, and our relationships with others improve. So don't be afraid to say no. Try to catch yourself in the moment and use your true voice to say what you really want to say.

Offline Britta

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Re: symbolically or literally
« Reply #1 on: September 16, 2013, 07:16:20 am »
Quote
and the cost of this could be our life, both symbolically and literally.

Symbolically: losing control, e.g. suffering a depression or another psychological disorder
Literally: committing suicide (probably due to the above)
If it's not used by a native speaker it's not idiomatic. And idiom trumps grammar every time. Jack Wilkerson†

Offline longman3575

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Re: symbolically or literally
« Reply #2 on: September 16, 2013, 11:56:55 pm »
Always thank you!