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Instead of BUSY: Words, Idioms, Synonyms and Phrases

Great words to use instead of "busy"

Tired of the word "busy"? Why not try a new word or expression that more accurately describes your level of preoccupation. Here are some alternatives that allow you to better express exactly how busy you are and when you are likely to be available.

It’s safer to avoid using the word “busy.” It’s blunt and often just not the right word. Below are expressions that instead of "busy" to be much better in English.


Common words with "busy"


Here are 6 words come with busy:

1. Really busy

  • I'm really busy.

2. Kind of busy 

  • I'm kind of busy.

3. Sort of busy

  • I'm sort of busy.

4. Unbelievably busy

  • I will be unbelievably busy next week.

5. So busy

  • I was so busy yesterday.

6. Little busy

  • I might be a little busy tomorrow.

Talk about your busy day


Here are 11 words to talk about your busy days:


1. Busy day

  • I have a very busy day ahead.

2. Big day

  • I have certainly had a big day.

3. Hard day

  • I had a really hard day, but I could have done worse.

4. Full day

  • Today's my last full day in Paris.

5. Eventful day

  • It had been a long and eventful day.

6. Brisk day

  • A typically brisk winter's day on the South Coast.

7. Hectic day

  • I've had a pretty hectic day.

8. Animated day

  • My day was animated day.

9. Busy period

  • If I Have an extra pair of hands during busy periods can take the pressure off.

10. Busy year

  • But on the home front, too, it's been a busy year.

11. Crowded day

  • It was crowded day in my work.

Idioms and expressions instead of "busy"


1. Tied up

  •   I’m a little tied up with this new project.

2. Occupied

  • She’s a bit occupied today dealing with new staff.

3. Overstretched

  • He’s slightly overstretched at the moment.

4. Over-extended

  • She’s quite over-extended in this particular role.

5. Overloaded

  • We’re rather overloaded with all these new cases.

6. Overwhelmed

  • I'm overwhelmed with work.

7. Swamped

  • They’ve been completely swamped with new customers this week.

8. Slammed

  • Two people in my department quit this month. I’m totally slammed with work right now.

9. Snowed under

  • It looks like I’ll have to take the laptop home again. I’m snowed under right now.

10. Hectic

  • A hectic business schedule.

11. Buried 

  • I'm buried in work.

12. Burned/burnt out

  • You can’t work all year without taking a vacation. You’ll get burned out.

13. Busiest men have the most leisure

  • Raj said he was busy but I know that busiest men have the most leisure.

14. Up to (one’s) ears

  • I'm up to my ears in work.

15. A lot on (one’s) plate

  • John’s work has suffered a bit, but we all understand. He has a lot on his plate with his newborn twins.

16. Behind on my work

  • I'm behind on my work.

17. Bite off more than one can chew

  • Why not just take four classes instead of five? Don’t bite off more than you can chew.

18. Busy as a beaver/bee

  • I always remember my mother being busy as a bee around the holidays.

19. Biz

  • Hey guys, these days you really seem biz.

20. Have (one’s) hands full (with something)

  • There’s a huge event on campus today. Our security officers really have their hands full.

21. Up to (one’s) eyeballs/neck in (something)

  • I’m up to my neck in paperwork right now. I had no idea taking out a mortgage would require so many documents.

22. Have (a lot of) irons in the fire

  • I have too many irons in the fire right now to start reading a novel.

23. Hard at work (on something)

  • All our coaches are hard at work watching film.

Talk about the busy place or schedule


Some words usually used in work and busy days:


1. Crowded

  • A very crowded room.

2. Madhouse

  • This place is a madhouse.

3. Lively

  • She joined a lively team of reporters.

4. Bustling

  • the bustling little town.

5. Hectic

  • A hectic business schedule.

6. Packed

  • The waiting room was packed with coworkers.

7. Full

  • My day is full of work.

Synonyms for busy day

Here are some synonyms for the word "busy":


1. Active

  • I needed to change my lifestyle and become more active.

2. Efficient

  • An efficient administratornt way of contacting people.

3. Brisk

  • Business had been brisk since July.

4. Hard-pressed

  • Most people would be hard-pressed.

5. Tireless  

  • Tony is a tireless worker.

6. Diligent

  • A diligent student.

7. Industrious

  • She was an industrious and willing worker.

8. Hardworking

  • He was hardworking and energetic.

9. Assiduous

  • An assiduous student.

Common phrases to say "busy"


Here are some phrases to practice: 

  1. He had been too busy to enjoy himself.
  2. He was busy with preparations.
  3. I am buried with stuff I need to do.
  4. I am jammed packed. I do not have any time.
  5. I am so busy that I don't even have time to eat.
  6. I am so busy, that I can not breathe.
  7. I am so busy.
  8. I am so busy. I do not sure, if I am coming or going.
  9. I am so far behind, I do not think I will ever catch up.
  10. I am swamped. I have no time.
  11. I am totally booked for a while.
  12. I am totally overwhelmed.
  13. I am trying to keep my head above water.
  14. I do not have time for anything.
  15. I have a tight schedule. I do not have time.
  16. I have a very hectic hectic schedule.
  17. I have no free time.
  18. I have not time.
  19. I have so much on my plate. I am so busy.
  20. I was so overwhelmed by their kindness that I cried.
  21. I'm so busy that I can't even go home tonight.
  22. I'm so busy that I can't even go to lunch.
  23. I'm so busy that I can't even think.
  24. Mark might be a little busy tomorrow.
  25. My head is spinning.
  26. My head is spinning. I have so much work.
  27. The store was packed. It was hard to move.
  28. The team members are busy raising money.
  29. There was enough work to keep two people busy.
  30. They papered the bedroom with a busy pattern of satyrs and dryads.
  31. They were so busy yesterday.
  32. Today is so hectic.
  33. We will be unbelievably busy next week.



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