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The Enneagram

The Enneagram is more than just a personality model, you do not just take a test and place yourself and your fellow human beings into boxes. The Enneagram gives you an answer to WHY you feel, think and act as you do. You gain the knowledge to understand your defense strategies and development paths, and thus help you get out of the box that restricts us from living a full and meaningful life. Here you get the tool to grow as a person through self-knowledge. As we become more conscious and understand ourselves better, it becomes easier to act in a more humble and understanding way towards ourselves and others.


The Enneagram is based entirely on working with ourselves, so it is important to always let each individual find his or her own way forward, at their own pace. You cannot force the Enneagram on anything, it must be self-selected. It takes the will and courage to make a personal development journey in one's life.


The Enneagram Life is based on the storytelling tradition ( The Narrative Enneagram ) which mainly comprises an educational form based on the participants taking part in interviews in panel form. By listening to a group of people within the same Enneagram type, we can more easily understand how this personality type thinks, feels and acts. We also get a simpler understanding of the different variants that exist within each personality type. Again, never forget that each individual is unique. The Narrative Enneagram includes not only the psychological parts of the model but also the spiritual and somatic patterns of each Enneagram type.


How does the Enneagram work?

The Enneagram is based on nine different personality types, here called "Enneagram types", they are descriptions of basic versions of our ego structure. The model describes the life strategies of these Enneagram types, which is meant to be a habitual way of thinking, feeling and acting. This means that we usually limit our way of looking at the world, and in the choices, we make in life. The Enneagram does not describe who we are, but how we are stuck in a typical way of dealing with and interpreting life.


To get started you need to find your type of enneagram. This can take time and is nothing we can force forward. There are several ways to find the right one. The easiest way is to start with a test, to get a feel for which Enneagram types are more likely. You can also do a Typing Interview, an interview with an Enneagram guide. The Ennneagram Life offers this, more information on this you can find during selection. For more information on different tests, read more under Enneagram tests. Furthermore, it is good to attend lectures and courses, where you get the opportunity to meet others and discuss their thoughts and thoughts together.


The nine Enneagram types

The Enneagram Arrows.jpg

The nine Enneagram types are:

1 One , the Reformer or Perfectionist

2 Two , the Helper or the Giver

3 Three, the Performer or the Deliverer

4 Four , the Individualist or the Romantic

5 Five , the Investigator or the Observer

6 Six , the Loyal Skeptic, the Skeptic or the Loyalist

7 Seven , the Enthusiast, the Entrepreneur or the Epicure

8 Eight , the Protector or the Boss

9 Nine , the Peacemaker or the Mediator

The Enneagram describes nine different ways of showing up and being motivated in the world. Each Enneagram type is usually described with one or more names, it is true that we all interpret terms a little differently, so you always have the number. The number itself has no significance, 1an is no more worthy or better than a 5a, there is no ranking.

The Enneagram types are divided into three centers, the three centers for intelligence.  

- the instinctive (body) center of intelligence

- the emotional (heart) center of intelligence

- the intellectual (head) center for intelligence


We all experience these three intelligences, but each personality type has a certain strength or home base in one of them. This primary center affects our way of being in the world. It may be a good start to study these centers to find their enneagram type. However, it can sometimes be confusing as a first with a strong inner critic can experience himself as a main type rather than a body type. But with an open mind, humility and increased self-knowledge, everything finally falls into place.


The three Body types (8,9,1) value morality and that everything is as it should be. They carry an anger over everything's imperfection and use their gut feeling as a guide in life. They have the power to set things right - and let their own internal guide tell them what should be corrected.


Eight: The Protector "What do you stand for?"
Is energetic, intense, dominant and "all or nothing" type. They are aware of righteousness and willing to fight for its cause. They do gladly take command. Anger and firmness is a natural means of expression. Can be very protective of their own and want to bring the best out of people.


Nine: The Peacemaker  “Have we heard everyone's opinion?”
Is responsive, kind, tolerant and accommodating. Pay attention to harmony and often let others decide. Follows rather than risk conflict and can be perceived as waiting. Spreads a good atmosphere and make people feel comfortable, excellent peacemakers.


One: The Perfectionist  "What needs to be done?"
Is honest, ambitious and reliable. See existence in right and wrong. Pays attention to how things can be perfect. Is critical of himself and others. Is pleased with a really good job but can easily overwork themselves, have a hard time to relax. Are often talented teachers and have great energy to help others understand things.

The three Heart types (2,3,4) value togetherness and recognition. They live through relationships and are ashamed to fail. They use different expressions for their image and personal attributes to get attention and to show that they are counted for and belong.


Two: The Helper "What can I do for you?"
Is helpful, active and generous with time, energy and things. Pay attention to other people's needs, pay less attention to their own needs. Actively goes in and supports and helps where they feel it is necessary. Pleased to be the spider in the web.


Three: The Performer "What needs to be done?"
Is confident, ambitious and energetic. Pays attention to success and identifies with their work. "You are what you do." Easily goes into high-speed until the energy is completely depleted. Image is important and they are often good at adapting to what is needed, and they are social and entertaining.


Four: The Individualist "What's missing?"
Is passionate, idealistic and often artistic and sees things in new ways. Pays attention to what is missing in themselves in comparison with others. Perceives themselves as unique and different, seeks the meaningful and finds deficiencies in everyday life. Have a great ability for compassion for others and can stay with others in hard times. 


The three Head types (5,6,7) value safety and clarity. They live a lot in their thoughts and carry a fear of not being able to control existence. They use knowledge, understanding, planning to protect themselves against the insecurities of life.


Five: The Investigator "What do we know?"
Is withdrawn, objective and experiences life at a distance rather than participates. Pays attention to understand context and to gather things and knowledge. Enjoy solitude and to think in peace and quiet. They are reliable and can be very protective when needed.


Six: The Loyal Skeptic “What can go wrong?”
Is reliable, loyal, and look for the best for the group. They experience the world as threatening and they are alert to dangers. They think systematically, often in concepts, and balance opportunities against anything that can go wrong. They are friendly and can also be an excellent leader, good at making others grow.


Seven: Enthusiasts “What more can we do?”
Am optimistic, energetic, charming and experience life as a great playground. They are attentive to experiences, constantly plan for everything pleasurable they could do. Is opportunity oriented and can be an excellent entrepreneur and provide new insight. 

Spiritual, what does it really mean?

It is not synonymous with being religious or practicing yoga or meditation. Being spiritual means living from the heart and not identifying as with one's thoughts, and not responding to feelings. Being spiritual is an awareness within you, you are the essence behind the thoughts and feelings, ie the energy and power behind the soul.

To be spiritual is an awareness, an awareness that you are so much more than just a physical body that has a personality, and that has thoughts and feelings that have been shaped by life experiences. Being spiritual is synonymous with knowing what feels right to you, and daring to question your feelings. It's about standing in its truth, even if that truth is painful. Does that mean you are questioning your identity? Yes. We need to understand where our programming and limited ways of thinking come from.

To attain spiritual awareness, you need to be ready to de-program yourself from your limiting beliefs about yourself and others. By limiting belief is meant a thought that contains a negative charged value that you perceive as truth. And what is a truth? Well, something we've been repeating for ourselves long enough to believe it.

The so-called belief circle illustrates how to easily get stuck in a thought pattern that is difficult to break and get out of.













If we speak for a long time, it will eventually become a truth for us.


The distinction between a belief and a consciousness is a distinct difference, a difference that one has to experience for oneself, as this is not something that can be said by other people, but is something that everyone must experience for themselves.

So to reach here, practicing religion, yoga, meditation, walking in nature or anything else that calms your body and soul can be a way. And together with a model such as the Enneagram, it can help increase self-awareness and thus show the way towards a more conscious personal development.


Somatik, where is it?

The somatic part of the Enneagram is about the body. The so-called somatic nervous system controls voluntary movements and transmits sensory and body position information to the brain. The The Narrative Enneagram teaches how to learn to listen to our bodies. We may think that it is our mental center that interprets what is happening around us. But our mind reports what the body feels in the given situation. If we are not in contact with our bodies, unconscious trauma and habits can become the actual reality. Many today are not in sufficient contact with their bodies, as the culture we live in today does not value bodily and emotional intelligence, but instead primarily values ​​mental intelligence.

Without the ability to be conscious and feel emotions and beliefs in our bodies, we remain in automatic response patterns. But when we are more conscious and listen to what our bodies tell us, we have the ability to make new conscious choices that will eventually build up and strengthen our ability to listen to the body.

Troscirkel, Tro cirkel, belief circle

Developmental paths and stress patterns

The arrows in the symbol describe the development path for each type of enneagram, but also its stress or negative development. It is the arrows in the symbol that show you this. For example, if we look at 2an the Helper, 2an can find his way of development in the direction of the arrow, in this case in 4an the Individualist. So when 2an uses 4's strengths, as an example to allow himself to see himself fully, and to feel all his own emotions and naturally nurture himself. This is something positive for people who often get stuck in helping others and often neglect themselves. In the opposite direction, there are stress patterns, so when 2an falls in the direction of the arrow toward 8an, 2an picks up the negative properties of 8an, and can become aggressive and controlling.


To remember how the arrows think, you can think that when you are strong, stable and have good self-knowledge you work in the opposite direction of the arrow, but when you are stressed, low and in imbalance, you fall in the direction of the arrow.

The stress point is the negative qualities of the second Enneagram type and the safety point is the positive properties of the second Enneagram type.


1: an

Stress point -> falls into the 4 and becomes temperamental and irrational
Safety Point <- rises in 7 and becomes more spontaneous and joyful


2: an

Stress Point -> drops into 8 and becomes more aggressive and dominant "I know what you need!"
Security Point <-Rises up in 4 and takes care of himself, becomes emotionally aware, "See and hear what others need, without own gain"



Stress point -> drops into 9 and becomes unengaged and apathetic
Security Point <- rises in the 6 and becomes more cooperative and engaged in others



Stress point -> falls into 2 and becomes over-involved and clingy
Security Point <- rises into 1 and become more objective and principled



Stress point -> falls into 7 and becomes hyperactive and scattered ... loses focus ... (scattered)
Security Point <- rises into 8 and becomes more confident and resolute


6: an

Stress point -> falls into the 3 and becomes more competition oriented and arrogant
Security Point <- Rises into 9 and becomes more relaxed and optimistic


The 7

Stress point -> falls into 1 and becomes more perfectionistic and critical.

Security Point <- Rises into the 5 and becomes focused and in-depth


8: an

Stress point -> falls into 5 and becomes more secretive and scared
Security Point <- rises into 2 and opens his heart and become more caring


9: an

Stress point -> falls into the 6 and becomes more anxious and anxious
Security Point <- rises into 3 and become more energetic and focused on developing itself


No one is a pure personality type, everyone has a mixture of their basic type and their so-called neighbor types. The neighboring types are called wings, or wings, and are the Enneagram types found on each side of the basic type. That is, for Enneagram type 2, the wings are 1an and 3an, for 5an it is 4an and 6an.


Our personality is dominated by the basic type but is influenced by the elements of the wings. You usually say that you have a dominant wing, or simply a wing. It is discussed that the wings may be more or less dominant to different people, but Hudson believes that rather that we have the potential for all nine types and therefore also the potential of both wings. Furthermore, here we will refer to a wing, but leave it open to each person's interpretation. Again, as we mentioned earlier, there is no absolute right and wrong in the Enneagram, as each individual is unique and man is too complex for a locked system.


Ross Hudson (Enneagram Institute) has named these wings and describes the differences in great detail. It gives us an explanation as to why two people with the same Enneagram type can still be very different.


We all have access to the potential of all nine types in the Enneagram, but the three points we have contact within the symbol are more easily accessible to us. The more self-knowledge we have, the easier it is to share the positive qualities in these points.


1. our development point

2. our stress point

3. our wings


2w3 The Helper - More confident, ambitious, competitive, friendly, adaptable, supportive and status seeking.



2w1 The Servant - More idealistic, objective, self-critical, judgmental, warm, service-minded and "people pleaser"


3w4 The Professionalist - Introspective, sensitive, artistic, imaginative, pretentious, ambitious, creative, image-conscious



3w2 The Charmer - Warmer, more encouraging, sociable


4w5 The Bohemia - Introvert, intellectual, reluctant, reserved, unconventional, self-conscious, depressive




4w3 The Aristocrat - Extrovert, optimistic, ambitious, flamboyant and image-conscious, original, different, moody

5w6 The Problem solver - Loyal, worried, skeptical. cautious, investigative, perfectionist, socially uncomfortable




5w4 The visionary - creative, humanistic, sensitive, empathetic, self-absorbed, provocative


6w7 The Loyalist - Extrovert, materialistic, active, impulsive, reliable, balanced, entertaining, cautious



6w5 The Defender - Introvert, Intellectual, Cautious, Investigative, Reliable, Cynical


7w8 The Realist - Thrilling, aggressive, competitive, materialistic, extrovert, committed, impatient



7w6 The Entertainer - Loyal, lovable, responsible, worried, spontaneous, fast, impulsive


8w7, The Rebel - Extrovert, enterprising, energetic, fast egocentric, revolutionary, violent



8w9 The Bear - Gentle, receptive, "quietly strong", delegating, challenging, bullying


9w1, The Dreamer , more orderly, critical, controlled, philosophical and stubborn.




9w8, The Judge , more outgoing, determined, optimistic and inspiring


1w2 The lawyer - warmer, more helpful, caring, critical, controlling, demanding,




1w9 The Idealist - More relaxed, objective, principled,

purposeful, cooler and judgmental


* The type descriptions above basically come from the book Personality Types by Russ Hudson, where you can read more about how the wings affect the different Enneagram types.  

The three instinctive subtypes


In the body center, there are three instinctive forces described as subtypes in the Enneagram, the self-preserving, social and intimate subtype. These are not specific to the Enneagram but are based on instinctive survival patterns, which we use to survive as a race.

In the Enneagram's teachings, we talk about having a dominant subtype, called our instinctive subtype (Instinctive subtype). This affects our attention, our values, our way of thinking, feeling and acting.


Self-preservation - Self-discipline, survival, basic needs - Concerns about health, finances, security

Social - Friendship, interconnected with what is greater than oneself, generous with time and energy, role-status, knowing belonging to the social group - forgetting themselves

Intimate - Focus on attraction, intimacy, adds passion, creativity - looking for the ideal partner, thrill-seeking


The dominant subtype can be seen as a strength, but, like our basic driving force, becomes over-activated and when overused it becomes our weakness instead. We also have one of these driving forces underdeveloped, which is a bright spot for us. The goal is also here to increase our self-awareness and work on balancing all these three driving forces.


Knowledge of the instinctive subtypes may explain why two people with the same Enneagram type can still be very different.

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