UNIT 80. Myself/yourself/themselves, etc.

Australia-43 grammar


Study this example:
Steve : Hi, I’m Steve.

Steve introduced himself to the other guests.
We use myself/yourself/himself, etc. (reflexive pronouns) when the subject and object are the same:

Steve introduced himself

Steve – subject
himself – object

The reflexive pronouns are:

singular myself yourself (one person) himself/herself/itself
plural ourselves yourselves (more than one person) themselves
  • I don’t want you to pay for me. I’ll pay for myself. (not I’ll pay for me)
  • Julia had a great vacation. She really enjoyed herself.
  • Do you talk to yourself somethings? (said one person)
  • If you want more to eat, help yourselves. (said to more than one person)

– It’s not our fault. You can’t blame us.
– It’s our own fault. We should blame ourselves.


We do not use myself, etc., after feel/relax/concentrate/meet:
– I feel nervous. I can’t relax.
– You have to try and concentrate. (not concentrate yourself)
– What time should we meet? (not meet ourselves, not meet us)

We normally use wash/shave/dress without myself, etc.:
– He got up, washed, shaved, and dressed. (not washed himself, etc.)

You can also say get dressed. (He got dressed)


Compare -selves and each other:
– Kate and Joe stood in front of the mirror and looked at themselves.
(= Kate and Joe looked at Kate and Joe)
– Kate looked at Joe; Joe looked at Kate. They looked at each other.

You can use one another instead of each other:
– How long have you and Bill known each other? or …known one another?
– Sue and Ann don’t like each other. or …don’t like one another.
– Do you and Sarah live near each other? or … near one another?


We also use myself/yourself, etc., in another way. For example:
– “Who repaired your bicycle for you?” “I repaired it myself”

I repaired it myself = I repaired it, not anybody else. Here, myself is used to emphasize I (it makes it stronger).
Some more examples:
– I’m not going to do your work for you. You can do it yourself. (= you, not me)
– Let’s paint the house ourselves. It will be much cheaper.
– The movie itself wasn’t very good, but I loved the music.
– I don’t think Sue will get the job. Sue herself doesn’t think she’ll get it.
(or Sue doesn’t think she’ll get it herself.)