Definition of on automatic pilot in English:

on automatic pilot


  • Out of routine or habit, without concentration or conscious thought:

    ‘I leapt out of bed and dressed on automatic pilot’
    • ‘Sometimes a conductor stands in front of musicians, waves his or her arms, they respond on automatic pilot, and you get serviceable, dull music and the waste of a conductor's fee.’
    • ‘I'm functioning on automatic pilot and am by then well on my way into the second half pint of coffee.’
    • ‘If you're unsure of your parenting skills, try taking on one task at a time and doing it regularly - you'll soon be operating on automatic pilot.’
    • ‘They often lead their private lives on automatic pilot, but many of them feel seriously deprived, because they don't have real emotional connections.’
    • ‘She walked on automatic pilot to the tube and changed trains at Embankment without waking up.’
    • ‘It is a sentence written by someone who is writing on automatic pilot, putting down the thoughts pretty much as they popped into her head, and not bothering to arrange them in a sensible order once they were set down on paper.’
    • ‘Having seen this quartet perform before, I was alarmed at how tired and bored the violinist looked, almost appearing as if he was playing this glorious first violin part on automatic pilot.’
    distractedly, inattentively, abstractedly, unheedingly, carelessly, absent-mindedly, on automatic pilot
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