Saying how happy or sad you are

Here are some of the ways you can express your feelings of happiness and sadness in English.

Saying how happy you are

You can be...

- (absolutely) delighted
- thrilled to bits
- over the moon
- really pleased
- so happy

"She was absolutely delighted with her present!"
"Dave was thrilled to bits with his new computer."
"Jenny's over the moon with her promotion."

Or you can say...

- I couldn't be happier.
- That is fantastic / wonderful / great / marvellous!

When you hear good news you can say:

- What great / wonderful / fantastic news!
- We've been waiting so long for this (moment).
- Thank God! / Thank God for that!
(British English speakers tend not to be particularly religious)

Pronunciation tip
Stress the adverbs and adjectives for greater emphasis:

- I'm really pleased.
- What great news!

Saying how sad you are

Here are some ways you can talk about unhappiness.

You can be...

- really sad about (something)
- really sad (to hear...)
- upset / unhappy about (something)
- a little down
- down in the dumps
- a bit depressed
- miserable
- in pieces
- distraught (pronounced "dis - trort")
- devastated
- heart-broken
- absolutely gutted

"She was absolutely gutted when she heard she hadn't got the job."
"He was heart-broken at the loss of his wife."
"We were devastated to hear your terrible news."
"She's in pieces after the performance."

We can also talk about the help or extra support that somebody might need when they're in a difficult situation.

"She's going to need all the support she can get."
"We're going to have to rally round them for the time being."
"It's going to take time for them to pick up the pieces."
"They'll need some moral support."
"It's going to take her ages to get over it."

If someone is a little down (over something minor), you can try these expressions:

"Chin up!"
"Look on the bright side!"
"Oh well, things could be worse!"
"Cheer up! It might never happen!"

Quick Exercise

Choose the correct word.

1. Lucy was in __ when she heard the news.
2. John's thrilled __ with his new phone.
3. Your colleague's wife has had a baby and you say:
4. You're talking to a friend about your brother (who just split up with his girlfriend). You say, ''He's still __''
5. Your cousin has just started university and she's having a wonderful time. Someone asks you about your cousin and you say:
6. A colleague's grandmother dies after a long illness. You say, ''I was __ to hear about your grandmother.''
7. Your friend is unhappy because he had to sell his car. You say: ''__ At least you don't have to wash it every week now!''
8. Your football team lose the championship. A friend asks you how you feel and you say: ''I'm __''
9. Your best friend starts dating again a week after her boyfriend left her. You say, ''It didn't take you long to get __ !''
10. Two friends tell you that they're going to get married. You're really happy for them and say: ''I'm absolutely __ for you!''

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