What Does Bound and Determined Mean?

Bound and Determined Meaning

Definition: Extremely motivated.

Bound and determined is a way of describing determination. It shows that someone is more determined than the average person to achieve a goal.

Often, it is followed by to do something, as in bound and determined to graduate or bound and determined to lose weight.

People who feel this way are extremely motivated and will work hard to do whatever they are bound and determined to do.

Origin of Bound and Determined

Bound and determined is almost redundant. Someone who is determined to do something is working to achieve it. Someone who is bound to do something is likely to do it. Like many idioms, there is no certain origin of the phrase using the two words together.

There are multiples meanings of the word bound, which might offer possible explanations.

meaning of bound and determinedBound can refer to boundaries, suggesting that bound and determined may come from a statement about breaking through boundaries. Bound could also mean restricted or tied to something, which suggests the phrase may mean that someone is tied to their determination and will not let it go.

Ultimately, there is no definitive origin story for this phrase.

Examples of Bound and Determined

expression bound and boundPeople will often describe their goals and dreams using this expression.

“I am bound and determined to be a good parent,” one might say. One might even use the phrase as a comparison, as in the statement, “I am bound and determined to be a better parent than my own.”

A college student might also use the phrase to describe aspirations.

  • I am bound and determined to pass this class and become a doctor!

The student will do whatever possible to pass the class.

Often, people will also the phrase to describe actions that repeat. One might say,

  • That baby is bound and determined to keep us awake all night.

While the baby might not have that particular goal, the parents feel as if the baby cries all night every night in a way specifically aimed at keeping them awake.

More Examples

  • You’ll meet young people bound and determined to gain an education despite the hurdles life’s thrown their way. –Indianapolis Star
  • [An] Up-and-Coming Artist Is Bound and Determinedto Reshape Modern R & B.  –LA Times


The phrase to be bound and determined is to be more determined than usual.