Are you working hard or hardly working?
The adverb hard is used to modify a verb and means that the action is being done very intensely. So, to work hard, means that you are making a big effort at your work and dedicating copious energy. Note, the adverb hard follows the verb.
example: She works hard during the week, but she also plays hard during the weekends.
The adverb hardly is used to modify a verb and means that the action is not being done very intensely. Therefore, the adverb hardly has the opposite meaning of hard, and reduces the intensity of the action.The adverb barely is a synonym with hardly. Note, the adverbs hardly and barely come before the verb.
example: He hardly works and should change his work habits before he loses his job.
He barely has any time to see his family.
Does that clear things up? Don’t forget to mentally practice.