In Frozen 2 there is a lyric that Anna says to Olaf:

Like how I'm holding on tight to you..

I don't understand the grammar and the meaning behind this. Does this mean "I will be tightly with you", or "I'm hugging you"?

Can we change the sentence to this?

Like how I'm holding on to you..

  • 2
    It might not mean physically but emotionally: not letting them go. Who knows what one line of a lyric is supposd to mean? Commented Nov 14, 2020 at 18:49
  • to hold on tight to someone is an idiom with two meanings.
    – Lambie
    Commented Nov 3, 2021 at 17:37

2 Answers 2


This sentence probably refers to Ana's emotional attachment to Olaf as much as it does to any physical contact. If you tell someone you will "never let them go," it can be a way of saying that you are never going to give up on them or abandon them. When Ana says she is "holding on tight" to Olaf, she is not just saying she "likes warm hugs" (to quote him from the first movie), she is saying that she is always going to try to be there for him when he needs her, and make sure that he gets to be there for her the same way.

And yes, you can also say "I'm holding on to you". Adding the word "tight" just serves as emphasis as to how much effort she is willing to put into the "holding on" thing... she's not letting go easily. Lol.


Can we change the sentence to this?

Like how I'm holding on to you..

Yes. Regardless of whether the sentence is literal or metaphorical, "tight" is being used as an adverb modifying "holding on".

Note also that this is a sentence fragment, because the sentence goes across multiple lines of lyrics. The actual sentence is:

Some things never change, like how I'm holding on tight to you

So we can expand it out, if we want to be extremely clear rather than poetic:

There are some things which never change; an example is the way I'm holding on to you; specifically, I am holding on to you tightly.

As others have pointed out, the "holding on" here is probably metaphorical: the thing that never changes is that Ana wants to stay with Olaf, she is "holding on" emotionally. "Holding on tightly" is just an extension of that metaphor.

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