Many of you should remember some verbs followed by a to-infinitive or the –ing form, for example, ‘enjoy doing’ and ‘hope to’. Today, we would like to explain the differences between using the to-infinitive and the –ing form for 4 words, ‘try’, ‘mean’, ‘remember’, and ‘stop’. You may have learned in the past, but could you remember? Let’s revise with us!


1. Try to do vs Try doing

‘Try to do’ means work hard to complete a difficult task. If ‘Try to do’ is used to describe something in the past, it means have tried but failed. On the contrary, ‘Try doing’ means do something that you have not done before. It can be a difficult or an easy task, and you do not know the result at this moment.


(Try to do)

Even though he knows that it is a tough situation, he tries to overcome it.


She tried to break the record of the 100m race, but ended up winning the first runner-up.


(Try doing)

Try calling me if I do not reply to your message.


2. Mean to do vs Mean doing

‘Mean to do’ means intend or destine. On the contrary, ‘Mean doing’ means imply.


(Mean to do)

I didn’t mean to offend you. I’m sorry if I have said something that hurt your feeling.


(Mean doing)

Working in a rural area means taking me 3 hours for traveling.


3. Remember to do vs Remember doing

‘Remember to do’ means not forgetting to complete something undone. On the contrary, ‘Remember doing’ means have completed something as you are not forgetting.


(Remember to do)

Remember to hand in your assignment before this week’s Friday, or else you will get a mark deduction.


(Remember doing)

It’s raining cats and dogs this morning. Fortunately, I remembered bringing my umbrella so I did not get wet.


4. Stop to do vs Stop doing

‘Stop to do’ means stop doing one thing, and start doing another thing. On the contrary, ‘Stop doing’ means no longer do something.


(Stop to do)

I have to stop to work on this report, or else I will be late for the appointment.


(Stop doing)

The advertisement encourages people to stop smoking for their own and their family.