Take the wind out of someone’s sails

Idiom

Take the wind out of someone’s sails

Definition

Refers to undermining someone’s confidence or enthusiasm through words or actions

Examples

He took the wind out of her sails when he gave her a negative critique

The new policy has taken the wind out of their sails

Origin

Mid-1800s, from the literal sense of taking the wind out of a sailboat’s sails

Faqs

question

What does ‘take the wind out of someone’s sails’ mean?

answer

It means to undermine someone’s enthusiasm or confidence.

question

Where does the phrase ‘take the wind out of someone’s sails’ come from?

answer

It comes from the literal sense of taking the wind out of a sailboat’s sails.