In the Midst of – Usage & Meaning

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Candace Osmond

Candace Osmond studied Advanced Writing & Editing Essentials at MHC. She’s been an International and USA TODAY Bestselling Author for over a decade. And she’s worked as an Editor for several mid-sized publications. Candace has a keen eye for content editing and a high degree of expertise in Fiction.

Are you in the midst of confusion about the phrase “in the midst of”? I know, I probably confused you even more there. But I promise this guide will help explain everything you need to know about the idiomatic phrase, like where it came from and how you can use it in a sentence. Read on!

What Does ‘In the Midst of’ Mean?

In the Midst of Usage Meaning

To kick things off, let’s tackle the question that nags at lots of people. “In the mid” or “in the midst of” is a common idiomatic expression we use to describe something in the middle of or surrounded by other things or people.

Most people use the phrase “in the midst of” to state that they’re in the middle of doing something, which could range from a simple task to something more involved. But you might also use it to show a particularly chaotic or crowded situation. Basically, it means being in the thick of things.

Where Did the Saying ‘In the Midst of’ Come From?

The origin of “in the midst of” comes from the Middle English words middes and myddest. Back then, it was used as a noun to describe the middle or center of something.

  • She passed through the midst of the field.

Over time, it slowly evolved into an adverb, and we now use it to describe something put in the middle or surrounded by other things.

  • I’m in the midst of organizing receipts to file my taxes.

How to Pronounce Midst

First of all, just know that it’s not “misd” or “mid-est,” no matter what other people say. It’s actually pronounced as mid-st.

In the Midst of Synonyms

Synonyms can help spice up your vocabulary and also add some color to your writing, so you’re not using the same word too much. Something like “in the midst” stands out, and a reader would pick up on the phrase’s overuse. So, try these phrases instead:

  • Amidst
  • Surrounded by
  • In the thick of
  • Encircled by
  • In the center of
  • In the heart of
  • In the middle of
  • Neck deep
  • Busy with
  • Amid
  • Among
  • During

Examples of in the Midst of in Sentences

In the Midst of Usage Meaning 1

Now that we’ve covered all the details about its meaning, origin, and how to say it correctly, let’s take a look at some examples of how “in the midst” can be used in a sentence to give you some deeper context of the expression.

  • I was in the midst of cooking dinner when the power went out, so now I’m left with a partially cooked roast.
  • We found our group of friends in the midst of a sea of people at the concert and could barely get out when the show ended.
  • My ADHD husband managed to keep his calm and remained focused in the midst of all the chaos at the convention.
  • I’m in the midst of planning my next book, and it’s all I can think about.
  • And, even after claiming neutrality, I found myself in the midst of a heated argument between my two friends.
  • Amidst all the sadness surrounding my brother’s death, there was a glimmer of hope that his memory would live on in my nephew.

You’re in the Midst of Learning!

That’s a wrap on yet another common idiomatic expression! Do you have a better idea of what “in the midst of” means and how to use it properly? I hope so! And be sure to check out our other breakdowns of idioms and phrases to increase your vocabulary.