To go to the overview of the Enneagram personality test click here.
The Enneagram types are set out in three groups of three and they correspond with each of the three centers of intelligence and perception; the head, the heart and the body.
Although we all process information through the head, heart and body, each personality type strongly relates to a particular one.
Groups 5, 6, and 7 relate to the head. Head based types are associated with fear and this emotion influences their personality. Their head rules their heart. They are thinkers and they like to consider a variety of options before coming to a rational decision. Their main focus is on the outside world and how they can decode it so it can be fully understood.
5. The Thinker
Alert, analytical, calm, cerebral, curious, devoted, independent, innovative, insightful, intense, investigator, isolated, minimalist, objective, perceptive, secretive, thinkers, withdrawn.
Thinkers are able to see the world from new eyes and are often the visionaries and philosophers who open the world up to a new way of seeing things. They are curious and are constantly asking questions to be able to gain a new and unique understanding of how the world, everything in it, and beyond, works.
Knowledge is what drives a thinker, they exist to investigate and uncover new information, new ideas and explore intellectual ground that has not yet been covered. They strive to come up with a new way of seeing things and observe and analyze every piece of date to piece it all together and look at it from a new angle.
The difficulties lie when they have gathered up more information than they can deal with. Instead of feeling armed with knowledge, they are unable to process what they have discovered and panic and feel incapable of expressing their findings in a positive way. They often feel as though what they have uncovered is too far out there for the world to take it seriously and this can lead them to feel as though they are delusional and even losing their minds at times.
This is where there is confusion between a genius and a madman is born. The genius is the one fully in control of the information they have gathered and where the knowledge and data is fully rational, logical and understandable. The madman gets lost in the chaos, is delusional and becomes overwhelmed with confusion. Their findings are then impossible to understand and make very little sense to either the madman or to anyone else. That is why it is essential that the thinker calmly and rationally collates his findings and stores it in a way that it is understandable, translatable and has authenticity.
As thinkers they are influenced by fear; they can easily become overwhelmed and perceive the world as intrusive and dangerous. They are often hoarders of knowledge and data and store it all in their head, as they are afraid that others will steal their discoveries and they believe knowledge is what offers them power.
A Thinker’s studies often reveal great revelations and their fear of what they find out about the world can cause them to retreat and withdraw into themselves, even to the extent of cutting themselves off completely from other human contact. This can lead them to developing an unrealistic vision of society and becoming out of touch with reality.
Instead of allowing their fear to control them, it is essential that they only absorb as much information as they can handle at a time. When they take on too much it becomes a weight too heavy to bear, so it is essential they lighten the load so they can continue on their venture to discover how the world works.
If they have self-confidence and are secure within themselves they are able to have a balanced perception, a good understanding and trust in the knowledge existing within their minds. Rather than taking time out to recharge and then remaining stuck there, they would benefit from pushing themselves back out into society so that they can relate to the world to gain a profound understanding of it, without feeling lost and detached from it.
When they are able to conduct their studies without feeling afraid of the importance in the data they collate, they can experience a new sense of freedom by understanding they do not need to be attached to the outcomes or to how other people perceive their extraordinary findings.
6. The Loyalist
Appealing, anxious, assertive, committed, compassionate, compliant, dependable, faithful fearful, hardworking, intelligent, loyal, obedient, outspoken, reactive, responsible, security-orientated, suspicious, trustworthy, worrier.
They are loyal to friends, relationships, family and their beliefs. There is nothing a loyalist wouldn’t do to support whatever it is they believe in. The main reason for their loyalty is their fear of abandonment. This fear ensures they make attachments to everything around them so that they have something to hold on to.
They falsely believe they can build safe foundations without working on their own insecurities and needs first. They need to have faith in their own ability to survive and have faith that they are able to navigate change, so that they are empowered to let go of the need to create security through outside factors.
To avoid looking at their issues with low self-worth, abandonment and insecurities they project onto everything around them by creating attachments to people or organizations as a way of showing faith and loyalty. They feel that if they express to others that they will be there for them through thick and thin, this will be reciprocated and they will never be in a position where they could be rejected or abandoned.
Loyalists are always on the lookout for someone who could betray their trust or let them down. They observe people and if they see any inconsistency they will do whatever it takes to back these feelings up with information that proves their theory. They cannot bear to be in a position where they could be let down, so they never drop their guard. They have the ability to see any problems and deal with them before they cause major upheaval.
They prefer rules, regulations, predictability and for everyone to cooperate. If someone is a little different or doesn’t conform, they are seen as a threat. Rather than seeing that variations add flavor to their lives, they would rather block them out due to their fear of change or of being overturned.
They are trying to keep their irrationalities under control by remaining in control of everything in their surrounding world. Loyalists need to understand that when they have calmed and soothed their own irrational fears and concerns, they will be far more productive and competent at dealing with all else around them.
Loyalists often test those closest to them to see if there is any risk of being rejected. They do not want to be fully committed as this can be overwhelming, though, they do want to be close enough within their friendships and relationships so that those who they care about do not feel tempted to stray.
They are full of contradictions, while they want to have trust, they find it extremely difficult to place their trust in other people. They search for security, yet feel extremely insecure within themselves. Fear is the one thing that overrides everything. When they can let go of their need to control everything and instead control their fear they can begin to find the clarity, balance and security that will lead them to inner peace.
7. The Visionary
Adventurous, acquisitive, busy, creative, distractible, dreamer, energetic, enthusiastic, entrepreneurs, extroverted, fun-loving, free-spirited, lively, optimistic, playful, scattered, spontaneous, versatile.
The visionaries are also enthusiasts as everything is looked at through the eyes of adventure. They are fascinated with the world and see it as one giant adventure playground waiting to be explored. They adore new experiences and spontaneously try to squeeze as much into life as they possibly can. Due to this rush to discover exciting possibilities they often make terrible choices that set them back and cause them to feel frustrated and anxious and their pursuits offer very little nourishment.
They are free-spirited and restless, therefore are always on the go, meeting new people and travelling to far off lands. They seek out entertainment where they roam, their imagination fuels their dreams and they see magic in everything.
They allow their hearts to lead them and they are optimistic about love and their relationships are light-hearted and fun. Others will need to be able to keep up with their fast-paced lifestyle as they bounce from one interest and passion to the next. They are open-minded and have friendships and relationships from all walks of life. Although, negative people affect their feel-good vibration and because they avoid conflict, they will likely wander away from these connections.
They are fast learners and take in new information and data extremely fast. They are impatient when they are studying and want to know everything about everything instantly.
They are positive and are generally in a very happy place, usually seeing the world through rose-tinted glasses.
Through filling their life full with new possibilities and experiences they often miss out in the meaning of what it is they are doing, as they are so preoccupied with cramming too much into such a short space of time. They are constantly looking to distract themselves from the mundane and dull aspects of life, though, through doing this they often fail to live in the real world and end up living a life full of illusions.
If they take time to relax, slow down and appreciate silence and the finer details of life they can easily live in the present moment and allow experiences to naturally drift in and out of their life without feeling the need to grab hold of them and make the most out of every second.
They often feel entitled or superior to others and this is mostly due to having unrealistic expectations and failing to see that not everyone has access to the same opportunities.
They are extroverted and are known to exaggerate their experiences. They can often be materialistic, self-centered and preoccupied with gaining more. More experience, more material goods and more seconds out of every minute. They constantly want, want, want and there is no end to their demands, this need has to be reigned in before there will be any balance.
Although they demand a lot, when they reflect, they are usually appreciative for what it is they have. They fail to see that everything needs balance and by constantly bounding from one option to the next, they risk missing the meaning and the importance in most of what they are doing.
Author: Alex Myles
Editor: Travis May
Images: Flickr/Jinho Jung