A hackneyed phrase is one which is overused by too many people too often so that it becomes tiresome.
It can be a phrasal verb like raining cats and dogs, or just some ordinary everyday phrases like how are you? I’m fine thanks, and you?
It is not a bad thing to use these tried and tested combinations and in fact we learn them as children, grow up with them and feel comfortable with them.
However, it is a great thing to experiment with phrases or collocations that are less common or even invent your own. Language is flexible.
For example.
Inextricably linked
This collocation is something I often come across while reading websites and news articles. It reminds me of when I was a 1st year university student. I used this collocation in an essay and felt intellectual at the time. It is totally hackneyed, to the point of absolute boredom. You can mix up your vocabulary. Try
inseparable, or
inextricably connected!
How about
The point is, we’ve got a language in English with over a million different words, and those words can be combined in sometimes very flexible ways. If you are interested in writing, this is one of the biggest tips to improving how you do it.