What Does ‘Let That Sink In’ Mean and How to Use it?

Let That Sink In Meaning

The phrase ‘let that sink in’ doesn’t sound unfamiliar, does it? Because we hear it so much and in so many ways that there appears to be a need for a good guide to its usage in grammar, formal and informal subjects. Everyone fits it around they want, which confuses you. Yes, because it can be used to give an expression of several things.

The phrase has a clear meaning, but since it, groups with the words giving different meanings cause the problem. This is probably among the most simple phrases used around us which can easily be understood. And let me tell you, we don’t believe it to be that simple and that oh! How come I get it at the first go, that’s where we baffle. Before moving ahead, make it very clear that this is a straightforward and logical phrase though it has vast options.

In this article, we’ll see what does “let that sink in” mean and how they are used by people with examples.

“Let That Sink In” Mean

Source: Dictionary.Cambridge
Source: Cambridge Dictionary

‘Let That Sink In’ refers to the act of becoming fully aware, feeling, or comprehended. In a nutshell, that means the person talking to you is trying to create a certain feeling in you.

Let that sink in means letting information sink into one’s brain slowly so it can be better understood. One way to do this is to slow down and take time to process any kind of information.

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Literal & Grammar Meaning of ‘Let That Sink In’

Let That Sink In
Source: Giphy

As far as my mind goes, the first thing we perceive after hearing this phrase is its literal meaning because it is pretty simple. Moreover, it has no problematic terms or words we do not understand. And if we talk about the whole phrase, it is pretty understandable and makes sense even if you don’t know the exact meaning, but unlike other terms used in English, it is straightforward and friendly.

In just one look, the phrase tells us that they are talking about someone doing something because it uses “Let” at the beginning (also a symbol of politeness, politely asking someone about something).

“That” signals something they might have been talking about previously.

“Sink” is where we are tough to understand because it is used in two ways

  • as a noun i.e.the sink we use in our homes
  • as a verb i.e., something is falling in the water

In the beginning, many memes got famous about this phrase where they used the sink as an object and said let that sink in as if some sink (thing) is on their doorstep and they’re asking to bring it inside. But the truth is that this phrase puts forward something which needs to be absorbed.

If we talk about grammar, ‘let that sink in’ is an idiomatic phrase that implies meaning when some sentence or conversation is directed with it. These support some other sentences and cannot give their complete sense alone. There must be some conversation or stance going on before using this phrase.

What does sink in mean in slang?

Let that Sink In is slang for fully understanding something I had to explain it over and over again to him in order for it finally to sink in. It still hasn’t really sunk in that she left me.

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In what ways do people say, “Let that Sink In”?

This phrase is used when one wants another person to give something new. For instance, Ali says, “I am moving abroad to start a new business; please let that sink in.” Ali has talked about something which was not expected, and to avoid any sudden reactions, he is asking the listener to give it some time and think about it.

Here it clearly shows that it is used at the time of talking about something for which abrupt and intense reactions are possible. Here the phrase acts as a cool down.

For example, someone is telling you something which shocks you, but then they say let that sink in, which means they calm you down to take it easy and do not act intensely, give it some time instead until you’re in a position to accept it or talk about it. Because, as you know, the former loses its identity when something sinks into something.

For example, if bread is put to sink in the milk, after some time, it’ll be a part of the liquid. So we say ‘let that sink in’ and leave that thing to be normal with circumstances.

Referring to something as positive or acceptable

When ‘let that sink in’ is added after saying something, it means that a person is sure that what they have said is correct; it is just the listener who cannot understand it at the moment, so he/she prefers some time to be given to their proposal until it starts making sense. It also means you want someone to think about your words.

It is an indirect way of asking them to try accepting your idea but in a very polite manner. It also gives the sensation of respect towards the other person. You could say something aggressively to be taken, but instead, choose to be respectful and give the other person a chance to absorb it.

Expresses Mutual Understanding

‘Let that sink in’ is often used after a complete sentence or conversation. But adding it at the end changes the whole meaning and temptation of the tone. It shows that you want other people to accept something. You use this phrase when it is essential for you that they agree with you. Or maybe their alignment is sometimes crucial; for example, you are talking to your colleagues or employees about a change in the company policies, but they must agree and get along with you. This phrase expresses your care about other people’s feedback and reaction, telling that you are okay with what they come up with, but first, you would like them to give attention to your proposal and try to accept it.

Emotions and Sentiments

Unlike other idioms, this phrase gives an obvious meaning, and the good thing is that you can try perceiving it in the desired way. Let me explain this; suppose you are calming your friend over some loss; you can use this phrase while comforting them.

This phrase functions appropriately according to the human brain because it cannot accept anything suddenly. It processes the whole scenario and gradually adapts to the new thing. ‘Let that sink in’ gives our mind a feeling of relaxation and a surety that it can process that thing.

So it plays finely with our emotions, and adding it to the conversation makes it more polite and rational. You can understand it from the example: Your uncle’s death was a definite loss, but you did not think of it as the end of the world, let that sink in. It tells you that you should give yourself time to think about the mystery behind a fantastic event.

As we have discussed before, when we let something in, it means allowing it to absorb entirely until it stops feeling new or uninvited.

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‘Let That sink in’ Usage & Examples

Whenever new information is given out or a piece of old information is reshared, this phrase is often used to emphasize it so that people will take the information more seriously. Let me give you an example: John at the age of 18 is the youngest person to receive multiple Grammy awards. Let it sink in

Additionally, the phrase is used in a variety of personal conversations to convey a shock, a first, or something that requires time to process. For example, It was a risk I was willing to take despite my fear of heights. Let that sink in for a moment.

Examples of ‘Let That sink in’

The following examples will help you understand different meanings of the phrase ‘let that sink in’ we have talked about

  1. I have taught you a complicated science concept; please do its exercise to let that sink in.
  2. You need to leave the house and shift to a new place; let that sink in.
  3. Losing my job was hard initially, but I let that sink in.
  4. Please do not react; let that sink in.
  5. I promise it will not look strange if you let that sink in.
  6. You do not need to make the final decision right now; first, let that sink in for some time.
  7. Let that sink in so that you understand what I’m saying.

Best way to use ‘Let it sink in’

It doesn’t even have to be viral for people to post the famous quote on social media. Before becoming a meme, it is surprisingly a powerful phrase that helps you think beyond merely literal thinking.

It induces someone to return to something and spend some more time understanding context in its fullest. All texts that need attention can also be incorporated into these magical words. Let this sink in and you’ll find it can be beneficial in a few mainstream environments.


Let it sink in’ is a powerful expression for many reasons. Still, in particular, it can induce empathetic thinking, understanding, and the ability to relate to a situation.

Formerly, it meant to instill godliness and religious importance in followers and devotees. Today, it means to get people to think and go the extra mile.

Frequently Asked Questions

How do you use Let that sink in?

Let this sink in,” a simple definition would mean “let it sink in.” I agree. It is an idiom and is often used as a lyrical expression to say something for an impact. Someone will tell me if I need to think about something for an hour.

Is it sink in or sync in?

Syncs are commonly used for working with other people: i.e: We were on track and we danced flawlessly. It means that words are understood. – Her email was long. Read them carefully so it would sink into your brain.

Posted by
Kamran Haider

Kamran Haider, the IAT's Co-Founder, is a digital and affiliate marketing specialist. He writes about blogging, SEO, and tech-related issues.

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