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Thread: Enneagram Fears in a nutshell

  1. #1
    Permabanned Array
    Join Date
    Aug 2010

    Default Enneagram Fears in a nutshell

    So, how should we treat our enneagram fears? Should we challenge them head on? Should we avoid them? Can we grow to overcome them?

    For example, as an E8 with a fear of vulnerability, am I supposed to just man up and be more vulnerable? Or am I supposed to set myself up in a way where I can nurture that fear but also avoid it?

    Does anyone know wtf I'm talking about? Because I don't actually know how to phrase my question.

  2. #2
    Senior Member Array
    Join Date
    Jan 2013
    5 sx


    what do you mean by "nurture the fear"?

  3. #3
    i love Array skylights's Avatar
    Join Date
    Jul 2010
    6w7 so/sx
    EII Ne


    I think you have to treat it like physical exercise. You don't want to coddle yourself, and avoid the fear-creating stimulus all the time, but neither do you want to create hypersensitivity to it or injure yourself by trying to crush it. Limited increasing exposure would probably be ideal, with periods of reflection in between to analyze your reaction, your feelings, and how you can continue to grow in response to it.

    So as an e8, afraid of vulnerability, you do want to open up, but you probably should start with short sessions with a friend/relative/significant other you trust very much or a professional counselor. Once you open up a little, give yourself time to rest and reflect on how easily you were able to do it, whether it was really uncomfortable or okay, what things were hard to talk about, whether you had any emotional response, and so on. Then do it again, stretching yourself a little more and a little more.

    I try to do it with e6 and learning to trust my personal decisions. Of course it's trickier and messier than this IRL, though.

  4. #4
    So tired... Array Amargith's Avatar
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    Nov 2008
    4dw sx/so
    IEx None


    ^Im finding myself doing the same thing with being less of a perfectionist and actually executing some of my ideas...however much reality seems to masacre them when i do execute them

  5. #5


    Luckily for me, my fears (or should I say weaknesses?) can be tackled by forming habits. Fears and weaknesses aren't the same though.

  6. #6
    So she did. Array small.wonder's Avatar
    Join Date
    Feb 2013
    4w5 sx/so


    My biggest fear I suppose is that I don't matter (insignificance), and no one truly cares about me. I'd love to say that I've completely overcome this, but (haha) I haven't.

    I do think you have to fight your fears by acknowledging that they aren't true, and reinforcing that by making what is true clear to yourself. I think you have to understand your fear quite a bit in order to do that though, like specifically why you fear being vulnerable (you fear being betrayed? or you fear being seen as weak? etc). This works in two ways: 1) verbally or mentally stating truth to yourself and 2) showing yourself that your fear is a lie by physically facing off with it. For example: I have to literally tell myself sometimes (yeah, like inner monolouge) that I do matter and that person that I'm afraid of being dismissed by, probably would actually want to talk to me too. I should just go talk to them for crying out loud. And then I force myself to physically take action (in this scenario, going and talking to said person-- Regardless of how awkward that might be). Usually by making myself take action contrary to my fear, I end up proving my fear wrong (the person will acknowledge me and engage in conversation, proving that I'm significant).

    I like to square off with my fears and jack them in the face-- I've found that I need to do it over and over (daily really), but the fear diminishes with time.
    Find my Enneagram writing here, and ethical boutique here.✨

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