by Liz Walter
Today, I’m going to write about words and phrases for describing excitement. I’ll start with a very basic point that often causes trouble for learners of English: the difference between exciting and excited. Remember to use -ing adjectives for the things that cause a feeling, and -ed adjectives for the person experiencing the feeling:
Our trip to see the whales was really exciting.
Everyone was excited about seeing the whales.
When children (or sometimes adults) behave in a silly way because they are too excited about something, we say they are over-excited:
Lucy knocked her drink over – I think she’s a bit over-excited.
It was so exhilarating to ski on the fresh snow.
When we reached the top of the mountain, we were exhilarated and exhausted.
He had some thrilling adventures when he was young.
She’s addicted to the thrill of skydiving.
Peter was thrilled with his present.
The word heady is used to describe situations or periods of time where someone feels happy and excited. It often implies that someone feels more confident or free than usual:
They bought the cottage in the heady months after their wedding.
For Max, this academic freedom was intoxicating.
She was intoxicated with fame.
A few idioms connected with fear can also be used for excitement, depending on the context. For instance, you could say that a very exciting movie kept you on the edge of your seat, or that your heart skipped/missed a beat when you saw something exciting.
If something makes you excited, you can say that it sets your pulse racing:
This young actor is setting pulses racing all over the world.
Daisy was stoked to be invited.
When we arrived in New York, I was just buzzing.
People also say, informally, that they are buzzing for something when they are excited about something that is going to happen in the future:
I’m buzzing for Sophie’s party.
I hope you are excited, thrilled and stoked to learn some new words and phrases, not to mention buzzing for more posts!