to walk on eggshells

Idiom Definition

Idiom Definition - walk on eggshells

"to walk on eggshells"

to be very diplomatic and inoffensive in order to not anger, upset or offend someone


Related words and phrases:

Idiom Scenario 1

Idiom Definition - walk on eggshells

Two colleagues are talking ...

Colleague 1:  The boss is really upset because we let him down by supplying bad information that he used in his meeting with the director.

Colleague 2:  He does seem like he is looking for someone to fire.

Colleague 1:  We had better walk on eggshells around the office for the next week or so.

Colleague 2:  Good idea. We'll keep our heads down, agree with whatever he says and hope we don't upset him any further.

Idiom Scenario 2

Idiom Definition - walk on eggshells

Two friends are talking ...

Friend 1:  I see that you and your wife have reconciled.

Friend 2:  Yes, but now it seems like we are both walking on eggshells. We are just both so worried that we will say something that will upset the other person that we are afraid to talk about anything serious.

Friend 1:  You are worried about offending each other again?

Friend 2:  Exactly. We don't want to have another really bad fight now that things are better.

to walk on eggshells - Usage:


Usage Frequency Index:   238   click for frequency by country

to walk on eggshells - Gerund Form:

Walking on eggshells in order not to offend someone is diplomatic.

to walk on eggshells - Examples:

1)  Frankly, I'm getting tired of having to walk on eggshells, weighing up everything I say in case it may offend someone, somewhere.

2)  she had 'bad nerves' and we had to walk on eggshells around her.

3)  Since you no longer have to walk on eggshells, you feel more relaxed on a daily basis. 

4)  You would know by the mood I was in to walk on eggshells around me.

5)  ... to be brutally honest with each other. Right now we walk on eggshells, and avoid certain things and conversations, and it's hurting us as a couple.

6)  ... question yourself constantly. A classic description is feeling like you have to walk on eggshells because you don't want to do anything that can possibly upset them.

7)  No one wants to feel like it is necessary to walk on eggshells in one's own relationship.

8)  ... is everyone feels like they walk on eggshells around you and they're terrified of you.

9)  ... of speaking her mind in a blunt way without feeling the need to walk on eggshells.

10)  ... go ballistic on this issue. In other words, he would rather walk on eggshells than ruffle feathers.

11)  In the beginning, joking about my blindness was like walking on eggshells, but now my audience is a lot more comfortable with it.

12)  My day-to-day activities revolve around walking on eggshells in the presence of my supervisor who is not afraid to verbally reprimand me in ...

13)  But walking on eggshells to avoid his fury has taken a toll on our children and me.

14)  We have women talking about walking on eggshells. Quite often through that holiday period it's about trying to keep the peace ...

15)  He was very, very controlling... It always felt like we were walking on eggshells, I was so afraid but I got used to it, it became a ...

16)  Tippy-toeing around, walking on eggshells, too afraid to tell it like it is because even though it's the ...

17)  I feel like my 20s were spent walking on eggshells making sure everyone felt loved and not really expressing my opinion.

18)  Verbal abuse often leaves a woman feeling like she is "walking on eggshells" because the slightest thing can trigger an attack.

19)  It was like she was a different person. I had been walking on eggshells ever since she revealed her illness to me.

20)  For many of us, much of our waking lives involves walking on eggshells around others, biting our tongue or smiling when we feel irritated or angry.