Words are powerful tools to characterize yourself and impress potential employers. If you were asked to choose words to describe yourself, what would you say?

Would it be creative, or inspiring?

Maybe you are passionate or ambitious?

In this article, we will be looking at some important tips on how to effectively select words you use to describe yourself. We will also look at good words to describe yourself that you can utilize.

“You are unique. You have different talents and abilities. You don’t have to always follow in the footsteps of others. And most importantly, you should always remind yourself that you don't have to do what everyone else is doing and have a responsibility to develop the talents you have been given.”

Roy T. Bennett

When it comes to showcasing yourself in your best light during job interviews or when writing a resume, the right words can make all the difference.

By mastering the art of self-expression, you can create a positive impression on hiring managers.

Preparing for a job interview

Creating a description of yourself may take you a minute to come up with the best words to say. The good news is that there are so many words to describe yourself to choose from!

Describing yourself in an interview

No matter what adjectives to describe yourself you select, they should reflect the traits that make you stand out and special. You do not want to sound arrogant but also do not want to overlook your strong sides.

To get to the interview, you first need to make sure you use the right words in your resume. For instance, a good place to provide descriptive adjectives is the resume summary. You can do this by using our resume builder: write the description yourself or ask the AI assistant to help you!

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When picking words to describe yourself, it is important to stay positive but also remain truthful. Follow the below guidelines when preparing for a job interview.

Preparation tips:

  • Think about your professional qualities, personal interests, and unique skills.

Discuss what sets you apart from others and what people think when they hear your name. Ask for recommendation letters. From this list, pick the best words to describe yourself that accurately and succinctly sums you up.

  • Write down the self-describing words you came up with.

Examine them on how well they capture the essence of who you are. Do they represent your strengths and passions? Do they emphasize the qualities you are most proud of? If not, go back to your list and choose different words.

  • Consider how others might perceive these words.

Are they positive and inspiring or could they be misconstrued? Make sure the words you select properly represent your creating a desired image.

  • Do not be afraid to get creative with the words you use to describe yourself.

You do not have to stick with generic labels like "friendly" or "funny". Instead, develop unique ways to describe yourself that truly reflect your persona.

At the end of the day, answering the interview question to describe yourself is an opportunity for self-expression. So take some time to ponder your identity and how you would like to be perceived.

Prepare for various interview settings, including the STAR method.

By following these tips, you will be able to craft an accurate, meaningful description of yourself that stands out!

Examples of good words to describe yourself

Explaining who you are can be a challenge. You want to employ the appropriate words to describe yourself in an interview depicting your values and strengths.

Consider this list of adjectives to describe yourself, to begin with:

  • Adaptable - able to react to varying circumstances quickly.
  • Adventurous - ready to embrace risks and explore new ideas.
  • Affable - easy-going; good-natured.
  • Ambitious - having eagerness and enthusiasm for success.
  • Analytical - able to examine problems systematically and make logical, reasoned decisions.
  • Assertive - confidently expressing opinions or needs while respecting others' perspectives.
  • Calm - unruffled; not easily agitated or disturbed.
  • Capable - competent and confident.
  • Caring - concerned about others' feelings
  • Charismatic - having a compelling charm, personality, or presence that attracts and influences others positively.
  • Cheerful - positive outlook on life.
  • Clever - quick-witted and able to learn easily.
  • Collaborative - working effectively with others, fostering teamwork and cooperation to achieve common goals.
  • Communicative - proficient in expressing thoughts, ideas, and information clearly and effectively.
  • Compassionate - understanding others' feelings and treating them with kindness.
  • Confident - believing in yourself and your abilities.
  • Courageous - able to face difficult situations with bravery and fortitude.
  • Creative - capable of generating original ideas, solutions, or approaches, often thinking outside the box
  • Dedicated - committed to achieving a goal, no matter what it takes.
  • Dependable - always there when needed.
  • Determined - persistent in achieving goals.
  • Diligent - conscientious in carrying out tasks to a high standard.
  • Diplomatic - skilled in handling sensitive or delicate situations tactfully, and maintaining professionalism.
  • Empathetic - having an understanding of grasping the emotions of someone else or a situation.
  • Energetic - full of vitality and enthusiasm.
  • Ethical - acting in accordance with moral principles and values, displaying honesty and integrity.
  • Flexible - open-minded, willing to change plans, and go with the flow.
  • Friendly - enjoys making connections with others.
  • Generous - charitable, with compassion for others and a willingness to help out when needed.
  • Goal-oriented - focused on setting and achieving objectives, driven by clear targets or aspirations.
  • Helpful - ready to assist when needed.
  • Honest - open and truthful, with integrity in all your actions and words.
  • Humble - modest; not boastful or egotistical.
  • Humorous - knowing how to address tricky scenarios with humor and irony, but also being aware of when not to joke around.
  • Independent - self-sufficient; capable of working alone and taking initiative.
  • Innovative - thinking outside the box to come up with new ideas.
  • Intelligent - able to think critically and logically.
  • Kind - being generous, considerate, and thoughtful of others.
  • Leader - capable of guiding, inspiring, and motivating others toward shared goals or vision.
  • Level-headed - self-controlled; not easily provoked into rash action.
  • Loyal - devoted to those around you, with trustworthiness and faithfulness in relationships.
  • Motivated - having ambition and the drive to get things done.
  • Open-minded - accepting new approaches without judgment.
  • Optimistic - choosing to see the bright side of a situation.
  • Organized - knowing how to prioritize tasks and plan ahead to stay on top of things.
  • Outgoing - friendly; able to socialize easily with strangers.
  • Patient - able to wait without becoming frustrated or angry.
  • Passionate - excited about the work and committed to doing it well.
  • Perseverant - working hard despite any setbacks or difficulties that may arise along the way.
  • Proactive - taking initiative and acting in anticipation of future needs or changes.
  • Positive - remaining optimistic even when times get tough.
  • Reliable - keeping your promises and fulfilling commitments on time without fail.
  • Resilient - able to recover quickly from difficult situations.
  • Resourceful - skilled at finding creative solutions to difficult challenges.
  • Respectful - treating people with consideration and esteem.
  • Responsible - taking ownership of your actions and owning up to mistakes.
  • Self-aware - conscious of one's thoughts, motivations, and emotions.
  • Selfless - actively helping others without expecting something in return.
  • Self-motivated - don't need someone else to motivate or inspire you.
  • Sensitive - aware of the feelings of others; empathetic toward them.
  • Sincere - genuinely honest with no hidden agenda or motives behind actions.
  • Strong-willed - resolute; determined to get what one wants despite obstacles.
  • Studious - taking the initiative to learn new skills.
  • Supportive - encouraging others to reach their highest potential through active listening, positive reinforcement, and constructive feedback when needed.
  • Tech-savvy - knowledgeable and skilled in using technology, adapting to digital tools or platforms
  • Thoughtful - prone to considering the needs of other people before one's needs.
  • Trustworthy - reliable in keeping promises; consistent in following through with commitments.
  • Understanding - comprehending complex issues.
  • Versatile - able to quickly respond to altering scenarios.
  • Visionary - able to envision future possibilities or trends, with a forward-thinking perspective.
  • Witty - quick-witted; effortlessly funny.

By using these adjectives to describe yourself and other words you come up with, you can show potential employers that you have the traits they are looking for in a candidate.

With the right words to describe yourself, you can make sure you leave a good first impression and raise the willingness to continue the relationship with you.

Words NOT to describe yourself

Regarding portraying yourself professionally, certain words should be avoided. Although you have the freedom to pick characteristics and self-describing words, be careful about the words you use to not hurt your chances of getting hired.

Avoid negative words:

  • "I'm not good at..." It's essential to be honest about areas for improvement, but focus on discussing how you're currently working to develop those skills rather than highlighting shortcomings.
  • "That's not possible." Avoid using language that suggests limitations. Instead, focus on solutions and possibilities, demonstrating a can-do attitude.
  • "I'm jobless." Instead of using terms that focus on your current lack of employment, emphasize your readiness to contribute and your enthusiasm for the opportunity.
  • "I failed." Avoid framing past experiences solely as failures. Instead, discuss the challenges you've overcome and what you've learned from them.
  • "I hate/dislike." Such language can reflect poorly on your attitude. Rather than saying, "I hate administrative tasks", reframe it positively, such as, "I'm more drawn to roles that involve creative problem-solving".
  • "I really need this job." While it's understandable to be eager for employment, stating that you "need" the job can make you appear desperate. Focus on expressing your interest in the company and how your skills align with the role.

Choose good words to describe yourself and bring a positive attitude. Instead, focus on highlighting your skills, qualifications, and experience to demonstrate why you would be a great fit for the job.

Hiring managers mention that they would be discouraged from hiring someone who uses negative language. The lack of enthusiasm in self-description also would be a deterrent.

Being mindful and not using negative or self-limiting adjectives and phrases can help you present yourself in the best possible light to potential employers.

Avoid cliches:

  • Perfectionist. While attention to detail is valued, calling yourself a perfectionist might signal potential issues with time management or an inability to prioritize tasks effectively.
  • Team player. Teamwork is essential, but this adjective has become a cliché. Instead, provide specific examples of how you've collaborated effectively with colleagues or contributed to successful team projects.
  • Problem solver. Rather than just claiming this, tell about the problems you've solved in previous roles and the positive outcomes you achieved.
  • Quick learner. Being able to learn things fast is beneficial, but this phrase is overused and might not differentiate you from other candidates. Instead, share instances where you quickly adapted to new tasks or environments.
  • I'm passionate about everything I do. Enthusiasm is great, yet this phrase might seem exaggerated or generic. Instead, focus on specific instances where your passion drove successful outcomes.
  • My weakness is that I work too hard. Offering a strength disguised as a weakness might come across as insincere. Instead, discuss genuine areas for improvement and how you're actively addressing them.

Other phrases to not use at a job interview are "good at everything" or "I'm an expert". Claiming proficiency in everything might seem arrogant. Also, stating that you are an expert in a particular area might set unrealistic expectations.

Instead, showcase your skills and experiences, letting your accomplishments speak for themselves. Remember, the choice of words to describe yourself in an interview may be detrimental to the hiring decision.

Sample answers

Be prepared for the variation of the question about words to describe yourself. For instance, you may be asked questions like:

  • Describe yourself in 5 words.
  • Pick 3 adjectives to describe yourself.
  • Choose three words to describe yourself.

Although they are all similar questions, each has its limitations. Look at a few examples that you may use as a reference when preparing your answer to describe yourself at job interviews.

How to describe yourself - examples of answers:

Example 1: "Pick three words to describe yourself."

  • The first word I would use is "adventurous". To me, this word describes my willingness to explore and try new things. I'm always up for a challenge and enjoy learning.

    The second word is "creative". I take a unique approach to everything I do and love thinking outside the box. Creativity gives me the freedom to express myself in ways that make me feel alive.

    The third word is "compassionate". For me, this means caring for others and being understanding of their struggles. It's important to me to be kind and generous with my time and energy. These three words together paint a picture of who I am an adventurous, creative, and compassionate person. They serve as reminders of my core values and how I strive to live my life each day.

Example 2: "Describe yourself in 5 words."

  • I am a passionate professional and constantly look for ways to improve myself by taking on new tasks or roles. I am a lifelong learner who is eager to advance his knowledge and stay informed about the latest developments in my field. I am also enthusiastic about my job which shines through in my work and my interactions with others. My strong interpersonal skills allow me to effectively collaborate with colleagues. Additionally, I'm an independent thinker who is open to new ideas.

Example 3: "What would be the best words to describe yourself?"

  • I'm driven to succeed and constantly strive for self-improvement. I'm versatile, flexible, and open to trying new things. I'm organized, analytical, and detail-oriented. I'm reliable; someone who can be counted on.

    I'm also creative, independent, and adaptive. I enjoy brainstorming ideas and working collaboratively with others. I'm a problem solver with strong critical thinking skills. I'm confident in my abilities and willing to take risks if necessary.

    I'm honest, authentic, and genuine. I value integrity in all aspects of life. I'm empathetic and understanding; someone who listens with an open mind. I'm a good communicator with the ability to motivate others.

    Finally, I'm a lifelong learner and eager to take on new challenges. I believe that failure is an integral part of success and that no one is ever finished growing or learning.

Sample answers by profession


"In my role as a nanny, I provide a nurturing and supportive environment where children can thrive and grow. Through creative activities and attentive care, I aim to build strong bonds and foster a sense of security and happiness in the children I look after."

Preschool Teacher:

"In the classroom, I embody patience and empathy, nurturing curiosity and creativity through engaging activities. My goal as a preschool teacher is to create an inclusive environment where every child feels valued and inspired to explore their potential."

Software Engineer:

"With a meticulous approach, I solve complex technical challenges by crafting efficient and innovative solutions in my role of a software engineer. Embracing continuous learning, I stay at the forefront of technology to deliver solutions that meet both current and future needs."


"As a nurse, my caregiving approach is defined by compassion and dedication, providing holistic support to patients and their families during vulnerable times. I prioritize personalized care, ensuring each patient feels respected and supported on their journey to healing."


"Combining vision and attention to detail as an architect, I design spaces that inspire and enhance the human experience. From concept to realization, I strive to create environments that are not only functional but also visually striking and emotionally resonant."


"In the fast-paced environment of a restaurant, as a waitress, I deliver exceptional service with a warm and attentive demeanor. Whether it's managing multiple tables or catering to individual preferences, I take pride in exceeding expectations and creating memorable dining experiences."

Project Coordinator:

"As a project coordinator, I excel in organizing tasks and facilitating clear communication among team members. By leveraging my strategic planning skills, I ensure projects stay on track and objectives are met efficiently and effectively."


"Dedicated to making a positive impact, I volunteer with compassion and enthusiasm, driven by a deep sense of empathy for others. Whether it's lending a helping hand or advocating for meaningful causes, I strive to create lasting change and foster a sense of community."

Addressing weaknesses

It's quite common for interviewers to ask candidates about their weaknesses. This question identifies your self-awareness, honesty, and your ability to address and overcome challenges.

Identify your weaknesses

Reflect on your skills, experiences, and areas where you could improve.

Choose weaknesses that are relevant to the job but not critical to its success.

Be honest and self-aware

Acknowledge your weaknesses with honesty and self-awareness. Avoid clichés like "I'm a perfectionist" or "I work too hard", as they may come across as insincere.

Show initiative

Discuss steps you've taken to address or mitigate the shortcoming. Highlight any training, courses, or self-directed learning you've undertaken to improve yourself.

Provide examples

Share specific instances where your weakness may have impacted your work. Explain how you learned from those experiences and applied the lessons moving forward.

Discuss personal growth

Emphasize your commitment to personal and professional development. Mention any feedback you've received and how you've actively worked on incorporating it into your improvement plan.

Maintain confidence

Despite discussing weaknesses, maintain a confident and positive demeanor. Show that you view challenges as opportunities for growth rather than insurmountable obstacles.

Here's an example response:

  • One area I've been working on is my public speaking skills. In my previous role, I noticed that I sometimes struggled to communicate complex ideas clearly during presentations.

    To address this, I enrolled in a public speaking course and joined a local Toastmasters club. I've since had the opportunity to lead several successful presentations, and the feedback I've received has been positive.

    I continue to seek opportunities to refine this skill because I understand its importance in conveying ideas effectively in a professional setting.


Self-awareness is key, as it will help you determine the best words to describe yourself.

Here are some additional tips for picking good words to describe yourself:

  • Focus on the positive: Highlight your best qualities, skills, and traits.
  • Keep it simple: Use easy-to-understand language that is clear and direct.
  • Be honest: Do not exaggerate or try to make yourself sound better than you are.
  • Be original: Avoid using clichés or generic phrases.
  • Use action verbs: Think of ways to describe yourself that are active and engaging.
  • Let your personality shine: Use words that reflect your character and how you want others to see you.

When composing words to describe yourself in an interview, make sure they accurately reflect your true personality and professional values. Have no hesitation in choosing something bold or meaningful that captures who you are.

Remember: when describing yourself in an interview, there is no wrong answer. To start, pick 3 + adjectives to describe yourself that make you feel proud and confident about who you are!


Should I tailor my self-description for each job interview?
Yes, customize your description to highlight qualities and skills that are relevant to the specific job and company culture.
Can I use personal qualities in my professional self-description?
Yes, but focus on qualities that are relevant to the job, such as being organized, proactive, or a good communicator.
What if I don't have much work experience?
Emphasize transferable skills, relevant coursework, internships, and extracurricular activities that showcase your capabilities.
Can I use examples from previous jobs?
Yes, use specific examples to illustrate your skills and achievements. This adds credibility to your self-description.
Should I mention personal interests?
Briefly mention relevant hobbies or interests that showcase skills or qualities valuable for the job, such as leadership or teamwork.
What if the interviewer asks unexpected questions?
Stay adaptable and connect these questions back to your key qualities and experiences, maintaining a positive and professional tone.