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  1. Newbie
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    Smile Present continuous for habitual actions in the present

    Hi everyone!
    I am a little bit confused about the usage of present continuous for repeated, habitual actions in the present.


    At 7.15, I'm usually having breakfast.
    At 7.15, I usually have breakfast.

    While I'm walking the dog, my wife is making dinner.
    While I walk the dog, my wife makes dinner.
    I am not sure whether simple form is possible with "while".

    The second example sounds as present real conditional but as far as I know present real conditional has only these forms:

    [If / When ... Simple Present ..., ... Simple Present ...]
    [... Simple Present ... if / when ... Simple Present ...]

    Thanks in advance!

  2. engee30's Avatar
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    Retired English Teacher
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    Re: Present continuous for habitual actions in the present


    With the present continuous used for habitual actions, you draw your speaker's attention, or I'd even say you take them mentally, to the point in time where that specific action takes place (try to imagine your speaker is present at that very moment):

    At 7.15, I'm usually having breakfast. (=at 7.15 I am usually already in the progress of eating my breakfast; so imagine that your speaker could actually see you having your breakfast when they were there with you at 7.15)
    At 7.15, I usually have breakfast. (=I simply start having my breakfast at 7.15, usually)

    It's a similar thing with your other pair of sentences.

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