Understanding the 8w9 (A comprehensive guide)

In this brief guide, we will discuss the elusive 8w9 personality in the enneagramm, as well as other concepts related to it.

Definition of 8w9

The 8w9 is a blend of the core traits of enneagram 8 and some of the 9, and they may be characterized by the tendency to be strong-willed and protective of those around them, and a confident, tough approach to challenges and conflict, as well as a strong desire to restore normalcy.

The 8w9 is also known as the Diplomat, as they tend to take a softer approach to conflict than their pure 8 counterparts.

Key Traits that may be seen in the 8w9 maybe confidence, patience, and protectiveness. 

In addition, despite the tough behavior, the 8w9 may be more gentle and subdued than the other eight types, and they won’t have as much outer behavior as the type 8s.

In fact, these people are likely to be more introverted than other personality types, and they are likely to go about their peacekeeping purposes much gentler than others.

The 8w9 may also dislike taking orders from other people, but they may also be more calm and laid-back than the other variant of the Type 8 personality, which is the 8 wing 7.

The 8w9 may often be seen struggling to openly share emotions, and they may have difficulty voicing their affection, but in some cases, they may not have as much difficulty expressing their discontent or displeasure, as they work to avoid the anxiety that may come from being harmed in some way.

Like type 8, the 8w9 may have a fear of being controlled by others and they may constantly and neurotically seek autonomy and independence.

Basic Desires of 8w9

The basic desire of 8w9 is to guard themselves against threats and make sure they are invulnerable at all times, and they may display a rather strong need to control their own destiny.

This is not an adult trait that will only be seen in a real-world scenario, the 8w9 will likely show the need for autonomy and self-reliance by starting to assert independence at a young age.

The 8w9 seeks to defend themselves by building emotional walls and denying entry to most, save a select few.

The primary and basic desire of the 8w9 is that they seek to appear strong, and they may often subconsciously believe that being too emotional or being too sentimentally available will make them seem weak.

Basic fears of 8w9

The basic fear of the 8w9 is that they might be under someone’s control or be vulnerable in some way, and their sense of inner peace might be tied to this feeling due to the wing 9 traits they have.

This may lead them to constantly steel themselves against the world and make them very hard to get to know or help, should they need it at all.

The 8w9 may fear that showing emotion may make them weak or open them up to hurt, which is something they need to avoid at all times, which they may do by putting up a strong front despite how they feel inside.

The basic fear of 8w9 may also push them into avoiding situations in which they have less control, and they may generally prefer to be in positions of leadership.

Strengths and Weaknesses of 8w9

Some strengths and weaknesses of 8w9 individuals are discussed below:


  • They have the ability to see different perspectives
  • They are strong and ruthless when they need to deal with challenges
  • They can be very head-on in their approach to new things
  • They are naturally energetic and confident
  • They have no trouble leading others through support and guidance, and maybe even strictness
  • They are confident and disciplined leaders
  • They don’t feel the need to display unnecessary emotion and therefore they are genuine when they do shoe affection or praise
  • They are good at getting people to follow them and command respect naturally
  • They fiercely protect those they care about
  • They always give attention to the needs of others
  • They try to find the best way out of conflict into peace


  • They may often struggle to control their temper
  • They may have trouble following people
  • They may feel boxed in by small roles
  • They may stifle those around them with their strictness
  • They can be stubborn or rigid
  • They hate rules or orders from authority figures
  • They can seem overly confident or emotionally detached
  • They may have trouble resolving emotional conflicts
  • They may not be good at sharing things with the people close to them
  • They may not be receptive to help, preferring to do things their own way

If you’re facing this, it may be a good idea to seek the help of a therapist or other mental health professional. You can find a therapist at BetterHelp who can help you learn how to cope and address it.

8w9 vs 9w8

9w8 may have a tendency to give in and continue the things the way others want to do them, whereas 8w9 may give you a great deal of resistance if that is not something they agree with and feel you are pushing on them, as 8w9 is driven by the core traits of type 8 whereas 9w8 is driven by 9.

8w9 has a tendency to be assertive and aggressive despite their need to avoid conflict but 9w8 might keep the assertive and aggressive bit last.

The 8w9 is also likely to be a bear-like protector, maybe very vicious on those that mean harm but warm and cuddly with those that call for their affection, while the 9w8 is likely to be the soft cushion that offers more support than protection without too much roaring.

The primary difference between 8w9 and 9w8 is that while 8w9 is more focused on being in charge of their territory, the 9w8 is more fixated on being left alone.

9w8 has more trouble dealing with external pressure and the 8w9 deals more strictly with the inner fears that control them, and their sense of inner peace is not as tied to the outside.

8w9 vs 8w7

Where the 8w9 is more stable and protective, seeking invulnerability and authority positions, the 8w7 is a novelty seeker, going forth and conquering new things, forever seeking excitement and newness.

The 8w9 is likely to be an introverted person, whereas the 8w7 is most likely playful and extroverted.

8w9s tend to be the boundary setters of the enneagram and maybe more agreeable until you cross their boundaries, whereas the 8w7s may be the conqueror of the enneagram and may act as the boundary-pushers, forever trying to expand their relational, social and financial territory. 

8w7s actively seek to be dominant, looking for positions of power with energy,  while 8w9s seek to be more invulnerable than actively dominating, they just want to avoid being submissive, which may be their version of the conflict.

The 8w7 may also have more explosive anger than the 8w9, who is more likely to experience seething, smoldering sort of anger that seeps into everything.

Enneagram 8w9 in love

Enneagram 8w9 in love is usually a wonderful and protective thing, they will be chivalrous (women and men alike), be attentive to you if that is what you want, and try to make sure you are well at all times, however, they can also be hard to reach emotionally, they will have a tough time sharing things, and you may need to deal with an aloof, detached sort of person when they are dealing with conflict.

The enneagram 8w9 in love may have a strong push/pull tendencies, that is, they pull in what they like strongly and push away what they don’t like just as hard, which may make for some explosive and interesting situations.

They will likely have difficulty being vulnerable, so when an enneagram 8w9 is in love, they need to be given time to come around and trust their partner, rushing them will serve no one as they might see it as you encroaching on their space, and they might stand rigid as a rock as first, waiting for you to back down, and if you don’t, you might scare them off.

To get an enneagram 8w9 in love to trust you and open up to you, you may try to do the same with them, tell them that you trust them and show them that as well, make sure you become a little vulnerable with them so they have the belief that they are still in the position of authority in some way, that they still have control.

The enneagram 8w9 may also have difficulty expressing emotions, so you may need to look at what their language of love is, and see if you can decipher their actions or behavior to know how they feel because they might be expressing it in different, non-conventional ways.

Enneagram 8w9 female

The Enneagram 8w9 female may have to suppress her inner anger and frustration and this only makes it worse over time, so these women need to learn to let things go easier.

However, enneagram 8w9 women are some of the strongest women on the enneagram and they are not much different from the men, they will show the same emotional detachment and tendency to avoid submission of any kind, and a tendency to want to be invulnerable.

Personality traits rarely change according to gender, at least not by much, and so in an enneagram, 8w9 female as well shame about the fact that you are angry will just keep that anger stuck inside of them and eventually turn inward, just as it would in an enneagram 8w9 male.

The enneagram 8w9 female is also likely to feel offended or upset at being analyzed or “figured out” and may see it as an invasion of her privacy, and this is also likely to be a person that might have issues with the society seeing her as a function of her gender rather than that of herself.

INTJ 8w9

An INTJ 8w9 is likely to be an introverted, stable individual who places a high premium on the processes fo thinking and look at the environment around them and acting accordingly.

These people are likely to have difficulty with the emotional expression of any kind and they may often have trouble with impulsive or spontaneous behavior of any type.

8w9s are quiet even in general, and they may be disdainful of overly fleshy indulgences, and they are likely to be more calmly aware of power dynamics, and therefore they make for better INTJs than the other type 8 wing, which is the party-loving, impulsive 8w7.

The INTJ 8w9 may always be composed and aware of who has the power in the room; rarely ruffled and afraid.

One might see that the iNTJ 8w9 is capable of withstanding a great amount of pain without complaint, and they may show disgust over weakness and cowardice, eventually stepping in to guard them despite this.


In this brief guide, we discussed the elusive 8w9 personality in the enneagram, as well as other concepts related to it. Please feel free to reach out with any questions or comments you may have.

If you’ve enjoyed the ”Understanding the 8w9” mentioned above, I would recommend you to take a look at ”Enneagram Type 8w9 Childhood” too.

Frequently Asked Questions (FAQs): 8w9

What is an 8w9?

The enneagram 8w9 is a type with traits of 8 and 9 and may have a basic fear of being hurt by others. 

The 8w9 may avoid situations in which they have less control, and they make actively seek positions of authority to make sure they are safe and not at risk of being vulnerable.

Which Enneagram type is most common?

Enneagram Type Nine is usually thought of as being the most common enneagram type.

How do you deal with Enneagram Type 8?

To deal with an Enneagram type 8 one needs to use more diplomatic language, try to not challenge them overtly.

Showing a little respect to the enneagram type 8 is good, but do not show them so much reverence that they start feeling like they are always right and that it would be okay for them to steamroll you.

Who Should an Enneagram 8 marry?

The Enneagram 8 should marry someone who is a little more light-hearted and fun, and someone who won’t seek to challenge them in an authoritative way, like type 6, the loyalist, or type 9, the peacemaker.

Type 8 may also get along with type 2 but type 2 might find them too cold or detached and it may not be great for the fear of insecurity that the type 2 nurses.



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