look to one's laurels


Protect one's preeminent reputation or position, especially against a threat of being surpassed. For example, Your opponent's done very well in the practice, so you'd better look to your laurels in the actual game. This idiom alludes to laurels as the traditional material for making a victor's crown. [Late 1800s]

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The American Heritage® Idioms Dictionary Copyright © 2002, 2001, 1995 by Houghton Mifflin Harcourt Publishing Company. Published by Houghton Mifflin Harcourt Publishing Company.