In this post you will learn useful English collocations with SELF.
SELF is a short word of only four letters and is usually used as a reflexive pronoun.
English reflexive pronouns MYSELF, HIMSELF, OURSELVES are all variations of this.
However, the following are alternative uses of SELF and it can be added to a huge number of other words in the English language to give you some really interesting collocations.
I have set out some of my favourites together with useful examples to explain their use in more detail.
English Collocations with SELF
Often we hear the expression “he is a self made man” or “he is simply self made”.
This usually means he did everything himself. He set up his business, made it successful without help from any one.
Example: Peter set up his first retail store when he was 20 years old. Now he has ten stores all over the city. He is a self-made man he did it all without any bank loans or assistance from anyone.
When something or someone can operate independently of everyone or everything around it/him then we can refer to it as self-sufficient.
Example: Within the city area there is a small working farm. It is fully self-sufficient. It has cows and produces milk and cheese and butter. It has hens for eggs and meat and grows corn to make bread.
There is a farm shop on the farm selling all natural products grown or produced on the farm. It is fully self-sufficient.
In fact, the electricity is produced from a small wind farm on the land and there is a natural well with fresh drinking water. It is really independent it is truly self-sufficient.
There are many different types of holidays to decide from when choosing your holiday destination and type of accommodation.
When you want some independence to come and go as you please, to cook your own meals or stay in bed all day then people usually opt for a self-catering package.
Catering is connected to the preparation and serving of food.
Therefore a self catering holiday is one where you must cook your own meals at all times and prepare your own food.
Unfortunately that also means the dish washing!
Example: A 300 year old mill has now been converted to offer self-catering accommodation.
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English Collocations with Self - Infographic
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Usually an envelope on which you must write your name and address and send it to someone so that they can send it back to you.
Sometimes this envelope should also have an appropriate stamp (postage stamp) so that it can be delivered to you through the postal system.
ex. All applicants should submit a self-addressed envelope to Ms. Smith in order to receive their summer metrocard.
Adhesive is also known as glue, that is a sticky substance that will stick two pieces of paper together.
When an envelope or form is stated as self-adhesive it usually means that you only have to peel off (remove) a cover and then press the two pieces together and they will stick immediately. This means you do not have to wet or lick (use your tongue) the envelope to get it to stick.
We also use little notelets or pieces of coloured paper (post-its) on which we write an important note or telephone number. We then stick this to a desk or computer so someone will notice it. It is stuck with the self adhesive tape on one side of the notelet.
Example: Mary rang Michael but he was out at lunch. The person who answered the phone promised to write a note on the self-adhesive post-it and stick it to Michael’s computer screen.
Book shops are still busy and popular and despite all the technology available we love to spend our time looking through the shelves for interesting books to read.
One of the most popular sectors are the SELF-HELP BOOKS. There are self help books available on literally everything.
A SELF-HELP BOOK is a guide to show you how best to do something with out the need of hiring expensive professionals. There are self help books from computer programming to building shelves and from teaching you how to bake bread to growing tomatoes. Often these books are called “computers for Dummies”, DIY for Dummies and so on
ex. Jane really need to improve her knowledge on spreadsheets. She ran in to the book store and began searching the shelves for such a book. She quickly came across 2 self-help books “Spreadsheets made easy” and “Microsoft for dummies”.
Do you know what does GOOD MAN YOURSELF expression mean? Find out the meaning of this saying and learn other collocations with English reflexive pronouns with my Skype English Lessons.
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For more information on English phrasal verbs, English idiomatic expressions, English collocations and vocabulary, check out the following links:
As always, plenty of material is available on BBC Learning English.