What does "never mind" really mean?

I am trying to find out the answer for it. I have been hearing that for years, but I don't use it myself because I do NOT know the true meaning.

  • If its a matter of specific usage, you should add a phrase or phrases using "never mind", based on your understanding or what you heard. Then we could address a specific meaning. As it is you are just asking about the meaning which can be found in a dictionary.
    – user485
    Apr 4, 2013 at 1:36

3 Answers 3


It means do not think about (something) and is used in a variety of contexts:

  • Have you seen my glasses? ... oh, never mind. I found them. = Give it no more thought
  • Never mind, I know you didn't mean to do it. = Don't worry about it
  • Never mind what she says, do what I say. = Pay no attention to it
  • I can't even run around the block, never mind a marathon. = To say nothing of

You may find even more uses in the Oxford Advanced Learner's Dictionary. Phrases of this sort are usually listed in good dictionaries, after the definitions of the headword.


I'd use it sometimes when trying to talk to someone but it gets so frustrating I give up. For instance:

I might say "The sky is blue."

They might say "Not really. It only appears blue because ...."

I'd reply "Never mind"


To me, it usually means forget about it or don't worry about it.

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