knock (oneself) out

(redirected from knock ourselves out)

knock (oneself) out

1. Expend a lot of one's energy or try very hard (doing something). The image is of working so hard as to become unconscious. I'd like to get these reports done before the weekend, but I'm not going to knock myself out.
2. One can feel free (to do something); go ahead; one can do something for as long and as much as one likes. If you want to go through all the files one by one, knock yourself out, but I ain't doing that. We don't get overtime, so there's no reason to stay, but if Joan wants to she can knock herself out.
See also: knock, out

knock out

1. To cause something to fall out of something else by striking or colliding with it, either intentionally or unintentionally. In this usage, a noun or pronoun can be used between "knock" and "out." I tried to knock out the broken piece, but it seems like it's stuck in there. When Dave crashed his bike, he knocked the mail out of the mailbox. It was actually kind of funny.
2. To render one unconscious, as from a physical blow or a drug. In this usage, a noun or pronoun can be used between "knock" and "out." You really think you can knock out the champ? We're going to knock you out for this procedure, so you won't feel any pain at all.
3. To exhaust one or make one fatigued. In this usage, a noun or pronoun is used between "knock" and "out." It's amazing how standing all day can really knock you out. My medication usually knocks me out, so I better stay home for the day.
4. slang To thoroughly impress, overwhelm, or excite one. In this usage, a noun or pronoun is used between "knock" and "out." The show of support from everyone just knocked me out. That movie really knocked me out—I didn't expect it to be so good!
5. slang To cause to stop operating or functioning. In this usage, a noun or pronoun can be used between "knock" and "out." The storm knocked out power to the whole island. Be careful not to overload the system—you could knock it out with too much traffic.
6. slang To eliminate from contention, as in a sports competition. In this usage, a noun or pronoun can be used between "knock" and "out." Every year, some underdog knocks out a top-seeded team. I'd love to knock the defending champs out of the tourney, but it will take a miracle.
7. slang To produce or complete something, usually with the main motivation of simply getting it done. If we can knock out a few more of these reports before the weekend, we'll be in good shape for next week. I'm just trying to knock out as many pages as possible so I can get up to the page count before the deadline.
See also: knock, out
Farlex Dictionary of Idioms. © 2022 Farlex, Inc, all rights reserved.

knock oneself out (to do something) (for someone or something)

to make a great effort to do something for someone or some group. (As if one had worked oneself into unconsciousness.) I knocked myself out to plan this party for you! She knocked herself out for us. I don't know why I knock myself out to do these things for you. You are not at all appreciative. He knocked himself out to get there on time.
See also: knock, out

knock someone out

1. Lit. to knock someone unconscious. (Someone includes oneself.) Fred knocked Mike out and left him there in the gutter. Fred knocked out Mike.
2. Fig. to make someone unconsciousness. The drug knocked her out quickly. The powerful medicine knocked out the patient.
3. Fig. to surprise or please someone. I have some news that will really knock you out.
4. Fig. to wear someone out; to exhaust someone. All that exercise really knocked me out. The day's activities knocked the kids out and they went right to bed.
See also: knock, out

knock something out

1. to create something hastily. He knocked a few out as samples. He knocked out a few of them quickly, just so we could see what they were going to look like.
2. Fig. to put something out of order; to make something inoperable. The storm knocked the telephone system out. The high winds will probably knock out electrical service all over town.
See also: knock, out
McGraw-Hill Dictionary of American Idioms and Phrasal Verbs. © 2002 by The McGraw-Hill Companies, Inc.

knock oneself out

1. Make a great effort, as in I was knocking myself out to finish on time. This expression also is put negatively, Don't knock yourself out, meaning "don't exert yourself; it's not worth that much effort." [c. 1930]
2. Enjoy yourself, have a good time, as in You're off to Europe? Knock yourself out. [Slang; mid-1900s] Both usages allude to knocking oneself unconscious (see knock out). For a synonym see break one's ass.
See also: knock, out

knock out

1. Also, knock out cold. Render unconscious by a blow or some other means. For example, It was just a swinging door, but it knocked her out, or Just one of those sleeping pills can knock you out cold. [Late 1500s]
2. Make tired, exhaust, as in That sightseeing tour knocked me out.
3. Render useless or inoperative, as in The storm knocked out the power.
4. See knock off, def. 2.
See also: knock, out
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.

knock out

1. To hit something abruptly and cause it to move beyond a border: The batter knocked the baseball out of the stadium. I removed the filter and knocked out the dust.
2. To cause someone to be eliminated from some competition: An engine malfunction knocked the car out of the race. We knocked out last year's champions in the quarterfinals.
3. To render someone unconscious: The thief knocked the guards out before they could call for help. Those sleeping pills could knock out a horse! I banged my head on the car door and knocked myself out.
4. To defeat someone in boxing with a punch from which he or she cannot recover: The new champion has knocked out the last three opponents. The boxer knocked the opponent out in the first round.
5. To render something useless, inoperative, or ineffective: The storm knocked the phone lines out across the state. High winds knocked out the power to all the homes in the valley.
6. To exert or exhaust someone thoroughly in order to accomplish something. Used reflexively: She always knocks herself out to be ready on time. Try to clean the house for the party, but don't knock yourself out.
7. To produce something in abundance: The workers knocked out 500 parts in an hour. We used to make the parts by hand, but the machine can knock them out much faster.
8. Slang To impress someone greatly: Your new poems knock me out!
See also: knock, out
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.

knock oneself out, to

To make a great effort, to apply oneself to the point of exhaustion. This hyperbolic expression, alluding to knocking oneself unconscious with extreme effort, dates from about 1930. It is often put negatively, as in “Don’t knock yourself out; we can finish this project tomorrow.” In the mid-1900s a newer slang usage surfaced, knock yourself out, meaning enjoy yourself, have fun. Unlike the earlier usage, it is not yet a cliché.
See also: knock, to
The Dictionary of Clichés by Christine Ammer Copyright © 2013 by Christine Ammer
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