Actually or Currently?

Janean Fischli, September 12, 2023


In act or in fact; really.

Example: "We must pay attention to what young people are actually doing."


  • to emphasize that something said or done is surprising. “He actually expected me to be pleased about it!"
  • to express a contradictory or unexpected opinion or correcting someone. “Tom seems to be happy, but he isn't, actually.”
  • to introduce a new topic or to add information to a previous statement. "He had a thick Brooklyn accent—he sounded like my grandfather, actually."

Don’t get confused! The word actually does not mean currently, as it does in Spanish. Native Spanish speakers are tempted to say a sentence like, “I am actually living in an apartment.” In English we would use the word currently or right now in this sentence: I am currently living in an apartment.

Quotes that Include “Actually”

“They always say time changes things but actually you have to change them for yourself.” ―Andy Warhol

“Even though the future seems far away it is actually beginning right now.” — Mattie Stepanek