work (one's) way through (something)(redirected from work their way through)
work (one's) way through (something)
1. To remain continually engaged in some task. Often used when the task is long-term, tedious, or plodding. We're working our way through the set of problems the math teachers assigned. Even if I'm not really enjoying a book, I feel like I have to work my way through it once I've started it.
2. To work in order to pay for some long-term educational program. Kate is working her way through college, but it's taken a while, as she's only been able to attend classes part-time. You don't even realize how well off you are. When I was your age, I had to work my way through school!
Farlex Dictionary of Idioms. © 2015 Farlex, Inc, all rights reserved.
work(one's way) into something
1. . to get into something tight or small gradually and with effort. He worked himself into the dark corner and hid there for a while. The mouse worked into the crack and got stuck.
2. . to get more deeply involved in something gradually. I don't quite understand my job. I'll work my way into it gradually. Fred worked into the daily routine gradually.
work(one's way) through something
1. . Lit. to work to earn money to pay the bills while one is in college, medical school, law school, etc. I worked my way through college as a waiter.
2. . Fig. to progress through something complicated. I spent hours working my way through the tax forms. I worked through the forms very slowly.
3. . Fig. to struggle through an emotional trauma. When she had finally worked through her grief, she was able to function normally again. Larry worked through the pain.
McGraw-Hill Dictionary of American Idioms and Phrasal Verbs. © 2002 by The McGraw-Hill Companies, Inc.
work, etc. your way through somethingread or do something from the beginning to the end of something: He worked his way through the dictionary learning ten new words every day. ♢ He’s eating his way through all the restaurants that are recommended in the Good Food Guide.
Farlex Partner Idioms Dictionary © Farlex 2017