watch (one's) step

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watch (one's) step

1. Literally, to pay attention to where one is walking. Often used as an imperative. Watch your step! All of these cords are a tripping hazard.
2. By extension, to proceed with caution. Watch your step when you meet with the boss—this is a situation you need to finesse. Larry better watch his step around here, or he won't be invited back.
See also: step, watch

watch one's step

 
1. be careful of one's walking or stepping. It's slippery here. Watch your step.
2. Fig. to act with care and caution so as not to make a mistake or offend someone. John had better watch his step with the new boss. He won't put up with his lateness. Mary was told by the teacher to watch her step and stop missing classes.
See also: step, watch

watch one's step

Exercise caution, as in You'd better watch your step talking to them about a merger. Often put as an admonition, this phrase transfers taking care in walking to other kinds of caution. [First half of 1900s]
See also: step, watch
References in periodicals archive ?
Nor would it startle you to come across a selkie or a siren, although you might want to watch your step.
June Dinsley, 81, from Egglescliffe, said: "You've got to be careful how you go and watch your step.
You'll also find Benny Spellman's Fortune Teller (The Merseybeats), Richie Barrett's Some Other Guy (The Big Three) and Bobby Parker's Watch Your Step, which my old band The Move used to play while singer Carl Wayne was chopping up TV sets with a huge axe
SO YOU DEFINITELY WATCH YOUR STEP WHEN CLIMBING UP, DOWN AND ALL AROUND THE STRYKER.
By taking part in the Watch Your Step scheme, part of a national awareness campaign, older people, their families and others who care for them can make a massive difference to their everyday lives.
as you learn to watch your step, shift your weight, make room in all
Starting in the West Midlands, the Watch Your Step drive aims to cut injuries at work, such as the 40,000 falls that happen each year.
This initiative, Watch Your Step, is part of a cross-industry campaign with local authorities and stakeholders, which aims to raise awareness of simple, cost-effective measures that can reduce the human and financial burden.
You have to watch your step in some areas at St George's where a ditch wends its way around the back of the clubhouse and perilously near the Royal and Ancient marquee.
Wearing white attracts them - and watch your step, please.
Watch your step entering and exiting; the car may not be exactly level with the floor.
2) Step Number Two is to religiously WATCH your step for the next long while, and depending on the heinousness of your crime, that while could range from two weeks to six months or more.
And I thought, good for you son but watch your step for the pavements there are covered in dog poo.
There are quite a few blind corners in this area - you really have to watch your step at times.