Have you ever heard someone say ‘I have a full plate right now?' You might have heard it in work when someone has many things to do, or with friends when someone is telling you they ‘have a lot on’, or they are too busy to meet for coffee right now. You can also use the expression 'I have a lot on my plate’ to mean the same thing.
If you have a ‘full plate’ you have a schedule or workload that is filled with obligations, tasks and problems. When you have a ‘full plate’ or ‘a lot on your plate’ your time is filled to capacity.
Here are some examples you might hear in everyday speech.
“Being a mother, working and studying at the same time means I always have a lot on my plate.”
“I could do with some help with dinner this evening. I have a full plate with work I need to finish.”
“Id like to be healthier and work out more, but I always seem to have a full plate with everything else.”
Here are some examples you might hear in a business contexts.
“I think Maria could use some help, she has a lot to do and really has a full plate at the moment.”
“I’m afraid I am not available for a meeting this week, I have a full plate right now.”
“I have a lot on my plate at the moment at home, so I’m afraid I can’t give this project the attention it deserves.”