muddle

A muddle is something that's messy and confusing. If your bedroom looks like a hurricane just hit it, you might describe it as a muddle.

Oftentimes, we create the muddles in our lives, so it’s appropriate that muddle can be used as a verb meaning “to mix up” or “confuse.” Conveniently, though, the word muddle also describes a way out of difficult situations; to muddle through a troublesome task is to somehow figure it out, even if you don’t quite know what you’re doing. It has been suggested that muddle comes from an old Dutch word meaning “to make muddy.”

Definitions of muddle
  1. verb
    make into a puddle
    synonyms: puddle
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    type of:
    rile, roil
    make turbid by stirring up the sediments of
  2. verb
    mix up or confuse
    “He muddled the issues”
    synonyms: addle, puddle
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    type of:
    confuse, jumble, mix up
    assemble without order or sense
  3. noun
    a confused multitude of things
    synonyms: clutter, fuddle, jumble, mare's nest, smother, welter
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    types:
    rummage
    a jumble of things to be given away
    type of:
    disorder, disorderliness
    a condition in which things are not in their expected places
  4. noun
    informal terms for a difficult situation
    “he made a muddle of his marriage”
    synonyms: fix, hole, jam, kettle of fish, mess, pickle
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    types:
    dog's breakfast, dog's dinner
    a poor job; a mess
    type of:
    difficulty
    a condition or state of affairs almost beyond one's ability to deal with and requiring great effort to bear or overcome
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