to be = general and the current action?

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ademoglu

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Hi,

When I say, "I am helpful", does it describe me in general or the current action also, depending on the context? In fact, I'd like to know if we can use 'to be' to describe it in both situations?

You are very helpful. =(This could mean that you are always helpful)
You are very helpful. =(Let's say that my girlfriend is helping me to carry the stuff we have just bought.)

Thanks.
 

GoesStation

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You are very helpful describes you in general.
 

teechar

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Now, you are (being) very helpful.
You might, for example, say that as an encouragement to a child who wasn't (being) helpful before.
 

Tdol

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I would be careful because the use of now could imply a criticism of previous behaviour. Use are being if you want to focus on the current asssistance.
 
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