Complacent refers to being self-satisfied, often to the point of becoming unconcerned or unaware of potential dangers or problems.


US English

UK English

Part of Speech



self-satisfied, smug, contented, unconcerned, satisfied, pleased, self-contented, self-assured, cocky, overconfident.


Concerned, anxious, vigilant, conscientious, alert, careful, attentive, uneasy, troubled, worried.

Word Forms

Part of Speech Words
Noun complacency, complacence, complacences, complacencies
Verb None
Adjective complacent
Adverb complacently

Example Sentences

  • After achieving great success, some individuals become complacent and stop striving for excellence.

  • He seemed complacent about the company’s future, even though there were warning signs of impending financial difficulties.

  • She had become complacent in her relationship, assuming that her partner was always going to be there for her without putting in effort to maintain the relationship.

  • The coach warned the team not to become complacent after winning their last game, as they would face a much tougher opponent in the upcoming match.


The term “complacent” is often used to describe someone who is self-satisfied to the point of being indifferent to potential dangers or risks. This can apply to various situations, such as in business, relationships, or personal goals. For example, a business owner who becomes complacent may fail to address issues within the company, leading to a decline in profits or even closure. Similarly, a person in a relationship who becomes too comfortable and complacent may neglect their partner’s needs, causing the relationship to deteriorate.

The word “complacency” is derived from the Latin word “complacere,” which means to please or to be pleasing. The prefix “com-” means “together,” while the suffix “-ent” denotes the state or quality of something. When used in conjunction with the root word, “complacent” can have a negative connotation, implying that someone is too pleased with themselves or their current state of affairs.

There are several related words that share the same root, such as “complaisant” and “complacency.” “Complaisant” is an adjective that indicates someone is willing to please others, often to an excessive degree. “Complacency” is a noun that refers to the state of being complacent, and can also be used in a negative context. For example, a person who displays complacency about a serious issue may be criticized for their lack of concern.

In summary, the word “complacent” is used to describe someone who is overly self-satisfied and unconcerned about potential risks or dangers. It is derived from the Latin word “complacere” and is often used in conjunction with the suffix “-ent” to indicate a state or quality. Other related words include “complaisant” and “complacency,” which share the same root and similarly connote a lack of concern.