What is the difference in the meaning between following sentences:

  1. I might be working more this week.

  2. I might work more this week.

(note : this week refers to 'coming week' or future) I'm confused here as to why there is the use of 'continuous tense' in the 1st sentence? Do both sentences imply the same meanings ? If they imply same meaning why they look different ? Suppose: I work in a office. I already know that I have extra more work in the office today. How can I say this:

  1. I will work more today.
  2. I Will be working more today.

Which one is correct ?
Please provide helpfull and understandable answer. Thank you very much in advance

  • Comments are not for extended discussion; this conversation has been moved to chat.
    – ColleenV
    Commented Jan 22, 2019 at 11:45

4 Answers 4


As the others have said:

I might work more this week.

Implies that you have some sort of control over the situation, whereas

I might be working more this week.

Implies that you don't really have the choice.

can't i say : "There is traffic on the highway so i might arrive late."

Yes you can. And the reason this shows that you don't have control is because of the mention of the traffic.

Also context can play a big difference, if somebody invited me to a party in a week's time and I said

I'll be there, but I might be late.

That would imply that I have control, because I knew about it a week in advance, whereas if I sent that message on the day, it would imply that I have no control.

I hope this helped.

As for your second set of questions, both make sense. However I would have said "I have to work more today" to show that I have to do it, not that I really want to do it.


The two sentences do have very similar meanings, and are largely interchangeable, but there is a slight difference in implication. Your comments indicate that you have not fully understood this first sentence. Let me restate: your two phrases convey the same fundamental information; they both indicate a possibility that the speaker will do some work. We can use either formulation and be understood, we can substitute one for the other and convey the same basic information. So in your comments you say

can't I say : "There is traffic on the highway so I might arrive late." (instead of) "There's traffic on the highway so I might be arriving late"

and indeed you can, but you might chose one over the other for some reasons I will now explore. English (and imagine many other languages) has many ways of saying the same thing, it's good that you want to explore these possibilities, but there are not always fixed rules about when to use which possibility. Often we are dealing with matters of taste and personal habit. Consider just a simple active versus passive example:

John delivered the package.


The package was delivered by John.

we could attempt to justify when to use one form rather than the other (in the active case John is the focus of attention, in the passive case it's the package), but there are also flavours of formal versus informal speech and stylistic preference. When I was working as an author of technical documents we were strictly instructed to use the active form, never the passive. So I do not believe that you will find a single, simple heuristic to determine which of your alternative forms to use. I am pretty confident that most native speakers and writers will on occasion use one when the other might be a better choice, and in doing so will not be considered ungrammatical.

Using your examples, I believe that the choice of one form over the other allows us to convey one additional piece of information: what controls the decision to work.

I might work more this week.

implies that it is my decision about how much time I spend working, I might work, I might not work; I will decide.


I might be working more this week.

has an implication that some factor outside my control will determine that I may need to do additional work. To expand on factors: If you are an employee your employer might require you to extra work this week. If you are a farmer the weather might require you to do something extra. If you are a lawyer your trial might be rescheduled by a judge, you may need to do urgent preparation.

For example:

The hotel is fully booked so I expect to be working more this week.

Summary: The same basic information is communicated, but different formulations allow us to convey additional information. In this case, we can convey the difference between choosing to do more work and being compelled to do more work. In general the difference between formulations may simply be a matter of style. Sometimes, we may simply see one as more poetic than the other.


The 1st sentence does not imply the same meaning to the 2nd sentence. The 1st sentence suggests that it is anticipated that someone, other than self, may ask this person to work more hours. The second sentence suggests that this person may or may not decide to work more hours of their own accord.


The first sentence is like, you will work more and you have no chance to avoid that. However, the second one is more of the meaning of you have a chance to do more work but you can decide whether working more or not.

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