What Is Another Way to Say “Fall Behind”?

Looking for synonyms for fall behind? We’ve got you covered!

Here’s a list of other ways to say fall behind.

  • Lag
  • Trail
  • Lose ground
  • Get behind
  • Be delayed
  • Slip back
  • Drop back
  • Fall off the pace
  • Linger
  • Straggle
  • Dally
  • Drift
  • Lag behind
  • Dawdle
  • Hang back
  • Stagger
  • Fall off
  • Recoil
  • Retreat
  • Regress

Want to learn how to say fall behind professionally? Keep reading for examples and use cases.

1. Lag

Appropriate Use: Suitable for situations where someone or something is moving or developing more slowly than others.
Example: “Several team members started to lag in their project contributions due to heavy workloads.”

2. Trail

Appropriate Use: Best used when someone is behind others in a sequence or progression.
Example: “In the sales ranking for this quarter, John is trailing behind his colleagues.”

3. Lose ground

Appropriate Use: Ideal for situations where someone is losing an advantage or falling behind in competition.
Example: “After the market shift, our company started to lose ground to competitors.”

4. Get behind

Appropriate Use: Suitable for instances where delays cause someone to fall behind schedule or expectations.
Example: “She got behind on her report submissions after taking on additional responsibilities.”

5. Be delayed

Appropriate Use: Used when something is postponed or slowed down, causing a lag.
Example: “The project was delayed due to unforeseen technical issues.”

6. Slip back

Appropriate Use: Best for describing a situation where there is a regression or a return to a previous, worse state.
Example: “After a strong start, the new division began to slip back in its performance targets.”

7. Drop back

Appropriate Use: Ideal for contexts where someone falls to a lower position or status.
Example: “During the marathon, several runners began to drop back after the halfway point.”

8. Fall off the pace

Appropriate Use: Suitable for situations where someone is unable to keep up with the expected or set pace.
Example: “As the project deadline approached, some team members started to fall off the pace.”

9. Linger

Appropriate Use: Best used when someone remains in a place or condition longer than necessary.
Example: “He tended to linger on the preliminary stages of the design process, causing delays.”

10. Straggle

Appropriate Use: Ideal for situations where individuals are spread out and some are lagging behind.
Example: “In the company run, a few participants straggled behind the main group.”

11. Dally

Appropriate Use: Suitable for scenarios involving unnecessary delays due to slow or leisurely actions.
Example: “The team cannot afford to dally on making the crucial decision.”

12. Drift

Appropriate Use: Used when someone gradually falls behind or loses focus or direction.
Example: “She began to drift from the project’s main objectives, causing concern among her teammates.”

13. Lag behind

Appropriate Use: Best for cases where there is a significant and noticeable delay or slowdown.
Example: “Despite their efforts, the department continues to lag behind in adopting the new system.”

14. Dawdle

Appropriate Use: Ideal for situations where someone is wasting time or being slow, causing delays.
Example: “There’s no time to dawdle on the details; we need to meet our deadline.”

15. Hang back

Appropriate Use: Suitable for instances where someone is hesitant or reluctant to move forward or keep up.
Example: “In group discussions, he tends to hang back rather than contribute his ideas.”

16. Stagger

Appropriate Use: Best used to describe a situation where progress is unsteady or inconsistent.
Example: “The project’s progress staggered due to fluctuating team availability.”

17. Fall off

Appropriate Use: Ideal for contexts where there is a decline in quality, quantity, or intensity.
Example: “After a strong start, the team’s enthusiasm began to fall off.”

18. Recoil

Appropriate Use: Suitable for scenarios where someone or something is forced back or retreats.
Example: “The division recoiled after the unexpected market downturn.”

19. Retreat

Appropriate Use: Used when there is a withdrawal or a step back, often from a previously advanced position.
Example: “Faced with overwhelming competition, the company had to retreat from its aggressive expansion strategy.”

20. Regress

Appropriate Use: Best for situations involving a return to a less developed state or condition.
Example: “Due to lack of practice, her programming skills began to regress.”

Linda Brown