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GRE Vocab Wednesday: I Don’t Feel Like It

Don’t want to get out of bed — at least not before noon? Prefer to Netflix binge on the couch all day rather than leave the house? Generally don’t like to expend much effort doing anything?

Well, hopefully this doesn’t describe you (though Netflix binging is forgivable), but the words below capture this mood of lethargy and laziness, where a couch is better than a car, car better than public transportation, and walking something to be cursed — and of course bed is the best.



If you like to avoid activity, and exertion in general, indolent is the word for you. But I’m guessing since you’re reading Vocab Wednesday and presumably studying for the GRE, you’re not that indolent. In fact, as a fancy word for lazy, indolent isn’t a word an indolent person would want to learn, let alone use. Why exert yourself using three syllables when a mere la-zy will do.



Idle, irresponsible, letting the proverbial reins drop, a feckless person lacks any initiative. He or she doesn’t want to take responsibility for anything, but would rather slack off through life. A feckless person may assume that feckless is related to reckless, and go on about their idle day. But the more driven types would hunt out a dictionary to find out that feckless is about not having any goals or ambitions.



Most people approach vocabulary with a lackadaisical attitude: they are unenthusiastic about words and are generally pretty unmotivated about increasing the size of their lexicon. To be lackadaisical is to be laid-back and unenthusiastic.



This word does not describe garbage yet to be thrown out. The verb disposed means to be inclined to do something. Indisposed, the opposite, means to not feel like doing something. Often, when invited out, people will say they are indisposed if they are not feeling well. In other words, they’d rather not the leave the house. Interestingly, a second definition of the word means ill. So when you are indisposed (ill), you are indisposed to leave your house.



Many think this is a hateful word, though that would actually be loathe. Loath — without the “e” — means to be reluctant to do something. It’s an adjective, not a verb like the other loathe. With loath, there is no laziness or lack of initiative going on here. I could be loath to doing any number of things. Maybe I’m tired or just momentarily uninterested. Perhaps I’m loath to studying late at night, not because I’m sleepy, but because I find I have trouble falling asleep. And there is nothing like a good night’s sleep to make sure I’m not feeling indolent the next day.


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