35 Text Abbreviations You Should Know (and How to Use Them)

35 Text Abbreviations You Should Know (and How to Use Them)

Abbreviations are the text version of the emojis that have taken over all forms of conversation on the internet. They can be useful if you’re sending a quick text message, but if your recipient isn’t aware of what they mean, they can lead to a lot of confusion. So if you’re going to use them in conversation, it’s a good idea to know which ones to use and how to use them. Here are 35 abbreviations that you should segment from the herd and add to your daily vocabulary.

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Classic Texting Abbreviations


Laugh Out Loud. It is the English equivalent of the abbreviations “haha”, “ho ho”, or “hahaha”.


OMG is an acronym for “Oh My God.” The term is most often used in written and spoken form. It may be used to express shock, distress, annoyance, excitement, and many other emotions. OMG was first used in 1941 in the movie Citizen Kane when Orson Welles (Citizen Kane) says it to express his shock at finding out about the death of his sled.


IDK stands for ‘I don’t know. It is quite a widely used phrase these days. There are a lot of people who would frequently use IDK instead of saying ‘I don’t know or just because it sounds cool.


The term “JK” is an Internet slang abbreviation, used as a shorthand for “Just Kidding“, that is often used in electronic communication.


ROFL (rolling on the floor laughing) is an Internet slang term that is used to convey joy or amusement. The acronym is incorrect since the Internet slang version of the LOL includes an “L” (laughing out loud).


YOLO means “You Only Live Once”. YOLO is used to reinforce that our time on Earth is short, thus it should be spent doing the things that are most important to us, instead of wasting it on mundane activities. This phrase became very popular after being used in a song by rapper Drake, back in 2012. Before the song, the acronym was first widely used online throughout forums and blogs.


The HMU abbreviation is used in texting, chat, instant messaging, and on social media when referring to “Hit Me Up”. 

Basic Texting Abbreviations 


This abbreviation stands for Before Christ. It is used to denote age, time, or date that occurred before the beginning of the Christian era. 


TYSM is an abbreviation used online in text messaging, emails, on social media channels, forums, blogs, or bio for saying “Thank you very much”. Since it is a common abbreviation for social media users started to use TYSMs to support their favorite celebrities on social networks. It is also very common for using this abbreviation while posting on someone’s wall on Facebook, Twitter, or Instagram.


NP is abbreviated as “no problem“, whereas YW is abbreviated as “you’re welcome”. Naturally, NP/YW abbreviation seems to be natural for both online and offline language use. Thus, if you want to sound natural in your English speaking skills, you should know what the NP/YW abbreviation means.


NBD is an acronym for No Big Deal which is the term used by the youth language of internet lingo & texting. The abbreviation NBD is used to show nothing big has occurred, nothing special was done, it’s not worth mentioning; don’t make it a big deal, make it a non-issue.


BTW is an abbreviation by the way. It’s used in our day-to-day conversations. The “W” stands for “Way.” Way back in the early 1900s, people started writing BTW instead of BY THE WAY.


It means let me know. The word LMK is an abbreviation used in texting, online chat, instant messaging apps like Whatsapp, Facebook messenger, etc.


ILY is an abbreviation that may be used to express love or endearment. While it may be most commonly seen as a reference to the popular song “I (Love You)” by Barney and Friends, it can also refer to similar expressions such as “ILY2” which is short for “I Love You Too.” ILY can also be used within text messages and social media such as Facebook.


OMW – On my way. This is an abbreviation for a term that’s often used to signify “I am out the door” or “I am on my way”. It is very useful when you have multiple people in a group chat texting back and forth, as it means you can see who is leaving from another location.


NVM stands for Nevermind. The abbreviation NVM was created in the form of a reply to someone who uttered a statement that was deemed stupid or pointless. According to Urban Dictionary, the term is used in conversational English to describe something as trivial, not worth remembering, and/or not noteworthy enough to care or take note of. It can also be used in literal phrases such as “I might forget what I’m wearing today (tomorrow) because it doesn’t matter anyway”.


IRL means ‘in real life and the abbreviation is used in social media platforms like Facebook, Twitter, etc. by squeezing out the words with characters to get an abbreviated form of it. It was earlier known as ‘IRL’ but the use of letters ‘I & R’ has changed recently. This term is used commonly on social sites to mention their real-life experiences with friends, sharing their photos of traveling, activities, food pic, etc.


The ETA abbreviation or acronym is used in texting, email, chat, and on social networks such as Twitter, Instagram, Facebook, and others. Read on for more information about what ETA means and its uses. ETAs use the term “ETA” to denote the Estimated Time of Arrival of a specified event or occurrence.


TMI stands for Too Much Information. This acronym can be used to describe information that is too personal or for people who share too many details of their daily lives.”

Social Media Abbreviations


The meaning of the TFW abbreviation is “that feeling when“. So, “that feeling when” means “that feeling when something happens to you, and your response is to exclaim that”.


DM is an abbreviation for Direct Message. It’s a feature found on Twitter that enables users to send messages only to the person they are following and can’t be seen by others who don’t follow them, and it’s the most used function on Twitter these days.


Fear of missing out. The acronym is used on many social media platforms to describe the feeling of anxiety over missing out on something.


It is an abbreviation that you may see on Twitter or Google+ that means “in case you missed it.” This shorthand term is used when reposting older content, usually to reach a new audience.


Short for For The Win. It means something is awesome. Like a shortcut or a browser plugin, or a digital trick that helps someone to accomplish a task better and/or faster.


TLDR (Too Long Didn’t Read) is an internet slang that refers to the notion that some people might not have time to read a long article, and may therefore skip ahead to the end (the TLDR part) and then read only that.   If you’re like: “I don’t have time to read six hundred words.

Opinionated Texting Abbreviation 


Many people today are using the phrase “For What It’s Worth” abbreviated to FWIW. FWIW is used in Tweeting and on Facebook to show that one has an opinion regarding an issue, but they will probably be ignored by the masses.


TBH is an abbreviation we use in the modern world. It stands for, To Be Honest, and is used in a variety of situations to start a sentence or say how you truly feel about something.


SMH means shaking my head is an abbreviation for the word shaking my head. This means that you are showing your disapproval in a certain situation with someone, event, idea, or something unnecessary.


IMO/IMHO is an abbreviation for “In my opinion” and “In My Humble Opinion”

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