How to use ‘myself’ in a sentence

Use ‘myself’ when you’re both the person doing something and the person it’s happening to

For example:

I treated myself to chocolate gateau for breakfast.

I made myself ill by eating too much.

I punished myself later by having celery sticks for dinner.

Use ‘myself’ to add emphasis

For example:

I myself scoffed every last fairy cake.

I would eat that Tim Tam myself, but I think I’ve had enough.

My boss was going to take the last Anzac biscuit, but I pushed her aside and ate it myself.

In these sentences, ‘myself’ is added only for emphasis. If you remove it, the sentences still make perfect sense.

Image: Anzac biscuits.

I ate the Anzac biscuits myself. Image by Amanda Slater / CC BY-SA

Take care when including yourself in a list of people

It’s easy to use ‘myself’ incorrectly when adding yourself to a list of people.

Email Harold, Miri, or myself for the best pavlova recipe.

Email Harold, Miri, or me for the best pavlova recipe.

Always think of the sentence as if you were the only one in it. You wouldn’t say ‘Email myself’, you’d say ‘Email me’. Once you have the sentence right, add in the other people.

Image: pavlova.

Email me for pavlova recipes Image by AnneCN / CC BY 

Note: The above rules also apply when using:

Want to know more?

Find out how to use ‘I’ or ‘me’ in a sentence

5 responses to “How to use ‘myself’ in a sentence”

  1. Simon says:

    Hi Eleanor. Something that’s bee bugging me for long time is the use of ‘in terms of’. Have you discussed this issue before?

    • eleanormeecham says:

      Kia ora Simon.

      No, we haven’t done any blog posts on ‘in terms of’ before. What exactly about that phrase is bugging you?

  2. Dave from Stats says:

    Eleanor, you are so good at making English fun! The examples are great!

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