This article will explore each of the enneagram types by highlighting their major personality traits, strengths and weaknesses as well as their basic fear and desire.
The 9 Enneagram Types
Here are the 9 enneagram types:
- The Reformer – Type 1
- The Helper – Type 2
- The Achiever – Type 3
- The Individualist – Type 4
- The Investigator – Type 5
- The Loyalist – Type 6
- The Enthusiast – Type 7
- The Challenger – Type 8
- The Peacemaker – Type 9
Let us take a look at these types in detail!
The Reformer – Type 1
The enneagram type 1 is also known as the Reformer because of their desire to change the world for the better – they believe they are on a mission to set things right! They are rational and idealistic and can be described by the terms self disciplined, purposeful, possibly perfectionists and hold values high.
These individuals are always on the move to make things better but they have this fear that they may make a mistake. Nonetheless they strive to produce perfect output and this may make them over critical of not only their own self but that of others too. This also causes them stress and anxiety as they are worried things may not go as planned – which is usually the case when it comes to life!
People with this enneagram type know the meaning of sacrifice. They may seem very disciplined to others but they are burning with passion and desire.
These individuals believe in values and strong morals hence they have the fear that they will be corrupted by their innate desires and feelings. They feel they will become evil or defected and abandon the mission they have undertaken.
Deep down, this type wants to achieve the perfect balance in life where they feel at peace and complete but at the same time embark on their mission to a better world. They want to be good and have integrity and be honest not only to themself but to others as well.
The Helper – Type 2
An enneagram type 2 is also known as the Helper because of their desire to help others and make their tasks easier or remove any burden upon them. They are very caring and have great interpersonal skills that allows them to interact with people to help them and understand their situation and needs. Personality traits used to describe type 2s include possessive, demonstrative, helpful and people pleasing.
People with this type are very empathetic and have profound emotional intelligence thus it makes them more approachable and appealing to people who are in need of help and find it difficult to ask. They are friendly, generous and self sacrificing hence they overlook their own needs to fulfill those of others!
Type enneagrams are scared they will be left alone and unloved. They want to belong somewhere especially in someone’s heart. They feel that the only way they can do this is to feel worthy. How do they feel worthy? Well they have this innate core belief that they must be helpful in some way to another person – they must be able to help them get work done, provide the resources they need or be there for them in their difficult times.
The desire of enneagram type 2s stems from their fear that they will be left alone and unloved. Also, they feel they will be worthless not only in their own eyes but those of others too. Hence they want to be able to be in a position that they can help other people and they will strive persistently to do so. They want to be recognized and appreciated for the help they provide and also be loved in return. This is the basic desire of enneagram type 2s that drives them to work hard to become close to others – a bit too close sometimes!
The Achiever – Type 3
A type 3 enneagram is also called the ‘Achiever’ because of their desire that drives them to accomplish the big things in life. They are very hard working; putting in much time and energy in their work in order to achieve the success they desire!
These individuals are known to be very confident and have high levels of self efficacy, determination and the will to compete with others. However, they are also concerned about how others think of them and their image in the public which is sometimes very stressful.
The basic desire of an Achiever is to feel valuable and worthy of attention. They want others to know about their achievements and appreciate them or show them recognition in some way. People with this type usually define the term success according to others views and opinions and they work towards this so called success to gain respect and status in the society.
The basic fear of type 3 enneagrams arises from not achieving what they desire deeply. They want to be worthy of the love and recognition of others; they want to achieve great things that benefit or impress people and hence be celebrated by them. However, deep down, they have this fear that they may fail and not achieve their dreams or successes and this scares and depresses them especially when others are excelling in their life and the eyes of others. This inculcates a sense of jealousy in type 3 enneagrams.
The Individualist – Type 4
They are also known as the individualist because of their desire to be self-sufficient and do things on their own terms. Being dramatic innately, expressive and and sensitive describes them very well. Such individuals are very honest, creative and remain reserved and personal however they do long to connect with others. What prevents this? Their fear of being vulnerable or abandoned hence they tend to keep a distance.
Another highlighting feature of such personalities is that they dislike the ordinary lifestyles people have most probably because they feel they cannot achieve something like this in their life.
Type 4 enneagrams are confused about who they really are or what beliefs and values define them. They fear not having an identity or self worth. They feel as though they are not benefitting society and have no place in it. Such individuals become a victim of self pity and self indulgence and want to stay inside their thoughts.
Their basic desire stems from their fear; they want to discover themself and hence possess an identity. They want to be known for who they are and be visible in the eyes of others so maybe they can connect with them and experience the life of the ordinary and live the dream they imagine.
The Investigator – Type 5
These individuals are very much interested in learning things that are relevant to their area of interest. They will investigate its elements and try to gather as much information as they can! The enneagram type 5 is alert, innovative but secretive at the same time.
The type 5 enneagram has an innate need to learn continuously. They want more and more information and want to increase their reservoir of knowledge. It bothers them if they have an interest in a certain thing or phenomena however, they are not able to learn more about it. Their curiosity is indeed a problem for them. At the same time, this desire to learn more about their interests distracts them from other things in their life especially the practical ones.
Another defining trait of this enneagram type is that they want to be different from others in what they learn or study.
The Basic Fear – Type 5 Enneagram
The basic fear of these enneagrams is that they will become useless in the sense that they have no skill or knowledge. They are scared they will not be competent in any field of life which they can master. The fear is not associated with showing off but to give their own self a sense of assurance that they have a skill they know very well and it makes them stand out from others.
The Basic Desire – Type 5 Enneagram
Their basic desire stems from their fear of not being competent. The desire is to learn so that they are competent and skilled in a certain area that is of much interest to them and not so common or known amongst others. They desire to be different in the knowledge they possess and skills they can employ. It gives them a sense of competence, capability and assurance.
The Loyalist – Type 6
A type 6 enneagram is also known as the loyalist because of their traits that include commitment and engaging with others and willing to fulfill their promises. These individuals are very hard working as well as reliable and people that can be counter on. They believe in being there for others, especially their loved ones.
The type 6 enneagram is also an excellent problem solver and they are able to see where the loopholes are, why exactly there is a problem and what possible solutions there are! They are great at bringing people together for a common cause that requires cooperation and joint resources in order to solve an issue or problem!
Basic Fear of Loyalists
The enneagram type under discussion here is fearful of losing what support, stability or guidance they have in life. They are very much dependent on others whom they not only consider close but also depend on. The reason why they are so loyal to their close ones is because they do not want to lose them. Why? These people are the ones they derive their support and guidance from. They have this belief that they do not have all the resources that they think they need to take the world on!
Basic Desire of Loyalists
The type 6 enneagram has the desire to have stable and strong relationships from where they can derive support, guidance and the strength they need to tackle their own problems in life. They want to be able to trust others and depend upon them and feel like they have someone to rely on.
This is what drives these individuals to form loyal bonds with others so they are not left alone when they are in need.
The Enthusiast – Type 7
These individuals are versatile and spontaneous! They have a lot of energy in them and they like to be in high spirits! However, by continuously working themselves out, they can get tired and become exhausted and hence lose focus. They will become distracted and lose track of the goal they had in mind. It is obvious then that they have problems with impulsiveness and impatience.
Overall, these individuals are joyful and cheerful and that is what they emanate when they are around others. At their best, they want to focus on worthy goals that use their talents and strengths.
The basic fear of this enneagram type is to be in pain. They absolutely hate pain and they do not want to be deprived in any manner. They will avoid situations where they might get hurt emotionally or physically because they do not want to deal with the experience or feeling of pain. However, because of this fear, they often miss out on worthwhile experiences.
To be satisfied and fulfilled or content is the desire of this enneagram type 7. They want to feel complete and whole so that they do not have to rely on anyone else for their needs. It is also linked to their fear of being in pain and deprived. Hence, they strive to fulfill their needs in an independent manner and wish to be in a state that renders them safe.
The Challenger – Type 8
This enneagram type can be described as confident, confrontational, decisive and assertive as well. They do not hesitate to voice out their opinions or take a stand for what they firmly believe in. Furthermore, these individuals are focused on what they want and will not stop at anything when it comes to achieving their goals or desires.
However, although they are resourceful and generally straightforward people, these enneagram types are affected by their ego and can be dominating when it comes to being around other people. They want to have what it is that makes them feel complete or whole and as we said they will do anything in their power to get it!
The Basic Fear
When it comes to enneagram type 8, their basic fear is to be controlled or manipulated by others to the extent that they end up hurting themselves. They want to be independent and in control of their own lives. What they fear is being exposed or vulnerable so that someone can take advantage of the power or influence they have over the enneagram type 8 individual.
The Basic Desire
Of course their basic desire stems from their fear of being controlled! The type 8 enneagram wants to be in control of their own life. They do not want to live in the constant fear that they will be manipulated or influenced by another being!
The Peacemaker – Type 9
This enneagram type is one that is willing to go a long way to keep peace and avoid conflict! They are generally easy going individuals who are cooperative, agreeable and tolerant as well. They prefer to compromise and agree to what others say in order to ensure smooth functioning. Hence, they are not too difficult to convince!
These individuals are also very trusting of others and easily accept what the other person says. Usually, they do not bother to go through much effort to determine what the other person says is true or not. They do this because of their personality which is to trust others but also because they do not want to get into a fight with another person.
The Basic Fear
The peacemaker or type 9 enneagram is afraid of losing those whom they are close to or surrounded by. They do not want to be left alone after a fight which they could have prevented. This is why they avoid conflict at all costs; it is not that they cannot take a stand or do not have any preferences of their own but they are afraid to lose the ones they clash with.
The Basic Desire
The type 9 enneagram wants to be in peace and avoid any type of conflict in their life. He wants to be able to operate smoothly in his environment where there is no friction and things can proceed easily.
However, sometimes they pay a high cost to avoid any conflict which results in pain. Sometimes, they distract themselves in order to not feel the pain associated with conflict. They might focus on food, watching too much content or other hobbies which may not be so healthy.
This article looked at all the 9 enneagram types and introduced them to the audience by highlighting their basic personality traits as well as their basic fear and desire.