What single word would you use to describe yourself?

I ran into a friend at the grocery store the other day.

This is not surprising because a) I have lots of friends and b) I eat lots of groceries. This particular day I was just running into the grocery store while I was on my way home from … the grocery store. A different grocery store.

THAT’S the way I roll. I am a rolling ball of excitement who visits not one, but TWO and sometimes THREE grocery stores in a row. A remarkable feat when you consider I grow all of my own vegetables. And make everything else out of kitty litter and water bottle caps. What is it I’m buying then?

Well, on this particular trip it was a package of hot Italian sausages, buns, tortillas, sour cream and a copy of Flea Market Style magazine.

My friend Marlilyn who works at the grocery store came up and gave me a big hug and kiss.  This is not surprising because a) I’m very cute and b) Marilyn’s very kissy.

In fact 3 aisles later some man pointed to my lip marked cheek and jovially asked who’d  been kissing me.  I slapped him in the face with my sausage and screamed INAPPROPRIATE TOUCHING, INAPPROPRIATE TOUCHING.  It’s kind of a blur but I think I somehow got hold of a whistle and started blowing it too.

It was probably an overreaction on my part.  I’ve been a bit jumpy lately. But it’s amazing what people let you get away with after the tiniest of nervous breakdowns. I’m thinkin’ of robbing a bank.

Anyhow, Kissy-Monster Marilyn and I were talking and she described me as having a “steely resolve”.

Really?  I have a steely resolve?  I guess I do.  That’s fun.  I’m not sure I ever would have thought of myself that way, but now that she mentioned it … I think she’s right.  If I were to describe myself, “steely resolve” probably wouldn’t be the words I’d use.  Which got me to thinking … how would I describe myself if I could only use one word?

Kind?  No.  Even though I am kind in a lot of cases it’s not what defines me I don’t think.

Smart?  You bet.  I can spell the word Chihuahua without a dictionary AND I can tell you what temperature it is in Fahrenheit if only given the current temperature in celsius.  And a pen and paper.  And access to Google.

Funny?  Come now.

Then it came to me.  I’m determined.  It might not be a great word to describe myself to other people but it’s who I really am.  Others would probably describe me as funny.  Or handy. Or wildly engaging with just a touch of mystery.

But to me … I’m determined.

You know what I’m going to ask now don’t you?  And I want you to really think about it.  It might not be as easy as you think.

If you had to describe yourself in one word, what would it be?

Funny Kind Smart Caring Clever Happy Angry Damaged Mischievous?

Or maybe Steely?

Have a good weekend,




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  1. Rachel says:

    Hi Determined. I’m Mercurial.

  2. Sarah says:

    One word? Ugh. I’ll go with loyal. Fiercely loyal.

    (I know this is cheating, but the runners up were patient, supportive, and smart.)

  3. Jeanette says:

    I’m “creative problem-solver” – and can also be a little bit wordy :)

  4. Allison says:

    I’m somewhere in the P’s … persnickety or persistent.

  5. Jen says:

    One word… evolving

    Yeah. That fits right now. I am JUST starting grad school to get my MBA. I am making a career change, I am just leaving newlywed status. I am trying to work on my little business, and trying to find work. Plus I changed my diet, started exercising, and stopped smoking.

    Yeah, evolving fits.

    But my friends would call me quirky…

  6. gloria says:


  7. Jeanne McNeil says:


  8. Laura says:

    Passionate. Mostly because it sounds a tad more flattering than melodramatic.

  9. Ashley W says:

    Warm. (I hope.)

  10. missnicoleo says:

    I’m often described as: long pause…..interesting.

  11. Kirsten says:


    • Denise says:

      Kirsten – okay you got me to hit the dictionary at 7:00 am on that one. Several online dictionaries in fact … and the thesaurus. And I am still wondering what you mean. One mentioned opposites, another a specific computer search another amphibian (I’m hoping that isn’t it). Bi-polar? Multiple personalities? Inquiring minds want to know. ~Denise And now I guess mine must be “curious”. Which does in fact fit me.

  12. Bobbi says:


  13. Trysha says:

    I’m not kind, but I’m friendly. Loyal is what I would be preferred to be known for. Some people would probably use the word bitchy to describe me, but those people…would probably be right. Haha!

  14. Court says:


  15. Susan R says:

    Independent, above all else.

  16. Cathy says:

    Cathy is: Friendly.

  17. Tara says:

    As soon as I saw the headline of your post, I immediately thought, “Oooh, I know this one – I’m determined!!”

    But then you stole it right from under my determined feet so I’m going to go with my second thought:


  18. Terri says:

    This old lady …well I’m known as “OHNERY”. Like to keep the youngin’s on their toes. HeHeHe.

  19. Amie Mason says:

    I would say ‘bubbly’ or ‘chatterbox’ but I think my husband would say ‘moody’ or ‘highly-strung’….

    • Viki says:

      But Amie, that’s the beauty of it: They’re two sides of the same coin–it’s just the actions you choose with your qualities that determine whether or not that quality will be seen as positive or negative. When someone says to me, “Man, my kid is so STUBBORN,” I say to them, “But that means that she will stay the course when she needs to!” (aka DETERMINED). If your husband says you’re moody, you can take pride in being SENSITIVE TO OTHERS’ MOODS . . .which is an excellent gift! Nobody wants a friend who is indifferent to their own mood. And HIGH-STRUNG? Try ENERGETIC, SPARKLING or (my personal favorite and my one word) VIVACIOUS! It’s all in how you spend the energy that determines the word, even if they represent the same/a similar quality.

  20. Allison in E ON says:

    Sad to admit: Tired.

  21. Stephanie Hobson says:

    Stubborn, aka bull headed. Or as a friend of mine said just last week, “Like a dog with a bone”.

    Or as a different friend once described me, the most curious person he had ever met. Not curious as in unusual, exotic, or even interesting. Curious as in nosey!

    So put those two together, nosey and stubborn, and right there you have trouble in River City!

  22. carey says:

    Hmmm.One word to describe myself? I just can’t decide. Smart, yes, funny, sometimes. Loyal, you betcha. I guess what I am, is indecisive.

  23. LuAnn Agustin says:


  24. Lea Studebaker says:

    Empathetic. My husband says its a curse and a blessing, I care enough for the both of us, then some. His words not mine.

  25. JBB says:

    Muh? Is that a word?

  26. Sia says:

    Efficient… For now.

    … And your grocery store attack cracked me up.

    …AND, thank you for that “fly.sitting.on.your.food.laying.eggs.so.cover.it.up” post a few days ago… Now, I imagine eating fly eggs every single day.

  27. Kimberly says:


  28. kimberly says:

    Wow, that’s a tough one. it has to cover all the little facets of your personality, and mine are all over the place. lol. I think the best one, would be the word ” resolved”. can I use that? is it a description, or an end result?

  29. Feral Turtle says:

    Turtle!….wait maybe Feral cuz it sounds more exciting!

  30. Sue says:

    I recently got on Medicare and have been dutifully getting all my long overdue screenings. The last was at the GYN, who was gazing at my nether regions and announced that all looked normal, but atrophied. I’ve been feeling nothing but atrophied ever since.

  31. Christine says:

    I would use the word Mama to describe me because….well it’s true and….because currently my old self is lost somewhere in this title.

    • Karen says:

      Well then find your old self. Think about it today. You’re not a mama. Well, you are, but that’s only part of it. It’s not what you are. Think of pre-mama you and remember what it was, and become it again. :) In addition to mama. ~ karen!

      • Nancy Blue Moon says:

        Great advise Karen..Christine..Think of something you used to love doing..something that made you smile and feel good about yourself..Then make time to do it again..Remember: When Mama’s happy..everybody’s happy!

  32. Laura Bee` says:

    Who I am and how I feel are very closely intertwined. This morning you caught me feeling less like myself.

    I’ll get back to you.

    • Karen says:

      I”m glad you’re giving it some thought. ~ karen!

      • Laura Bee` says:

        Feeling much better. Thanks for making me look for me today…the answer popped in my head just now.

        Now – if you really knew me, this would make you laugh because I say it so often – I’m fine. Fine in many ways & I’ll continue to be fine.

  33. RosieW says:

    Hard to choose, as I’m drawn to your word DETERMINED, but think ECCENTRIC is most accurate.

  34. Candice says:

    I’m in the throws of helping with my daughter’s upcoming wedding (November) with 200+ guests.I’m a minimalist so this pomp and circumstance is alien to me and I have no idea what the f@#k I’m doing and the fact that I think she’s making a HUGE mistake, I’d say I’m…anxiety-prone.

  35. Jodi says:

    I’m gonna say “golden”. Because I still need reminding sometimes how precious I am – and how good my life is, even though I’m getting better at appreciating it.

  36. Natika says:

    hmmm… this is a very interesting idea, especially the part where you say what others would call you and what you would call yourself is different.

    Idealist is my word.

  37. Carol says:

    Multifaceted! 😉

  38. Cindy says:

    Eclectic. But I like evolving a lot too.

  39. Jody says:


  40. karen anderson says:

    weird. And proud of it!!

  41. Amanda says:

    Okay, I saw it in the graphic above, but it fits. Curious. Relentlessly.

  42. marilyn says:

    i looked in the dictionary for the definition of determined and …you guessed it..steely resolve! imagine! me…positive! my brother once described me as pollyanna..i’ll take it. and yes i am a kissy person, runs in the family and is all part of the positive thing..i try to pass it on. lol

  43. jenny says:

    really difficult finding one word to wrap up my whole personality but id just say ‘unique’

  44. Erica says:


  45. Beckie says:

    lately? defeated

    other times…resigned

    I’ve also been told I am *argumentative*

    but…I beg to differ

  46. Resolved
    I am also very creative, necessity being the mother of invention and all. This and other reasons have also made me – resolved.

  47. Wendy says:

    InnerAltitude! I start the day off great..then BAMM…someone looks at me weird or the tractor in front of my 10 minute drive is too large to pass…the words on the menu do not match what I’m eating…turns my mood backwards. Give me barn aroma, puppy, the ocean..I can then eat everything on the menu without chewing with a smile.

  48. Thera says:


  49. jainegayer says:

    Karen, you are determined. I read your blog on doing your ENTIRE yard…moving those boulders, definitely determined.
    I woud have turned and ran, very far.
    People tell me I’m strong, emotionally.
    I guess I am…

  50. KimC says:

    Control-freak. I hate that about myself! On a side note, I laughed when I read that you describe yourself as determined. With school starting, I had to fill out a form describing my 11 yr.old daughter in 5 words. On the list I used ‘perfectionist’ which my daughter took offence to so together we switched it to ‘determined’. She seems to think that description has a nice ring to it as she’s been tossing it into every conversation this week!
    Have a great weekend Karen.

  51. A college professor once called me “exquisitely feminine”. Yes, still trying to figure that one out.

    But I would call myself tenacious. I don’t like to defeated by any challenge that comes my way.

  52. CP says:

    I have a similar story to your grocery store encounter, but rather than “steely resolve”, I got “quiet force”. I’m going with it. Albeit quietly and forcefully.

  53. Judy D. says:


  54. qtpuh2tme says:


  55. Diane S says:

    How I see myself = confident
    How others see me = doormat

  56. Kathy says:

    Kinda Kooky!

  57. Moe says:


  58. Phedra says:


  59. Jamieson says:

    ONE word??! I’ve never said just one word in my life.

    • Amy Schmucker says:

      YEah, that about says it for me too.

      I guess my word would have to be talkitive. Or friendly would be more positive spin on it.

  60. Johan says:

    Sitting here with an ice pack on my face because some batshit crazy woman hit me with a package of meat yesterday. Can’t remember much after that but there is a ringing in my ears too….
    I am going with ‘curious’, at least I was….

  61. Charmaine says:


  62. Rondina says:

    To others : smart. I hate that. I’ll be talking to a total stranger and out of the blue they ask, “You’re really smart aren’t you?” That’s when I dismiss myself as soon as possible. I think I’m friendly. Why would I be talking to the total stranger if I wasn’t friendly?

  63. Heather says:

    Persistent. Like a dog with a bone

    • Debi says:

      Wrong! I’ve seen your blog. I’d say – amazing!

    • Sally A. says:


      Don’t say that! I know how you feel though. Right at this moment I am torturing myself because of something really dumb I did recently at work. I mean really dumb. Like they might fire me dumb. So my word was going to be dumb. Just know that tomorrow is another day and hopefully that’s the day it gets better! Right now would be good too, but oh well. :) Also, everybody fails and everybody can be dumb.

      • Sally A. says:


        I’ve noticed that many of us are defining ourselves with a word about how we feel. That’s different. I feel dumb, but after I looked up Mercurial (cause I’m dumb :)) I realized that describes me perfectly!

        1. changeable; volatile; fickle; flighty; erratic: a mercurial nature.

        animated; lively; sprightly; quick-witted. (I think quick-witted may be a stretch)

        Add dumb and we’re there!! Ha!

      • andrea meyers says:

        Ii did something dumb at work, got fired, and lost my dream house I was 5 days away from closing escrow on!!
        you’re not dumb, just in a journey-learning mode. everything happens for a reason.

  64. Sue H. says:


  65. Jodi T. says:


  66. Alice says:

    Grateful — with good reason — but I try to be, even when things don’t look so good.

  67. Brenda says:

    I’m working part-time in a job I’m not enjoying any longer, my daughter just left for college (freshman) & I’m missing her badly, I really need to find a full-time job (yeah, in this USA economy)that I “hopefully” enjoy …..I need to get to know my husband again (we have a 14 yr old son in the house still, but unless we find some commonality that does not include our children, I’m afraid what our relationship will look like in 4 yrs when he leaves)….so yeah, adrift. Or depressed, that one works, too. I’m really, really trying to change my “word” to hopeful….but I don’t have much hope of that…yet.

    • Sandra says:

      Oh my, Brenda you are describing …me! Although my two sons have both moved out, one currently in college, the other graduated and working full time etc. they are still local. Daughter just started college that is 4+ hours away. One 15 yo daughter at home for three more years…and who is this person that shares my bed?

      One word to describe me? positive

    • Brenda, your comment really touched me. I can feel how sad you are, but I love that you’re trying to change your word.

      I believe words are the most powerful tool we have to transform our lives. I tell my daughter (who is 10, and our child of “no”) that when her words roll back over her ears and her brain hears them again, her brain believes them. So it’s important to give her brain positive words to build a positive outlook.

      It sounds juvenile, I’m sure, but I believe it. Another word for ‘adrift’ is ‘searching,’ but ‘searching’ is active. It gives you power and authority over your own direction. And even though things are changing rapidly and changes can be terrifying, there’s also a ton of opportunity: to redefine your relationship with your husband, with your son, and together as a family. To find a job or career path that fulfills you. To figure out where your interests lay, then pursue them with passion. To indulge in new ways to expand and deepen your relationship with your daughter now that she’s away.

      There is so much opportunity, and as a Searcher, you can try on different hats and seek out what truly makes you happy.

      Apologies for the armchair psychology. I hope you can grab hold of that rudder and steer yourself into what makes you happy. ~ April

      • Brenda says:

        April………thank you…….just — thank you! :)

        • Tim says:

          I know this is from awhile back now. But all i have to say is “good for you!” You may be “adrift” right now, and i know it seems cliché and even a little 12-steppy, but the first step is admitting there is a problem. You can’t fix a problem you didn’t know existed. You made a decision to love and cherish your husband till death do you part. You just need to remember why you made that decision, and wake up each day and make that decision again. Remember why, and you will find that connection again…I promise!

  68. karol says:

    Today, it’s “troubled”. Tomorrow, I’m hoping for better. So maybe “hopeful” would be a more positive choice for today.

  69. Andreae says:

    I’m really good at synthesizing, in the sense of synthesizing information into something coherent, not in the sense of playing the synthesizer. Does this make me synthetic? I only wear natural fibres…

  70. Maggie V says:

    POSITIVE!! Like Marilyn says it runs in the family at least most of us in the family. The glass is always half full and we like it that way at least most of us. Just sayin! Cheers

  71. Sandy says:

    I would say “Thinker”. It is nice to know that I am not the only one that shops at two or three grocery stores. It saves me money!

  72. Glenda says:

    Optimist. Kind of like Scarlett O’Hara – “Tomorrow is another day” or could be considered ostrich with my head in the sand. I prefer optimist.

  73. Kathy says:

    Joyfully tenacious. Or tenaciously joyful.

  74. gabrielle says:


  75. Jeannie says:


  76. Marion says:

    I’m opinionated. Seriously, I have an opinion on pretty much everything. I’ll share them with anybody if given the chance, although I know (most of the time) when to shut my mouth. I had a friend once tell me I was “too honest” sometimes. So yea, I’m honestly opinionated (and quite liberal, so there ya go).

  77. Barbara says:


  78. taria says:

    I need to work on this because it is probably cranky. Been a long year for us here and I have just become cranky.

  79. Melissa says:

    What does your mirror face say?

    We have a family joke that the way you look at yourself in the mirror is the way you want the world to see you. When I look in the mirror, I try to look “approachable and friendly.” To counteract my TYPE A personality…

    My word to describe myself, in spite of my mirror face, is: resourceful.

  80. Patricia says:

    either caring or enabling….hmmmmmm

  81. West Coast Nan says:

    Amazing – not that I think I am great or anything, just that to have gotten this far in life is quite a feat so I will honour that with my one word description. Also, I can still do a cartwheel.

  82. Dawna Jones says:

    I would used determined as well. I think in the end it describes how I manage to go about my day to day life and the things that get thrown at me.

  83. Ruth says:

    Good morning, Determined… I am Complex (as in ‘complicated’, not the one that requires psychiatric assessment) ;P

  84. jan says:

    It is what it is…or I am what I am.

  85. toekneetoni says:


  86. Rebekah says:

    Observer: a person who watches or notices something. Thanks for causing some introspection this morning!

  87. Patti says:

    A long time ago at some dumb thing we went around the room each of us using one word to describe the others. I got “pleasant” and “nice” … blech! I think I’m a Fearless sh*t-kicker!

  88. Karen says:

    This is hard!

    I would say – overwhelmed!

    Others would say – confident?

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