Yesterday I had two people very close to me in my life use the word Discombobulated. They both used it in correct syntax and both described different turns of events. The first one described the physical discombobulated state of some one lost and confused as to their surroundings. While the second one described the mental state of frustration and confusion as to how they felt due to events unfolding around them.
The urban dictionary defines Discombobulate as ‘One of those rare and wonderful words that means exactly what it sounds like. There is no word more onomatopoeic to confusion than discombobulate’.
It got me thinking why they chose to use this word rather than simply state confusion as the final outcome to what was happening. It certainly emphasised their position on the subject matter and to be honest made me laugh when it was used more than once that day. Not a word I would imagine many people throw into their daily conversations often.
Then it got me thinking how many people out there feel discombobulated? In everyday life how many people are walking around not knowing how they are feeling. So many people are unable to articulate their feelings clearly. In some case when they try to explain these feelings they then leave the listener can feel confused. Can one really nail down the exact emotion of the events that have left them feeling discombobulated?
How many people are walking around not knowing which direction they are heading in life, aimlessly following the crowd rather than walking their own path. Just doing what the norm is. Not able to define the direction they want to head in. Then they wake up one day and think how did I get here? How did my life turn out this way? By this time they are so discombobulated that they don’t know how to get onto their path.
How sad to think that many of us at some stage in our life feel totally discombobulated so it got me thinking well what is the antonym to this discombobulation? I was then feeling discombobulated myself as there are no antonyms. Can we not be the opposite of confused? surely not! Here are a few near antonyms offered by one dictionary : reassure, satisfy, enlighten, inform. Seriously slim pickings there.
However if you want a synonym for this word you have many to choose from : adrift, addle, baffle, befuddle, bemused, bewilder, confound, confuse, disorient, fuddled, muddle, mystify, perplex, puzzle, vex. The list can go on and on, my personal favourites are bamboozled and flummox.
So now that I have had chance to digest the word discombobulated I plan to try to not use it, without a positive alternative I don’t wish to inject it into my conversations…. yet part of me just loves the word and the way it sounds when used correctly… perhaps the positive is the smile it brought to my face yesterday when used so often.
My final thoughts on discombobulated ….. it’s a fun word that I hope none of you feel or find yourself in that state to often.