Things Will Work Out: Definition, Meaning, And Origin

Last Updated on
June 25, 2023

The idiomatic expression "things will work out" means that things will eventually turn out for the best, even if they are difficult right now. People use it to offer comfort and support to someone who is going through a tough time.

In short:

“Things will work out” expresses hope that a positive resolution will emerge.

What Does "Things Will Work Out" Mean?

The idiom "things will work out" means that despite current difficulties and challenges, everything will end up well. It implies that whatever issues or problems one is facing right now, with time, things will sort themselves out and result in an acceptable outcome or solution. People often use it to reassure and inspire in times of doubt or adversity.

For example, when a friend is going through a difficult breakup, you might tell them: "I know it's hard right now, but things will work out." Or when someone is struggling with job uncertainty, you might offer words of encouragement: "Don't lose hope; things will work out."

Let's delve into its core meanings and usage:

  • It reflects the belief in the resilience of the human spirit and the ability to overcome challenges.
  • It conveys optimism and hopefulness in difficult or uncertain situations.
  • It encourages the listener that even though problems seem daunting now, they will eventually resolve in a satisfactory manner with patience and perseverance.

Where Does "Things Will Work Out" Come From?

The origin of the phrase "things will work out" is not clearly attributed to a specific author or time period. The phrase is a reflection of the universally understood concept of hope and optimism, widely used in English-speaking societies. It's an everyday expression, offering reassurance during challenging or uncertain times.

Historical Example

"Anyone can demonstrate the fact that things will work out right if we constantly expect them to do so."

- Health [a Monthly Devoted to the Cause and Cure of Disease], 1908

10 Examples of "Things Will Work Out" in Sentences

Here are some examples of the idiom in use:

  • Don't worry about your exam results; things will work out in the end.
  • I know you're going through a tough time right now, but remember, things will work out.
  • I hope to see you again soon, and remember; things will work out.
  • Things will work out; you'll see. Just give it some time.
  • I know the situation seems impossible, but things will work out.
  • Little did we know at the time, but things were about to work out in ways we couldn't have imagined.
  • We're working to get back on track, confident that things will work out in the end.
  • Let's circle back to this discussion later, and don't worry; things will work out.
  • I believe in you and the fact that things will work out soon.
  • The idiom "things will work out" can provide reassurance during times of uncertainty or difficulty.

Examples of "Things Will Work Out" in Pop Culture

The phrase "things will work out" often appears in pop culture, typically reflecting themes of hope, resilience, and optimism.

Let's explore some instances:

  • "She learned that if you work hard, stay focused, and put your mind to it, most of the time, things will work out for the best" is a quote from the book "Yesterday, I Cried: Celebrating the Lessons of Living and Loving."
  • In the animated Disney film The Little Mermaid, Vanessa sings, "Things are working out according to my ultimate design."
  • In the TV series House (2004-2012), Dr. James Wilson asks, "Do you think things will work out with my brother?"
  • "I still have a list in my phone of why things will work out for me in any time of my life" is a quote from the 2017 book "What If It Does Work Out?"

Other/Different Ways to Say "Things Will Work Out"

Several alternative expressions convey a similar sentiment to "things will work out."

Here are some of them:

  • Everything will be alright
  • All will be well
  • It will be okay
  • Things will get better
  • It will turn out fine

10 Frequently Asked Questions About "Things Will Work Out":

  • What does "things will work out" mean?

"Things will work out" is an idiom expressing optimism and hope that despite present difficulties, circumstances will improve in the future.

  • How can I use "things will work out" in a sentence?

You can use "things will work out" to offer reassurance during challenging times. For example, "I know you're worried about the job interview, but things will work out."

  • Where does the phrase "things will work out" come from?

The origin of "things will work out" is not clear. It is a widely used phrase reflecting the universally understood concept of hope and optimism.

  • Can "things will work out" be used in a negative situation?

Yes, in fact, "things will work out" is often used in negative or challenging situations to offer hope and reassurance for a better future.

  • Is "things will work out" an encouragement or an observation?

"Things will work out" is often used as a form of encouragement, although it can also be an observation based on past experiences of resilience and overcoming difficulties.

  • Can "things will work out" be considered a cliché?

Some might consider "things will work out" a cliché due to its frequent use, especially in challenging times. However, its universality underscores its resonance with human experiences of hope and resilience.

  • Can "things will work out" apply to both personal and professional contexts?

Yes, "things will work out" can be used in a variety of contexts, both personal and professional, anywhere optimism or reassurance is needed.

  • Does "things will work out" convey a passive attitude?

While the phrase suggests an optimistic outlook, it does not necessarily imply passivity. It often encourages patience and resilience while actively working towards improving circumstances.

  • Can "things will work out" create false hope?

While "things will work out" aims to inspire hope, it's crucial to balance optimism with realism. Circumstances do not always improve, and managing expectations is important.

  • Is "things will work out" used universally?

While the specific phrase is English, the sentiment it conveys—hope and resilience in the face of adversity—is a universal human experience, recognizable across different cultures and languages.

Final Thoughts About "Things Will Work Out"

The idiom "things will work out" is used to reassure and comfort someone who is apprehensive, worried, or doubtful about a current situation. It encourages the listener to remain hopeful instead of losing faith.

Here's a quick recap:

  • The phrase represents an optimistic outlook and assurance of better times ahead.
  • While it offers hope, it's important to balance optimism with realism.
  • It's a universal sentiment applicable across a range of personal, professional, and cultural contexts.

Remember, "things will work out" can serve as a powerful mantra during tough times. Sometimes, the belief in a better future can be the first step in making it a reality.

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