boil the ocean

boil the ocean

tv. to waste one’s time attempting to do the impossible. (see also plowing water.) You’re wasting my time. You might as well be boiling the ocean.
See also: boil, ocean
References in periodicals archive ?
We don't encourage our customers to boil the ocean in one go," says Khan.
18, 2013 /PRNewswire/ -- Sometimes we have no choice but to boil the ocean.
It takes time to boil the ocean, and you need a lot of first downs to get to a touchdown, you need a lot of touchdowns to win the game.
Often in healthcare, we slow our progress because we think we cannot drink the water before we boil the ocean.
Obviously, you can't boil the ocean all at once, but applying zero tolerance to the key levers will provide a value-added endgame if we think out of the box.
You are invited to a brown bag meeting at which we will boil the ocean on the new marketing plan with the aim of creating a call to action which will cascade to offline chat.
an internet commerce firm headed by ex-Lotus chairman Jim Manzi: "They were trying to boil the ocean.
You can either boil the ocean by listening to every call manually and go out of business, or rely on a tiny sample and face the compliance risk.
This is of course, the intersection of terror and possibility, as we transition from our first fumbling attempts to boil the ocean into a land populated by people who have been doing this stuff for a long time before us.
We were trying to boil the ocean but scaled it back, created a strawman to kick around, solved some other problems by talking to the dog, and meantime ignored the consultants who have gone native.
It has been a stage-by-stage process and a glowing success because they didn't try to boil the ocean by taking it on all at once.