Identifying Basic Personality Type using Enneagram

This is a follow up on what I have written about Enneagram on 3 February 2015.

The Feeling Triad: Type 2, 3, 4
Type 2 (the Helper) is caring, generous, possessive & manipulative.
– Healthy 2s are compassionate, generous,  loving & thoughtful; they go out of their way to be of service to people.
– Average 2s are possessive, needy & controlling, but not able to express their needs directly. They want to be loved but often intrude on others too much.
– Unhealthy 2s deceive themselves about the presence of their negative feelings, particularly rage & resentment. They want others to see them as loving & good all the time even when they manipulate people & act selfishly.

Type 3 (the Motivator) is adaptable, ambitious, image-conscious & hostile.
– Healthy 3s quickly learn how to make the best of most situations, & they are interested in building & maintaining high self-esteem. They are able to motivate others to want to be like them because they are genuinely admirable in some socially valued way.
– Average 3s are the most out of touch with their emotions & with their individuality. They suppress their feelings in order to perform more effectively & to make others like them. They lose touch with their feelings as they try to get the success & affirmation they crave.
– Unhealthy 3s can become hostile & extremely malicious if they do not get the admiring attention they desire.

Type 4 (the Individualist) is intuitive, expressive, self-absorbed & depressive.
– Healthy 4s are very personal, revealing & communicating their feelings in ways that enable others to get in touch with their own emotions.
– Average 4s become too aware of their feelings, especially their negative ones, withdrawing from others & living too much in their imaginations.
– Unhealthy 4s are extremely depressed & alienated from others, tormented by self-doubt & self-hatred. They become suicidal when they can no longer cope with reality.

The Thinking Triad: Type 5, 6, 7
Type 5 (the Investigator) is perceptive, original, detached & eccentric.
– Healthy 5s are extremely knowledgeable about some aspects of their environment, & are capable of brilliant, original, inventive solutions to problems.
– Average 5s feel more at home with thinking & imagining than with doing, & so get lost in the mazes of their minds while their lives & opportunities diminish.
– Unhealthy 5s create more problems for themselves than they solve because they have become so completely isolated from reality. They are unable to know what is real or unreal, true or untrue.

Type 6  (the Loyalist) is engaging, committed, defensive & paranoid.
– Healthy 6s are loyal & faithful friends. They act to everyone’s  mutual benefit, are committed to others & they look for the same qualities from others.
– Average 6s look outside themselves too much for “permission” to act from an authority  figure or belief system which will tell them what to do. Unsure of themselves unless the authority is on their side, they nevertheless feel they must assert themselves against the authority to prove their independence, at least from time to time.
– Unhealthy 6s succumb to anxiety & feelings of inferiority & insecurity, self-destructively bringing about the very consequences they most fear.

Type 7 (the Enthusiast) is enthusiastic,  accomplished, uninhibited & manic.
– Healthy 7s are exuberantly enthusiastic about the environment, becoming extremely accomplished in a wide variety of activities.
– Average 7s become extremely restless, moving from one topic to the next before anything can be completed, engaged in an unending search for new experiences. This causes them to do more of everything, although, ironically,  the more they do, the less they are satisfied. They want to keep their minds occupied at all times so that their anxiety will not get to them. They constantly imagine that they are “missing out” on something that would be more of everything so they will not feel deprived.
– Unhealthy 7s become self-centred, dissipated escapists,  flying impulsively out of control.

The Instinctive Triad: Type 8, 9, 1
Type 8 (the Leader) is self-confident, decisive, dominating & combative.
– Healthy 8s are based on tremendous vitality & a keen intuition that can see possibilities in situations & in people that others often miss. They feel strong & capable,  & can use their immense self-confident,  courage & leadership abilities to inspire others to great accomplishments.
– Average 8s tend 5s dominate everything in the environment too aggressively, asserting themselves impulsively & indulging their instinctual needs for control & satisfaction without much regard for the consequences.
– Unhealthy 8s relate to environment as bullies & tyrants, ruthlessly tearing down anyone & anything that stands in their way.

Type 9 (the Peacemaker) is peaceful, reassuring, complacent & neglectful.
– Healthy 9s are based on their openness, their ability to identify intimately with a person or belief, & a centredness that enables them to remain calm even when others around them are reacting hysterically. Their receptiveness, optimism & peacefulness are reassuring to others, enabling others to flourish because they create a harmonious atmosphere for everyone.
– Average 9s undermine their own development (& their ability to deal with reality) by disengaging from a real, grounded connection with their own drives, with others & with the environment. To maintain their tranquillity, they begin to idealised the other – whether a person or an abstraction – too much.
– Unhealthy 9s become dangerously fatalistic & neglectful as they cling to what have become little more than illusions about reality from which they have dissociated themselves.

Type 1 (the Reformer) is principled, orderly, perfectionistic & self righteous.
– Healthy 1s  have the ability to relate to the environment impartially; they are consequently able to act with wisdom & conviction. They are reasonable, fair-minded & conscientious, guided by principles & ab inner “knowing” which give them strong consciences & a clear understanding of right & wrong.
– Average 1s are out of balance with their natural drives, feelings & instincts, which they try to control too much. They strive for nothing less than absolute perfection, finding it difficult to accept anything as it is since it can always be better.
– Unhealthy 1s are intolerant & self-righteous, becoming obsessed about the corruption they find in others while ignoring their own

contradictory actions

.  In the name of the highest ideals, they can become extraordinarily cruel to themselves & others.

Adapted from Chapter 3 of the “Personality Types” by Don Richard Riso

Susan in Yangon


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