voluntary

Voluntary is an adjective that describes something you do because you want to, without being influenced or forced into it. Usually a voluntary act is something you consciously choose to do, like going into work even on a snow day.

Voluntary comes from the Latin word voluntarius, which means "of one's free will." Voluntary can also describe a service given without any payment expected in return. For example, if your work for the community theater is voluntary, that means that you don't get paid for your time. If you're offering your voluntary help in this way, you might also be called a volunteer, someone who offers free help to assist others.

Definitions of voluntary
  1. adjective
    of your own free will or design; done by choice; not forced or compelled
    “man is a voluntary agent”
    “participation was voluntary
    voluntary generosity in times of disaster”
    voluntary social workers”
    “a voluntary confession”
    Synonyms:
    conscious
    knowing and perceiving; having awareness of surroundings and sensations and thoughts
    intended
    resulting from one's intentions
    wilful, willful
    done by design
    freewill
    done of your own accord
    self-imposed
    voluntarily assumed or endured
    uncoerced, unforced, willing
    not brought about by coercion or force
    unpaid, volunteer
    without payment
    willing
    disposed or inclined toward
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    Antonyms:
    involuntary, nonvoluntary, unvoluntary
    not subject to the control of the will
    unconscious
    not conscious; lacking awareness and the capacity for sensory perception as if asleep or dead
    driven, goaded
    compelled forcibly by an outside agency
    forced
    forced or compelled
    unconscious
    without conscious volition
    unwilled
    without deliberate volition
    unwilling
    in spite of contrary volition
    unwilling
    not disposed or inclined toward
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  2. adjective
    controlled by individual volition
    voluntary motions”
    voluntary muscles”
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    Antonyms:
    involuntary
    controlled by the autonomic nervous system; without conscious control
    automatic, reflex, reflexive
    without volition or conscious control
    autonomic
    relating to or controlled by the autonomic nervous system
    vegetative
    relating to involuntary bodily functions
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  3. noun
    (military) a person who freely enlists for service
    synonyms: military volunteer, volunteer
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    Antonyms:
    conscript, draftee, inductee
    someone who is drafted into military service
    type of:
    man, military man, military personnel, serviceman
    someone who serves in the armed forces; a member of a military force
  4. noun
    composition (often improvised) for a solo instrument (especially solo organ) and not a regular part of a religious service or musical performance
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    types:
    postlude
    a voluntary played at the end of a religious service
    type of:
    solo
    a musical composition for one voice or instrument (with or without accompaniment)
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