soften the ground (for someone or something)

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soften the ground (for someone or something)

To create a situation in which it is easier for someone to do something or for something to happen. Pioneers like her softened the ground for women to have careers in the sciences. With their star quarterback softening the ground, they look to be on their way to another championship appearance. Everyone knows your father softened the ground for you to get into this school with his money and connections.
See also: ground, soften, someone
Farlex Dictionary of Idioms. © 2015 Farlex, Inc, all rights reserved.