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What do you mean you are aggressive?

What do you mean you are aggressive?

Posted by Grant Richardson, 26h May, 2015

Here are two definitions for aggressive, from the Cambride Dictionary:

behaving in an angry and violent way towards another person:

If I criticize him, he gets aggressive and starts shouting.


determined to win or succeed and using forceful action to win or to achieve success:

She carved out a reputation for herself as an aggressive businesswoman

Native speakers generally learn the first definition before they learn the second one.

So, if you mean the second definition, make sure to show the relevant context (such as business dealings):

In business, I am very aggressive.


The following might not sound very impressive, especially on a date:

I am a very aggressive person


You might not get another date with that person.

A clearer alternative word here might be determined or ambitious
Cultural noteFor someone to be perceived as aggressive in the angry or violent sense, it often depends on the culture.In Hong Kong, for example, people might be considered aggressive if they shout while exchanging views at a public demonstration, whereas, in some other countries, shouting would be expected.In contrast, some Southern European cultures consider shouting during conversations between friends as normal, albeit spirited, behaviour.

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