Lately, I’ve been working on using the Enneagram for personal growth. The Enneagram is a set of nine personality types where each type is denoted by a number and driven by a core desire. I’m a type six in this system.
According the basic theory behind the Enneagram, as a six (“The Loyalist”), my primary desire is security, and my worst fear is losing security. Sixes are often described as anxious, wary, skeptical, and responsible. Sounds like the right type for the Worrier, right?
As I’ve said before, I love personality tests/typing. In the MBTI framework, I am an INTJ, and while I identify fairly strongly with that type, I’d say that I feel even more like an Enneagram type six on some days. I’ve also talked about anxiety and relationships on this blog and explained that I tend towards an anxious attachment style. Which is to say that in relationships (romantic or otherwise), I tend to be very worried about losing that relationship and thus the security that it offers. Again, all signs point to Enneagram six for me.
I think that the Enneagram is a very helpful system for personal understanding and growth. In my case, knowing that my primary desire is (usually) security helps me to see when I am putting my desire for security before other more logical or more beneficial desires. For example, wanting security often keeps me from trying new things, going new places, or getting close to new people. But sometimes, you just have to do those things. Or you know that doing those things will be good for you in the long run.
I would recommend that everyone either take an Enneagram test to determine their type and/or read through descriptions of all nine types and decide which matches you most closely. Remember, when taking any personality test or trying to type yourself, you absolutely must be honest. Answer the questions based on how you are, not how you want to be.
Here are some other interesting articles and blog posts about the Enneagram that you should definitely check out if you’re still interested in learning more:
- Leigh Kramer’s blog is great in general, and I especially love all of her posts about the Enneagram. She even did a series on Enneagram types and bloggers! (Leigh is a four, btw.)
- Heidi Priebe, MBTI extraordinaire, ENFP and type seven, wrote an extensive post about the most common Enneagram types for each of the Myers-Briggs types.
- Anne of Modern Mrs. Darcy, friend of Leigh Kramer, INFP and type nine, compares and contrasts MBTI and the Enneagram to help you decide which one you should learn if you only have time/mental space for one. (Real answer: learn both!)
If you know of any other great reads about the Enneagram, hit me up! I’m also going to do a post about Enneagram books sometime in the future, so I’m also taking book suggestions!*
*Who am I kidding? I’m always taking book suggestions!