Meaning | Synonyms
- go insane or crazy
- become mentally ill or unstable
- to come to be without something
- to be deprived of something
- to fail to keep something
- to lose control of your emotions
- to become sick
- not of sound mind and reason
- temporary confusion or anger
- moment of madness or foolishness
- I thought he had lost it when he told me how much his new car had cost.
- He thought he’d lost it when he found his keys in the microwave.
- She had been stuck at home with four small children all week and she was losing it.
- Sometimes the music is so loud at work that it feels like I’m going to lose it.
- I can’t imagine that I would lose it. My shoe has to be here somewhere.
- Please be careful with my earrings. It was a gift from my mother. If you lose it I will be very upset.
- If he doesn’t start pulling his weight in this new position at work he is going to lose it.
- I have very poor balance. If I stand on one leg I have to concentrate very hard otherwise I will lose it.
- If this woman does not figure out how to start her car soon, I am going to lose it.
- If he asks me the same question again I might just lose it.
- This movie is so sad! If one more person dies I am going to lose it.
- When we were out on the boat this weekend I thought that I was going to lose it.
“Lose” is an old Middle English word going back to 900. It means to be without something. It is generally used in an informal way when speaking figuratively. It means that you are losing your ability to keep your emotions in check. It can refer to any kind of emotion, including happiness, anger, and sadness.
Dating back to the 1500s, the phrase ‘to lose your mind‘ obviously did originate in a mental health capacity back then. There will have been no other term for expressing insanity. It would probably be unusual to hear it from the medical profession today.
Now we have other medical terminology for various types of mental problems so, this phrase is more likely to be used informally, to explain a type of temporary madness when something challenging, difficult, or foolish happens. It is just a momentary situation, suggesting that someone has lost their grip on their sanity or they have done something stupid.