close off(redirected from closed themselves off)
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1. To prevent access to a particular area or thing. In this usage, a noun or pronoun can be used between "close" and "off." We had to close off that section of the restaurant for a private party. I had to take a detour on my way home because the water department closed a bunch of streets off.
2. To avoid emotional connection with others; to isolate. In this usage, a reflexive pronoun can be used between "close" and "off." Todd really closed himself off after his last break-up. I have a hard time making friends because I usually close myself off from other people.
3. To refuse to listen to viewpoints, ideas, or opinions that differ from one's own. In this usage, a reflexive pronoun can be used between "close" and "off." Grandpa, you can't just close yourself off to the ways of the modern world. Can you please listen to what I think, instead of automatically closing yourself off?
Farlex Dictionary of Idioms. © 2015 Farlex, Inc, all rights reserved.
close something off
to prevent entrance into something; to block something off. Please don't close this passageway off. They closed off the passageway anyway.
McGraw-Hill Dictionary of American Idioms and Phrasal Verbs. © 2002 by The McGraw-Hill Companies, Inc.
To prevent passage along or through something: The police closed off the main avenue for a parade. Park rangers closed the lake off to motorboats.
The American Heritage® Dictionary of Phrasal Verbs. Copyright © 2005 by Houghton Mifflin Harcourt Publishing Company. Published by Houghton Mifflin Harcourt Publishing Company. All rights reserved.