As promised, the grand finale! Grammar Error #10 is going to be the end of this miniseries. At least for now. I’m sure, I will be mention grammar again before long. That’s how I am. I do that. I see someone writing something that reminds me that it’s a common error and I like to bring knowledge, learning and wisdom into the world.
My inner little Grammar Goddess is ready to step into action and spread enlightenment (which means knowledge). I like to help people. And one way of doing this is giving them some information that will add to the quality of their lives and to whatever it is they are doing.
Remember, first impressions count! They most often decide whether someone scrolls on down or stops and investigates us further – and ultimately becomes a customer or client. First, there are the pictures, of course. Visuals are what first catches the eye. Then a person reads the accompanying text. If that is still to his or her liking, there could be a customer or client sitting right there, looking at the computer screen and getting ready to click that “ORDER” button.
If you lose that person on the visuals, too bad. If the picture is catching attention and your copy is making the reader’s hair stand on end, more than likely, they will not invest in any of your products or services. Good language speaks volumes. It is a sign of quality and this will be mentally transferred to your products and services by the reader. If he or she decides they see quality in you, trust is built and it is much more likely for them to part with their money.
I don’t mean this in a bad, manipulative way. This is about you earning a living with something that is of value to you and you are imbuing what you offer with this value. If you don’t value yourself or what you do, you cannot expect anyone else to do so. So show the world how great you really are. Show yourself in all your glory. Because you are worth it.
Grammar Error #10
This seems to be a tricky one. Many people think that when they are referring to the present, the form to use should be use to. However, this is wrong. And let me explain why. Once you understand the reasoning behind it, it is quite logical and you will better remember it for future reference.
Being used to doing something means that you have already formed a habit of it. This has already happened in the past. Hence, now this habit is something that comes automatically and naturally. It is no surprise, it is a recurring event in your life.
Before the used to, however, there is the auxiliary verb to be. And this decides about person and time the entire event takes, will take or took place. Be is the deciding factor, used to the constant.
She was used to meditating first thing in the morning.
She is used to meditating first thing in the morning.
She will be used to meditating first thing in the morning.
But when do we use use to?
The answer is quite simple. In a question.
Did he use to go to bed early as a child?
Did + use is the same as used. This goes for any verb.
Did + go is the same as went.
Did + stop is the same as stopped.
It stands to reason that we use the usual grammatical rule of the sentence structure of a question without exception. Being used to (doing) something is no different to being beaten or kissed – in grammatical terms. So remember this:
He was used to listen to birds chirping.
Did he use to listen to birds chirping?
I think now that you understand the logic behind this grammatical rule, you can now easily remember and apply it.
If you have any questions, don’t be shy to pop me a mail to firstname.lastname@example.org and ask. I’m happy to help make this world a better place and quality in the use of language is part of this.