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To tighten control over someone or something; to restrain, slow down, or diminish someone or something. A noun or pronoun can be used between "rein" and "in." You need to rein in your journalists. They can't be writing such inflammatory pieces. I'm trying to rein in my enthusiasm a bit, because I don't want to be disappointed.
Farlex Dictionary of Idioms. © 2015 Farlex, Inc, all rights reserved.
rein someone or something in
to bring someone or something under control; to slow down someone or something. Fred is getting out of hand. The boss undertook to rein him in a bit. The boss is trying to rein in Jane's enthusiasm.
McGraw-Hill Dictionary of American Idioms and Phrasal Verbs. © 2002 by The McGraw-Hill Companies, Inc.
1. To restrain or control something or someone: The coalition tried to rein in its more militant members. I reined my anger in and refused to fight.
2. To make a horse move more slowly or stop by pulling back on reins: Rein in your horse while this truck goes by. The horses wanted to break free, but the rancher reined them in.
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.