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The Ultimate Guide to Verbs with Gerunds and Infinitives as Objects

This lesson is organized into three parts, with two parts focusing on verbs with gerunds as objects and one part focusing on verbs with infinitives as objects.

  1. Verb + Gerund (ex. "she enjoys cooking")

  2. Verb + Preposition + Gerund (ex. "we are thinking about getting a dog")

  3. Verb + Infinitive (ex. "they decided to sell their house")

Part 1: Verbs that use a gerund (ex. "doing") as an object

First Verb

Meaning of Gerund Object

Example

Accept

the action that is okay

he accepted working for less pay

Admit

the action that the subject says he/she did

she admitted stealing the money

Appreciate

the action that the subject is thankful for or sees value in

he appreciates having time off from work to spend with his kids

Avoid

the negative action that the subject doesn't like

she avoids taking public transportation

Consider

the situation that the subject has not made a decision about yet

he is considering quitting his job.

Confirm

the situation that the subject says did indeed happen

the journalist confirmed interviewing the gang leader last month.

Delay / Postpone

the action that will happen later than originally planned

the city delayed opening the new library

Deny

the action that the subject says did not happen

The President denies spreading lies about her political opponent

Discuss

the topic of discussion

They discussed going on a trip together someday

Dislike

the action that the subject doesn't like

He dislikes speaking in front of groups

Enjoy

the action that the subject likes

She enjoys spending time with her family

Experience

the situation that the subject is part of

I experienced surfing when I was in Hawaii

Finish

the situation that the subject ended

We finally finished painting our new home.

Go

the recreational activity that the subject does

She goes skiing a lot in the winter

Imagine

the situation that is in the subject's imagination

While I was walking around the city, I imagined living there

Include

the activity that is part of the subject

The trip includes hiking up the local volcano

Involve

a feature or characteristic of the subject

Being a manager involves resolving conflicts between employees

Mention

something that is spoken about

He mentioned having some family members who live in our town.

Mind

something that is a problem for the subject (or not a problem if used in the negative)

I mind driving there (this is a problem for me) I don't mind driving there (this is not a problem for me)

Miss

something that the subject wishes they could do again

I miss being a child sometimes

Permit

something that the subject allows

My company permits wearing casual clothes

Practice

something that the subject does repeatedly to improve

I practiced giving my speech before my wedding day

Quit/Stop

something that the subject doesn't do anymore

I want to stop/quit eating fast food

Recommend / Suggest

something that the subject thinks is a good idea

I suggest making a reservation for the restaurant because it's quite popular

Resist

something that the subject can stop themself from doing

I somehow resisted yelling at him even though I was extremely angry.

Resume/Continue

something that the subject stopped but then starts again

We continued negotiating the contract after lunch.

Regret

a mistake that the subject made in the past

I regret buying a big house because it requires so much cleaning.

Risk

something that could be a negative consequence

She risked getting arrested by protesting against the dictator in her country.

Spend/Waste time or money

something that the subject does with their time or money (spend = neutral, waste = bad)

He spends a lot of time sleeping / She wastes her time looking at her phone all day / They spend their money traveling / They waste their money gambling

Tolerate

something uncomfortable that the subject can accept

I can tolerate sitting for long periods of time during a long distance flight

Try

something that the subject does for the first time to see if it's good or successful

He tried adding almond milk to his coffee but he didn't like it / She tried skydiving last weekend and loved it.

Part 2: Verbs that use a preposition and then a gerund

First Verb + Preposition

Meaning of Gerund Object

Example

adapt to

the new situation that requires adaptation

I'm adapting to living alone

apologize for

the mistake that the subject feels sorry about

I apologized for being late

believe in

the concept that the subject feels is important or good

She believes in donating to charity

commit to

something that the subject has a dedication towards

He is committed to being a good father to his son

complain about

something that the subject is unhappy about

She always complains about getting slow service at the bank

concentrate / focus on

something that the speaker gives their attention to

I'm focusing on improving my English grammar these days

consist of

something that is a part or component of the subject

My job consists of giving people financial advice for their life

insist on

something that the subject strongly wants to do

Our neighbor insisted on cooking dinner for our family

look forward to

something that the speaker is anticipating with a positive feeling

I look forward to celebrating my 40th birthday next week.

relate to

something that has a connection to the subject

the car accident was related to someone driving under the influence of alcohol

rely / depend on

something that the subject needs

Our team depends on receiving accurate information to make a good decision

specialize in

something that the subject has specific knowledge or skill with

She specializes in recruiting executives for big companies

succeed in

something that the subject is successful with

We succeeded in saving $10,000 last year so we can go on a trip

think about

something that is on the subject's mind

I often think about changing my career to something different

worry about

something that makes the subject nervous

I worry about getting sick even when I'm perfectly healthy

Part 3: Verbs that use an infinitive verb (ex. "to do") as an object

First Verb

Meaning of Infinitive Verb

First Verb

Meaning of Infinitive Verb

Example

Can Afford

something that you have enough money or time to do

Can Afford

something that you have enough money or time to do

I can afford to buy a car.

Agree

something that the subjects have the same opinion about

Agree

something that the subjects have the same opinion about

We agreed to split the cost 50/50.

Aim

something that is a goal for the speaker

Aim

something that is a goal for the speaker

I'm aiming to start my business next summer.

Ask

something that the speaker wants another person's permission

Ask

something that the speaker wants another person's permission

I asked to use her washroom while I was at her house.

Decide

a decision that the subject made

Decide

a decision that the subject made

My husband and I decided to move to Canada.

Forget

something that the subject didn't do because they forgot about it

Forget

something that the subject didn't do because they forgot about it

I forgot to use my coupon before it expired. I didn't realize that I had it.

Expect

something that the subject thinks will happen

Expect

something that the subject thinks will happen

We expect to feel very tired when we arrive after our 12 hour flight.

Get

a positive opportunity that the subject has

Get

a positive opportunity that the subject has

I got to sit in a Ferrari at the car show that I attended last week.

Be Going

a future intention for the subject

Be Going

a future intention for the subject

I'm going to leave in a few minutes

Happen

an unexpected event that the subject experiences

Happen

an unexpected event that the subject experiences

I happened to see my former high school teacher at the grocery store.

Hesitate

something that the subject does not have confidence to do

Hesitate

something that the subject does not have confidence to do

I always hesitate to start talking with someone that I don't know

Hope

something that the subject wants to happen in the future

Hope

something that the subject wants to happen in the future

I hope to go to Brazil someday.

Learn

something that the subject learns

Learn

something that the subject learns

My son is learning to ride a bike.

Manage

something that the subject does successfully

Manage

something that the subject does successfully

We managed to visit all of the popular sites in the city.

Mean

something that the subject intends to do

Mean

something that the subject intends to do

I meant to fall down because I knew it would make my 2-year-old son laugh.

Offer

something that the subject says that they will do for another person

Offer

something that the subject says that they will do for another person

My friend offered to organize a birthday party for me.

Plan

something that the subject is making plans about

Plan

something that the subject is making plans about

My wife and I plan to paint our house white.

Promise

something that the subject says that they will do for sure

Promise

something that the subject says that they will do for sure

My daughter promised to call me if she needed any help.

Remember

something that the subject does because they remember it first

Remember

something that the subject does because they remember it first

I always remember to lock the front door when I leave.

Try

a goal that the subject wants to achieve

Try

a goal that the subject wants to achieve

I'm trying to learn Japanese.

Used (only about the past)

something that was true about the subject in the past but not anymore

Used (only about the past)

something that was true about the subject in the past but not anymore

My hair used to be brown (but now it's grey).

Practice

Choose the correct option based on the information provided above. Remember that if there is a preposition before the blank, the answer will be a gerund:

  1. I happened finding/to find an old family photo when I was cleaning the basement.

  2. We agreed meeting/to meet on Friday afternoon.

  3. I don't want to risk upsetting/to upset him right now, so I'll tell him later.

  4. They succeeded in convincing/to convince me to join them.

  5. Sorry, I didn't mean taking/to take your bag. I thought it was mine.

  6. She apologized for bringing/to bring us the wrong meal.

  7. Can you imagine having/to have six kids? I don't know how they do it!

  8. Do you mind helping/to help me with this?

  9. Remember bringing/to bring your ticket with you when you come.

  10. My dog somehow managed opening/to open the box of dog treats.

  11. My boss recommends taking/to take a vacation to rest for a while.

  12. I finally got seeing/to see my favorite band perform live!

  13. My job consists of inspecting/to inspect products for any quality issues.

  14. We can't afford taking/to take a trip this year. We need to save more money first.

  15. Please avoid feeding/to feed the animals while at the zoo.

  16. He believes in giving/to give people second chances so he's quick to forgive.

  17. I need to stop saying/to say "yes" to things that I don't want to do.

  18. Don't hesitate contacting/to contact me if you have any questions.

  19. I'm considering quitting/to quit my job soon.

  20. The company should focus on improving/to improve the speed of their service.


Answers

  1. I happened to find an old family photo when I was cleaning the basement.

  2. We agreed to meet on Friday afternoon.

  3. I don't want to risk upsetting him right now, so I'll tell him later.

  4. They succeeded in convincing me to join them.

  5. Sorry, I didn't mean to take your bag. I thought it was mine.

  6. She apologized for bringing us the wrong meal.

  7. Can you imagine having six kids? I don't know how they do it!

  8. Do you mind helping me with this?

  9. Remember to bring your ticket with you when you come.

  10. My dog somehow managed to open the box of dog treats.

  11. My boss recommends taking a vacation to rest for a while.

  12. I finally got to see my favorite band perform live!

  13. My job consists of inspecting products for any quality issues.

  14. We can't afford to take a trip this year. We need to save more money first.

  15. Please avoid feeding the animals while at the zoo.

  16. He believes in giving people second chances so he's quick to forgive.

  17. I need to stop saying "yes" to things that I don't want to do.

  18. Don't hesitate to contact me if you have any questions.

  19. I'm considering quitting my job soon.

  20. The company should focus on improving the speed of their service.

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