What's a word that can be used to describe someone who is ambitious, but with a more positive aspect? Ambitious seems a little negative. I require a word for a person who dreams big, and wants to achieve success.

Thank you

closed as off-topic by Hot Licks, Mitch, Helmar, MetaEd Oct 20 '16 at 19:08

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  • When did ambitious become negative? – alwayslearning Oct 20 '16 at 10:36
  • It's not negative as such, but it's describes a more hard working determined person. I want to find a word which describes a dreamer, or someone who really wants to achieve something in life. – PK123 Oct 20 '16 at 10:44
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    Perhaps zealous? – Murad Oct 20 '16 at 12:26
  • And what did you find in a thesaurus? – Hot Licks Oct 20 '16 at 12:48
  • @Jon Snow's papa I think zealous is a great word. If you would post an answer, I'll mark it correct. Thanks! – PK123 Oct 20 '16 at 13:26

Oxford offers many synonyms, like determined, enterprising, pioneering, progressive, motivated, driven, enthusiastic, energetic, commited, purposeful, assertive and eager. Even "ambitious" could work in the right context.


Perhaps aspiring?

I disagree that ambitious has negative connotations though.

  • Well I would like to say "He is _." I don't think aspiring would fit, and I still feel ambitious might not be the exact word I'm looking for. I want to say something along the lines of "He dreams big" or "He wants to succeed" – PK123 Oct 20 '16 at 10:08
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    Not sure you can convey that with one word tbh – ElendilTheTall Oct 20 '16 at 10:53
  • ... Dreaming is certainly a good start, but dreams alone don't get you very far. What was that superb Dumbledore quote when he warned Harry about watching too much Mirror-of-Erised? – Edwin Ashworth Oct 20 '16 at 11:02

Words that come to mind are driven, focused and committed.

You may also consider single-minded and goal-oriented if you don't mind the hyphen.


I think visionary could work.

Oxford Dictionary defines as:

(adj) Thinking about or planning the future with imagination or wisdom.

‘a visionary leader’

(noun) A person with original ideas about what the future will or could be like.

'She was a visionary who acheived what many thought to be impossible.'

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