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The Ultimate Guide to Nosotros Commands in Spanish

Spanish speakers use nosotros commands like the English “let’s” to make suggestions.

They’re formed using the imperative mood—the tense used to tell people what to do.

But what is the imperative mood? And how do you form commands using the nosotros (we) form?

In this blog post, you’ll learn how to correctly conjugate nosotros commands in this mood and how to use them in sentences like a native speaker.

Contents

What Is the Imperative Mood in Spanish?

There are three verb moods in Spanish: the indicative, the subjunctive and the imperative.

The imperative is what we use to make commands and suggestions. So because of this, nosotros commands are usually (but not always, as we’ll see soon!) conjugated in the imperative mood.

Here are some examples of sentences with verbs in the imperative mood:

¡Cómete las verduras! (Eat the vegetables!)

Ven a la fiesta conmigo. (Come to the party with me.)

No mires la televisión antes de acostarte. (Don’t watch TV before going to bed.)

Check out our post here for the complete rundown on all Spanish commands.

How to Conjugate Nosotros Commands

Each Spanish pronoun (except “I” and “he/she”) has its own ending in the imperative, just like the other tenses.

This means nosotros commands have a specific ending.

If you already know the present subjunctive, this will be easy for you—nosotros commands use the same conjugations as they do in the present subjunctive.

If you’re not familiar with the subjunctive yet, no worries. Here are the conjugations for nosotros commands:

Verb StemNosotros Command ConjugationExample
-ar-emosPensarPensemos
-er-amosComerComamos
-ir-amosVivirVivamos

Take a look at some examples:

Vivamos en Madrid. (Let’s live in Madrid.)

Cenemos espagueti esta noche. (Let’s eat spaghetti for dinner tonight.)

Negative nosotros commands work in the exact same way and the conjugation is also identical to the positive commands.

The only thing you have to remember is that the negative adverb no always comes before the verb:

No bebamos tanto alcohol, por favor. (Let’s not drink so much alcohol, please.)

No comamos comida italiana. (Let’s not eat Italian food.)

Things to Know About Nosotros Commands

Commands Using Ir + A + Infinitive

The ir + a + infinitive formula can actually be used for nosotros commands without needing to conjugate the verb in the imperative—all we need is the present simple tense!

This form is so common now that it’s the only one many Spanish speakers use.

Using it is easy: You just take vamos (ir in first-person plural present), add the preposition a (to), then add an action or a place.

For example:

Vamos a la playa. (Let’s go to the beach.)

Vamos al cine. (Let’s go to the cinema.)

Vamos a comer. (Let’s eat.)

There’s only one downside: You can’t use this form for negative commands or suggestions.

When making a negative command or suggestion, you need to use the true negative imperative of ir:

No vayamos a la playa. (Let’s not go to the beach.)

No vayamos al cine. (Let’s not go to the cinema.)

No vayamos a comer. (Let’s not go eat.)

Using Nosotros Commands with Pronouns

Spanish pronouns are always tricky, especially when dealing with direct object pronouns and indirect object pronouns.

Some verbs don’t need a pronoun (like “to go”), some need one pronoun (like “to smoke”) and others need two (like “to send”).

There are two things worth mentioning here:

  1. Both the affirmative sentences and the commands use the same pronouns. We don’t have to worry about pronouns that much, after all! If you know how to use pronouns in affirmative sentences, you have already done more than half the work.
  2. If there are any pronouns, they are attached at the end of the command. If you have the pronoun las, the command will end in -las. If you have the pronouns me and lo, the command will end in –melo.

Knowing this, we can now have a look at some examples in affirmative and imperative sentences:

Los fumamos (We smoke them) → Fumémoslos (Let’s smoke them)

Se la mandamos (We send it to her) → Mandémosela (Let’s send it to her)

Los compramos (We buy them) → Comprémoslos. (Let’s buy them.)

However, when we are forming a negative nosotros command, we place the pronouns before the verb, between the no and the verb—similar to the affirmative sentence. For example:

No los dejamos (We don’t leave them) No los dejemos. (Let’s not leave them.)

No se lo decimos (We don’t tell it to him)No se lo digamos. (Let’s not tell it to him.)

If all this sounds a little overwhelming, take a breath and relax. Getting used to Spanish grammar rules like object pronouns takes time, but it’ll come a lot easier the more you practice. 

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Using Nosotros Commands with Reflexive Verbs

Until now, we’ve learned how to deal with normal, non-reflexive verbs. But what happens if we have a verb like abrocharse (to fasten) or bañarse (to have a bath)?

Keeping in mind that a reflexive pronoun always accompanies reflexive verbs, and the reflexive pronoun for the nosotros is nos, here’s how we form positive nosotros commands with reflexive verbs:

Nos is attached to the end of the verb. The verb form then loses its final -s (never forget to do this before you add your pronouns—it won’t just sound better, but it will also be easier to pronounce), then an accent is added to the first vowel after the verb’s stem.

Way to complicate things, Spanish language! Here’s what this will look like:

Bañémonos. (Let’s have a bath.)

Llamémonos “Los Tigres.” (Let’s call ourselves “The Tigers.”)

Afeitémonos. (Let’s shave.)

For negative nosotros commands with reflexive verbs the pronoun is simply added in front of the verb and no other changes are needed. For example:

No nos bañemos. (Let’s not have a bath.)

No nos llamemos “Los Tigres.” (Let’s not call ourselves “The Tigers.”)

No nos afeitemos. (Let’s not shave.)

 

Learning to use and master nosotros commands is easy if you follow a few simple steps.

Grab a notebook and a pen and try to think of as many nosotros commands as possible, both positive and negative. And include some reflexive verbs, as well!

I’m sure after 15-20 examples, it’ll start coming more naturally to you!

And One More Thing…

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