Tripping Up on Commonly Confused Verbs: ‘Remind’ vs. ‘Remember’

Language is like a magic toolbox, but sometimes the rules can be a bit confusing. Just one wrong word or a mix-up here and there, and our message can turn upside down! 

Today, let’s talk about two words that often get confused: “remind” and “remember.”

Remembering” (or “sich erinnern” in German) is similar to using a very quick computer in our brains to search for and retrieve information we have stored in our minds. It’s the opposite of forgetting. 

You use “remember” when you’re actively pulling something out of your memory bank.

For example, “I still remember the name of my first boss.

On the other hand, “remind” (in German, “jd. erinnern”) is about bringing something to someone else’s attention. 

For example, a project manager might remind her team members about a deadline. Or a salesperson might remind his client about an upcoming delivery.

Both words have quite different meanings and uses. And mixing them up can lead to funny situations or puzzled expressions. 

So, let’s make a pact not to mix up “remember” and “remind” anymore!

The one who remembers correctly and reminds someone correctly is a true communication champion!

In a nutshell

  • Use “remember” when you are recalling something from your own memory. You are the one who is doing the remembering.
  • Use “remind” when you are telling someone else to remember something. You are reminding them of something they already know or need to know.

Now, it’s your turn: Have you ever mixed up words, leading to funny or embarrassing situations?

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Foto Christine Sparks

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