have a lot on (one's) plate(redirected from have a lot on their plate)
have a lot on (one's) plate
To have a large or excessive amount of things to do or deal with. I just have a lot on my plate right now while I'm finishing up my degree and doing this huge project for work.
Farlex Dictionary of Idioms. © 2015 Farlex, Inc, all rights reserved.
have a lot on one's plate
Also, have too much on one's plate. Have a great deal (or too much) to cope with, as in What with the new baby and the new house, they have a lot on their plate, or I can't take that on now; I've got too much on my plate already. This expression transfers a loaded or overloaded dinner plate to other activities. [First half of 1900s]
The American Heritage® Dictionary of Idioms by Christine Ammer. Copyright © 2003, 1997 by The Christine Ammer 1992 Trust. Published by Houghton Mifflin Harcourt Publishing Company. All rights reserved.
have enough, a lot, etc. on your ˈplate(informal) have enough, a lot of things, etc. to do or be responsible for: I can’t help you next week, I’ve got too much on my plate. ♢ She has a lot on her plate at the moment; that’s why she looks so worried all the time.
Farlex Partner Idioms Dictionary © Farlex 2017
plate, to have a lot/enough on one's
To have more than enough to worry about or cope with. This term originated in the 1920s and transferred the image of an overcrowded dinner plate to a very full agenda. R. Simons used it in Houseboat Killing (1959): “I’ll leave you at it. I’ve got plenty on my plate at the moment.” The synonymous my plate is full (or to have a full plate) date from the same period.
The Dictionary of Clichés by Christine Ammer Copyright © 2013 by Christine Ammer