Spoken English Expressions: No-brainer, Tough call


Everyday English Speaking Course

Two more English expressions for describing decisions are “a no-brainer” and “a tough call.”

If a decision is “a no-brainer,” it means it’s so easy and so obvious that you don’t even have to think about it. For example, imagine that you really want to buy a particular pair of shoes, but they cost $100 – so they’re a little expensive. If the shoes suddenly go on sale for $20, then buying them is a no-brainer – the decision is easy; it’s obvious that you will decide to buy them.

The opposite of a “no-brainer” is “a tough call” – this is a decision that’s difficult to make because the options are very similar, or the situation is quite complex. For example, if you’re looking at two paintings by the same artist in the same style, and someone asks you which painting you prefer, you can say, “It’s a tough call. I really like them both.”

You can use the English phrases “no-brainer” and “tough call” to describe an easy/obvious decision and a difficult/complex decision, respectively.

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