Expressions using Themes (e.g. Collocations, IELTS, Business English)

Collocations With The Word Go

Collocations are words that usually go together in English.

Here we are going to look at words that go with the word 'go' to make useful and popular expressions you will hear in social and professional contexts.


Go figure

'Go figure' is a phrase, most commonly used in the US, to express surprise, confusion, or wonder at something. It is a shortened form of 'go and figure that one out'. 

Examples

  • Adam is the laziest employee in the company, yet he's the one given the promotion. Go figure!
  • When I was in a rush to get to work yesterday morning, the car wouldn't start. Today, on my day off, it starts straight away. Go figure. 


Go bust

If somebody or something happens to 'go bust', they lose all of their money or fail financially. It tends to be used more in relation to a business.

Examples

  • I never thought that shop would go bust. It was always very busy.
  • Getting involved in real estate was a huge mistake. I ended up going bust.
  • Apparently John's business went bust and now he owes tens of thousands to creditors.


No-go area

A 'no-go area' is a place that people are forbidden to enter, or one in which it is considered highly dangerous to do so. It can also be used figuratively in relation to a topic that is awkward or difficult to talk about

Examples

  • Once the war began, the capital city became a no-go area for non-combatants.
  • That part of the city is riddled with violence and street gangs. It has even become a no-go area for the police.
  • Don't mention politics when you meet up with Fiona later. It's a bit of a no-go area with her.


Go public

If you 'go public' with something, you publicize or reveal something that had previously been private or kept secret. This collocation can also be used in relation to becoming a publicly-traded company, or, in other words, one in which anyone can invest.

Examples

  • A disgruntled employee went public with information about some of the shady practices going on within the government.
  • When are you two going to go public with your relationship? I can't believe I'm still the only other person who knows about it!
  • The company decided to go public to secure some much needed extra capital.


Go smoothly

'Go' in this context means to develop or happen in a particular way. If, therefore, something was to 'go smoothly', it would develop or happen as planned or without difficulty. Included below are other common variations in this context.

Examples

  • If we want the negotiations to go smoothly, we have to make sure that we are all on the same page.
  • Things are going well at the moment. I just started a new job and my wife is expecting our first child.
  • The meeting with the client yesterday would have gone badly if Carol hadn't turned up and saved the day.


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