impossible

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achieve the impossible

To succeed at or overcome a task that is thought (sometimes hyperbolically) to be outside the realm of possibility. People can achieve the impossible if they work together. I felt like I had achieved the impossible when finally I received that promotion last week.
See also: impossible

near to impossible

Of such difficulty as to be or seem almost impossible. (Hyphenated if used before a noun.) The promises of the candidate during her presidential campaign are near to impossible to achieve, but they have garnered a huge following of dedicated supporters. The boss keeps setting us near-to-impossible deadlines for these new projects.
See also: impossible, near

be near to impossible

To be of such difficulty as to be or seem almost impossible. The promises of the candidate during her presidential campaign are near to impossible to achieve, but they have garnered a huge following of dedicated supporters.
See also: impossible, near

difficult is done at once; the impossible takes a little longer

Situations that are very challenging or seem hopeless take longer to complete than ones that are merely difficult. Kate is undeterred by any problem I bring her. She truly embraces the idea that difficult is done at once; the impossible takes a little longer.

difficult is done at once; the impossible takes a little longer

Prov. Tasks that are only difficult are done immediately, harder tasks take longer. (Describes a very competent group or person.) The secretary in our office is extremely capable. She has a little sign on her desk that says, "The difficult is done at once; the impossible takes a little longer." In her case, it's not a joke.
References in classic literature ?
I have told you," he began stiffly, "that recruiting on Malaita is impossible for a woman, and that is all I care to say--or dare.
he said to himself; and an inner voice told him he must not go, that nothing could come of it but falsity; that to amend, to set right their relations was impossible, because it was impossible to make her attractive again and able to inspire love, or to make him an old man, not susceptible to love.
That is it impossible to load the Columbiad, and that the pyroxyle will take fire spontaneously under the pressure of the projectile.
No road can be plainer than that from the place where they now were to Coventry; and though neither Jones, nor Partridge, nor the guide, had ever travelled it before, it would have been almost impossible to have missed their way, had it not been for the two reasons mentioned in the conclusion of the last chapter.
Jones grew more and more positive that they were out of their road; and the boy himself at last acknowledged he believed they were not in the right road to Coventry; though he affirmed, at the same time, it was impossible they should have mist the way.
It was impossible to do the one without the other," returned Enfield.
Whether the seamen of three hundred years hence will have the faculty of sympathy it is impossible to say.
Besides, it will be impossible to prevent some persons from suspecting that they are brothers and sisters, fathers and mothers to each other; for, from the mutual likeness there is between the sire and the offspring, they will necessarily conclude in what relation they stand to each other, which circumstance, we are informed by those writers who describe different parts of the world, does sometimes happen; for in Upper Africa there are wives in common who yet deliver their children to their respective fathers, being guided by their likeness to them.