it’s not brain surgery

it’s not brain surgery


  • to indicate that a specific task is simple and easy to undertake 
  • to mock someone who describes a simple task as involving much more than it really does 
  • to reassure someone that the subject or task they are being taught is simple and easily understood

Example Sentences

  1. Learning to ride a bike is simple, it’s not brain surgery.
  2. He’s acting like figuring out where the trash goes is a huge achievement, but it’s not exactly brain surgery
  3. I can’t believe I had to show her how to use a chequebook, it’s not brain surgery.
  4. Everyone knows if you don’t drink enough water, you’ll get dehydrated, it’s not brain surgery.
  5. If you can’t figure it out let me take a look, it’s not like it’s brain surgery.


It’s not brain surgery, which is a relatively new idiom, synonymous with “it’s not rocket science,” and is used to convey that a task or idea is simple and easily accomplished. Originating during the latter half of the 19th century, the idiom found popularity in the 1970s as more people became aware of and understood the training and skills required to perform brain surgery. This provided a standard that people could use to easily compare other tasks too.

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