psych out

psych-out

[sahyk-out]
noun Informal.
an act or instance of psyching out.

Origin:
1960–65; noun use of verb phrase psych out

Dictionary.com Unabridged

psych

1 [sahyk]
verb (used with object) Informal.
1.
to intimidate or frighten psychologically, or make nervous (often followed by out ): to psych out the competition.
2.
to prepare psychologically to be in the right frame of mind or to give one's best (often followed by up ): to psych oneself up for an interview.
3.
to figure out psychologically; decipher (often followed by out ): to psych out a problem.
Also, psyche.


Origin:
1915–20 in earlier sense “to subject to psychoanalysis”; originally a shortening of psychoanalyze; in later use (especially in defs. 1 and 2) perhaps independent use of psych-

Dictionary.com Unabridged
Based on the Random House Dictionary, © Random House, Inc. 2014.
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World English Dictionary
psych or psyche (saɪk)
 
vb
informal (tr) psych out See also psych up to psychoanalyse
 
[C20: shortened from psychoanalyse]
 
psyche or psyche
 
vb
 
[C20: shortened from psychoanalyse]

psych out
 
vb
1.  to guess correctly the intentions of (another); outguess
2.  to analyse or solve (a problem, etc) psychologically
3.  to intimidate or frighten
4.  (intr, adverb) to lose control psychologically; break down

Collins English Dictionary - Complete & Unabridged 10th Edition
2009 © William Collins Sons & Co. Ltd. 1979, 1986 © HarperCollins
Publishers 1998, 2000, 2003, 2005, 2006, 2007, 2009
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Etymonline
Word Origin & History

psych
short for psychology in various senses; as an academic study, in student slang by 1895. The verb is generally negative when used transitively, positive when intransitive; first attested (also psych out) 1934 as "to outsmart," from 1963 as "to unnerve." However to psych (oneself) up is from 1972; to be
psyched up is attested from 1968.
Online Etymology Dictionary, © 2010 Douglas Harper
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Slang Dictionary

psych out definition


  1. in.
    to have a nervous or emotional trauma; to go mad for a brief time. (See also freak (out).) : Another day like this one and I'll psych out for sure.
Dictionary of American Slang and Colloquial Expressions by Richard A. Spears.Fourth Edition.
Copyright 2007. Published by McGraw-Hill Education.
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psych (so) out definition


  1. tv.
    to try to figure out what someone is likely to do. : The batter tried to psych out the pitcher, but it didn't work.
Dictionary of American Slang and Colloquial Expressions by Richard A. Spears.Fourth Edition.
Copyright 2007. Published by McGraw-Hill Education.
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American Heritage
Abbreviations & Acronyms
psych
psychoanalyze
The American Heritage® Abbreviations Dictionary, Third Edition
Copyright © 2005 by Houghton Mifflin Company.
Published by Houghton Mifflin Company. All rights reserved.
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American Heritage
Idioms & Phrases

psych out

  1. Analyze or understand something; also, anticipate the intentions of someone, as in It's hard to psych out the opposition's thinking, but we have to try.

  2. Undermine the confidence of, intimidate. For example, The basketball team managed to psych out their opponents' guards. This expression is often used in the passive and can mean "lose one's nerve," as in After I learned that he had two doctorates in the field, I was completely psyched out. Both slangy usages date from the second half of the 1900s and allude to influencing someone psychologically.

The American Heritage® Dictionary of Idioms by Christine Ammer.
Copyright © 1997. Published by Houghton Mifflin.
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