Please take a minute to undertake the following little linguistic task. Grab a pen and a piece of paper. Write down a few sentences that describe yourself in a good mood. Now, write some sentences that describe yourself in a bad mood. Do you notice any patterns of language? Do you employ any clichés or common idioms almost despite yourself? Are metaphors springing up in all their linguistic glory? Crucially, do you notice an orientation for each group of descriptions? Were you consistently ‘up’ when you described your good mood? Were you flying high, or on cloud nine? Were you physically ‘down’ when you were mired in a bad mood? Dwelling in the depths of depression, or stuck in the gutter? In their classic book, ‘Metaphors We Live By’, George Lakoff and Mark Johnson unpick how our very understanding of the world is shaped by the language of metaphor. So much so, we often miss and take for granted metaphors in our everyday talk and writing. The authors start with the example of

Source: The Magic of Metaphor