reality check

noun
a corrective confronting of reality, in order to counteract one's expectations, prejudices, or the like.

Origin:
1970–75

Dictionary.com Unabridged
Based on the Random House Dictionary, © Random House, Inc. 2014.
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Collins
World English Dictionary
reality check
 
n
an occasion or opportunity to consider a matter realistically or honestly

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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FOLDOC
Computing Dictionary

reality check definition


1. The simplest kind of test of software or hardware; doing the equivalent of asking it what 2 + 2 is and seeing if you get 4. The software equivalent of a smoke test.
2. The act of letting a real user try out prototype software.
Compare sanity check.
(2007-03-15)

The Free On-line Dictionary of Computing, © Denis Howe 2010 http://foldoc.org
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American Heritage
Idioms & Phrases

reality check

An assessment to determine if one's circumstances or expectations conform to reality, as in Time for a reality checkwasn't this supposed to be a money-making enterprise? [Slang; second half of 1900s]

The American Heritage® Dictionary of Idioms by Christine Ammer.
Copyright © 1997. Published by Houghton Mifflin.
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Example sentences
But the week leading up to my commencement forced a reality check.
Once you have a folder of ideas, it's time to do a reality check on needs
  versus desires.
Let me interrupt the tourism brochures here for a reality check.
Your answers to the following questions will provide both an inspiration and a
  reality check.
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