Independent Meaning: Here’s What It Means and How To Use It

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Independence is highly valued in the modern world. 

While many people are congregational in the way they group together, someone who is independent will almost always operate in their own ways and refuse to adhere to other people’s rules. This attitude and discipline can either be divisive or helpful, depending on the context. 

This is what the word independent means, how it applies in several contexts, and how to use it in complete sentences on your own! 

What Does the Word Independent Mean? 

Independent (ˌɪndɪˈpɛndənt, in-de-pend-ent) in modern English means not connected to other things or people and not dependent on other things or people. It also means not being controlled by an employer. 

Ultimately, independence means not being influenced by others. Independence can be as simple as saying, “I want a job where I can make my own decisions,” or as complex as someone who has no friends because they refuse to let anyone close enough for them to take control of their lives.

The definition of independence is broad enough to encompass everything from refusing help from your parents when you’re old enough to move out on your own all the way up to isolating yourself from society because you don’t trust anyone else with your life choices.

What Are Some Synonyms for Independent?

If you were to look in a thesaurus for word lists of synonyms for the word Independent, you would likely find words like: 

  • Self-reliant
  • Self-sufficient
  • Self-supporting
  • Competency
  • Self-determining
  • Self-employed
  • Solo
  • Solitary
  • Freethinking
  • Self-governing

What Does Independent Mean in Politics and Government? 

In general, being independent means the ability to make decisions without the interference of others. However, in the context of government, it is more specific. 

Having independence means that a person or organization can act independently and govern themselves without control from an outside force. 

What Is an Independent Candidate?

An independent candidate does not belong to any political party, like a republican or democrat, and therefore can make decisions without interference from others. 

Independent candidates are also those who can act independently and govern themselves without being influenced by outside forces like political parties or special interests; they are free from control, influence, restraint, and other forms of regulation that come with working under another person’s authority.

In essence, being independent means you don’t allow anyone else (including yourself) to control your actions, whether for political or personal reasons. Instead, decide what you will do on your own accord based on what needs doing at any given time without having someone else tell you otherwise.

Is Being Independent the Same as Being Alone? 

Being independent doesn’t mean living alone or being free of friends, family, and other loved ones. Most people would likely agree that being completely alone is not a positive thing.

A person who leads an independent life thinks for themselves and isn’t afraid to live their life however they choose. Independent people feel comfortable being different, making them attractive in the workplace. Independent thinkers are significant assets because they challenge the status quo, which often helps inform new ideas or products.

Being independent means making decisions and taking responsibility for them — even if those decisions aren’t always the best ones! Being responsible for your choices takes maturity, courage, and practice. The more you practice making decisions yourself, the more confident you’ll become.

Whether independence is good or bad depends on its context. Many people would agree that it’s good to have a certain degree of freedom and choice in your life—for example, being able to choose what you eat or wear every day. 

Suppose, however, that you’re entirely free from any outside influence. In that case, this could lead to problems such as loneliness or isolation (if no one else is around), boredom (if there aren’t many activities available), or lack of motivation (if there are no goals).

What Are Some Example Sentences Using the Word Independent?

One of the best ways to learn how to use a word is by seeing it in use in a variety of different contexts and situations. Take a look at these following examples, and you’ll be able to use the word independently in no time! 

The independent contractor charged less because he didn’t have an agency taking a portion of his income. 

It’s sometimes difficult working with independent countries, simply because they like their solitude.

Getting the support of independent voters can be difficult, but it’s essential to winning elections in this town.

I try to have an independent mind when dealing with problems like this.

The independent film somehow managed to make 100 Million at the box office!

I’m an independent woman — I don’t need a man!

Even though they lived together, they operated on independent incomes.

Each independent state has its own rules regarding car registration.

The independent schools didn’t receive financial support from the government.

A worker made an independent inquiry about the CEO’s new car. 


As you can see, independent has a few meanings — as an adjective, as part of different phrasal verbs, and as a noun — and all these definitions tend to show how important it is to be independent. However, the meaning that applies to most situations is the first one: someone or something that isn’t affected by other people or things. 

Thank you for reading this article. It has been a pleasure to share a few tips designed to help anyone trying to master their English. 

We believe no other resource on the internet can give you such a complete and well-rounded set of tools and information for learning your English as The Word Counter can. So, please take some time to check out what we offer. We can almost guarantee you will find it helpful!


Independent Definition & Meaning |

Independent definition and meaning | Collins English Dictionary

Independent – Definition, Meaning & Synonyms |