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set your sights on

Meaning: If you set your sights on something, or set your sights on doing something, it becomes the target of your ambition or the object of your attention.

For example:

  • Stanley has set his sights on coaching Liverpool, so he'll start getting to know people who have influence in the club.

  • Microsoft has set its sights on one of the biggest search engine companies, so I wouldn't be surprised if the company's shares go up.

Note: This idiom can also be expressed as "has its sights set on", "has her sights set on", "have their sights set on", and so on.

Origin: Metaphorical, and related to the fact that a person using a gun looks through the gun's sights in order to aim, and will have his sights set on the target before shooting at it.

Quick Quiz:

Jerome has set his sights on a gold medal in the Olympics, so he's
  1. training hard
  2. going to shoot it
  3. saving up to buy it

Discuss: set your sights on

Idiom of the Day

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