Are you ready to discover everything you have to know about the basic phrase “J’ai la flemme”?
It includes a full guide of what it is and how you can use it in a conversation with an audio example. And because we care about you, we also sprinkled super useful stuff like dialogue example, slow pronunciation audio and more!
It literally means:
A long time ago, doctors thought people with a lot of “phlegm” (an old name for “mucus“) in their body were not very dynamic. With time, the word changed a bit to become “flemme“. And so “Avoir la flemme” (To have “la flemme“) means “To feel lazy“.
That’s why “J’ai la flemme” is translated in English as “I feel lazy” or “I can’t be bothered” or “I don’t feel like it“.
First, use it carefully because it’s familiar and not appropriate to formal situations such as a work environment.
The typical use would be “J’ai pas envie de travailler. J’ai la flemme” (I don’t want to work. I feel lazy). By saying such things, you imply that you prefer doing a passive and less energy-consuming activity instead, for example: take a nap!
If someone asks you to do something and you want to “politely” say that you don’t want to, use instead: “Je n’ai pas envie.” (I don’t want to.)
And finally, if you know someone who is being lazy and wants to tell him/her, you can use: “Mais quel flemmard(e)” (What a lazy person.)
As many French expressions, if you want to strengthen it or make it more passionate you can add “Putain” before or after, eg: “Putain j’ai la flemme !“.