I'm looking for a word which describes "constant desire to achieve more, to gain something, doesn't matter what".

It can't be tied to one goal, like ambition or aspiration. It can be adjective.


"I can't rest, my ' ' is driving me forward" OR "I can't rest, I am too ' ' for that"

EDIT: Okay, I'll try to explain better. Let's say I have 2 choices to make: to eat a salad, OR to eat a chocolate bar. To earn some money OR to watch NETFLIX. So, I choose healthy food and I choose money. I always choose what I think is the best option which leads to maximum gain (subjectively speaking). And I want maximum gain, always. How is that "wanting" called ? Words "ambitiousness" or "driven" don't exactly fit

  • 3
    So what is wrong with "ambitious"? And you need a sample sentence per the SWR tag. Commented Aug 13, 2019 at 15:51
  • Since "desire more" is underspecified and leaving room for an oblique object, the souhht phrase should do so, too. In my humble opinion, It should not make explicit, that the speaker doesn't know what more could be achieved, but the question suggests otherwise. Which is it, do you know?
    – vectory
    Commented Aug 13, 2019 at 16:08
  • 2
    'Ambition' doesn't need to have a single objective. Commented Aug 13, 2019 at 16:11
  • Probably answered at word for 'ambitious'. Commented Aug 13, 2019 at 16:12

5 Answers 5


From the question:

I'm looking for a word which describes "constant desire to achieve more, to gain something, doesn't matter what".

I would use insatiable:

: incapable of being satisfied : QUENCHLESS
// had an insatiable desire for wealth

To paraphrase the example sentence:

I can't rest. My desire for more is insatiable.


Driven (respectively, drive) would fit. From Dictionary:

adjective being under compulsion, as to succeed or excel: a driven young man who was fiercely competitive.

I can't rest. I am too driven.

  • 1
    @ marcellothearcane.See times of posting. ;)
    – S Conroy
    Commented Aug 13, 2019 at 16:50
  • Oops, I can't subtract 😬 Commented Aug 13, 2019 at 17:06

I think driven seems to fit well.

Driven - (of a person) relentlessly compelled by the need to accomplish a goal; very hard-working and ambitious.

Especially when talking about personalities driven often refers to the need to accomplish something; anything at all. It differs from ambitious in that it does not neet to be an accomplishment that moves on forward in life or up the ranks at work.

  • 1
    The comparison to Ger ich treibe should be very interesting here. Old English still had the infinitive marker -en, if I recall correctly, (cp Ger inf. treiben "to drive"); May be driven is not a bona-fide passive form as I always thought it were. Ich bin treiben basicamly means "I am driving [e.g. the cows up to the alms]"
    – vectory
    Commented Aug 13, 2019 at 16:42

Motivated - having an incentive or a strong desire to do well or succeed in some pursuit.

  • 1
    Your answer could be improved with additional supporting information. Please edit to add further details, such as citations or documentation, so that others can confirm that your answer is correct. You can find more information on how to write good answers in the help center.
    – Community Bot
    Commented Mar 1, 2023 at 21:36
  • More specifically, please cite the source of your definition. Commented Mar 1, 2023 at 21:53


The lure of something unknown. A form of self-delusion in case of "my own temptation". my tempation expresses at least a personal longing, or vice versa strong pull, but positive connotation is merely implied? Akin to attempt; Strongly influenced by christian philosophies of moral warning before the extreme ends of fundamental human tendencies.

Alternatively try



attitude (viz NWA)



strive, contention



Needless to say these are mostly negative, but because your examples are ("can't", "won't"), and all may have a positive connotation as limited as agreement on what constitutes a "gain"

Something more positive for the Zeitgeist may be

business, busy

It's understood that nobody runs businesses in order to loose after all.

  • Not my DV, but "temptation" seems like an antonym to what the OP is asking. Commented Aug 13, 2019 at 20:56

Your Answer

By clicking “Post Your Answer”, you agree to our terms of service and acknowledge you have read our privacy policy.

Not the answer you're looking for? Browse other questions tagged or ask your own question.