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push someone's buttons

push someone's buttons

Date: Apr 19 2012


1. Quote - Listen to the quote and guess what the slang means.

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“It’s pretty easy to push my buttons and make me emotional. I have no trouble crying on camera.”

- Actress Elizabeth Olsen talks about getting emotional for her movies. (Us Weekly)

- 女演员伊丽莎白·奥尔森 (Elizabeth Olsen) 讲述拍片时如何变得情绪化。


1. Definition - Study the definition.

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draw a strong emotional reaction from someone

2. Use - Learn how the slang is used.

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People are not machines. We are often unpredictable and spontaneous. Still, we all have certain situations that always make us react in the same way. For instance, seeing a hurt animal might always make you cry. Having to wait in a long line might always make you annoyed. And seeing your boyfriend talking to a pretty girl at a party might always make you jealous. These are your buttons. Like a machine, when they get pushed you react the same way every time.

When someone or something pushes your buttons, it draws a strong emotional reaction from you. Someone who knows you really well can easily push your buttons. They know just what to do in order to make you have a strong reaction. Usually, when we say someone pushes our buttons, we mean that they make us very irritated, angry, or upset.

The actress Elizabeth Olsen often has to act emotional for the camera. Luckily, she says it is easy to push her buttons. In other words, it is easy to draw a strong emotional reaction from her. So she has no trouble crying or appearing angry or upset for a film.

What kinds of things push your buttons? Is there a person in your life who really knows how to push your buttons?


1. Examples - Hear some example sentences.

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“My little brother really knows how to push my buttons and make me lose my temper.”

“Sometimes we push each other’s buttons, but most of the time we get along really well.”

“That movie must have really pushed her buttons. She cried through the whole thing.”


1. Winners - See who guessed the slang definition correctly.

cubi1604 Trigger your emotions
by cubi1604
It means to aggravate someone.
by candycandice
It means that a person annoys you so much.
by Irene Forever
Ahshan to touch my hurt feeling,the fire point of my emotion or something else.
by Ahshan
alzhbeta it's like when you know all emotional sides of someone and intentionally annoys him
by alzhbeta
m@nuelm@d When getting emotional is as easy as pushing a button
by m@nuelm@d
Quynh Mai To push one to their emotional limit, to aggravate, to irritate someone
by Quynh Mai
To make the feel bad.
by Royal Sympathy
Mania_16 Easily changing sb's mood!
by Mania_16
anges491 arouse or provoke a reaction in someone
by anges491

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dashalSuper Member!

Russian Federation

To push smb’s buttons means tomake smb demonstrate his really emotions

01:35 PM Apr 21 2012 |



just like a lighter,you press the button,the fire will rush out.

06:29 AM Apr 21 2012 |




Laura , sending you a box of Godiva chocolates, kidding, I wish i could.Cry

02:07 AM Apr 21 2012 |



Chocolate in most of the people pushs the buttons to  a journey of flavor and pleasure sensation.

who loves chocolate really will know what I mean.


10:38 PM Apr 20 2012 |

1 person likes this



Iran, Islamic Republic Of

It is said those who have somehow artistic streaks are so touchy and emotional in a way that their buttons can easily be pushed .I’m not sure how it is reliable to extend this theory to all but at least for me it worked and in most cases I see it as a weakpoint when I can not researve my tears while reading a sad book or watching a sesative scene in a movie or while others are talking about the tragedies in their life or just daydreaming even for a second about sth bad in future that may never happen Embarassed(seems I can live very well vicariously through others)WinkI remember about 4 years ago TV was brosdcasting an episodic movie with gloomy theme ,I can never forget how hard I tried to keep my tears from shedding while the whole family was watching the movie beside me. crying for a movie could make you feel embarrassed .despite my hard struggle to keep myself it ended with a couple of red baggy eyes .All I could do was just keeping myself from sobbingLaughing

10:24 PM Apr 20 2012 |




My instructor professor knows perfectly well how to push my bottom every time he asks me from where I copy the program. It’s very nosy statement on my work of studying. Each time I will go excitedly defending myself and said to him that this is the only one piece of work in the world. I imply that I didn’t copy from anyone else’s work , let alone commit plagiarism. Innocent

08:09 PM Apr 20 2012 |



what is this meaning?


06:07 AM Apr 20 2012 |




What’s pushing my buttons. Many things, but I’m trying to keep a poker face, especitally with age, you’re getting an experience with life and try to pretend you don’t notice some things, grow a “thick skin”  not to pay attention on some stuff that bugs you and keep a poker face. What really pushes my buttons, I think ignorance, narrow-mindedness, stubborness, unforgiveness…

11:12 PM Apr 19 2012 |




I am not easily  getting angry ,nonetheless    I am very emotional ,sometimes  even to the tears , here people can really push my buttons , a sad movie, childrens  that are sick  and  without possibility  to be cured , the horrors of war  and natural disasters  ,all these  and more.Embarassed

10:59 PM Apr 19 2012 |




oh yep,i have got it .

10:43 PM Apr 19 2012 |

La Princesse de la vie


I’m quite good at hiding my feelings, so it’s not easy at all for anyone to push my buttons.. But when I just get alone, I burst into thinking about the matter and showing my reactions preserving them for myself…

07:11 PM Apr 19 2012 |



i think it meann someone try yo provoke my emotion


03:52 PM Apr 19 2012 |

Bonnie PN

Hong Kong

do something that make someone angry or sad

02:57 PM Apr 19 2012 |



Saudi Arabia

What easily (press) push my buttons is drive in a traffic jam on a red hot day among careless drivers.

12:24 PM Apr 19 2012 |


Syrian Arab Republic

control his emotion ,have him to control in a certain emotional way like being angry or upset or sad or happy or aggresive or enthuestaic ….. etc

11:39 AM Apr 19 2012 |




bursting out!! yooooooww Tongue out

10:37 AM Apr 19 2012 |



to make someone angry  upset or happy immediately ,just like  that you push a button of machine then it work at once

08:57 AM Apr 19 2012 |

1 person likes this




get on ones nerves

08:21 AM Apr 19 2012 |

1 person likes this

i love life

Palestinian Territory, Occupied

In my opinion without love and smile our lives could become  very pessimistic , where is the problem if you express about your emotional feeling on the camera or front ordinary people , no trouble if you do that .

we should be smilling regardless all difficulties in our live , I am trying to change my terrible living conditions , Really there is no thing deserve to be upset .

I have never meet someone’s pushes my bottons , the good treatmeant is one of the better ways to live with love and smile 



I want to take my anger button off. it is easly to pushYell

05:59 AM Apr 19 2012 |

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