Is there any difference between "content" and "willing"? If there is a difference, I would like to know in what context would you use the word "content" instead of using the word "willing"?

  • Did you check the dictionary definitions for those words?
    – user3395
    Commented May 28, 2016 at 13:41
  • First read this and then come to this. Not much difference. Choice of usage depends on the situation and you.
    – Usernew
    Commented May 28, 2016 at 14:53
  • Yes I did, seems like there is not much difference. But I was just wondering why do we need to have two words with the exactly same meaning. There must be some some situation that ones would choose one word over another word. So in what context would you choose to use "content" over "willing"? Which one is more formal? Which one do people use in conversation? Which one do people think it sounds more natural? Or if these two words can be used interchangeably in every situation, I'm sorry for asking this question.
    – IgNite
    Commented May 28, 2016 at 14:59

1 Answer 1


In my experiences in everyday English it's fairly rare for content to be used this way, though I think anyone hearing "content to [verb]" would understand. The words content and willing are definitely not interchangeable in every situation, or even in any situation but this one.

I think that you could make a case that the words have slightly different connotations: a person that is willing to wait is someone that will wait if necessary, while someone that is content to wait is satisfied with waiting. But I don't think that there are any situations where using one wording would be natural and the other odd.

  • Thanks, I would like to vote this up but I'm not allowed to do so as my reputation is less than 15.
    – IgNite
    Commented May 28, 2016 at 16:43

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