Extrinsic means not connected to the essential nature of something. New cleats are extrinsic to making the soccer team. How you play is what gets you on the team, whether your cleats are old or new.

If the ex in extrinsic makes you think of external or extra you’re on the right track––all these ex words are talking about something that is outside, or above and beyond. You often hear extrinsic paired with its opposite, intrinsic, which means part of something or someone's essential nature. If being sweet-tempered is intrinsic to your personality, you might not even know how to get mad.

Definitions of extrinsic

adj not forming an essential part of a thing or arising or originating from the outside

extrinsic evidence”
“an extrinsic feature of the new building”
“that style is something extrinsic to the subject”
“looking for extrinsic aid”
inessential, unessential
not basic or fundamental
associated by chance and not an integral part
added or derived from something outside; not inherent
alien, foreign
not contained in or deriving from the essential nature of something
external, extraneous, outside
coming from the outside
not essential
intrinsic, intrinsical
belonging to a thing by its very nature
inalienable, unalienable
incapable of being repudiated or transferred to another
basic and fundamental
built-in, constitutional, inbuilt, inherent, integral
existing as an essential constituent or characteristic
inner, internal, intimate
innermost or essential
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