Native English Answer: What’s the Difference Between Being and Been?

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It takes a bit of work to understand tenses in English because English is such a descriptive language. In Gabby’s English tips such as this one, she explains how to have a better understanding of the grammar and usage of all the parts of speech in American English. We have been working hard to provide excellent materials and support to assist you in your quest to learn English.


To have a full understanding of English you should read and listen to native English speakers. This will allow you to better grasp sentence structure and the flow of the words. Remember also, the premium Go Natural English course provides many more resources to help you. Get involved in the conversations and practice speaking English as often as you can.


Episode transcript below:


Hey! How’s it going?

Welcome to Go Natural English.

In this English tip I’m going to answer a question from a Go Natural English audience member, Kenza.

Kenza asked, “What is the difference between “being” and “been?”

So, Kenza, that’s a great question.

It’s kind of a grammar and usage question and I’m happy to share my answer with you.

So, I would like to start off by saying that a really great way to start to be an independent learner is to expose yourself to a lot of English and you can start recognizing the differences between things like “being” and “been.”

Of course, it’s going to help a lot and you’re going to learn faster if you have some direct explanation.

At least, in my opinion, I learn better when I have some direct answer like this English tip video.

And also in the premium Go Natural English course where you get more explanations, you get more answers directly, and you learn from exposure to more English because in the course we have tons of native English conversation for you to listen to and see how we really use vocabulary and grammar in everyday American English conversation.

So, you can find out more about that on my website,

So, back to your question, Kenza, about “being” and been.”

Now, they’re both a form of the “to be” verb, but they’re used in different tenses.

So, I could use “being” with the progressive like “I am being” – let me change that a little bit – “He is being annoying.”


“I am being amazing.”

Okay, so, “He is being annoying.”

Another progressive tense would be “He has been annoying.”

So, see, with the present perfect progressive we use “been” and in the present progressive we use “being.”

So, “He is being annoying – He has been annoying, but now he’s not annoying.”

So, they’re both forms of “to be” so I would recommend to perhaps review grammar a little bit but don’t focus on your books.

Get out of your books.

Listen to more English, perhaps for identifying how you use “being” and “been” in different tenses.

It would be helpful to listen to stories or to conversations, and as I mentioned with the Go Natural English premium course, we have a lot of conversations where we talk about the past and experiences, so we use tenses like “has been” or “have been” so you’ll be able to hear a lot of examples.

So, one more time just to recap – they’re part of the same verb “to be” but we use them with different tenses.

So, again, “I am being a great teacher”, okay? – the present progressive and in the present perfect progressive, “I have been a great teacher.”

So, we just use them in different tenses.


Thanks for your question.

I hope I answered it.

If it’s still not clear, leave a comment.

Let me know.

You’re going to also ask in the Go Natural English community on or tweet at Go Natural English and I hope to hear from you real soon.

So, come on back and I’ll share another tip with you in a couple of days, alright?

Bye for now.

Learn English like a Native – How to respond to “Guess what?”

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