I have just recently listened to a song Enjoy Yourself (It's Later Than You Think).

Here is a snippet of the lyrics

Enjoy yourself, it's later than you think
Enjoy yourself, while you're still in the pink
The years go by, as quickly as a wink
Enjoy yourself, enjoy yourself, it's later than you think

What does its later than you think mean in this context

It seems as though it is referring to your life and you need to start enjoying it now. But the line would make more sense if it was "its sooner than you think" referring to your death being closer than you had expected, so start living now.

How does its later than you think convey the message I believe the song is trying to convey. The statement its later than you think would refer to an event being farther in the future than one had perceived, so you dont have to worry about that event now you can continue what your doing.

  • 3
    It's later means right now, this very moment is later than you think. Like you said, closer to your end. Commented Oct 6, 2021 at 16:40
  • It’s later (in your life) than you think. Commented Oct 6, 2021 at 20:52
  • With that phrasing, "it" refers to the current moment.
    – nnnnnn
    Commented Oct 7, 2021 at 8:07
  • It's similar to the way you would say "It's 9pm" to refer to the current time.
    – Barmar
    Commented Oct 8, 2021 at 0:01

1 Answer 1


In that phrase, "it" refers to the current time in life, not some future time. So it means "it's now later than you think".

This is similar to other phrases that use "it" with time:

It's 9pm.
It's time to go home.
It's almost the weekend.
"It's the end of the world as we know it (and I feel fine)."

It's possible to set up a context where "it" refer to an event, e.g.

Death is coming, it's sooner than you think.
When is the meeting? It's at 3pm.

But without such an antecedent, "it" usually means now.

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