Synonym Chooser

How is the word self-possession distinct from other similar nouns?

Some common synonyms of self-possession are aplomb, assurance, and confidence. While all these words mean "a state of mind or a manner marked by easy coolness and freedom from uncertainty, diffidence, or embarrassment," self-possession implies an ease or coolness under stress that reflects perfect self-control and command of one's powers.

answered the insolent question with complete self-possession

When might aplomb be a better fit than self-possession?

In some situations, the words aplomb and self-possession are roughly equivalent. However, aplomb implies a manifest self-possession in trying or challenging situations.

handled the reporters with great aplomb

When could assurance be used to replace self-possession?

The meanings of assurance and self-possession largely overlap; however, assurance carries a stronger implication of certainty and may suggest arrogance or lack of objectivity in assessing one's own powers.

handled the cross-examination with complete assurance

When can confidence be used instead of self-possession?

Although the words confidence and self-possession have much in common, confidence stresses faith in oneself and one's powers without any suggestion of conceit or arrogance.

the confidence that comes from long experience

Thesaurus Entries Near self-possession

Cite this Entry

“Self-possession.” Thesaurus, Merriam-Webster, Accessed 18 May. 2024.

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