10 Other Ways to Say “First of All”

Other Ways to Say First of All

Sometimes you might need to express a sequence or prioritize information in your conversations, presentations, or writing.

Naturally, you would want to start with clarity and precision, especially when you have a lot to communicate.

While the phrase “first of all” is a common way to initiate a list or sequence, the English language offers many other alternatives to add variety and coherence to your expressions.

Using these synonyms will help you convey your ideas with style and effectiveness.

In this article, we’ll explore other ways to introduce a sequence or prioritize information in English using positive and engaging words. Let’s get started!

Alternatives to “First of All”

Instead of relying solely on “first of all,” you can choose from a variety of synonyms depending on the context and the emphasis you want to convey.

Indicating Sequence

1. To begin with

Example: To begin with, let’s examine the primary causes of the issue.

Meaning: This phrase signals the initiation of a series or discussion. It serves as a clear and straightforward way to start explaining a topic or addressing a series of points.

2. Initially

Example: Initially, I had reservations about the project, but later I changed my mind.

Meaning: “Initially” is used to introduce something that happened at the beginning of a process or period. It indicates the initial stage of an event or the starting point of a thought or action.

3. To start

Example: To start, let’s look at the basic principles behind this concept.

Meaning: “To start” serves as a simple and direct way to kick off a discussion or explanation. It signifies the commencement of a particular topic or activity.

4. In the first place

Example: In the first place, this idea should be carefully considered.

Meaning: This expression highlights the initial or primary aspect of a subject. It is often used when introducing a key point that should be the primary focus of attention.

5. At the outset

Example: At the outset, I want to make it clear that safety is our top priority.

Meaning: “At the outset” emphasizes the importance of addressing something right from the beginning. It indicates that a particular aspect or principle should be established as a priority from the start.

man presenting

Prioritizing Information

6. Foremost

Example: Foremost, we must focus on improving customer satisfaction.

Meaning: “Foremost” indicates that a particular point takes the highest priority. It emphasizes that this point should be the primary consideration or concern.

7. Primarily

Example: Primarily, our goal is to reduce carbon emissions.

Meaning: This word emphasizes that something is mainly or fundamentally true. It signifies that a specific goal or objective should be the primary focus.

8. Above all

Example: Above all, honesty and integrity should guide our actions.

Meaning: “Above all” signifies that a particular aspect is the most important consideration. It suggests that this aspect should be held in the highest regard or given the utmost attention.

9. Firstly and most importantly

Example: Firstly and most importantly, let’s remember to treat each other with respect.

Meaning: This phrase combines “firstly” with “most importantly” to stress a point’s significance. It indicates that the first point mentioned is not only the initial one but also the most crucial one to remember.

10. First and foremost

Example: First and foremost, teamwork is crucial for project success.

Meaning: This expression combines “first” and “foremost” to underscore the primary importance of something. It highlights that the mentioned factor should be considered before anything else and is essential for success.

10 Other Ways to Say First of All Infographic

Variations for Different Contexts

Choosing the right synonym for “first of all” depends on the context and the level of emphasis you want to convey:

Formal or Professional Settings: In formal documents, presentations, or professional discussions, consider using expressions like “foremost,” “primarily,” or “firstly and most importantly” to introduce key points with precision and professionalism.

Academic or Technical Discourse: When presenting research findings or explaining complex topics, phrases like “to start” or “in the first place” can provide clarity and structure to your discussions.

Everyday Conversations: In casual conversations among friends or family, feel free to use more straightforward expressions like “to begin with” or “initially” to maintain a friendly and approachable tone.

Writing and Essays: When crafting essays or articles, experimenting with a variety of synonyms can make your writing more engaging and reader-friendly. Tailor your choice to suit the flow and style of your writing.

Highlighting Importance: If you want to emphasize the paramount importance of a point, phrases like “above all” and “first and foremost” work effectively to grab attention.


In conclusion, having a variety of ways to introduce your points or arguments can greatly enhance the effectiveness of your communication. Whether you’re delivering a presentation, writing an academic paper, or engaging in a professional discussion, these alternatives to “first of all” provide flexibility and can help you articulate your thoughts more effectively.

For more detailed information and examples of how to use these phrases, you can visit the forum discussion Synonyms of “First of All” on WordReference Forums.

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