wrap one's head around

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wrap (one's) head around (third-person singular simple present wraps one's head around, present participle wrapping one's head around, simple past and past participle wrapped one's head around)

  1. (figuratively) To come to a good understanding of.
    • 1978, Science Policy Foundation, Science & Public Policy, volume 5, page 456
      It is sometimes mind-boggling to try and wrap one's head around all the possible information sets which one should try to address.
  2. (more literally uncommon) To crash into (something, especially a pole) messily and fatally while travelling in a motor vehicle.
    • 2011, David Adams Richards, The Coming of Winter, page 14:
      “Some crazy young bastard wrapped his head around a pole.”
  3. Used other than as an idiom: see wrap,‎ head,‎ around.
    • 2005, Charles R. Saint, The A.A.H.:
      The words barely left the lips when there came a loud cry and a trample of hoof beats. It was Kelly, radiant and shining, her mane was whipping with her speed. I cried out to her and the mare came to a stop and wrapped her head around mine.
    • 2007, Jeff Gelb, Michael Garrett, Dark Passions, page 314:
      The man wrapped her head around and around. Helen couldn't move and she couldn't breathe and she could barely see. The man loomed over her as if he were in a fog. In spite of her training, she panicked. She thrashed her head from side to side []