if it’s the last thing I do

if it’s the last thing I do


  • indicates determination to achieve something
  • used after a statement of intent to do something
  • … and I’m absolutely going to do it
  • … I’m dedicated to doing this
  • sometimes used as a threat (example 5)
  • sometimes shows stubbornness;
  • … and I’m not going to stop until it’s done (example 6)

Example Sentences

  1. I am going to get this house cleaned today if it’s the last thing I do.
  2. I am going to learn to play the guitar if it’s the last thing I do.
  3. I will see this project through to the end if it’s the last thing I do.
  4. She said she was going to become his wife if it is the last thing she does.
  5. I’ll teach you to respect me if it’s the last thing I do.
  6. I’m going to get my point across if it’s the last thing I do.


The origin of this phrase is unknown.  “The last thing” indicates a sense of finality. It literally means if it’s the final thing I do before I die. But the phrase’s figurative meaning is closer to: I will definitely do this before I die, or simply: I will definitely do this.


  • if it kills me
  • and you’re not going to stop me

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Idiom of the Day

axe to grind

Meaning: have a private or selfish reason for doing something

Example: He should not become the chairman of the committee as he has too many axes of his own to grind. Read on


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