go through the motions

idiom

Definition of go through the motions 

: to do something without making much effort to do it well He claimed that he was looking for a job, but he was really just going through the motions.

Learn More about go through the motions

Share go through the motions

Statistics for go through the motions

Look-up Popularity

Comments on go through the motions

What made you want to look up go through the motions? Please tell us where you read or heard it (including the quote, if possible).

WORD OF THE DAY

lying above or upon

Get Word of the Day daily email!

Test Your Vocabulary

Words from Greek and Roman Mythology Quiz

  • the-triumph-of-venus-by-alessandro-magnasco
  • Boreal comes from the name of the ancient Greek god of which wind?
Name That Thing

Test your visual vocabulary with our 10-question challenge!

TAKE THE QUIZ
SCRABBLE® Sprint

Test Your Knowledge - and learn some interesting things along the way.

TAKE THE QUIZ

Love words? Need even more definitions?

Subscribe to America's largest dictionary and get thousands more definitions and advanced search—ad free!