I'm trying to find a word that describes a lack of confidence. Something that gives a sense of worthlessness maybe. I've dried looking up in Thesarus.com for similarities to lack of confidence and antonyms to self-worth, but with no luck. Anyone have some ideas?

  • 3
    First option: diffidence; alternate, inadequacy? However, your context seems a bit different and as you suggested, a sense of worthlessness seems very appropriate.
    – Kris
    Oct 2, 2012 at 5:02
  • i needed a single word. diffidence was good Oct 2, 2012 at 5:07
  • 5
    Floccinaucinihilipilification will give you a sense of worthlessness. Oct 2, 2012 at 5:14
  • Try timid: Lacking in courage or confidence.
    – Jim
    Oct 2, 2012 at 5:19

4 Answers 4


According to OED:

diffident: modest or shy because of a lack of self-confidence: a diffident youth.

Another word as @Jim suggested would be timid.

timid: showing a lack of courage or confidence; easily frightened: I was too timid to ask for what I wanted.


"Insecurity" would be a good one. To have insecurity is to have lack of self-confidence, lack of self-worth. Insecure.


You can use:

  1. Timid: Showing fear and lack of confidence
  2. Diffident: Lacking self-confidence. E.g: stood in the doorway diffident and abashed
  3. Fainthearted: Lacking conviction or boldness or courage.
  • Where are the definitions taken from? Always indicate your sources. Always. Thank you.
    – RegDwigнt
    Oct 2, 2012 at 8:56

I think wavering (“Fluctuating; being in doubt; undetermined; indecisive; uncertain; unsteady”), faltering (To “be unsure or weak” or “Move hesitatingly, as if about to give way”, etc.), and irresolute (“Undecided or unsure how to act” or “Indecisive or lacking in resolution”) might serve.

Also consider unsure, doubting or doubtful, iffy, chancy, and dicey (“Of uncertain, risky outcome” or “Of doubtful or uncertain efficacy, provenance, etc.; dodgy”).

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