When to Add a Comma After 'At times' or 'At all times'

At the beginning of a sentence, using a comma after short prepositional phrases, like “at times” or “at all times”, is generally optional.

At the beginning of a sentence, using a comma after short prepositional phrases, like “at times” or “at all times”, is generally optional.

At times, Olivia feels like she’s going to be alone forever.

At times I enjoy playing video games with my friends.

When in doubt, add a comma after an introductory phrase to help clarify the meaning of the sentence.

At all times, a soldier must be aware of his surroundings in all types of weather conditions.

In the middle or at the end of a sentence, commas are frequently unnecessary with these expressions—although they may be required in particular situations.

Fresh and clean water should be available at all times.

1. Introducing a Sentence With ‘At times’ or ‘At all times’

When starting a sentence with the expressions “at times” or “at all times”, you can optionally add a comma after it.

At all times, lawyers may access their clients.

At times I just feel like quitting my job.

But use a comma to avoid confusion or introduce a long sentence.

At times, I like writing down my thoughts and feelings to clear my mind and clarify my emotions.

When in doubt, add a comma after these introductory phrases.

At times, I practice yoga and meditation to ease stress and sleep better.

Follow the same comma strategy with similar prepositional phrases, such as “at various times” or “at certain times”.

At certain times, focusing on process rather than outcome is the best choice.

At various times in his life, John would get the urge to travel around the world.

2. In the Middle or at the End of a Sentence

In the middle or at the end of a sentence, we do not usually need a comma to separate the adverbial phrases “at times” or “at all times” from the rest of the sentence.

My ten-year-old daughter turns naughty at times.

Please keep your bags with you at all times.

Commas may be required, however, when using particular sentence structures. For example, insert a comma before a coordinating conjunction (and, or, nor, for, but, yet, so) introducing an independent clause.

Emma is cruel at times, but I love her because she is my sister.

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