Abulia – Definition & Meaning

Abulia is a term that is not commonly known, but it is a condition that affects many people. It is a psychological term that refers to a lack of willpower or an inability to make decisions. In this article, we will explore the definition and meaning of abulia, its origin, and its associations.


Abulia is defined as a condition in which a person has a lack of willpower, motivation, or initiative. People with abulia have difficulty making decisions, initiating actions, and carrying out plans. They may also have a reduced ability to experience emotions, such as pleasure or excitement.


The term abulia comes from the Greek word “a-” meaning “without” and “boulē” meaning “will.” It was first used in the late 19th century by French neurologist Jules Cotard to describe a condition in which patients had a lack of willpower and initiative.

Meaning in different dictionaries

According to the Merriam-Webster dictionary, abulia is defined as “a lack of willpower or an inability to act decisively.” The Oxford English Dictionary defines it as “a pathological lack of willpower or initiative.”


Abulia is often associated with neurological conditions such as stroke, traumatic brain injury, and Parkinson’s disease. It can also be a symptom of depression, anxiety, or other mental health disorders.


Some synonyms of abulia include apathy, lethargy, indecision, and inertia.


Antonyms of abulia include determination, motivation, and initiative.

The same root words

The root word “boulē” is also found in other words such as “bouleversement,” meaning “upheaval,” and “boulevard,” meaning “a wide street.”

Example Sentences

  1. John’s abulia made it difficult for him to decide what to do with his life.
  2. After the stroke, the patient experienced abulia and had difficulty initiating any actions.
  3. Mary’s abulia was a symptom of her depression and made it hard for her to feel motivated to do anything.
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