Imagine a wonderful person, who does the nicest things for other people and is almost completely selfless, but that person is insecure and only focuses on their faults. They conveniently always forget all the good things they constantly do, and only seem to think about their flaws. They are either completely oblivious to their good traits or don't count them as high as their faults.

Is there a word for this kind of person?

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    There are those who would say that this is an inverted egotism, and that focusing on oneself in any way is incompatible with true selflessness. Commented Apr 6, 2018 at 11:29
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    Imposter syndrome fits the description, however I dont think there is one correct answer for this question because it would likely depend on why the person in question is not seeing his/her positive attributes, is it humility to the extreme or incapability of looking one's self objectively? Is it just insecurity or somehow lacking in comparison to others (i.e. a role model). In any case I think one could say that the person has low self esteem.
    – posdef
    Commented Apr 6, 2018 at 12:08
  • @posdef I wanted the question to be more about the individual's insecurity and inability to look at themselves objectively, rather than them being humble, so I think imposter syndrome fits very well.
    – user224537
    Commented Apr 6, 2018 at 12:24
  • 'Honest' might be suitable. They honestly assess what only they know of themselves regardless of what the public think they know of them.
    – Nigel J
    Commented Apr 6, 2018 at 12:27
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    Depending upon precise requirement of meaning, self-deprecating could apply: modest about or critical of oneself.
    – Lee Leon
    Commented Apr 6, 2018 at 13:32

1 Answer 1


Imposter syndrome would be one possible response:

Impostor syndrome (also known as impostor phenomenon, fraud syndrome or the impostor experience) is a concept describing individuals who are marked by an inability to internalize their accomplishments and have a persistent fear of being exposed as a "fraud".


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    Just for the record, the opposite is the Dunning-Kruger effect. Commented Apr 6, 2018 at 23:48
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    @LinuxBlanket Good one! Adding to that, surveys demonstrate that huge, disproportionate percentages of people think they are above average in intelligence, skill, knowledge, whatever.
    – user862888
    Commented Apr 7, 2018 at 11:14