This is What Freedom Means to You, Based on Your Personality Type
In the typology community, there is a lot of talk about freedom and its meaning, particularly in relation to the perceiving personality types. These types are known for liking things open-ended, spontaneous, and exploratory. But each type craves freedom – everyone has a part of their life that they want complete agency over. But what is that for you? Does it mean traveling abroad without care or does it mean questioning a tradition that’s been forced upon you from an early age? Let’s take a look!
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Table of contents
Estimated reading time: 22 minutes
Here’s What Freedom Means to You, Based on Your Personality Type
Before we begin:
There are certain things that everyone wants freedom over. Let’s cover these before we move on.
- Freedom from oppression.
- Freedom of religion.
- Freedom to love who they wish.
- Freedom to have children or not have children.
- Freedom to search for happiness.
ENFPs want the freedom to pursue possibilities, opportunities, and outside-the-box thinking. They enjoy questioning traditions and leaving their comfort zone to explore uncharted territory. They enjoy learning about the unconventional ways of life and testing their value system to find out who they really are and who they are meant to be. ENFPs crave the freedom to speak their mind without judgment or misunderstanding. Surprisingly, ENFPs more than any other type I surveyed, mentioned financial freedom as a major component in their ability to feel truly “free”.
“Freedom for me means having no schedule 🙂 No obligations, no debt. It means hanging out with my partner, learning whatever I want. No drama, no pressure, and the ability to act on pure intuition, flit from creative thing to thing. Sleep and wake when I want, explore nature, play music, and have enough financial security to live frugally with no worries.” – Sarah, ENFP
“Freedom is to say and do what you want and to choose your own life without restraints from anything or anyone, even yourself”. – Sucheera, ENFP
“Freedom means financial freedom. I don’t want to be financially dependent on any one particular job/person. In other words, build many forms of passive income so that I’m not stuck in a horrible boss situation.” – Catherine, ENFP
“To me freedom means the ability to do what I want to do to. That’s why I’m so passionate about learning finances. It’s not about being able to spend heavily but being having a nice cushion between myself and whatever may happen.” – @MadelinePurvis, Twitter User and ENFP
“Freedom is important but it’s also comparable to a fire. Controlled and it produces warmth and cooking. When left to its own devices, you only get disaster. Perhaps that’s because as a type 7 I always seek freedom but freedom doesn’t always = happiness. That was a tough pill.” – @kiddorasa, Twitter user and ENFP
Read This Next: 10 Things That Excite the ENFP Personality Type
ENTPs want the freedom to experiment with their environment. Freedom can mean engaging in debate, asking “What if?” pushing the buttons, and looking beyond conventions and restrictions. This tends to land ENTPs, especially when they’re young, in the “rebellious” category. But really their main goal is to understand the underlying logic and meaning behind what happens in the world. ENTPs want to find new ways to do old things. They want the freedom to think about controversial subjects, to question authority, and venture beyond the confines of the known.
“Freedom is the ability to do and say what I want without some self-proclaimed authority sticking its nose in.” – @Antidiocy, ENTP Twitter User
“Freedom is being able to express, without reservation or repercussions, ideas and opinions with others with the goal of reaching a greater understanding about what is effective and true. It’s being able to have both time and opportunity to pursue the areas of knowledge which a person finds most interesting. Not being constrained by what is considered the orthodox or established way of doing things, when examining an issue and thinking through ways to improve upon the current situation and the status quo in any system. Being able to share honest thoughts and insights with others and they in turn with me, having a true free-market of thoughts and ideas.”
– Anonymous ENTP
“Freedom means to structure my life, my relationships, my finances, my day – flexible and flowing according to my needs, challenges and priorities. To not “MUST –DO” anything, but to do something because I choose it.” – Lente, an ENTP
Read This Next: 10 Surprising Truths About ENTPs
INFPs experience true freedom for the first time in their childhood. This is when their imagination takes flight and they discover that they can create vivid worlds of possibility in the solitude of their own thoughts. As they progress through life they crave the freedom to be truly themselves – to cast aside peer pressure, societal expectations, and worn-out traditions to be their best unique individual. INFPs are deeply in tune with their emotions and their values, and they listen to their instincts about what is right or wrong. They tend to question the morals they’ve been indoctrinated with because they want to be sure they’re not just following a meaningless rule or societal expectation. They want the freedom to question these things and to live as authentically as possible without incurring judgment or cruelty. They want to live in harmony with themselves without harming any human, animal, or any part of nature in the process.
“Freedom means being able to follow one’s heart until it doesn’t affect others negatively. And still be accepted and loved. It should not be rebellion against our loved ones. Everyone should accept everyone how they are.” – @Marmik19051158, INFP Twitter User
“Freedom for me is found in solitude, not having to talk, answer questions, go anywhere I don’t want to go, sleep, and read books, watch TV of my choice, eat when I feel like it and generally see people only as they pass by.” – Linda, an INFP
“Freedom is doing everything that sets you free as long as it does not come at the expense of others. It’s more than just doing “whatever you want”. Either you use that freedom or that freedom uses you.” – Seedy, an INFP
“Freedom means being able to respond to life fully as the person I was created to be. It means being completely authentic!” – Suzie, an INFP
“Freedom is the liberty to be yourself (while still showing consideration for others) It is not be forced into a hole made by others, but finding your own unique place, and it is allowing others the same. It doesn’t force anyone into something they’re uncomfortable with, and it respects their space. It understands and embraces the road less taken.” – Maryellen, an INFP
“Freedom to me means having the space (lack of schedule and other’s plans for me) to allow my day or week to unfold, and the friends, interests and resources to choose how to fill the time as I go.” – Christine Rigden, INFP Life Coach
“Freedom to me is being recognized by others as an equal. Having the right to exist, take up space and be a free thinker. The basics, I know, but freedom is really pretty simple and not everyone has it.” – @medievalviking2, INFP Twitter User
Read This Next: 10 Things That Excite the INFP Personality Type
INTPs are truth-seekers on a very intrinsic level. They want to understand how the world works and how everything is put together from the ground up. Their yearning for knowledge is vast and their patience for generalizations and senseless societal constructs is limited. They want the freedom to question things, to state the truth without judgment, to be honest without having to worry about whose feelings they are stepping on. They want their accuracy to be appreciated rather than misunderstood as “mean” or “tactless”. INTPs also crave a great deal of alone time and autonomy. While they desire meaningful relationships they also need regular time to process things on their own without interruptions.
“Freedom for me is to access what I want to do at any time. To not have other people’s will imposed on me, namely perceptions of authority or projections of power over my humanity. Trust and support. No set schedule. Minimal obligations. Access to expanding possibilities.” – @LetsGoCNote, INTP Twitter User
“Freedom is a return to the essentiality of an unencumbered soul, that embryonic state of being prior to the shackles of culture and the oppression of others
As Emerson said, “It is easy in the world to live after the world’s opinion; it is easy in solitude to live after our own, but the great man is he who in the midst of the crowd keeps with perfect sweetness the independence of solitude.”– Dan, an INTP
“Freedom means being free from society’s expectations, social demands, manipulation and pressure from others. Freedom is an extended chance to be what you wanted to be and to explore and understand things you normally couldn’t– without the intervention of rules (be it societal or religious).” – D, an INTP
“Freedom means to be in motion. I believe we are free, and as free creatures, we are dynamic. I wrestle with this though, because I don’t think that’s always a good thing. We can’t help moving, but we can influence where we go.” – @literaryjungian, INTP Twitter User
Read This Next: 3 Weird and Wonderful Secrets About the INTP
ENFJs feel free when the atmosphere they reside in is harmonious and at peace. They feel best in an environment where everyone is getting along, where there is a free-flow of ideas, and communication is honest and authentic. ENFJs want the freedom to search for meaning and potential in the world around them. Sometimes this means being alone to let their mind wander over possibilities, impressions, and patterns that they see occurring. Sometimes this means having trusted friends to confide in without fear of judgment or misunderstandings. ENFJs want the freedom to organize their own lives in order to best reach their potential and maximize their personal growth. They want to be the best versions of themselves that they can be, and they want a life where they have the time and independence to do that.
“Freedom to me is the ability to “go for” whatever I feel I need to in life, to derive the most meaning from it (provided it’s not harming or stepping over others). It’s the ability to live and follow my own destiny as I see it, without people trampling on it. I think we should all have the basic freedom of trying to create a happy and meaningful life for ourselves.” – @Katpassionate (Twitter handle), ENFJ Enneagram Coach
“Freedom means everything is flexible! From time constraints, to moving activities around, the day-to-day things to do on your list, how to do those things, etc. There is freedom to do and how to do it.”
– Neidy, an ENFJ
Read This Next: 10 Things You Should Never Say to an ENFJ
ENTJs crave authority over their own lives and agency over their own thoughts and endeavors. They detest being micro-managed, regulated, or stifled by an abundance of outside rules and restrictions. ENTJs want the freedom to envision long-range, revolutionary possibilities and the tools to bring those possibilities to fruition. They want the independence to organize their own schedule, as well as social freedom to express the truth directly without fear of being misunderstood. They hate having to “sugarcoat” things, conform to meaningless social rituals, or see their honesty mistaken for cruelty. Freedom means living a life that is in accordance with their values while making big moves to achieve meaningful change in the world.
“As an ENTJ I want freedom from authority imposing their will on me. Freedom from having my hands tied, and freedom to pursue what I want. Freedom means everything to me. It’s one thing I could go into an armed revolution for. Freedom of mind and freedom of thought comes first.” – Johannes Karlsson, socionics blogger, and creator of Active Apperception
“Freedom is having the ability to access anything I want to, express whatever I want to, do whatever/accomplish I want to (all within reason) without being held down by any authority or outside force.” – @BabsMistake, ENTJ Twitter User
“Freedom to me means to be able to act the way which makes sense to me, and to be able to expect respect for it, in a way which doesn’t affect my most important values in life.” – @Kyasaaat, ENTJ Twitter User
INFJs crave a quiet, meaningful life where they are able to balance helping others with regular time for solitude and quiet. These types find distractions, interruptions, and meaningless noise especially overwhelming because this “sensory-pollution” clouds their ability to make intuitive connections and spot underlying meanings in an accurate way. They want to be able to grasp the deeper meaning of what happens around them and question long-standing traditions and customs without fear of judgment. INFJs also deeply crave harmony in their environment. Anger and conflict make it nearly impossible for them to focus on what’s personally meaningful to them, and they can find themselves taking on the hurts and frustrations of the people around them. Freedom for INFJs often means emotional equilibrium in the world around them.
“Freedom is believing in the integrity of my environment. I often see how situations can unfold poorly and I notice all the small variables that contribute to it. I am in tune with how small acts drastically impact how the whole picture turns out in the end.” – @Skyebellsz, INFJ Twitter User
“Freedom is releasing myself through my thoughts to the outside world. Freedom is getting into my car and driving anywhere because I can. Freedom is knowing I’m limitless regardless of perceived societal constraints. Freedom is just is.” – @AlaaOAbdin, INFJ Twitter User
“Freedom is to learn how to give grace, to inspire greatness rather than artificially require it, and to be the best I can be.” – Anna, an INFJ
“Freedom means living an honest, authentic life, and being smart enough to realize that absolute freedom is not possible so living within those limits. Freedom is living my life to the best of my ability while not hurting others, for example, using my “freedom” to abuse someone especially a child or someone helpless.” – Goldie, an INFJ
“Freedom to me is not being micromanaged, and being given the opportunity to creatively solve problems in my own way and time (without interruptions!).” – Bonnie, an INFJ
“Freedom means being loved and accepted just as I am. Instead of constantly tailoring myself so those around me feel comfortable with what I am or how I am.” – Annie, an INFJ
“Freedom to me would be the ability to divorce myself from society when I wanted. It would mean having the ability to reject customs or traditions and just be who I am and others could just be who they are too. My freedom is wrapped up in the freedom of anyone who is oppressed so total freedom to me would be ending every -ism… racism, sexism, transphobia, etc.” – Marie, an INFJ
“Freedom to me is having a lot of options- both long term & short term- & the ability to chose for myself from them. The consequences of those choices being natural consequences. I think life is about decisions & consequences, so freedom is fairly important.” – @ElizabitchRenae, INFJ Twitter User
Read This Next: 10 Things That Excite the INFJ Personality Type
INTJs want the freedom to improve operations, to predict possibilities, and to think critically about beliefs that other people have accepted for years. They have boundless mental energy that they want to put to use to make mental models and improve the world around them. In peace and solitude, they can forecast future outcomes and try to create strategies or contingency plans to either achieve progress or circumvent obstacles. They are constantly thinking, “If this happens, then that will happen” and attempting to predict the reaction to every action that happens in the world. This tends to draw them towards careers that involve strategic thinking and future forecasting. Overall, INTJs want the freedom to innovate, to pursue their own independent goals, and to enjoy regular peace and quiet so that they can better envision possibilities and solutions.
“Freedom means being able to make my own choices and not be cast as an outlier if they aren’t the norm. It’s having the means (time, money, resources) to pursue my own interests, to take care of myself as I see fit, to never be in a position where I have to rely on someone else’s help.” – @metafabulous, INTJ Twitter User
“Freedom is super important to me – I need the freedom to still pursue my goals and interests, freedom to be my own person, but freedom of thought has to be my #1 thing. Loss of freedom is my biggest fear.” – @artemidite, INTJ Twitter User
“Freedom is autonomy and self-actualization.” – Valerie, an INTJ
Read This Next: 3 Weird and Wonderful Secrets About the INTJ
ESFPs yearn for the freedom to experience all that the world has to offer. Whether this means traveling to the furthest reaches of the planet or trying a bold new look, ESFPs want to feel that they haven’t missed out on any experiences that life brings their way. They are deeply aware of how short life is and they want to make every moment an unforgettable adventure. It’s also vitally important to ESFPs not to waste any time pretending to be someone or something they’re not. Figuring out their core values, their deepest desires, and their meaning and purpose in life is essential to them. They want to live a life that is in line with their values and a life that impacts others in a positive way. Freedom to discern for themselves what’s right and wrong and live in accordance with those morals is deeply important to them.
Daring and impulsive, ESTPs want the freedom to test themselves and push themselves to the limits of their capabilities. They want the liberty to try many different experiences and to analyze all their options before making a decision. Sometimes this means being a jack-of-all-trades before settling on a long-term career, other times this means dating and talking to a variety of people before settling on a relationship. ESTPs are serious about their commitments so they know they need the freedom to keep an open mind and pursue all the possibilities before they settle on one thing. ESTPs also want physical freedom. They enjoy the feeling they get while surfing on a summer tide, not knowing what to expect and reacting spontaneously to nature itself. They crave the rush that comes from skiing down a slope and feeling the freezing cold air on their face as they react to whatever obstacles come their way. For the ESTP freedom in choice and physical, tangible freedom is essential to their happiness.
“Personally I see freedom as the ability to pursue ANYTHING but the wisdom to know where the limits should be.” – Daniel Storm, @estpDaniel on Twitter
“Freedom means not being bound by a set routine, being in a position to learn new things, work with whom I want on projects that interest me. Having enough flexibility to take advantage of new and interesting opportunities.” Joanne, an ESTP
“Freedom is pretty all-encompassing and touches every aspect of life for me, from financial independence to as much free time as possible, reasonably balanced with obligations to family, which also includes work. Freedom to spend my free time exploring new places and things or just breaking out of routine to remain balanced with my ISTJ Unconscious.” – Johnny, an ESTP
ISFPs crave a life filled with meaning, beauty, and authenticity. They want to pour their soul and spirit into some tangible expression whether that be art, dance, music, cooking, or even a career field that allows them to help others. ISFPs hunger for the freedom to listen to themselves, to discern what’s right even if that means departing from what the rest of their peers or society tells them is right. ISFPs can be skeptical of social norms and instead want to find their individual place in the world and what sets them apart from others. Along with this, ISFPs have a desire to take part in a variety of experiences. They tend to enjoy traveling, creating, and working with their hands to make something new or improve things for themselves or others. They hate to feel micro-managed or stuck in a mundane, predictable existence. They want to feel that they have options and that there is always an adventure somewhere on the horizon.
“Freedom to me means no judgment of self-expression. When I picture freedom I also envision financial freedom to go wherever I want, whenever I want and even get whatever I want. I also envision no time constraints or really any type of responsibilities or obligations lol (outside of things that would hurt myself or others, of course). Also, I’m a Christian so that’s the ultimate freedom.” – Jamila Mensah, ISFP Singer
“Freedom, to me, means having space, time, and resources available to do what I want to do, how I want to do it, and figuring out where I want to go. When the opportunity to experiment or try something new presents itself, I run full force into it. However, even when I have the freedom and the ability to do whatever I want, there has to be some form of practical merit and application to what I am doing. For example, I would never travel somewhere unless I could make use of the land and the resources around me!” – @MadameKidd (Twitter Handle), ISFP YouTuber
ISTPs desire time alone to concentrate and focus on their area of interest. Freedom to them means autonomy, agency over their own time and space, and the ability to be honest without fear of reprisal or emotional over-reactions. ISTPs enjoy having an entire day to devote entirely to their own research, projects, or recreational activities. The enemy to freedom for an ISTP is micro-management, emotional neediness, or social pretenses that seem fake and disingenuous. ISTPs hate having their motives misread when they are direct and to-the-point. They hate being micro-managed or unable to physically be active and able to move. These types find liberation in physical activity, alone time, and exciting novel experiences.
“As an ISTP, when I think of the word freedom I connect it to solitude. The moments I imagine feeling, or remember having felt, absolute freedom are moments I’m / I’ve been disconnected from other living beings.” – @TieOnKevyt, ISTP Twitter User
“For me, freedom means having my intimacy respected and being capable to choose the path and the future I want for myself.”
– Senku, an ISTP
“I have finally attained freedom in so far as what it means to me. Freedom to me is to no longer be bound by anyone else’s approval. I no longer care what anyone thinks of me or what I do, look like, feel like, etc. And it is fantastic.” – Gina, an ISTP
Read This Next: 10 Things ISTPs Look for in a Relationship
ESFJs get a sense of freedom when there is certainty, structure, and dependability in their world. They like knowing who they can count on when times get hard. They appreciate having a routine for their days that creates a feeling of stability and security in their lives. Freedom means having a “home base” that is comfortable and peaceful; a place devoid of conflict and instability. Freedom is having a friend or family member who is there for them when they feel lost and confused. Because ESFJs feel best when they have a structured, organized life, they tend to create routines and traditions that they can look forward to on a regular basis. Having their home-lives steady and secure means that they can plan adventures and new experiences with the knowledge that at the end of the day they have a stable, peaceful life to return to.
Read This Next: 10 Stress-Busting Tips for ESFJs
ESTJs crave the freedom that comes from leading a prepared, responsible life. They like knowing their finances are in order and their security is taken care of so that they can totally relax when their work day is done. To this type, freedom can be as simple as a completed to-do list or the cool, crisp feeling of freshly-washed sheets when they settle in for a good nap. Freedom is often mental for ENTJs. They like knowing that they have agency over their own thoughts and opinions and that nobody can force them to conform to something they don’t believe in. They want to feel free to adhere to their ethics and what they believe is right. Freedom can also mean time alone to complete projects, get their lives in order, and make sure all the details in their lives are tended to. Freedom comes from knowing what and who they can count on and knowing that they are a source of strength to others as well.
“Freedom means having enough money to not worry and to be generous (luxuries not included). To have a fulfilling job. To have opinions without backlash. Knowledge of the truth and good accompanying actions.”
– Amy, an ESTJ (@Amy63169165 on Twitter)
ISFJs feel the most free when they have a life that is peaceful, secure, and harmonious. Trusted friends and family help them to feel refreshed and loved, and a steady routine gives them comfort and an inner sense of calm. When ISFJs have an established routine they can be free to experience the world without it bombarding them whenever it feels like it. When ISFJs know what they can depend on they feel more daring when it comes to traveling, being creative, and exploring new ideas. It’s also important for ISFJs to have an environment that isn’t draining to them emotionally. They crave harmony in their outer world and tend to be anxious if the people around them are at odds with each other. They are the quintessential nurturers in many cases and can over-work themselves as a means to make other people happy. This can turn into the enemy of their freedom over time. It’s important for ISFJs to realize their own needs and for the people around them to acknowledge their kindness and give them space to experience quiet and harmony.
Read This Next: The Childhood Struggles of ISFJs
ISTJs feel free when they are able to let go of anxieties and instability in their lives. Tying up loose ends, having a plan and a steady routine helps them to feel secure and at peace. These types especially appreciate having contingency plans in case anything falls apart in their own lives. Methodical and focused, they get a sense of calm when they can enjoy regular time alone to pursue their own interests and passions. Peaceful moments when they don’t have to answer to anyone else or be interrupted is essential. This is when they can delve into their latest hobby, book, film, or other pursuits. ISTJs feel freedom when they can support their loved ones and not worry about unforeseen details that might cause a problem further on down the road. They also frequently mentioned that getting outside and being in nature helps them to feel refreshed and liberated from all the responsibilities of day-to-day life.
“As an ISTJ personality type, what freedom means to me is the right to choose and make decisions on my own behalf. It is freeing myself from social stigma and unrealistic expectations…knowing myself and accepting both weaknesses and strengths.” – Bonnie, an ISTJ
“I like having all my plans in place and knowing everything is taken care of. The fact that I can be independent and provide for my family and believe what I want to believe and think what I want to think is freedom that I try to appreciate as much as possible.”
– Andy, an ISTJ
Want to Master the Art of People-Reading & Harness Your Personality Powers?
Whether you’re trying to identify your strengths, enjoy a better relationship with your partner, or experience less stress, knowledge of personality type is a powerful tool for self-understanding and connection with others. MBTI® certified practitioner and Psychology Junkie founder Susan Storm has spent over a decade coaching individuals and writing about personality type. She can give you insight into how your mind works, how to harness your natural gifts, and how to have more effective relationships with the diverse people in your life.
Want to take the first step to a fuller understanding of yourself and the people you love? Discovering You: Unlocking the Power of Personality Type provides in-depth, empowering, and applicable knowledge about how your mind works (as well as all 16 types in the Myers-Briggs® system).
You can also take a deep dive into one specific personality with these three books:
The INFJ: Understanding the Mystic
The INFP: Understanding the Dreamer
The INTJ: Understanding the Strategist
I have really come to enjoy reading up on my personality. I feel that people see me as a complex individual; when in actuality I’m very simple. My goal is to begin exploring those that I’m closer to personality. This could really help communicate with people in a way that’s good for them.