Feeling excited and nervous at the same time can be a difficult thing to manage. You might not currently know any words to describe this emotional mix. This article will explore some of the best ways to refer to nervous excitement. The following synonyms are the best:
- Butterflies in your stomach
Other words for “nervous excitement” are “anticipation,” “butterflies in your stomach,” and “expectation.” These alternatives are effective to show that you are feeling nervous about something that excites you. It’s common to feel these when going through new changes in life that might frighten you.
“Anticipation” is a great example of another word for “nervous excitement.” It shows that you can’t control your nerves about something new happening in your life. You are also excited because something is new, and you don’t know what to expect from it.
“Anticipation” refers to excitement in general. You may add further layers to the meaning if you think it suits the narrative of your writing. It’s great when someone doesn’t know how to handle their own excitement.
The definition of “anticipation,” according to The Cambridge Dictionary, is “a feeling of excitement about something that is going to happen in the near future.”
- I’m trembling with anticipation about this new job. I really hope it goes well, but I’m worried it’ll be a disaster!
- She is worried about all of this, but the anticipation is keeping her head in the game. I think she’ll do really well.
2. Butterflies in Your Stomach
“Butterflies in your stomach” is an idiomatic alternative you can use. It refers to a feeling of nerves that is often accompanied by excitement when you’re doing something intimidating.
It almost always refers to positive situations. You can use this idiom when you’re unsure what to expect from a positive thing because you want it to go well. It’s similar to putting pressure on yourself because you want something to be successful, even if it’s out of your control.
The definition of “butterflies in your stomach,” according to The Cambridge Dictionary, is “a feeling of being very nervous or frightened about something.”
- I have butterflies in my stomach because I’m meeting her parents today. I don’t know what to do with myself.
- You’re going to have butterflies in your stomach when she comes through that door. You just have to ask her one last time.
“Expectation” is a great example of how to say “nervous excitement” in a simpler way. It shows that you expect something to happen and might not know how to process your emotions in the build-up to that thing.
It’s great to use this when you have expectations that something might not be all that easy. It shows that you’re nervous about it because you’re not sure how things will go.
The definition of “expectation,” according to The Cambridge Dictionary, is “the feeling of expecting something to happen.”
- I have a lot of expectations about this, and I’m so worried that things won’t go well. Please, help me figure out what to do next.
- My expectation has never been clearer. I feel nervous and excited, and I’m worried about what’s going to come across when I meet them.
“Anxious” is a good synonym that gives you an idea of what to say instead of “nervous excitement.” “Anxious” doesn’t always refer to excitement, though. You need to be careful using it in some contexts.
It’s best to highlight that someone is “anxious” with excitement when using it. This shows that someone is so excited they’re feeling nervous or worried about what comes next. It’s great to use when someone has made a big change in their life and fears what’s coming.
The definition of “anxious,” according to The Cambridge Dictionary, is “wanting very much for something to happen; eager.”
- I’m very anxious about this job, but I think that’s good. I can’t wait to prove myself and show them I can do it.
- She’s feeling quite anxious about the interview. She’ll do well, but she needs to take a few moments to think it through.
“Exhilaration” is a great synonym showing that you are excited to the point of uncontrollable nerves or panic. You can use it to show that you are very happy about a new change or challenge in your life, even if you’re unsure how it will work out for you.
It’s a great word to show your anticipation for an event or outcome. It suggests that you’re unsure about what comes next, but you’re more than happy to go through with it and see what happens.
The definition of “exhilaration,” according to The Cambridge Dictionary, is “excitement and happiness.”
- Nothing compares to the exhilaration I feel when I’m around you. I’ve never known anyone to be as intriguing as you.
- I’m not sure I can handle this exhilaration. It’s one of the best feelings I’ve ever had. I don’t know what to do with it!
“Giddiness” is a great alternative for showing that you are nervous and excited. It shows that you feel silly and excited about something but feel a bit erratic or confused about it at the same time.
This is a great term when someone doesn’t know how to figure out their own emotions. It can be hard to label nervous excitement, but feeling “giddy” is a great way to go about it.
The definition of “giddiness,” according to The Cambridge Dictionary, is “a silly, happy, excited feeling that shows in your behaviour.”
- I feel so giddy about this. On the one hand, I’m very excited to see where it goes. On the other hand, I’m terrified of rejection.
- I’m pretty sure his giddiness is a clear sign that he’s interested. You should talk to him to find out where he stands with you.
“Frisson” suggests that you feel excitement or fear when you think about a new challenge or change in your life. It’s a great word showing that you don’t know what will happen next, but you welcome the new challenge.
It’s not a common word in English. You’ll often hear similar phrases like “thrill” used in its place because it’s more natural for native speakers. Still, “frisson” will definitely impress your friends if you can use it correctly in your writing or speaking.
The definition of “frisson,” according to The Cambridge Dictionary, is “a sudden feeling of excitement or fear, especially when you think that something is about to happen.”
- What about all the frisson I’m feeling right now? I’m worried that it’s going to come across to them, and they’ll judge me for it.
- Frisson like this can be a dangerous thing! It might get me a bit too excited, which is never a good idea.
“Trepidation” is a great synonym to use here. It shows that you are fearful of something, but you are also eager for it to happen. It’s a common feeling when you’re not sure what comes next because you’ve made a big change in your life.
You should use it when you are feeling an overarching sense of excitement for something. While you might be nervous on the surface, excitement is definitely the more pressing emotion when trepidation is involved.
The definition of “trepidation,” according to The Cambridge Dictionary, is “fear or worry about what is going to happen.”
- I’m trembling from this trepidation! I can’t seem to figure out what I want to do with myself. I just hope things go well.
- He’s experiencing trepidation at the prospect right now. His body is processing all the positives and negatives. Bear with him.
“Thrill” is a great alternative to show you are experiencing nervous excitement. It suggests you feel really excited about something, but the same thing might also make you nervous.
“Thrill” is a difficult emotion to manage and figure out. It’s hard for people because nervousness and excitement don’t always overlap. Since the two feelings counter each other, it’s difficult to know exactly how to handle a sense of “thrill.”
The definition of “thrill,” according to The Cambridge Dictionary, is “a feeling of extreme excitement, usually caused by something pleasant.”
- The thrill of this is almost too much to handle. I don’t know how to look after my emotions when they get in this state.
- There’s a huge thrill surrounding this meeting. The boss wants everyone to present things, and nobody is prepared for that.
“Elation” refers to a state of extreme excitement that might be accompanied by minor nervousness. You should use it to show that you are really excited to take on a new challenge, but you’re not sure how well you’ll do with it.
It’s a great alternative to use in this context. It suggests that you feel happy and excited overall. There might be nerves behind the happiness, but “elation” implies that you’re making the most of your excitement and positive attitude.
The definition of “elation,” according to The Cambridge Dictionary, is “a state of extreme happiness or excitement.”
- I’m elated about all of this. I’m very nervous about finding out what I have to do, but a part of me is quite excited to do it.
- This must be what elation feels like. It’s a unique feeling. I’m not sure I’ve ever felt like this before.
“Expectancy” is a good choice when showing that something is exciting and nerve-wracking at the same time. It suggests that you (or someone else) is experiencing excitement or pleasure at the prospect of a new challenge.
It comes from “expecting” something to happen. You should use it when you expect things to do well, though you are slightly worried about a more negative outcome – which is generally where the nerves come from.
The definition of “expectancy,” according to The Cambridge Dictionary, is “the feeling that something exciting or pleasant is going to happen.”
- The expectancy is high from these people, so you need to deliver the goods. How do you feel about that?
- Expectancy can be a difficult thing to manage. It feels exciting in one instance, but it’s all too easy to feel nervous in another.
Martin holds a Master’s degree in Finance and International Business. He has six years of experience in professional communication with clients, executives, and colleagues. Furthermore, he has teaching experience from Aarhus University. Martin has been featured as an expert in communication and teaching on Forbes and Shopify. Read more about Martin here.