top of page

Express Yourself: Habits

talk about things you're familiar with, and things that you became familiar with with used to, get used to and be used to

Knowing the difference between used to, be used, and get used to can make a real difference in your fluency and understanding when communicating in English. For example, look at these three phrases which have 'used to' in them:

  • I used to swim in the sea.

  • I am used to swimming in the sea.

  • I got used to swimming in the sea.

What is the difference? How different are the meanings? Are they talking about the past, present, or future?

Check out this video lesson and explanation and find out!

'Used to'

➡️ describes a past habit that is no longer done.


I used to smoke. = I smoked in the past, it was a habit, but now I don't smoke.


➕ used to + verb base (I used to smoke.)

➖ didn't use to + verb base (I didn't use to smoke.)

❓ Did + use to + verb base (Did you use to smoke?)


*used to can only be used to talk about the past

More Examples

Be Used toTo

to be familiar with something or someone because you have some previous experience with it/them and it is normal for you.


I'm used to waking up early because my children go to school at 7 am.

=Waking up early is something normal for me; it is something I have experience doing, so it is a familiar and normal thing for me.


➕ be + used to + verb-ing (I am used to waking up early.)

➖ be + not + used to verb -ing (I am not used to waking up early.)

❓ be + subject + used to + verb-ing (Are you used to waking up early?)


*can be used for present, past, and future situations

More Examples

Get Used to To

to become familiar or accustomed to something or someone that was strange or very different at first.


After living in Japan for 10 years, I got used to eating sushi.

=This means that maybe when you first tried or discovered sushi it was strange to you, but after a while, it became normal for you ➡️ so you got used to it...during the 10 years that you lived there.


➕ get + used to + verb-ing (I got used to eating sushi.)

➖ don't/ didn't get + used to verb -ing (I didn't get used to eating sushi.)

❓ Do/does/Did + subject + get + used to + verbing (Did you get used to eating sushi?)


*can be used for present, past, and future situations

More Examples


A) What does the form mean?

B) Do you know what it means in context?

Power in Numbers




Project Gallery

bottom of page