Typewatch Enneagram Type Descriptions
Type 2(Image Triad)
Twos are about love and other people and especially pride. Specifically twos are kind and gentle feeling types who take pride in being considerate of others to feel worthy of being loved themselves. They take pride in seeing people as people. They like people and want to feel closer to them. They take pride in recognizing the importance of others...the "I"..."you"...and "me". They are receptive and responsive. They have strong empathetic feelings and take pride in being sensitive and compassionate towards others. They are attuned to what others might need. This can include people they hardly know or even in an abstract capacity.
Simply being caring and compassionate isn't enough though. Twos are natural givers and handpick themselves as the person to fulfill what others need. They feel drawn to be in a facilitating role where they feel they can make a difference in people's lives. They take pride in considering all people important especially the disadvantaged and the neglected. No one is left behind. They take pride in being willing to get involved in roles that require getting in the trenches. They are drawn to being mentors and facilitators and volunteer roles in general. A two whom no one notices does the thankless job of stocking shelves in the back. Another two dutifully answers your questions and does whatever you ask. Another two greets you warmly at the door and offers to show you around the place. Another two organized all the twos together for the volunteer effort. While each of these twos are different fulfilling other people's needs gives all of them a sense of pride.
Twos take pride in being strong enough to take care of themselves and not need help in addition to being strong enough to assist others who do need help. Twos are image types and maintaining a sense of dignity is central to the considerate of others persona they've cultivated. They don't need to "collect" for the good they have done for others. They take pride in not being a burden on others and don't like admitting they have problems to fix and needs to be met. They prefer to deal with their issues themselves as people depend on them not the other way around. It is others that need help and not the two.
This twoish blindspot of others needing them more than vice versa is caused by their pride. They don't see themselves well due to their other-directed self-image orientation. They can be uncannily skilled at reading other people's emotional states and responding accordingly but often don't recognize their own needs and underlying motives. While they take pride in their loved ones' being better off due to them they need to be the main person in their lives. They need to feel essential to them in some capacity and have a knack for accomplishing that. If they have acted on good intentions they have earned the right to be loved and appreciated. If they go out of their way for others and get overlooked then they hurt a great deal. Even answering "no" is way better than not acknowledging their offer. They try to cover up the pain with their pride in being a good person and that it's others' fault for not recognizing that.
In enneagram theory twos are feeling-gut-thinking in that order and pride themselves in being considerate of others. They go with their feelings at the expense of looking at the cold hard realities of others and seeing themselves clearly. Their biggest fear is being unworthy of love and no longer being essential to others they care about. Being superego compliant types they justify being and existing in general by their willingness to go out of their way for others and supress their ugly and aggressive tendencies. They are tougher than the kind and gentle persona they project and being image types their self-image must be protected at all costs. They take pride in their own humility by being self-effacing. They note others who are more worthy. They also downplay themselves relative to others and say the kindness they displayed was nothing major. They always seem to remember the special occasions about others especially birthdays and anniversaries. Every good deed is an opportunity to score points with themselves over how unselfish they are. They try so hard to be unselfish that they ironically become selfish in the process.
Living up to their "good" self-image also makes twos surprisingly perfectionistic about meeting their own standards and expectations. It's really more about meeting their demands than the demands of others. They willingly put themselves in positions where they enjoy being accountable to the bar they set for themselves. Typical type two streams of consciousness are "Does it make me a bad person if I don't trust him?"..."What will I think of myself if I don't live up to this? I have to do this!" Their shame at not meeting their own expectations is a source of drive. Being image types the deeds they do equals who they are and being superego compliant they have the hardest time forgiving themselves. They have a lot of pride in being considerate so anything to the contrary is very difficult to swallow.
Like all image types twos cultivate a persona and confuse that with their true self. The more unhealthy a two is the greater the disconnect and the greater their pride based on their false persona. They have more pride in being self-effacing...kind...and gentle than actually being those qualities. This causes them to overestimate how considerate of others they are and how much people should feel grateful for them. They give to get to reaffirm their selfless identity even to the point of misprojecting other's needs. They then guilt-trip..."after all I've done for you". Tell them they have ulterior motives like "You just want to do this for me to claim credit for being a good person don't you" and heaven help you. Manipulating and intrusive tendencies emerge that are at odds with their angelic self-image. Beneath their velvet glove is an iron hand with a steely resolve. They like others having strings attached to them as it gives them a veiled form of control. The more unhealthy they are the more strings attached they want so that others can't easily sever their connections to them. It's all about keeping the strings attached even by becoming victims themselves if necessary. Healthy twos in contrast have learned to use their thinking center to see their pride for what it is. They've learned to seperate their character from their self-image. If they make a mistake that goes against their self-image of being a good person they can release themselves from their guilt and forgive themselves. They've learned to be comfortable with being selfish when it's called for. They become helpful and supportive without needing that to score points with themselves.
2w1s are more about "being called to serve". They're the twos more likely to be drawn to community service jobs and religious vocations. They are more likely to serve others purely out of principle. They take pride in being willing to assist others at the expense of themselves. They are proud to make sacrifices and accept the thankless jobs others don't want. They look to give up their time to benefit people more than work with people directly. They are willing to toil anonymously in unglamourous roles behind the scenes. They are willing to get their hands dirty with nothing to show for it. They take pride in not thinking highly of themselves for their good deeds when they know they could. Seeing others better off is its own reward. That is what it truly means to serve people.
2w1s tend to be more introverted and less saccharine. Due to their one wing they are both more idealistic and harder on themselves. They are also grittier and have more of a self-righteous streak. While they are more restrained and appropriate they are also more fiercely independent. They are more self-referential and less concerned with others expectations. They have a more internal system of scoring "virtue" points with themselves.
2w1s pride themselves in being down-to-earth and in not needing attention. They take pride that they are often overlooked and don't get the recognition they deserve. They take pride in being able to consider others who are more deserving more worthy than themselves. They have an ego in not internally exalting themselves for what they do. While they are proud to assist others without fanfare they still resent not being given their due. They are prone to falling in love with their own tragedy of never getting the credit that they deserve. When unhealthy they have a more veiled nature of controlling people compared to their more effusive and domineering three-winged siblings.
2w3s are more about "seeking to help and inspire". They value openmindedness and view being judgemental as counterproductive. They have more of an obvious need to be needed and are naturals at being the center of attention. They are more likely to host and organize things that others are interested in. They're the twos more likely to be involved with more open and cooperative facilitating efforts like charities and non-profit organizations. They take pride in being able to offer assistance where others want help. They are as much about the relationships as the help efforts.
Unlike their one-winged siblings 2w3s are anything but invisible. They tend to be warmer and more charming. They are more connective and upbeat. The more extroverted ones tend to be cloying and tacky. Either way they are characters that have no problem standing out. Due to their three wing they are both more results-oriented and naturally confident. They are more ambitious and competitive. They are also smoother and more pragmatic as well as more expansive and effusive. They are less self-referential and more likely to see interdependence as acceptable...even desireable. Although they set their own expectations they are concerned with what others think of them enough to let that dictate their actions. They have a more external interpersonally-based system of scoring "goodness" points with themselves.
2w3s pride themselves in being "just what the doctor ordered" for that person or situation. They take pride in being naturals at helping others. They hold themselves in high-esteem. They have a more variable self-image and are more adaptable. They have more of an ego in being an altruistic VIP. If they go out of their way for someone and don't get appreciated they can become manipulative and bossy. When unhealthy their style of controlling others tends to be more domineering and smothering compared to their more restrained one-wing siblings.
2 vs 1: Ones are much harder on themselves than twos. Twos can think highly of themselves merely by seeing themselves as considerate of others. Even when twos are self-critical...they have more of a pride in being self-critical. Twos being image-center first won't hesitate to have outbursts of emotion, which seems like a lack of self-control to the one.
2 vs 3: Twos being compliants feel they have to do something in contrast to threes who want to do something. Twos despite being other-directed are really creating and meeting their own expectations.
2 vs 4: Fours are elitist and are very comfortable with that. Fours don't like it when twos trivialize the complexity of their problems when a two says problems can be helped. Fours go out of their way to show they are not gentle while twos suppress that.
2 vs 5: Twos like people while fives range from apathy to being misanthropic. Twos feel a need to be in a facilitating role for others while a five is very comfortable withdrawing from people.
2 vs 6: Twos tend to be much more certain and sure of themselves than sixes. Twos are the iron hand beneath the velvet glove and are more formidable than they appear. Twos have pride that it is always others that need their help and never the two.
2 vs 7: Twos are drawn to putting themselves in positions of assisting others where they have to live up to their own expectations. Sevens don't like to put themselves in positions that would curtail their freedom.
2 vs 8: Twos suppress the sides of themselves that aren't gentle while eights wear their badassery on their sleeves.
2 vs 9: Twos unlike nines have controlling tendencies. Twos also have much stronger egos and are more formidable.
Type 3(Image Triad)
Threes are identity-seeking image types who believe they have the potential to become someone outstanding. Just as cream rises to the top so do they see it is their destiny to reach their potential. They want, even need, to become "winners in life" in the broader sense of the term, ie a positive version of anything but a "loser", to prove they have value and are valuable relative to others. A three is acutely aware of their self-development and evolution as a person, "who they are" as a work in progress. They have a deep-seated awe of themselves, of their journey, as well as their destination. They visualize "fulfilling the story of them" and "finally making it". They are resilient and bounce back from setbacks by detaching from their emotions and having a positive attitude. If they face failure or rejection they visualize how their journey must continue and pull themselves together to get back on track. They won't let circumstances get the best of them. They need to be moving forward otherwise they feel like they are falling behind.
There is no type that is more aware of how they come across to others. They can seem confident and self-assured on the outside yet have surprisingly fragile self-esteem on the inside. "Everyone loves a winner and no one loves a loser" resonates with all types but particularly with type three. They need to feel they are "winners in life" to feel they have sufficient self-worth to silence their internal voice of doubt. This causes a whole host of problems: focusing on becoming who they want to be instead of being who they are, and confusing being who they are with doing what they do. They fear others being able to see through them enough to discover they are not quite who they appear to be. This brings about deeper fears of possibly being meaningless and worthless, and feeling they could be a loser beneath it all.
On a more subconscious level threes are aware of the inconsistencies in their self-presentation that are caused by their efforts to find the right angle with others. They can be either very boring or very fun for example. They may feel others are on the verge of seeing that they are not quite who they appear to be. Without fully realizing it they hint to others that they are "not just anyone". They excessively let slip clues like went to a good school, has a great sense of style, was good at soccer as a kid, has a great career, how good they are at their hobby, etc. They subtly remind others of the interesting person they are or the ideal person they are in the process of becoming. On a more conscious level they may even be excessively forthright about certain weaknesses to look more professional or to be seen as more humble, perhaps overcorrecting what feels "off" in themselves. Their body language reflects a very subtle eagerness for one to mirror back to them how they are doing in real time to give them a sense of direction. There's a lot on the line so they try their best to hit the right notes with people.
This combined with confusing who they are with what they do can cause more superficial threes to confuse style with substance. They may have a checklist approach to self-definition and equate themselves with their resume. Not surprisingly it may be hard for others to get close to the real them. In extreme cases the disconnect between who they are and what they project can become so large that once the three achieves everything they feel like a sham and their lives take a drastic turn to reflect that.
Most threes aren't like that however. On the upside threes are very good at holding themselves accountable and aren't averse to putting in the hard work needed to become the person they have in mind. In addition to being ambitious they tend to be more responsible and more adaptive than the average person. While the more extroverted 3s are good networkers and salespeople, many 3s are content to live their lives in private trying to become the best "them" they can be.
In enneagram theory 3s are image center primary which is said to be disassociated from their thinking and instinctive centers. Much of the three fixation can be traced to excessive consciousness in their image or valuing center. That is precisely why threes are both the most aware of how they come across to others and most aware of their value in the eyes of themselves and others. 3s being part of the 3-6-9 group have a very fundamental desire to find their place among people and the world. Their awareness of how they come across to others makes them do that by becoming the best or most they can be. When healthy they are able to get in touch with their real selves as they realize they don't have to trade in who they are to become the person they want to be. Healthy 3s are excellent at inspiring others how to reach their potential just as they have done.
The 3w2 version of outstanding is closer to something that's more w2 inclusive, accessible to everyone and more mainstream. They are on average more sociable and are more about putting their best them forward. They want to shine. The more extroverted 3w2s have a beaming brightness to them. As one poster put it:
"It is far more about end product than process for me. I don’t really need to appear to have taking no effort whatsoever, though I hardly wish to lay out my every faltering baby step in my process for review. What is more important is what you are, how you present, how you impress. It is about commanding that stage, turning in a scintillating performance, dazzling them all so you are the one that gets remembered. And sure it takes work to get there, to be that person. But that’s just part of it all. That happens, but it is nothing to dwell on, because of course you have to work hard, that’s just part of the game, nothing remarkable there, let’s just look at what we’ve become."
The 3w4 version of outstanding is closer to something that's more w4 exclusive, more unique and original, just out of reach and admired from a distance. 3w4s are more aloof, more melanchonlic and icy cool. They tend to romanticize the hard work needed to get to top when no one was looking: "the dignity that is in work"(Obama). They are about putting their best foot forward in a more professional dignified manner. As one poster put it:
"The 3w4 romanticising of “hard work” is really the keen awareness of the image/reality dichotomy – it’s about “everything you don’t see” – the work it takes to “appear as though there is no effort involved” – it’s about knowing “what it takes”; that sense of bittersweetness every time someone gives you a compliment. It’s the secret you keep of everything you’re not – of how you’ve had to become, but that no one else will ever know. It’s the steely, gracious and enigmatic smile as you walk on stage, thinking about “what it’s taken to get here”. That’s the 3w4 romanticism of hard work. That sense of being born with leaden feet, but having overcome it with nothing but willpower and desire, to take to flight as though always born with great and golden wings."
3 vs 1: Threes are much more natural at promoting themselves. No type finds it as difficult to toot their own horn as a one.
3 vs 2: Twos are compliant types that feel they have to do things. Twos also find it very difficult to forgive themselves.
3 vs 4: Threes focus more on self-development while fours focus more on self-expression. Fours must live out their emotional states.
3 vs 5: Threes are much more comfortable promoting themselves. Fives find it awkward to sell themselves in any capacity.
3 vs 6: Unlike sixes, threes need to become someone outstanding.
3 vs 7: Threes focus much better than sevens and aren't as naturally spontaneous as sevens.
3 vs 8: Unlike threes, eights are anything but apologetic and are comfortable with people not liking them. Eights see themselves as animalistic while threes don't.
3 vs 9: Threes need to become someone outstanding. They are prone to overestimating their abilities where they have their ego invested whereas nines tend to underestimate their abilities.
Type 4(Image Triad)
Fours are image types who primarily identify with their feelings. They are moody and self-absorbed as well as very sensitive. They are disdainful, hostile even, towards being "normal" or "common". On the deepest of levels they are "different from others" and "true to themselves" and therefore significant, special, and unique. They are honest with themselves about how feelings are central to their lives and unlike twos and threes appear to wear their shame and vulnerability on their sleeve. Whether warranted or not fours attach subjective significance to their feelings from which they strive to create an identity embedded with their own stylistic signature that is their "personal statement" of who they are.
Their stylistic "personal statement" of who they truly are is the image that fours create and project to others. It can be dramatically expressive, finely parisian, absurdly original, profoundly eclectic, or something else that reflects the four's aesthetic sense of how to fully express themselves and their opposition to normalcy. This eccentric, dramatic, or "weird" persona fours may take on can be a method of countershame which serves to cover up the deep sense of shame fours hold for themselves and transform it into an attack on the external world. To compensate for their shame and feelings of defectiveness fours exhibit a subtle snobbery and elitism and see others as ordinary and trite. They feel their outsider status, sophistication, aesthetic sensitivity, creativity, and personal insight place them above the "commoners". This is how fours feel authentic.
Holding fast to living out their stylistic "personal statement" ideal to stay "true to themselves" despite seeming strange to others is how fours maintain being authentic. Their sense of being flawed, misunderstood, and of not being seen for "who they really are" only reaffirms to them that they are too different to live according to the terms and standards of normalcy as dictated by society. They were born to be outsiders and in order to be true to themselves they must live out their outsider destiny. This the very crux of the four's sense of identity and there is no type whose identity is as real to them as the four.
Fours are especially aware of their identity as a creative construct based on what resonates emotionally with them. While they strive to be as true to themselves as possible they resonate most with an ideal image that has unattainable depth and complexity. They perpetually fall short of their own personal ideal which causes shame and increased self-consciousness over the rootlessness of lacking a stable identity. This makes them constantly feel inadequate, defective, flawed, fustrated, melancholic, and envious of others who are better off. To make up for the perennial sense of something essential missing inside themselves they indulge in amplifying their emotions in each situation in the name of authenticity and searching for meaning. They internalize and personalize their experiences to squeeze the emotional juices out of each situation. They probe the darker sides of life and deepest depths of their psyche where most people don't dare tread. They introspect and observe themselves far beyond the average person. They feel they have a cretain richness in their lives that other lack, for others haven't seen what they've seen, known what they've known, and felt what they've felt.
The four's picturesque inner landscape is equally rich if not richer, a vast and endlessly deep treasure trove of murky nooks and crannies of emotional states to inhabit and indulge themselves in. They have a wistful side and dwell on the bittersweet nostalgia of past memories. They also create their own "personal story" filled with myth and metaphor and live it out as though it were as real as reality itself. Indulging their imagination to live out their emotional states and allow themselves to feel intensely is necessary to feel true to themselves. Part of their disdain for the ordinary has to do with feeling a need to amplify and intensify their feelings as ordinary experiences rarely satisfy them. Hence fours often find practical matters difficult.
Such closeness with one's emotional states brings an aesthetic sensitivity most fours have in common. Fours have a natural creative process that is necessitated by using their feelings to create an identity. They are often associated with being artists in some sense even if they aren't in the literal meaning of the word. They seek out the beauty in every experience. As fours are especially attuned to what gives light to meaning they breathe new life into their experiences and transform them.
This need to live out and even amplify their emotional states makes for anything but a trite existence. Fours can be paralyzed with self-hatred, and consumed with envy and even paralyzed with hatred for others. While fours are self-loathing they want to be heard out and understood more than offered a "patronizing" practical solution to their pain. They'd rather wallow in their suffering than have the depth of their turmoil trivialized and thus their feelings marginalized and invalidated. The combination of belonging to the reactive triad and being a feeling type means despite the four's fragility they can get hostile towards the person who clearly doesn't understand them. One should beware as there is no type that can hone in on another's emotional vulnerabilities and pierce others with their words like a venemous four. On the flip side fours can be very devoted and supportive. They can be deeply empathetic and very in tune with their partner's emotional states.
Thus fours tend to be high maintainence. They envy happy people and dream of finding that special someone who can rescue them from their melancholy. This shows up especially in relationships as fours hold their partners to high expectations. While fours are very accepting of a partner's quirks one should expect to be tested constantly by their drama which is really a fear of abandonment due to shame over their defectiveness. They are known for their "push-pull" behaviour where they share their deepest darkest secrets with their partner and then recoil in shame at what they revealed. They preemptively withdraw fearing their partner will seem them as irredeemably flawed and will leave them. If their partner sticks with them the process repeats as long as the four fears abandonment.
In enneagram theory fours are feeling-thinking-instinctive in that order. They indulge in amplifying their feelings at the expense of having a handle on the mundane aspects of real life. Their "difference from others" and self-absorbedness pushes them away from others enough to cultivate difference-based ideal self-images they can't achieve. This can set in motion a self-destructive cycle whereby they cling to their arrogance that the masses lack the nuance to understand them. Being instinctive-last they are more ungrounded than others and have a greater chance of sinking into despair and falling deep enough into an abyss they can't recover from. They sincerely want to get healthy but don't want to give up their overidentification with defectiveness and with it being an outsider, the source of their identity and fuel for their fixation. They can get healthier by realizing that others suffer just as they do and that their personal experiences aren't as different from others' as they make them out to be. They can start to accept and embrace what they have in common with others and experience success relating to them. This will allow them to understand that meaning and significance can be found outside uniqueness and with that greater flexibility to create a more realistic identity they won't keep falling short of actualizing. Once they accept the entirety of who they are they won't have to depend on amplifying their emotional states to live out an idealized persona they can never be. With a more authentic self-perception comes increased self-love without losing their insight and creativity and what makes them "them". They will be able to experience the joy of living in the present without being chained to the past.
4w3s are theatrical, dramatic, and effete. Compared to 4w5s they are generally more ambitious and competitive, and place a greater emphasis on appearing beautiful, desireable, and elite. They tend to feel entitled and exempt. They are said to be divas and aristocrats as their three wing transforms their sources of shame and defectiveness into art and expression, an aloof presentation that incorporates conventionally desireable elements into their style. They have a more glorious self-image and are more inspiration-seeking. They feel a connection with the magical as if they're part of a special class of people with secret powers. They are the outsiders who dream of magically returning to show others what they missed. The magical overtones in their persona are reminders of that to themselves. Compared to 4w5s they have more energy to keep up the act to get by in the world, but are also more likely to feel fake about it afterwards. They balance a greater ability to wear different masks with greater shame over losing their internal substance. They have an amorphous self-image that adapts to others but is in conflict with the core 4 fixation which sees it as "inauthentic". They are less likely than 4w5s to call out others for not being authentic for fear of pointing the finger back at themselves and their many contradictions.
4w3s are marked by multiple dichotomies due to types 3 and 4 being opposites in so many ways: inferior/superior, being/becoming, self-conscious/confident, putting themselves down/glorifying themselves, withdrawn/assertive, emotional/flatlined, reactive/cool-headed, mired in the past/focused on moving forward, awkward/poised, fragile/resilient, easily discouraged/do whatever it takes, rejecting the game/conquering the game. While they will put up countershame smokescreens to get your attention and see if you are perceptive enough to see and accept the real them underneath, they may seem distant to even close ones to keep up appearances. Ideally they'd have a rich emotional life without having the ugliest parts of themselves exposed.
Underneath a 4w3's more fluid identity their 4ness gives them an awareness of something truer and deeper within themselves that roots everything. Their 3 wing precludes people from seeing fully what is inside them including even themselves. However they know their personal awareness anchor is there no matter where their changeability takes them. They know on a deeper level their fluctuations stem back to a single consistent essence. Still, they wonder if they are fooling themselves. Despite their consistent underlying essence they lead an inconsistent life and wonder if they are being true to themselves. They try to balance selling themselves out in the real world with hanging out amongst the "keeping it real" crowd. They are more likely to go the distance in their career due to their three wing before their fourness causes them to sabotage themselves. In extreme cases 4w3s totally give up on life after finally "making it".
4w5s have a harsher edge than 4w3s and are the true outsiders of the enneagram. They tend to be more intellectual and introspective. They are more likely to philosophize their inner reality. Many 4w5s have an unflinching "this is me so deal with it" persona that's harder and crustier in comparison to 4w3s. They tend to be absurdly original or profoundly eclectic. Either way they have a more "take it or leave it" attitude and are more likely to direct a critical edge at others. Their persona serves more to redirect their shame away from their vulnerable self behind it in contrast to the 4w3 whose more shapeshifting persona facilitates relating to people. The more shame a 4w5 feels the more they implode, or in some cases amplify their persona as a countershame response. As a result 4w5s are more likely to present a more bizarre and even grotesque image in some instances that reflects their feelings of defectiveness combined with a fascination for the macabre that their five wing brings.
4w5s have a great pride in staying "true to themselves no matter what" amidst what changes in the world around them. They accept being isolated from others and are personally invested in their self-image enough to stick with it through thick and thin. They are equally proud of suffering for their weirdness as paying the price for being who they are only makes them feel even more authentic about themselves. It illustrates how they are too complex to be understood by the unworthy who lack the perception to decode their many layers to understand the real them.
Suffering for their internal self-image serves to reinforce their authenticity. The more they suffer for it the more they cling to their internal self-image and 4w5s wear their lack of compromise as a badge of honor for being true to themselves. "I'm completely true to myself and no one can take that from me." They mythologize their own personal tragedy. On the flip side being double-withdrawn they have less of a will to deal with the world and feel more overwhelmed by it. Despite seeking meaning in everything they are more likely to tend towards nihilism. Combine that with being even more true to themselves in response to their suffering and they become more and more disconnected from the world. In a self-destructive cycle the 4w5 holds his head high at never selling himself out like others, but ironically has little to nothing to show for it since he's actualized his identity with futile concepts that have no basis in reality. A feeling of hopelessness sets in and he withdraws from the world more permanently.
4 vs 1: Fours are indulgent whereas ones see that as a lack of self-control.
4 vs 2: Twos are other-directed while fours are more attuned to their own needs and self before others as the self is their primary focus
4 vs 3: Fours sink or swim wherever their emotions take them while threes don't like to give free reign to the expression of their emotions.
4 vs 5: Fours are in the feeling triad so feelings are their home base unlike fives who have to periodically detach from them to prevent from feeling overwhelmed.
4 vs 6: Fours are comfortable with their elitism as they just know they have insight and creativity others lack. Sixes don't like it when people place themselves above others due to it being unfair.
4 vs 7: Sevens have a blind faith in the future working out for them unlike fours. Sevens are more future-oriented and fours are past-oriented.
4 vs 8: Eights are the tough exterior with the marshmallow core underneath while fours are the opposite. Eights avoid displays of emotional vulnerability while fours see the ability to live out their emotions as desireable.
4 vs 9: Fours use separation to proudly affirm how different they are while nines fear being separated from others.
Type 5(Head Triad)
Fives are intellectually curious types who love to explore what interests them. They frequently indulge in spending lots of time with what's impractical. While they put lots of effort into thinking about things they have deceptively strong feelings however. They state their points dispassionately and insure what they communicate is well thought out which make them seem less emotional than they really are.
Fives take it for granted they have an inherent ability to theorize and understand things more deeply than others, something they'd never say openly. They are never quite "fully there" in their physical presence however. Their sensitivity to emotional stimuli plus a lack of smoothness from their less developed instincts always makes them removed to some degree to better handle situations. They withdraw from their environment and detach emotionally from others to shut out intrusions in their time and space. From the safety of their minds they can intensify their investment in their mental activities. They feel planning sufficiently and knowing enough can enable them to survive and thrive in life despite being isolated. This overuse of their thinking center to navigate an intrusive world from a distance causes them to be both idiosyncratic in how they perceive reality and eccentric as others perceive them. This causes fives to exhibit a certain quirky cleverness.
Fives are far more sensitive than they appear. Being fear types they tend to feel a crippling anxiety that's usually only noticed by close family and friends. Behind their distant exterior often lurks feelings threatening to overwhelm them. They prefer their privacy where they can immerse themselves in whatever interests them. Their limitless curiosity causes them to be self-motivated to learn challenging things and delve into subjects they truly enjoy, to the point of compulsion even. More than any other type they are connisseurs of knowledge. As a result fives tend to have a few intellectual areas of interest they have a deep understanding in which they take great pride in. Many fives withhold their knowledge just as they withhold themselves however, hence the five stereotype of a reclusive expert that no one knows about.
Fives see an interdependent world that desires too much from them. It's not uncommon to see them cut out dead weight and live minimalistic lifestyles to separate themselves from the world. They feel people want more of them than they have of themselves to give. They are affected by others easily and withdraw because they don't believe they have what it takes to deal with other people's demands and expectations. They are equally aware of being a burden on others and withhold both themselves and their emotions from others. Expressing emotions can make them feel vulnerable as they fear that will backfire in front of people who clearly don't understand them. They don't care for superficial small talk and limit themselves to authentic people who do have the potential to understand them. At work they prefer to be given their assignment then left alone. Even in relationships they may withhold parts of themselves and keep many secrets. Simply put fives are fear types who are always wary of people or things that come with "strings attached". Because their instinctive center is weakest they fear "giving their power away" would lead to them being a "sitting duck."
This fear of being a "sitting duck" leads fives to focus on having power. They remove themselves from external activity in order to feel they have enough mastery of the situation to navigate it from a position of strength. They seperate what's important from what's irrelevant and have an unrelenting focus to get to the bottom of things. They delight in "checkmating" others' points that aren't as well thought-out as theirs along the way. Their intellectual curiousity for a subject is intense enough to eventually turn into mastery. They imagine scenarios to understand the world well enough to anticipate reality. They feel powerful trusting their own opinions over what society says. They think things are under control if they know enough. They think they can get on top of things on their own if they figure things out and plan sufficiently. They have delusions of grandeur that make them dream about how the world would be if they had the ability to set things. They feel powerful knowing that others haven't thought about stuff as deeply as they have and don't understand what they understand. This "claim" along with their borderline intellectual overconfidence is a cover on a more subconscious level for their heightened sensitivity and inadequacy though. It's one thing to create theories but quite another to put them into practice. They have trouble with simpler things that most people can handle spontaneously. They know how odd they are and always feel fundamentally apart from others.
In enneagram theory fives are thinking-feeling-instinctive in that order. This causes them to intensify their efforts thinking up scenarios to anticipate and handle reality at the expense of being engaged in the real world. Because they are instinctive center last it is easy for fives to become ungrounded and spin out of control. They encounter new people in spontaneous situations and instead of acting naturally they detach or "freeze" (a very minor form of shutdown) to intellectualize their emotions("How do I express this emotion?") instead of using their feeling center to express their emotions(fear that could backfire on them). Opportunities to reach out to others are missed and fives loses confidence in their ability to act naturally around people. They spend more time alone with makes them more out of touch with the world. This increases their loneliness and eccentricity which makes it even harder to relate to people, which makes them withdraw and isolate themselves even further. Once a critical point is reached their cynicism and disdain for humanity accelerates. The scenarios their imagination comes up with to understand the world become more disturbing and further removed from reality. Healthy fives though are able to both fully participate in life and contribute to an interdependent society while also being able to give more of themselves and handle greater degrees of emotional interdependency. Their greater engagement of life allows them to be more in touch with reality and better at anticipating things.
5w4s are more fantastical and mythologize about how they aren't human. They are natural iconoclasts and disidentification is central to their self-image. Seeing things the normal way that everyone else does just seems "wrong" to them. They don't get as openly awed and apalled as their 5w6 siblings since worldly reality often pales in comparison to the reality of their internal experience. They are both more "cloaked" and also more emotionally immersing than 5w6s. They indulge in epic language to relive their feelings as anything less would seem too trite for the richness and significance of their internal experience. They tend to be less argumentative than 5w6s and would rather be convinced than convince others. They are more sociable and whimsical than 5w6s and want to show you there's more to them than meets the eye.
The 5w4 inner landscape has a certain richness that's both a blessing and a curse. From being both in awe and terrified of just about everything they've contemplated their minds are anything but "normal" in the way they perceive things. They think they will always know more about others than others will ever know about them. They feel they are impossible to get to know and the most one can see is whatever persona they exhibit. Similar to core fours they transform this into their own brand of elitism.
5w4s being iconoclasts force their way to the bottom of things to find meaning, safety with the known and familiar be damned. They have a "counter" mentality in how they focus on the undersides and opposites of things: "It was so dark it became light"..."that abhorrent yet fascinating person". Paradoxes, illusions, the twists and turns of fate, and unexplainable phenomena are representative of "something" that underlies and supercedes current reality and makes it richer. The unseen is more important than the seen. What is intangible matters more than what is tangible. What isn't obvious matters more than what is obvious. What is counterintuitive and fits is more aesthetic and elegant and therefore more significant than what is intuitive and fits. If the pieces fit when they shouldn't it's "anything but coincidental" and can be traced to something meaningful. When something is counterintuitive and makes sense it feels like a deep insight that was divinely revealed to them, a rare and special treasure that shows itself once in a blue moon. Something that's intuitive and makes sense is a dime a dozen that can only pale in comparison.
5w4s tend to be more subjective than 5w6s. Their thinking process is less incremental and has more "illogical leaps". They search for that one angle of looking at things that magically makes everything make sense to them. They have a bias towards seeing underlying patterns that fit together aesthetically and elegantly as more real and therefore closer to the truth. They see a plethora of nonrandom things that just happen to line up towards a single conclusion as evidence of some "higher meaning" to support their conclusion, or even an indication of fate. Such a lining up of tells amidst random chaos couldn't be chance or random. There must be something there that isn't obvious but no less significant if not more so. This makes 5w4s more likely to see things that aren't there than miss things that are there. They tend to have occultic and esoteric areas of interest.
5w6s see themselves as being fundamentally apart from others due to their oddness. They aspire to be one of society's foremost thinkers. They tend to be more awed at a world that never ceases to provide them with something to look into further. They are natural investigators who take the initiative to enthusiastically debate and discuss with others how they see the world. They tend to be more self-revealing and more emotionally detached than their 5w4 siblings. They have more of an uneasy truce with their emotions. On average they less sociable than 5w4s. While they also think there is more to them than meets the eye they feel more awkward about showing others this.
The 5w6 inner landscape is one of limitless curiousity, arguably the most of the eighteen subtypes. They've thought a lot about the world and the nature of things with an unrivaled specificity. They've seemingly thought about everything at one point or another from the complex to the simple. They've looked further into things than most others. As a result they feel they have an understanding of the way things are in the world that others don't. Others haven't examined things to the extent that they have. They think most people don't understand them and aren't likely to put in the effort to do so.
5w6 aesthetics are rooted in what is tangible and more easily seen due to their six wing. They envision being on the cutting edge of technological advancement as well as on the frontier of intellectual and physical realms. They contemplate exploring where few have gone before and witnessing worldly phenomena firsthand. They wonder what it's like to be inside the tiniest of probes observing life at the cellular level, or to be safely suspended in the fabric of space-time far away amidst black holes and other awesome anomalies of the cosmos. From these vantage points they are removed from the world of people yet tethered to the furthest reaches of the universe. Their sense of being in touch with these various frontiers beyond human experience has a highly intuitive and emotional aspect to it. There is a certain nirvana that's connected with understanding these worldly phenomena which also serves as an escape from reality. When they tap into that it feels empowering and feeds their tendency to think they have mastery over elements in the world. The more confident they are of their grasp of reality the more in control they feel and the easier it is to take action in the world without hesitation.
5w6s tend to have more sequential and incremental streams of consciousness and lack the "illogical leaps" of 5w4s. There is a process of gradual solidification to their reasoning that makes them natural synthesizers of what they take into account. They tend to have a "one thing progresses to another" way of coming to a conclusion that's generally more precise and easier to follow. They have bias against solutions arrived at primarily aesthetically for not being objective enough. They prefer a thinking process that is more "valid" and can withstand more scrutiny. They are more likely to see a bunch of things that cluster as "coincidental" and not an indication of some higher meaning that they can't explain, unless they can tie things in the cluster together in some way. They tend to not believe in fate. Much of life is random and they accept that. They are more likely to miss things that are there than see things that aren't there like their 5w4s siblings. They tend to be more methodical and analytical and gravitate to more structured intellectual areas.
5 vs 1: Fives unlike ones don't need to adhere to standards that apply to everyone to think they are good enough. Unlike fives the way ones are rational is tied to self-control. Ones find it easy to engage the world while fives find it draining. Fives don't need to obey the rules while ones are complient to the rules.
5 vs 2: Twos like people and feel a need to be in a facilitating role for others while fives are very comfortable withdrawing from people.
5 vs 3: Threes are much more comfortable promoting themselves. Fives find it awkward to sell themselves in any capacity.
5 vs 4: Fives periodically feel overwhelmed by their emotions and have to detach from them while fours are at home in their emotions and can't amplify them enough.
5 vs 6: Fives are naturally curious types and love knowledge for its own sake. They are oblivious to procedures and policies in power structures. Unlike sixes their first instinct is to intellectualize their emotions.
5 vs 7: Fives like to operate at some distance from the enviornment while sevens move the enviornment closer to them. Fives have a limited amount of themselves while sevens have lots of energy. Sevens are naturally spontaneous.
5 vs 8: Eights don't periodically feel overwhelmed by their feelings. Instincts are an eight's strength while being a five's weakness.
5 vs 9: Fives are attracted to examining what makes them uncomfortable whereas nines don't like to instrospect beyond their comfort zone.
Type 6(Head Triad)
Type six is the most "human" enneagram type and arguably the most authentic in that respect. All enneagram fixations are coping strategies to deal with the world and the six gestalt is most representative of the struggles of humanity throughout its history. More than any other type the life story of a six is about "coming into their own".
Sixes are head types that view the world as inherently unpredictable. They feel they came into an everchanging world without blueprints that account for the vagaries of life and have to play catchup. They see the danger that lurks just around the corner and need to figure out how to either remove it or cope with it, as well as find some backup through allies or something else out there that's a strong enough foundation. They have a base state of unrest they may not be aware of but their anxiety is visible to others. Their worst fear is to come to the horrible realization that they put trust in the wrong people and find out the basis of everything they believe in is a lie. Simply put sixes fear being "uprooted" so they construct a strong enough mental framework and/or support system of people to navigate life with to prevent that from happening.
This means making sure as many things are as "clear" to them as possible. Due to their elevated who?/what?/when?/where?/why?/how? and "what if?" head center cognition they notice and assess seemingly everything and then some. They want to find out if a way of thinking is legitimate. They want points to be unambigious and motives to be transparent. They want to see who knows what they are talking about and who is trustworthy. They want to be able to intuit where you are coming from and where you are going with this. Clear intentions are a sign of honesty and no hidden agenda and bring about parity and therefore fairness. Fives naively downplay motives and are ignorant of procedures and policies within power structures. Sevens blindly rely on the future and think they can have their cake and eat it too. Sixes however refuse to take anything for granted until it passes their smell test. They have a heightened awareness of catastrophic scenarios and worry the rug will be pulled out from underneath them when they see bad things happen to innocent people. Heaven forbid any of these things should happen to their loved ones. They have little faith things will work out on their own and are natural "what's plan B" people. They feel compelled to anticipate and figure out how to cope with potential problems as they know what could happen if they don't.
How sixes cope ranges from avoidance(phobic) to aggressively facing their fears head on(counterphobic). Due to their head center ambivalence sixes alternate between susceptibility and suspiciousness towards authorities and systems. They can instantly shift from fearful to aggressive and vice versa. There is no type that exhibits contradictory behaviour like a six. On a less conscious level they are on the lookout for someone or something worthy of trusting. On a more conscious level they keep a watchful eye out for who or what is most definitely not. They are very aware of when things are unfair or uneven between people. They sense who has power and who is likely to abuse it as they often see themselves as the underdog. This is frequently enhanced by the perception of being mistreated by authority figures during their formative years. Sixes may appear as devils advocates, skeptics, BS sniffers, self-doubters, pseudo-sevens, or something else but they all test for clarity and certitude and have an underlying state of unrest. Ironically they are often less unsettled during a real crisis since their mind doesn't have the time to blow things out of proportion. Even though the real source of anxiety is inside themselves it would be nice for things in life to be more clear.
Sixes see the world as inherently unpredictable so they feel they must be prepared and have a minimum amount of certainty in their lives. Just as they are consistently loyal to who and what they believe in, the people close to them must also be trustworthy and loyal to them. Many sixes choose to root themselves in friends and family instead of more external things like systems and authorities. They form strong friendships and come across as genuinely honest and down-to-earth. They like people who are authentic and dislike smooth-talkers. They can be selflessly supportive and stay loyal even to those who are no longer worthy. Betrayal is the worst violation of trust so there's no way they'd let people close to them hang out to dry. If people have managed to earn their trust(not an easy task due to their testing) it's only fair they stick by them in bad times as well as good. In an uncertain world one must hold onto the few that are worth it. It's hard to find people who are honest and dependable and who also do what they say they will do. True respect must be earned and those close to them have earned it.
Being able to earn their way in the world is also important. They value resourcefulness and contingency planning, and find satisfaction in earning the fruits of their labors. They believe in a merit-based system where each person is treated fairly and proportionally to how they deserve to be treated. They respect people who are deserving and don't like it when people get to where they are unfairly. As long as working hard and playing by the rules is fairly rewarded they accept their circumstances. They hold themselves to their own standards despite how unpredictably difficult the world is so all they ask for is a fair shot in life. They intend to be treated fairly and for things to be okay as long as they follow the rules.
Sixes favor spelled-out rules that make things more out in the open and fair for everyone. They feel them being responsible and following the rules despite how difficult things can be should count for something. Add to that they are already hard on themselves and they often feel justified in making excuses when bad things happen. While they doubt their decision-making it's not their fault the world's so unpredictably difficult. If they follow the rules it's not their fault if things don't work out. If they are responsible and things go wrong it's not their fault. If they don't stick their necks out no one can blame them for anything. They may criticize themselves to avoid criticism from others. They may even sabotage their success to avoid standing out and being a target for criticism. In their mind if you saw how difficult things are for them you'd see things from their perspective. Their enhanced head center cognition causes their superego to feel overburdened with constant self-criticism. They struggle to meet what they think is demanded of them due to believing the only way of being okay is to be loyal and follow the rules. They fear not being able to do anything right and that imminent punishment and criticism is just around the corner. They are looking for how to be or how to act. They want to be good and rule abiding, not deviant or culpable.
In enneagram theory sixes are head center primary at the expense of their feeling and instinctive centers. Being in the center of the head triad they may not be fully aware of their anxiety because they're so used to it. Excess cognition in a six's primary thinking center can be compared to being inside the "eye of their hurricane". By looking at types five and seven outside the eye sixes are reminded of the full extent of "thinking triadness" in themselves. Head types especially sixes have lots of who?/what?/where?/when?/why?/how? cognition. This is the root of their underlying anxiety and the enviornment merely exacerbates it. The head center also has to do with the focus, distractability, and scatteredness, as well as motor and tempo. It contains the most hamster-wheeling and vascillating energy of the three centers. Type six has the most head center energy and there is no type that has as much ambivalence as a six. While all head types overthink to predict and protect themselves from the world, sixes are the types most prone to "thinking so much they fake themselves out" and turning to their superego to resolve their cognitive dissonance.
Sixes excessively try to use their head center to nagivate life. The mental framework they construct for themselves is really a form of "shorthand" to map life's numerous contradictions to that their overactive who?/what?/when?/where?/why?/how? and "what if?" cognition burdens them with(anxiety by definition). By mapping to this internal shorthand they can be certain that at least most of what they conclude will be correct. In contrast to the fives's "nothing sacred" attitude sixes have an investment in keeping their own way of looking at things intact. They reject information to the contrary to protect the way of thinking they are loyal to. On a deeper level they know their defense mechanisms reduce anxiety via clarity but distort reality. They yearn to be able to get in touch with their "quiet mind" so that they can "just know" how things really are.
When this "shorthand" gets taken far enough it becomes "projection". They may see a person act in a certain way and based on their history project that person had such and such motivations behind that action. On a more subconscious level delving into further analysis could cause cognitive dissonance so they go for the answer that is most "clear" to them. This may be what they would do if they were in their shoes or what "side" or group that person appears to be most aligned with. If a person supported something politically they might be more inclined to project that person has the same belief system of others that had the same yes/no position on that issue. Due to projection sixes are prone to confusing what's clear to them with what the truth is. In order to find out if what's clear to them is not correct they have to go against their way of thinking before they have "proof" so there's internal resistance to going down that murkier mental path. This is most obvious in their implicit bargain with the world: how it's "clear" that they will be okay if they are loyal and follow the rules. To "realize" one may be screwed even if they follow a particular set of rules is to open a pandora's box of possibly never being safe no matter what. This may be more correct but is anything but nice and clear.
Sixes are the most likely types to believe in Murphy's law: "whatever can go wrong will go wrong". Unhealthy sixes are very programmable due to their head center being "short-circuited". They succumb to their anxiety and either become sheep..."I can't cope so you do my thinking for me since you are authorities"...and/or excessively project their insecurities onto others. Healthy sixes have learned to access their "quiet mind" to manage their fears and put them into perspective. Once they have mastered their internal anxiety they can become pillars of strength without losing their gift for being "human". What was "us vs them" is now the courage to fight for something bigger than themselves. Healthy sixes like Joe Gibbs have a talent for leading while remaining "one of the guys". More than any other coach he made the redskins a family centered around "core redskin values" where no player was unfairly above another. Winning three different superbowls with three average quarterbacks was a testament to his ability to get the most out of his players.
6w5s want answers to account for unknown circumstances more than support or guidance. They look more for predictability as they are especially aware of what doesn't make sense around them. Their five wing causes them to be do-it-their-selfers with respect to how they look at things. They are more likely to stick to their views than try out different views at others' suggestions like 6w7s. They are more precise in their communication and are often serious and focused thinkers. They are more analytical and tend to be strategic problem solvers. They focus more on precedent, what has worked that can possibly be adopted. They tend to put credence in structured systems of knowledge that make sense of how things are. Structure also makes it easier to function in real life since they keep their distance similar to fives. They prefer to know the rules so they can go about their business without being interfered with. They also protect themselves by withholding just enough to make sure they don't get hurt emotionally.
6w5s tend to distrust the outside world more and see it as dangerous. They fear trusting the wrong person or ideology and being led along like a pawn, or worse, being betrayed. They are constantly on the lookout for whatever doesn't seem quite right. They have a nose for what is rotten underneath and aren't flattered by smooth-talkers. They have more of a bunker mentality and don't like being an easy target. They are tighter and more coiled. They are more closed off and snap at others easier. They are more independent and insular as interactions with others sometimes feel too demanding. They are very careful about looking towards others for support and advice and instead put lots of pressure on themselves to make up the difference. They care more about their pipelines to the world being severed than losing support from people. They constantly imagine worst case scenarios as how could one not with everything that goes on in the world. They tend to be natural skeptics and devils advocates. They are more wary and guarded as well as more cynical and sarcastic. They have conditioned themselves to expect the worst as few things are more painful than being blindsided. While they want to know what you are thinking it's more to have everything being open and concrete than them needing help. They see flattery as fake and don't want to be patronized. They'd rather be called out than given undeserved reassurance. If a person is too accomodating they wonder what the catch is.
6w5s want to find the whole truth in a situation. They question and test anything and keep track of every inconsistency. They focus on resolving discrepancies. They are natural private investigators in how they are skilled at sussing out others. They concentrate on what people say and especially the way they say it: tone, body language, speech patterns, attitude, etc. They may not always intuit correctly but that's a small price to pay when the alternative is naively ignoring what can go wrong out there. They get nervous if others aren't as forthcoming as they are. They want to know what others are thinking especially if they ask so many questions without explaining where they are coming from. They feel they must know others' intentions to feel at ease. They don't believe in having things sugarcoated for them so negative feedback is better than no feedback.
6w5s are vigilant types who see themselves as underdogs and view the powerful with suspicion. They are vigilant and have a heightened awareness of whose or which "side" someone is on. They are very aware of when things are unfairly uneven between people and feel compelled to bring attention to that "abuse of power". The danger of leaving this unchecked is too big to be ignored. This passion often makes them follow politics but can apply to their everyday lives as well. They feel entitled to have their opinions be acknowledged and respected just like anyone else's. If someone unfairly marginalizes them by arrogantly claiming to know them better than they know themselves they feel justified to call out the cliques and mutual admiration societies behind it all. They don't see any hypocrisy since they are all about goodwill and open with their shortcomings. They don't see themselves as attackers nor do they wish to alienate so they are surprised others may see them like that. When they are wrong they can seem paranoid. When they are right their vigilance combined with their relatability gives them a dimension to effect change even eights don't have.
6w7s are more insecure and look for guidance and support from others. They look for people who can supply them with the bearings necessary to handle life's obstacles. They are more self-questioning and doubt their ability to find security in the world on their own. They tend to "weigh" their opinions with others. They interact with what's around them to make sure they are on the right track. They are more open and quicker to trust others. They are enthusiastic and friendly. They are less likely to say unequivocally they are right and others are wrong. When they challenge people they rarely employ a sustained scrutiny like 6w5s do. They go out of their way to show they aren't threatening which 6w5s often consider weakness. Being tough and protective yet flexible and openly vulnerable makes them endearing and likeable. They have a talent for rallying others around them when they bring attention to someone being mistreated.
6w7s are less focused and more distractable than 6w5s. They have a disorganized all-over-the-mapness with how they get all their ideas out. They are not as worried about being imprecise as they feel relieved just to be able to empty everything they were considering out of their hyperactive mind. They hurredly put down their thoughts as fast as they can for fear of leaving something about like jotting down their dreams before they forget them. They list all their points even the most anecdotal ones just in case. They want to be on the safe side as they are never quite certain about things. While 6w7s are more scattered than 6w5s they can come up with creative ideas that may be missed by more structured thinking.
6w7s want everything around them to fit nicely with their constructed safe reality. They want to be happy and content in addition to finding something strong and stable. They externalize their ambivalence and exhibit more contradictory behavior than 6w5s. They trust either too little or too much, rarely just right. When they find safety they mistrust it as too good to be true and give off mixed signals which in turn makes others uneasy with their unpredictability. Their contradictory traits and hamster-wheeling stem from doubt of themselves which drives their need for loyalty. They have push-pull tendencies from both not wanting to feel dependent on others and also not wanting to alienate them. They want to be independent with a safety net. They aren't sure how others feel about them and periodically need to be the center of attention for fear of being abandoned. They are more like divas with their flair for the dramatic. They fear being unable to cope in life and are more likely to have a victim mentality. Unlike 6w5s the last thing they want is distance. They are more demonstrative but also more masochistic and self-hating. Even if they are wrong they just want someone to be on their side and not be judgemental. Reassurance is most effective and therefore easiest to trust. They also want empathy and understanding. Honest criticism can come later once they have stopped overreacting and cooled down. In the meantime they want others to work things through with them. If they locate the source of anxiety within themselves instead of their enviornment they start to feel grounded.
6w7s are more awed and apalled than 6w5s. They are more easily startled. They vascillate between feeling excited and catastrophic thinking. They are most prone to thinking so much they fake themselves out. When their thinking center is "short-circuited" they think they are more rational than they really are. Their cognition can cause them to feel different about others from one moment to the next, as well as fear others feel equally ambivalent about them. They can swing from very nice to very challenging and vice versa. They are more hamstrung by their anxiety and frequently feel "something just came over them". When there is hardly any danger they are surprised at how much of what is buried inside them comes out. They want badly to quell their hyperactive mind from hamsterwheeling through harmful future scenarios but nothing seems to stay reliable or predictable long enough to relax with. They are like children who are gripped by fear of their own shadows and are grateful for anyone who can set them free. When there is serious danger paradoxically everything is clear and they become calm. Going in they are anything but confident but coming out they are often surprised and proud of their bravery.
6 vs 1: Ones have a life-long mission to self-improve themselves and tend to be very certain in their convictions. Ones equate repressing themselves with being more worthy. Sixes find it much easier lying to protect loved ones as they don't have a transcendant view of morality like ones.
6 vs 2: Twos are more confident and self-righteous. Twos being enablers are naturally parental while sixes are natural team players. Twos repress what is at odds with their gentle self-image whereas sixes repress themselves to fit in.
6 vs 3: Threes think it is their destiny to become someone outstanding whereas sixes aren't as naturally confident in their abilities. Threes keep their eye on the ball while sixes are prone to getting stuck in contingency planning.
6 vs 4: Fours are naturally elitist and sixes aren't. Sixes don't romanticize being different like fours do.
6 vs 5: Sixes focus much more on motives and intentions. Fives look before they leap emotionally. Sixes don't romanticize isolation and don't have delusions of grandeur like fives do. In contrast to fives, sixes orient themselves towards practical application of knowledge.
6 vs 7: Sixes don't have the blind faith in the future and themselves that sevens have. Sixes are much more self-conscious than sevens. Sixes are much more naturally responsible. Sixes are compliant types with a strong superego influence.
6 vs 8: Eights like to feel grand and sixes don't. When the desire for clarity and the desire to avoid weakness conflict the six will choose for former and the eight the latter.
6 vs 9: Sixes see nines as not alert enough while nines see that sixes need to chill out. Sixes have a heightened desire for things to be clear and communicated effectively while nines will be fine with explanations that "sort of" make sense due to their more elastic cognition. Nines find it easier to gloss over discrepancies. What is okay to a nine has a very wide latitude.
Type 7(Head Triad)
Sevens are gluttonous fun-loving types who believe in experiencing what they want in life without restrictions or obligations. They want a lot and are gnawed by their wants enough to see them as needs so they "need" that juicy steak and "need" that vacation. They take care of their stuff themselves and aren't a burden on anyone so why shouldn't they be entitled to a good life? These natural optimists have a hard time accepting the stark reality that the world isn't as accomodating as they would like. Being head types they understand that but sevens are sevens so understanding something and coming to grips with something are two different things.
Sevens have a blind faith in the future working out for them. Their jumping-the-gun streams of consciousness cause them to distort the future as being just around the corner. If they keep their options open a little longer they are sure to get what they want. They also frequently believe they can have their cake and eat it too. They enthusiastically plan out rosy scenarios in their mind. The future hasn't yet made the details apparent that might show their optimism is misplaced, nor does it make demands on them or slow them down like people in the present do. They feel if they keep moving and anticipating they can stay one step ahead of being bogged down by all that. It goes without saying they don't sweat the small stuff and are always on the lookout for shortcuts that would get them to their happier more fulfilling future faster.
Sevens have addictive personalities. They tend to be adventurous, impulsive, exciting, and enthusiastic. The more common sensing-perceiving sevens tend to be focused on more physical gluttony and are the typical party animals. The less common intuitive seven is no less addictive but has as much a need for mental stimulation as a need for physical stimulation. All sevens need the potential for a more fulfulling life more than anything. They need something better in their future to look forward to. The one thing a seven wouldn't relate to in a million years is contentment and a lack of wants.
With their monkey minds sevens tend to be mentally agile and versatile enough to quickly pick up the basics of many things. They frequently have a wide range of intellectual interests and can converse about anything. They tend to find it difficult to focus however and are easily destracted by the temptations in life. More importantly they often overestimate their abilities and confuse what they know with true mastery. More than any other type they tease others with their unrealized potential.
Between experiencing the fullness of life in the present and restlessly thinking up rosy future scenarios their mind is in high gear and their attention is diverted. On a more subconscious level coming to grips with sobering realities in the present and unflattering things about themselves is put on the back burner. Wants are reframed as needs and real inner needs are neglected. Emotional pain is seen as unpleasantness and avoided. These potentially painful feelings are compartmentalized and take awhile to hit home but when they hit they hit hard. On a more conscious level the seven primarily fears being trapped or stuck in a rut. Being bored or deprived from experiencing life triggers "rut" fears. Sevens find it much easier to acknowledge that they fear a "rut" than they fear "pain". The fear of being stuck or trapped in a rut conveniently relegates the fear of emotional pain to a more subconscious level in the fear queue.
Sevens are image center last which makes them shameless, insensitive, and cocky. Like eights they don't see how they come across to others well. Sevens move the enviornment towards them to accelerate their mental gears to distract themselves. Fives in contrast remove themselves from their enviornment to deal with things from a position of strength. Sevens are unprententous and young at heart. Don't let their youthful energy fool you though. Sevens have one of the stronger egos. Should they face obstacles these resilient types have confidence that they'll land on their feet...and they do.
Sevens are naturally egalitarian. They don't like playing power games and would rather just be concerned with themselves. They are grateful for their "lucky" lot in life which makes them fun to be around. They tend to give people the benefit of the doubt. While sevens generally aren't nitpicky of others' minor flaws they often underweight or even overlook major ones.
In enneagram theory 7s are thinking-instinctive-feeling in that order. Their default emotion is fear and their principal defense mechanism is distraction. They accelerate their thinking center mental gears to escape the need to come to grips with inner issues in their feeling center. They conjure up potential rosy scenarios, crazy schemes, exciting ideas, and creative ways of looking at things. They use all that to keep mental activity high enough to keep their mind off coming to grips with unflattering inner issues, unpleasant feelings, and sobering realities. It's much like running around to keep their kite in the air. Once it's time for follow-thru, examining the details brings them closer to reality which is a drag: the sticktoitiveness needed for that job training, that having a website business means having to cold-call to get customers, having to get up at 5 am for that job you thought you wanted, that cute girl sure is clingy. Once details are involved the grass isn't as green on the other side so the seven finds new grass starting from the mental realm and repeats the process.
On a smaller scale sevens may engage in wordplay or other shameless nonsensical "crazy funny" behaviour to distract themselves simply because they got the "itch" to discharge their excess head energy into their enviornment. Many sx-firsts think they have more seven in them than they do because sx is a probing deeply energy to squeeze the most out of an experience while sevenness is about staying in motion to keep their kite in the air to avoid coming to grips with inner issues and feelings.
Unhealthy sevens are completely hedonistic and have no focus in life. They are childish and irresponsible. They have an insatiable desire for one thrill after another. They are complete slaves to their passions. More importantly they are proud of it all. They are proud of being totally free. When they start to get healthy they come to feel a deep regret over the unfinished chapters in their lives they can never do over again. These are the same unfinished chapers caused by them mindlessly skipping from one thing to another. When sevens realize true happiness comes from their journey(coming to grips with unflattering stuff inside them and others along the way) not the destination(future focus)...they learn to commit to sticking stuff out and following thru and can take pride in what they have genuinely accomplished in life(as opposed to doing the minimum to get by)...they can finally escape from chasing their tail. Only then can they find true satisfaction.
7w6s are less grounded and more visibly anxious. They are more manic. They are much more prone to bipolar personality disorder. They are mercurial and endearing. They tend to be more amiable and friendly. They are natural peter pan types who never grow up. They are the more childlike side of seven. They are more creative and fantastical. They are more excited about life and never stop dreaming. They have an attitude of wide-eyed wonderment towards the world. They are prone to blurring the distinction between fantasy and reality. They are much more "pie in the sky" thinkers. They believe in "potential" and that is a big theme in their lives. They believe in potential in others and pockets of potential in the world. They believe the "holy grail" is out there somewhere and it's just a matter of finding it. They are more likely to chase their own tail. They lack the pragmatism and realism of their seven-wing-eight siblings.
7w6s feel more of a need to "check in" with others. Their six wing gives them a need to establish "solidarity" with people they care about. They care about how they are seen. The dense party animal stereotype offends them more. They don't like to be taken for granted as someone who is happy all the time and doesn't have problems. They want to be seen as someone who has depth of personality. They want to be seen as someone who is also "human" and can relate to how you are feeling. Their six wing causes them to be awed and apalled. They have more highs and lows. They have a good-natured sense of humor and are more natural entertainers. They tend to be funny more than they are characters.
7w6s tend to fear getting "trapped" in a rut as opposed to stuck in a rut. Their six wing makes them more likely to feel defeatism and despair. They admit to themselves the rut has "got" them in some way. They can see the walls closing in and becoming more trapped if they don't do something.
7w8s are more grounded and show less signs of anxiety. They tend to have less mood swings but bigger tempers. They can be pushy and belligerent. They are realistic and pragmatic. They are more aggressive and competitive than their six-winged siblings. They are more territorial and acquisitive. They tend to be more interested in worldly success than chasing a dream. They believe in what's possible not the holy grail. They simply persistently play the hand they are dealt the best they can. Their philosophy is similar to that Kenny Rogers song: "gotta know when to hold them when to fold them when to walk and when to run".
7w8s are the badboy/badgirl side of seven. They don't feel a need to "check in" with others. Their eight wing makes them less openly vulnerable. They relate to others from a position of strength as opposed to establishing solidarity. They assume people don't like them until they do so they don't need validation. Misconceptions of what a seven is don't really bother them personally. They don't care about how they are seen like their six-winged siblings. They value freedom more and are much more independent. They want the strings attached between them and others kept to a minimum. Their eight wing makes them more even-keeled. It takes more to excite them or make them depressed. They are more insensitive and have more of a "shocking" sense of humor and tend to be funny characters more than they have funny material.
7w8s tend to fear getting "stuck" in a rut as opposed to trapped in a rut. Their eight wing causes them to see a rut as annoying and something that ticks them off but doesn't have any power over them. Once they're out of the rut everything will be back to normal so no big deal.
7 vs 1: Sevens don't believe in restricting themselves like ones do.
7 vs 2: Sevens value freedom first and foremost and don't like being needed. Sevens don't like strings attached to others.
7 vs 3: Sevens are much less aware of how they come across to others. Sevens are also more spontaneous and less staged.
7 vs 4: Sevens have a blind faith the future will be better for them and always seem to be avoiding something to fours.
7 vs 5: Sevens have much more energy and have trouble focusing. Sevens don't feel a need to recharge like fives do.
7 vs 6: Sixes don't have the same faith in things working out that sevens do.
7 vs 8: Sevens don't want to control people whereas eights will control people to avoid being controlled.
7 vs 9: Sevens overestimate themselves while nines don't. Sevens want a lot and have a hard time accepting the world won't give it to them. Nines are much better at adjusting their wants to realistic expectations.
Type 8(Instinctive Triad)
Eights are strong-willed rugged streetsmart types who like feeling "grand" about themselves. They are competitive and decisive. They are gluttonous types who like to "live life hard"...like "work hard play hard"..."I want to really sink my teeth into that juicy steak." They delight in seeing themselves as animalistic yet think about things more deeply than they let on. Eights "just know" they have an inherent "gravitas" that most people don't have. They are anything but apologetic for taking up space around them. Others can immediately feel an eight's physical presence from their uninhibited "I am aligned with myself not you" expansiveness that is a reflection of their grand personality. They are naturally confident enough to not need to prove their strength to others or themselves. They simply assume they are both formidable enough and mentally tough enough to do whatever they gotta do, no discussion necessary. As tough as eights seem on the outside, what largely seperates eights from eight-lookalikes is how eights are even tougher from the neck up. They stomach the harsher realities of life that most others find unsettling. They are the least likely type to crack or break down psychologically. While they prefer being independent they know they can lead should they choose to. On the flip side they know deep down they are outsiders who can never fully be "one of the guys".
In a dog-eat-dog world eights feel they must be masters of their own destiny. They are unwilling to be controlled in any way. They tend to either run things or be independent contractors. They are wary of any interdependent setup where they aren't calling the shots. The eights that do work for others place a premium on getting financially independent as soon as possible. Even the mere possibility of being controlled triggers a need to prevent that from happening at all costs. That means controlling others if necessary whether it be dominating them or taking charge in a more formal capacity. The eight delusion is that they intend for reality to comply with how they want things to be. When that doesn't happen it feels like losing control. Basically the eight reframes not getting what they want as losing control which triggers increased anger and dominating behavior. This invites needless friction and makes them have to repeatedly learn life's lessons the hard way. Where it really costs eights is emotionally though. They pit themselves against the world so much that they deprive themselves from experiencing what it's like to be fully human. They miss what it's like to feel elated and discouraged, to be awed and apalled, to feel other emotions fully other than pure visceral anger. Letting their guard down and opening up is difficult for them.
Eights have a very strong sense of justice. There is nothing that ticks them off more than getting a raw deal. Eights have the biggest tempers and the english language often feels too trite to express their anger with. If there's one thing the eight feels compelled to do it's cuss. As eights don't like to be "moved" against their will, they are very aware when others are unfairly "moved" against theirs. They have a soft spot for innocence as it reminds themselves of what they've lost and are eternally trying to reclaim. In a dog-eat-dog world full of bad people it's one of the few things that makes them think the world isn't broken beyond repair. When they see innocent people getting the shaft it makes them very angry. Their protective instincts quickly kick in. They know someone's going to feel some pain and it's not going to be them. Eights are comfortable seeing themselves as monsters and have no inhibition against being "badder" than the bad to meet out punishment. "Judgement day" is where they feel most at home, where they are judge, jury, prosecutor, and most importantly, executioner. "Executioner" in this case means due to the eight the life of the perpetrator will never be the same.
Eights do not trust easily but once you're in you're in to stay unless you really screw up. If an eight yells at you he sees you as a decent person who did a bad thing. That's not as bad as him giving you the silent treatment which means he's cutting you out. Eights like to test people not to see where they stand but more to putting the finishing touches on whatever they have compiled on you. They pride themselves on having the ability to see what makes a person tick. They prefer to enter the fray only at the very end when they are about to finish things as opposed to lashing out in the middle of things. When an eight starts testing you it means he already found a red flag, like an "any last words before I get rid of you". They don't like to show their full hand until the end. Of course if you betray them you are gone.
Due to their more unconscious sense of self they aren't as aware of how they come across to others. They shamelessly assert their selfishness which others find refreshing. They do not feel the need to justify themselves in the least. They do they feel the need to hold themselves to any standards. Their streams of consciousness are "I choose to" as opposed to "I feel obligated to" or "I hold myself to". They revel in being "bad" and in not needing validation. In response to being called a thug, they may respond "damn straight" while kneeling down to give a child a free ice cream cone. They assume others don't like them until proven otherwise and therefore they don't need validation from others. When they don't get validation it confirms their self-image of someone who doesn't need validation. They also like to have a disconnect between them and others' perceptions of them to reinforce what others think of them doesn't matter. It reinforces their outsider nature, how they are "here" others are "there". That's how things were always fated to be. It goes without saying as outsiders eights also view many societal rules as stupid.
In enneagram theory eights are instinctive-thinking-feeling in that order. On a much deeper level eights really want power to make sure they are never vulnerable. Eights unconsciously do everything from a position of strength. They have a nose for what detracts from gravitas in realtime and avoid that. They live large and move against the world at the expense of feeling soft and tender emotions, and coming to grips with neglected feelings. They "trivialize" emotions and avoid both feeling them and coming to grips with them. The eight fixation in its purest form is an aversion to being "moved" by soft and tender emotions that make them feel weak. During a "moment" they become even more grand to avoid being moved emotionally. Their speaking becomes more measured as if to try to slow down time itself. With their fear buried deep in the unconscious position they can walk and talk like they have gravitas. The inhibition against being "moved" also applies to the physical and thinking realms. Everything seems so clear when they keep themselves pitted against the world. They know who their enemies are. They have a purpose and a mission. Simply put they feel engaged and alive. But it only serves to keep their mind off of coming to grips with their feelings they've put off processing. Their internal landscape feels like a purgatory as they forever battle unresolved emotions and issues that linger. They feel emotions most deeply when they leave them behind as if to finally give them a proper burial after a long period of neglect. They are much more sentimental than they let on and feel regret and nostalgia over not having felt more in the moment that had come and gone.
Unhealthy eights are totally out of touch with their feelings. They are often outlaws. They brag about having no conscience and more importantly they mean it. They are totally insensitive to others and have no remorse. They focus exclusively on living hard and large. They can be very destructive. In extreme examples they are brutal dictators. Saddam Hussein was a good example but not just because he was a brutal dictator. Eights in general don't like feeling they need to understand the world to navigate it. They see it as the world "telling them what to do". But most eights come around to reality and do what they gotta do to survive. Saddam was totally delusional. He ignored the advice of his generals and drew up the battle plans himself without regard to logistics. His plan was to have his army fall back in concentric rings around Baghdad despite there being a limited number of crooked roads. He had no desire to play his hand the best he could. He just didn't care he was out of touch with reality anymore. Healthy eights in contrast are magnaminous. They acknowledge their emotions. Although they are naturally self-validating they accept being "touched" by others. They are willing to make themselves vulnerable emotionally as the hardest person to conquer is oneself.
8w7s are less inhibited and tend to be colorful characters. They tend to have more mercurial life patterns. They are more cocky and convey a "it's a priviledge for you to engage me" vibe. They intend for reality to contour itself around the way they go about their business. They expect the red sea to be parted for them. They are a double-gluttony subtype and are more likely to have the itch to gamble and be high-rollers. They are vulnerable to taking on too much risk and overextending themselves. They are more frenzied and cathartic and have more self-destructive tendencies. They tend to be iconoclasts who delight in turning things upside down instead of solidifying them.
8w7s believe the best defense is a good offense. Their style of dominating is to preemptively attack you to keep you off balance. They delight in "checkmating" you as their seven wing makes them focus on where your options and possibilities are so they can cut them off. They have a greater focus on tactics and strategy. They are more "I reign supreme and will summon all my powers to blow you to smithereens".
8w9s tend to be more reserved and self-contained. They are more modest and friendly. They aren't as megalomanic as 8w7s. They are less likely to overestimate themselves. They speak in simpler language and seem less "heady" than 8w7s with their more drawn out cadence. They don't understand the eight-winged-seven self-destructive behaviour. They are more grounded and unmovable but they can get aggressive in a hurry if provoked. They are natural defenders who focus on solidifying structures as opposed to tearing them down and starting anew.
8w9s believe the best defense is to be well-fortified. They don't believe in preemptive aggression. They wait for the enemy to strike first and are natural counterpunchers. Their style of dominance is to endure whatever you throw at them and gradually steamroll you. They delight in pushing their weight against you and making you feel their physical presence. They are more "I am unbreakable and will steadily wear you down".
8 vs 1: Eights don't need to follow rules to consider themselves moral people.
8 vs 2: Eights wear their badassery on their sleeves while twos suppress that side of themselves.
8 vs 3: Eights view themselves as animalistic where that is too uncivilized for a three's self-image.
8 vs 4: Eights trivialize their emotions whereas fours amplify them.
8 vs 5: Eights have much more energy and will and aren't overwhelmed by their emotions.
8 vs 6: Eights like to feel grand and sixes don't. Eights often see the need for clarity as weakness and deny it.
8 vs 7: Eights will control people if necessary to avoid being controlled whereas sevens are more carefree.
8 vs 9: Eights invite conflict whereas nines don't.
Type Nine(Instinctive Triad)
Nines are the most patient and tolerant types in the enneagram. They have an innate belief that other people are similar to them underneath in a way they can't explain that makes them anything but megalomanic. They are truly accepting of peoples' faults and are biased to give others the benefit of the doubt. They are good listeners and one can talk to them about almost anything. They are able to see where others are coming from and can genuinely sympathize with what it feels like to not be listened to. They can make people feel good about even the deepest gloom.
They are easygoing and low-maintainence. They enjoy relaxing and letting their minds wander. They like immersing themselves in their hobbies and are often drawn to the outdoors. They don't impose their preferences and aren't sticklers over little things. They don't need for things to be spelled out. They are good-natured and unflappable. They have the ability to stay hopeful as well as level-headed and calm during a real crisis. Whether they are anxious, fustrated, angry, excited, or enthused, they show less than most people and appear stable no matter what.
They see being united and coming together in a positive light. They believe in "flow", whether it's going with the flow, idealizing a reality or philosophy that has flow, synchronizing themselves with the ebbs and flows of life, or being attracted to what naturally flows. They have a knack for waiting for the right time when things to come to them instead of them forcing the action. They have just enough of a positive outlook to favor letting things work out on their own but are anything but full of themselves. They have a good balance between being competitive and someone to simply hang with. All in all nines tend to be likeable.
As gut types nines are very "present" in their bodies in a naturally grounded and inert way. From being in the center of the gut triad they are saturated with enough earthy energy to make staying in their comfort zone their main priority, to the point where they block out the harshness and complications of life, and whatever doesn't "jive" with them in general. They want as much as possible for things to go smoothly and resist what bothers them. Their autonomy is important to them and a lot of things that make life more complicated aren't worth the trouble. With their instinctive energy trapped inside them they tend to stick with what's familiar, sometimes to the point of inertia and complacency. They go with the flow and are reluctant to assert their preferences outside of their comfort zone. They like feeling invited and feeding off others' energy but not to the point of no longer being able to slip in and out seamlessly. They lack strong personal boundaries in that they rarely tell people to go away so they don't want to risk a level of involvement that could lead to unwanted obligations. When they don't take the initiative to make themselves heard it often leads to a self-fulfilling prophecy of others ignoring them. They hold back their fustrations although they may not realize how much they do this.
On a much deeper level the underlying current of "anger" in gut types is traced to the eternal fustration of not being able to see themselves well due to being overly present in their bodies, similar to the fustration of groping in the dark. Inner needs like cultivating an identity have trouble being met with an unconscious sense of self, which in conjunction with being "held back" by their inertness makes it hard to get out from inside of them what they really mean and how they really feel. This constant low-idle "groping in the dark" rhythmic body-consciousness from which fustration and anger springs is the primary backdrop of the "overly present in their body" gut triad, similar to anxiety and shame for the head and image triads respectively. Although nines may deny their annoyance and irritation as forms of anger, they loathe being pushed or bothered, and especially anything that even faintly smells of obligation. Like eights and ones a nine's underlying fustration is there but instead gets redirected into less visceral forms like stubbornness and digging in their heels. If they are dragged into doing something they grit their teeth and make the best of it. Nines have an easier time accessing sadness, fear, hurt, confusion, numbness, than anger itself though ironically they get mad at themselves for saying yes when they didn't mean to.
Nines being very present in their bodies comes at the expense of having a conscious sense of "self" or awareness of having a persona. This makes them seem the least "put on" and adds to their likeability. On the flip side this lack of an identity makes them prone to self-neglect and introjecting aspects of others without them realizing it. That's why nines have difficulty vocalizing what they want or how they are feeling. When they say yes to the possibility of something in general others misinterpret that as committing to a real yes. They also have difficulty saying no with enough conviction for others to get the message that it's non-negotiable, especially when they feel pushed to defend and justify the no to someone who refuses to take no for an answer. This is a source of fustration for them and only adds to why they think communicating their wants and needs isn't worth the trouble. In an external sense nines tend to believe "everything will turn out fine"..."no need to get panicky"..."there are ways to work around that and we'll find them", while on an internal level nines have lowered expectations and are less positive thinking. They tend to see a bland neutral world with many shades of grey and prefer to be positive as they find negativity draining. That is why nines are more positive outlook than pure optimists like sevens.
Nines see the waves of conflict between them and others larger and more treacherous than they really are. They can be unnerved by focused negative energy and to a lesser extent relentlessness. What others see as a spirited discussion they see as a needlessly arguementative atmosphere. They don't like it when people feel compelled to fight over stuff in raised voices rather than try to discuss and merely understand each other. They feel people interrupt them and never give them an opportunity to say something important. They settle for an illusion that if they don't invite conflict or rock the boat everything will be okay. They bury their anger and fustration and are happy that their boat is still floating even if it's just drifting out of inertia. Steering the boat through problems would require a sense of direction so they are content to let it drift along. By ignoring problems they make them worse which causes them to ignore them even more and a negative feedback loop ensues. When there's too much swept under the rug to "numb out" any longer they finally erupt. This takes others aback and reinforces to them that anger is bad. On a more subconscious level they try to neutralize their anger by seeing the good in people.
Much of a nine's issues surface in relationships where it's about two people getting what they want from each other. It's not uncommon for nines to seem apathetic and invest less of themselves in something to protect themselves emotionally in case things go bad. To others they can seem emotionally disconnected or "numbed out". In relationships they are often able to shrug off disappointments easier because they had already left internally to some degree. It's not a matter of them not being accepting enough for if anything they hold out too much hope. They feel that people ignore them as well as don't pay attention or listen to them. Once they've determined things are passed the point of no return, they try to get the other person to leave by being unavailable and unappealing so that they have a guilt-free conscience. They don't think they make waves or invoke strong feelings in others. This way they confirm to themselves that they are invisible enough to slip in and out of situations without making enough waves to be responsible for whatever happens. In prematurely resigning themselves to being less visible they underestimate the effect they have on others and are surprised at how blindsided close ones can be.
Because nines are less "present" on the inside their cognition has less "form" or "definition" and therefore less of the restrictions that accompany them. This enables nines to gloss over negative scenarios just enough to think they can live a simple and easy life without disruptions, provided they don't invite conflict that could lead to estrangement from others(9w1), or make life more difficult for themselves(9w8). They especially fear being separated from loved ones(9w1), or losing loved ones permanently(9w8). Emphasizing they are distinctly separate individuals goes against their ego in not having self-importance(9w1), or in their self-importance not mattering(9w8).
With their ability to subtly gloss over what's uncomfortable to think about nines are able to drown out what disturbs their peace of mind(9w1), or their rhythm(9w8). While the seven's jumping-the-gun cognition makes them clearly see positive scenarios before the future can disprove them, the nine's more elastic cognition makes them block out what they consider disruptive. Due to having less "form" or "definition" their cognition is often more in symbols and images and other things of a less conscious nature than concrete words. They can be complacent and selectively not remember things. Any one thing can possibly lead to anything, for unlike fives there are no dead ends or other cognitive restrictions to their thinking process. They tend to explain things in stories where one thought naturally flows to another. This type of internal wiring though can make it harder to discriminate between what is essential and what isn't, and makes it more difficult to find their calling in life and set priorities. Although their ability to see many shades of grey gives them a talent for mediating others' disputes, it makes it harder to isolate what they really want in life.
In an everchanging world they are reluctant to commit on the spot as they feel a need to have something "jive" with them to tell if they really want it or not. They fear being swept up in the wrong thing and the obligations that come with it..."do I really want this or not?" Enough stress makes them hunker down and avoid everything as well as numb out. "Why bother?"..."which way to go?..."it doesn't really matter does it?"..."I don't know so I'll stay here and hope it goes away." Therefore their top priority remains to be as comfortable as possible with what's familiar, internally as well as externally. To achieve this their more amorphous cognition makes them block out what is outside of their comfort zone, particularly the harshness and complications of life.
In enneagram theory nines are instinctive(gut) center primary at the expense of their thinking and identity centers. This leads them to become more "checked out" and numb to their feelings in response to conflict or another stessor, as well as overfocus on living comfortably at the expense of critical thinking beyond their comfort zone and a developed identity. However a sense of self even if it's false helps one "get out there" and have one's self-perception and version of reality regularly tested. On a deeper level nines take pride in their invisibility as otherwise it would be too much of a blow for their invisibility to be "confirmed" by others on top of not being able to see themselves. Twisting their perceived invisibility into a strength also enables them to use it as an excuse to do whatever they have to do to stay in their comfort zone. On a deeper level they want to be stay in their comfort zone and avoid taking responsibility for their true needs and desires. A person needs to be a part of themselves before they are a part of anything though. Hence nines need to see themselves as distinctly seperate to connect with greater humanity.
Nines attempt to reach a state of premature comfort and/or enlightenment. Seeing friction and a lack of fluidity in eights and ones next to them may awaken some nines to the possibility that an easy life without disruptions may lead to missing out on essential parts of the human experience like being involved. Other nines may immerse themselves in activities to feel more alive to counteract inertia. Yet other nines may be surprisingly intellectual and even indulge in introspection, though the latter is usually on their terms. Similar to sixes there can be a wide range of nines. While it's not uncommon for nines to seem like fours, fives, sixes, and sevens even, what all nines have in common is presuming that things will be okay if they stay in their comfort zone by minimizing conflict and tension as well as blocking out the harshness and complications of life, numbing out what's unpleasant, an attraction to "flow" or willingness to go with the flow, and an underdeveloped sense of identity so that they often feel "invisible".
To get healthier nines need to wean themselves off autopilot mode or away from any delusion that they can ascend to a nirvana-like state without going through the arduous process of figuring out who they are and what they really want in life. They need to accept the reality that emotional pain cannot be numbed or escaped and instead comes with simply being present. They then need to learn to put themselves out there and allow for the discomfort that comes from being more emotionally honest and engaged with others. They need to stand by their own convictions and accept the risk that they will find conflict and come up against others' opinions. To live a more honest life they have to lay it out there and accept that whatever happens happens. If others reject their right to see things the way they do they are rejecting their truth which is unacceptable. Thus conflict can finally lead to closure. Once they see that anger is conviction in their truth they can see it as a constructive force that they could and should experience in realtime. When healthy nines are able to stay focused and rational during anger and let it run its natural course. They can then utulize their strength at seeing the merits of others' views without losing themselves in the process. With new self-assertion victories their sense of identity is developed enough to enable them to escape inertia instead of pain. They can become more "alive" and begin the positive feedback loop of engaging life more fully, releasing the logjam of instinctive energy that's trapped inside them.
The instinctive triad seems to "just know" compared to the relatively ungrounded cognition of other types so being in the center nines present an interesting paradox. They are more in touch with less conscious processes and the collective unconscious, yet have a tendency to be disengaged and subtly gloss over things that go against their preferred way of seeing reality. They have a knack for going with the flow and waiting for things to develop instead of forcing the action, but are also more prone to seeing what they want to see and living in their own bubble. Being in the center of the instinctive triad they are saturated with enough of the less conscious gut energy(not to be confused with not being intellectual) that it can be difficult to overcome their inertia and "get up and go". It's similar to sixes who "what if" so much they fake themselves out and threes who try too hard to hit the right notes with people.
9w8 is about calmness(nine) from a position of strength(eight). They choose to be calm as opposed to feeling they have to maintain being calm to avoid conflict or estrangement like a 9w1. They don't invite conflict but don't shy away from it either as they nip conflict in the bud as quickly as possible. They are the most "chill" of the instinctive triaders. They have the best balance in their personal boundaries as they are halfway in between being a doormat and dominating others. This is why they are generally the most likeable of all subtypes.
9w8 is called the "comfort-seeker" and wants to make life easier for themselves. They are firmly grounded in their bodies with an emphasis on being physically comfortable. Hardly anything bothers them. They aren't nearly as hard on themselves as 9w1s. They are easygoing but can be direct with others if forced out of their comfort zone as they are much more assertive than their 9w1 siblings. While they have a bias towards letting things work out on their own they have no problem stepping in and settling things.
9w8s have an ego in being grounded in reality. They pride themselves in being simple regular people. They take pleasure in noticing when there isn't any point to discussing something, often to the extent of exhibiting a "who cares" apathy. Asserting their self-importance certainly falls in that category. While they are realistic about themselves they have a tendency to be underestimated by others. Like eights they play down and trivialize what's not worth dwelling on as "no big deal". Not getting what they want is also declared "no big deal" and therefore not that important. They tend to be attracted to the outdoors and other physical activities. They mainly fear permanently losing loved ones.
9w8s are more genial and practical. They are significantly less withdrawn than 9w1s. Although they are less intuitive than 9w1s, they have a natural sense of rhythm for the ebb and flow of things around them. They have an ability to make anyone like them even when they are being irreverent and mischevious. They have an "it's all good" attitude as nothing appears to bother them. In response to a prank they might go "nice one" whereas a 9w1 would initially seem dazed and taken aback before saying it's alright. 9w8s have an overt(eight) haze(nine) in comparison to the more repressed(one) haze(nine) of 9w1s. Like all 9s they have trouble expressing anger directly and become less focused when they do. Their 8 wing though makes them more able to blow off steam by expressing anger physically at least, like throwing stuff in fustration.
9w1 is about keeping their inner peace(nine) intact(one). They avoid conflict externally and the reality of that conflict internally. They see conflict as an endless web of which any path could lead to estrangement so they hold their anger inside. They suppress their rough edges and conceal disagreeableness to seem accomodating. They have trouble saying no gracefully: "what do you mean?"..."answer to what?"..."I'm flattered you asked but I'll have to think about that as I have something else I gotta do"..."me participating would likely make no difference so you'd be better off asking someone else". They may also feel emotionally unsafe wanting something that's counter to the wants of the people around them. They'll either be wishy-washy and try to change the subject or find a way to go along while feeling they were sucked in. Basically they trade their comfort for others' comfort and hope and assume that by ignoring conflict they will maintain their emotional tranquility. To a 9w1 hope and assume are often close enough to be interchangeable. If they are in a safe and comfortable enviornment they can better explore disagreement.
9w1s are sensitive and self-effacing as well as gentle and loving. While they have issues with expressing anger they can also feel crippled with anxiety. They suppress or ignore their wants due to fear. They "cocoon" under stress and their "positive outlook" is a defense against a deep-seated belief of an inability to have an influence or impact. The delayed anger responses from 9w1s result from an excessive buildup of intense long-term anxiety that never got dealt with. They are much harder on themselves than 9w8s. They are very sensitive to criticism because they take it as a judgement on them as people. This is why praise can have such a positive effect on them. The key is to try to relieve their anxiety directly and then anger issues will resolve themselves.
9w1s have an "ego in having no ego", as opposed to the 9w8 ego in being able to be apathetic to what's pointless. They can be unusually intuitive and cerebral as well as creative and fantastical. They have a knack for synthesizing various theories and viewpoints. Sometimes they can seem like 4s and 5s except they idealize "flow" and don't take things to the same extremes. It's tough to narrow down the possibilities and discriminate the way they see everything as interconnected. They feel ambivalent and out of touch with what their instincts tell them. They repress and ignore negative urges in themselves but get fustrated with those who disturb the peace. In response to being disturbed themselves they might initially be taken aback or dazed and then say everything is okay.
9w1s are high-minded types who idealize peace, harmony, healing, and union with others. They mainly fear being seperated from loved ones and on some level they feel like they don't matter as a distinctly seperate person. "United we stand divided we fall" resonates with them because on a deeper level seperation is equivalent to annihilation. They dream about formlessness as the perfect reality, where one is freed from struggles of the ego and anything else that detracts from fluidity. They feel drawn to being connected with the vastness and beauty of nature and are attracted to things like large bodies of water and celestial entities in the sky. The Way of the Tao is very 9w1, as are other eastern philosophies that aspire to a formless and egoless nirvana. "The answer will come to you in time my son" wiseman archetype is also very 9w1. In such a reality unnecessary details, pain, and anxiety are either drowned out or work themselves out on their own.
9 vs 1: Nines aren't aggressive like ones are. They lack the one's constant need for self-improvement and complex around perfectionism.
9 vs 2: Nines don't have the two's controlling tendencies nor do nines have the two's ego strength.
9 vs 3: Nines have an inhibition against taking the initiative to make themselves heard unlike threes. Threes focus on meeting expectations and personal goals while nines care about avoiding obligations. "Seize the day!" doesn't resonate with nines like threes.
9 vs 4: Nines don't use seperation from others to exalt themselves like fours do. Fours like to bring attention to themselves unlike nines. Fours unlike nines are comfortable taking the initiative to make themselves heard.
9 vs 5: Nines are drawn to comforting thoughts as opposed to fives who are mentally intense, strong-minded, and arguementative, and drawn to disturbing thoughts. Fives like to argue for sport while nines don't want to bother with winning an arguement since it means getting angry which feels unpleasant. Fives unlike nines put a premium on what they say being well thought-out. Nines have a bias to simplify whereas fives have a bias to complexify. Nines have an elastic cognition while fives are constrained by their internal logic. Nine thinking is involved with generalities whereas five thinking is highly concentrated, penetrating, and almost microscopic in its focus. Nines are more "present" physically. Nines see being united and coming together in a positive light.
9 vs 6: Nines see sixes are too wound up and need to chill out while sixes see nines as asleep. Nines have much more elastic cognition. Effective communication isn't as important to nines as it is to sixes who need things to be spelled out. Nines are comfortable letting things happen on their own while sixes notice what can go wrong. Sixes being reactive types find it much harder to shield their annoyance from others. When nines feel smaller than their internal resources to deal with a situation, they get to a "what's the point anymore?"paralysis. Sixes lack the presumption of nines.
9 vs 7: Nines find it much easier to adjust their wants with what they are likely to get. Sevens don't feel invisible at all and easily take the initiative to make themselves heard. Unlike sevens, nines hold back their cockiness until they feel comfortable.
9 vs 8: Nines don't invite conflict like eights do. Eights have a much easier time expressing anger and don't feel invisible at all.
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Re: Youtubeable Exemplars for Each of the 108 Subtype and Stacking Combinations
« Reply #29 on: September 14, 2009, 12:53:21 PM »
Type 1(Instinctive Triad)
Ones idealize a moral purity that both transcends reality and is the foundation of it. They see the world through their perceptual filter of how things could be improved, the ideal as opposed to the real, which leads to a constant dissatisfaction with reality. They are eternally frustrated with all the flaws around them and with their eye for improvement feel it is their mission to fix them. They take pride in not wavering in their convictions no matter how unpopular and in resolutely pointing out the right way everybody ought to abide by. When everyone adheres to the same rules/ideals/principles there is fairness and order...and when people break the rules ones truly resent that. "You can't do that because if everyone did what you did..." is a common type one stream of consciousness.
Ones have the strongest inner critic of all types and justify their moral authority to "point out the right way" by constantly putting more effort into being good or virtuous than others. Due to their strict superego there is no type that feels as guilty for being "bad" and harder on themselves to be perfectly good. They are not just conscientious disciplined competent and reliable people who hold themselves accountable to do what they are supposed to do. They go further in the self-control department by continually repressing their "dirty" desires and restricting their indulgences. The more self-control they consistently maintain the more upright they are and the more they've earned both their right to point out how things should be and their duty to hold their enviornment as well as themselves to ideals.
Ones being perfectionists tend to be uptight and anal-retentive about things and aren't the easiest people to get along with. They practice what they preach however which many find sincere and refreshing in an image-dominated society filled with hypocrisy. They continually hold themselves to their own high standards. They do their duty and are dedicated to standing up for what's right through thick and thin as those are extensions of their perseverance. They are also the least likely type to be full of themselves, so much so one gets the sense that they couldn't promote themselves even if they tried.
Anger in particular is an emotion ones have problems with. Ones pride themselves in being stoic and see emotional expression especially spontaneous outbursts as a lack of self-control, but being in the instinctive triad their dominant emotion is anger. Thus a one's relationship to their anger is like a self-imposed noose around their personal volcano that wants to erupt at the slightest thing that they see is wrong around them. The result is a seeping out of resentment agitation and overcriticalness unbeknownst to the one that others find very palpable.
In enneagram theory type ones are (instinctive/gut)-(valuing/feeling/image)-(thinking/head) in that order. Due to their primary instinctive center ones focus on living out their convictions and neglect to use their tiertary thinking center when it calculates an exception to the rules. That's when they turn their thinking center over to their superego to resolve the conflict. Turning themselves over to their superego also causes them to irrationally overvalue self-control which makes them take pride in repressing their "dirty" desires and restricting their indulgences. Ones think they are more rational than they really are due to their stoic nature. Much distortion springs from their overvaluing self-control. This is the root of a one's contractive temperment.
In the lower to average levels of health ones have unrealistic notions of moral purity and self-control that are unattainable. This leads them to having secret indulgences such that their uprightness seems more than it is. Ones seeing their own hypocrisy makes them redouble their efforts only to fail again. As ones get healthier there is more consistency between what they practice and what they preach because their unrealistic moral standards have paradoxically loosened. They realize breaking some rules are okay and it's okay to cut loose a bit. Philosophically speaking the growth path for ones involves eschewing their moral purism in favor of some type of moral humanism.
1w9s see allowing unnecessary self-interested emotions as detracting from their objectivity. They have a greater focus on abstract and impersonal ideals that can withstand the test of time and endure an imperfect world just as they themselves consistently "withstand" and "endure". They are more stoic and cerebral and may theorize about how things should inherently be, the "perfect" virtues to adhere to, the "perfect" way to live by. It's no accident that many philosophers are 1w9s as constructing systems of thought based on their "moral postulates" is textbook 1w9 thinking, starting with assumptions they "just know"(instinctive) to be right(valuing/feeling) to build systems of thought(thinking). The principal author of the Declaration of Independence, Thomas Jefferson, was also a 1w9. The downside of their stronger thinking function compared to their two-winged siblings is experiencing more internal conflicts between what they "reason out"(thinking) and what they "just know to be true"(instinctive). This causes their superego to step in more and lead to a more repressed personality that makes them harder on themselves than others. Spock is a fictional 1w9 and Vulcan history is also very 1w9: "By the 4th century, Vulcan was tearing itself apart. Their rampant emotions combined with a hostile warrior culture led to many wars using atomic weapons. But out of this came a philosopher named Surak, who would propose leading a life governed by logic rather than emotion. His teachings quickly spread, and Vulcan finally began a shift towards peace."
1w2s in contrast sees the 1w9 focus as too detached from humanity and have a more practical morality focus, for example things between people like ethics and etiquette. The 1w2's focus on where to fix things is more in the trenches due to their 2 wing. They value connections between others above abstract ideals in terms of application of principles. They are more "human" which makes them better suited towards activism than philosophy. They take social issues more seriously and define fairness and what is right less in absolute terms and more what they see is equitable for others. This is why they are said to be natural advocates. In comparison to the 1w9, the 1w2 has less internal conflict between thought and action and feels more compelled than burdened. 1w2s feel more compelled to address what needs fixing in the shared interpersonal space between them and others. They see this as their duty. This combined with using the moral highground to establish and protect personal boundaries between themselves and others makes them seem more authoritarian. While they are harder on others around them and can seem condescending, they are also very hard on themselves. They would have a hard time looking at themselves in the mirror if they didn't take action.
1 vs 2: Ones are much harder on themselves than twos. Twos can think highly of themselves merely by seeing themselves as considerate of others. Even when twos are self-critical, they have more of a pride in being self-critical. Twos being image-center first won't hesitate to have outbursts of emotion, which seems like a lack of self-control to the one.
1 vs 3: Ones couldn't promote themselves to save their lives while that's the three's gift should they choose to use it. Threes also have much stronger egos and are sometimes willing to cut corners. In the off-chance ones do self-promote it's for the greater good than personal benefit.
1 vs 4: A one's strict superego precludes them from emotional displays and indulging like a four. Ones unlike fours aren't reactive, they have to look before they leap before reacting emotionally. A four sees being emotional as authentic while a one sees that as a lack of self-control.
1 vs 5: Fives unlike ones don't need to adhere to standards that apply to everyone to think they are good enough. Unlike fives the way ones are rational is tied to self-control. Ones find it easy to engage the world while fives find it draining. Fives don't need to obey the rules while ones are complient to the rules.
1 vs 6: Ones unlike sixes do not worry and are very sure of themselves. They know what their purpose is in the world. They "just know" way things should be and they pride themselves in not wavering in their convictions. Ones have a drive for self-improvement that sixes don't have.
1 vs 7: Ones are inhibited. Sevens are anything but. Sevens do not believe in restricting themselves.
1 vs 8: Ones are contractive while eights are expansive. Eights are very comfortable making exceptions to the rules when judging people. Eights also find it easy to exempt themselves from following any rules. Unlike eights, ones need to follow their rules to consider themselves moral people.
1 vs 9: Ones are tight while nines are easygoing. If the one's dedication to their cause is strong enough they will view losing connection with people outside their family as necessary sacrifices for the greater good while for a nine there is nothing worse than estrangement.
Tuesday, June 7, 2011
Typewatch Enneagram Type Descriptions
Typewatch Enneagram Type Descriptions