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  1. #1
    Junior Member faultyideal's Avatar
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    Default Can anyone help me with my Enneagram type?

    This may be a longish post. I have always swung back and forth between being completely sure and completely confused about my Enneagram type. I usually end up pretty sure that I'm a type 4, even a 4w5. But sometimes I don't know if I'm actually a type 9. All I ever really have settled on is that I'm a withdrawn type. I do know that I'm an INFP at least, which I know usually correlates with the E9 and occasionally with E4.

    Fours withdraw into a romanticized and idealized fantasy world where they like to imagine what kind of a life they would prefer to be living rather than the real one they actually have.
    Whenever I withdraw, my fantasies usually center around being an artist of some sort(ranging from writer, singer, guitar hero, actor, screenwriter, visual artist, etc.) or in a romantic fantasy with whatever girl currently has my attention. Or I'm some sort of wanderer, traveling by foot to see whatever beauty I can find in the world, or traveling in a boat at sea by myself

    Nines withdraw into a safe and carefree inner sactum where they can keep their peace of mind and entertain comforting thoughts about themselves. Nines can have problems concentrating because their attention can easily get distracted and drift off when they become bored or anxious.
    I do entertain comforting thoughts about myself, just as easily as I entertain UNcomforting thoughts about myself. And I will admit I probably have ADD. But the peace of mind thing I don't get. I try to remain peaceful outwardly but inside it's a torrential downpour of dark emotion.

    Type Four's Key Motivations: Want to be themselves, express themselves in something beautiful, find ideal partner, withdraw to protect their feelings, take care of emotional needs before attending to anyone else
    I want to express myself but I'm afraid I my expressions will be ridiculed or looked down upon or something of that manner. As a consequence, I find the only way I can express myself is indirectly. Potentially, instead of rambling until someone gets how I feel, I want to be able to make something amazing (song, painting) to express me, something other than me to explain how I feel. Something people can analyze themselves and understand.

    I am constantly on the search of someone who understands me without judging me. And as far as the emotional needs thing, I haven't gone to classes for the last like week because I've just felt too drained or whatever, I have just slept instead of gone.

    Type Nine's Key Motivations: To have serenity and peace of mind, to create harmony in the environment, preserve things the way they are, avoid conflicts and tension, escape upsetting problems and demands on them
    I hate conflicts, but when push comes to shove, I will easily air grievances, sometimes riddled with sarcastic and biting remarks. I hate it that, when I'm feeling bad and just want to sit and stare for a few hours, people try to make me do stuff or get out of the house to have fun/get things done.

    Also, who doesn't want to avoid obligations put on them? (see aforementioned skippage of classes lol)

    E4 is disconnected with both parents while E9 is connected to both
    My childhood was a happy one from what I remember. I knew my parents loved me and I loved them. However I always received guilt trips whenever they blamed (rightly) any injuries my little brother received on me (I mean come on, was it really my fault that he flipped out of that stroller and busted his head open on the concrete floor? I was only spinning him around in it. My parents should have been watching us more and telling me not to do that... oh wait, they were).

    I definitely didn't agree with them constantly saying I was the smartest, the most handsome, the funniest kid out of them all. And I didn't like how they tried to groom me into being a scientist or mathematician with their study cards. I'd rather be an actor, I started acting when I was in kindergarten, acting sick that is.

    Another problem was their growing dependence on alcohol. At night they would drink and sit in front of the T.V. getting louder and louder, not out of anger but out of happiness, laughing at comedians or cheering for the football team. I would then walk to my room and play by myself. I didn't want to be anything like them, but at the same time thought they were amazing.

  2. #2
    Shaman BlackCat's Avatar
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    Nine-

    The Peacemaker (the Nine)

    Peacemakers are receptive, good-natured, and supportive. They seek union with others and the world around them.

    How to Get Along with Me

    * If you want me to do something, how you ask is important. I especially don't like expectations or pressure.
    * I like to listen and to be of service, but don't take advatage of this.
    * Listen until I finish speaking, even though I meander a bit.
    * Give me time to finish things and make decisions. It's OK to nudge me gently and nonjudgmentally.
    * Ask me questions to help me get clear.
    * Tell me when you like how I look. I'm not averse to flattery.
    * Hug me, show physical affection. It opens me up to my feelings.
    * I like a good discussion but not a confrontation.
    * Let me know you like what I've done or said.
    * Laugh with me and share in my enjoyment of life.

    What I Like About Being a Nine

    * being nonjudgmental and accepting
    * caring for and being concerned about others
    * being able to relax and have a good time
    * knowing that most people enjoy my company; I'm easy to be around
    * my ability to see many different sides of an issue and to be a good mediator and facilitator
    * my heightened awareness of sensations, aesthetics, and the here and now
    * being able to go with the flow and feel one with the universe

    What's Hard About Being a Nine

    * being judged and misunderstood for being placid and/or indecisive
    * being critical of myself for lacking initiative and discipline
    * being too sensitive to criticism; taking every raised eyebrow and twitch of the mouth personally
    * being confused about what I really want
    * caring too much about what others will think of me
    * not being listened to or taken seriously

    Nines as Children Often

    * feel ignored and that their wants, opinions, and feelings are unimportant
    * tune out a lot, especially when others argue
    * are "good" children: deny anger or keep it to themselves

    Nines as Parents

    * are supportive, kind, and warm
    * are sometimes overly permissive or nondirective

    Nines

    Nine With an 8 Wing
    Awakened Nines with an 8 wing have a modest, steady, receptive core. They are charged by the dynamism of 8 - when focused on goals they often have great force of will. Get things done, make good leaders. May have an animal magnetism of which they are only partly aware. Can seem highly centered, take what they do seriously but remain unimpressed with themselves. 8 wing can bring a strong internal sense of direction. Relatively fearless and highly intuitive. Generally not intellectual unless they have it in their background. When more entranced, they manifest the contradictions of the two styles expressing them in sequence. Could be passively amiable like a Nine and then turn horribly blunt like an 8. One moment they are opinionated or nasty, next moment kindly and supportive. Often don't hear their voices when angry. Can have a sharp, grating edge. May be slow to anger and then explode. Or angry but don't know it; may confuse being assertive with being rude. Placidly callous - both styles support numbness. Tactless and indiscriminate and indiscreet. May be unwittingly disloyal, spilling everyone's secrets. Sexual confusion, sometimes they are driven by lust.

    Real-Life Nines With an 8 Wing: Clint Eastwood, Peter Falk, Gerald Ford, James Garner, John Goodman, Elliott Gould, Woody Harrelson, Helmut Kohl, Carl Rogers, Gena Rowlands, Gloria Steinem.

    Movie Nines With an 8 Wing: Richard Burton, Beckett; Sean Connery, The Russia House; Clint Eastwood, Tightrope, Unforgiven; Sam Elliott, Lifeguard; Elliott Gould, The Long Goodbye; Woody Harrelson, White Men Can't Jump; Bob Hoskins, Mona Lisa; Ann-Margret, A New Life; Al Pacino, Sea Of Love.

    Nine With a 1 Wing
    Tend to have been "model children." Instinctively worked to please their parents by being virtuous, orderly, and little trouble. When awakened, they have great moral authority plus good-hearted peacemaking tendencies. Often have a sense of mission, public or private, that involves working hard for the welfare of everyone they are committed to. Principled expression of love. Desire to contribute, do little harm. May be well-liked, modest, endearing, gentle yet firm. Some have great grace and composure with bursts of spontaneity and sweetness. Elegant simplicity. When entranced, they tend to be self-neglectful. May go passively dead and operate from a dubious, fractured morality. Dutiful to what they shouldn't be. Play the good child, disappear into contexts, settle for being overlooked or just partly recognized. Passive tolerance of absurd or damaging situations. One-sided relationships where the Nine gives too much. Rationalize, minimize, tell themselves they had a great childhood, everything's fine. Placid numbness creeps over them. Intolerance of their own emotions. Gradually deaden their soul.

    Real-Life Nines With a 1 Wing: Annette Bening, Tony Bennett, Warren Christopher, Connie Chung, The Dalai Lama, Annette Funicello, Mahatma Gandhi, Charles Grodin, Patty Hearst, Audrey Hepburn, Anjelica Huston, Grace Kelly, Nancy Kerrigan, Martin Sheen, James Stewart.

    Movie Nines With a 1 Wing: Tom Cruise, Risky Business; Annette Funicello, Back To The Beach; Chief Dan George, Little Big Man; Graham Greene, Dances With Wolves; Audrey Hepburn, Robin And Marian; Eva Marie Saint, Nothing In Common; Wallace Shawn, My Dinner With Andre; Tom Skerritt, The Turning Point; Harry Dean Stanton, Paris, Texas; Donald Sutherland, Ordinary People; Joanne Woodward, Mr. And Mrs. Bridge.


    ---------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------



    World View: My efforts won't matter to the world. It's best to keep the peace.
    Basic Desire: to find union and peace
    Basic Fear: of separation

    Healthy loop controlled by Basic Desire:

    Need to find union -> accept others -> do the right thing -> Need to find union

    In the healthy state, the need to find union induces Type Nines to genuinely open up to others and accept them as they are. Others often find their acceptance welcoming and build up a strong bond or union. This way, Nines' need are satisfied and a balance is reached.

    In the average state, when Nines' are less accepting of others or the world, which means the union begins to weaken. This causes the the need to find union to increase, which helps Nines to again become more accepting of others. Thus the balancing loop can help Nines to recover.

    Unhealthy loop controlled by Basic Fear:

    Fear of separation -> illusions of union -> accommodating -> union -> Fear of separation

    In the unhealthy state, the basic fear of separation can cause Type Nines to delude themselves with illusions of union, which they sustain by ignoring reality and blindly accommodating others or the world. Unfortunately, this means they won't achieve true union, which further increases Nines' basic fear. The cycle continues to build up.

    Insight:

    We can see from the diagram that a way to help break the control of the basic fear is to weaken the unhealthy loop. Nines can stop indulging in illusions of union, and start to really accept others. This will build real union, and reduce the fear of separation.
    Four-

    The Romantic (the Four)

    Romantics have sensitive feelings and are warm and perceptive.

    How to Get Along with Me

    * Give me plenty of compliments. They mean a lot to me.
    * Be a supportive friend or partner. Help me to learn to love and value myself.
    * Respect me for my special gifts of intuition and vision.
    * Though I don't always want to be cheered up when I'm feeling melancholy, I sometimes like to have someone lighten me up a little.
    * Don't tell me I'm too sensitive or that I'm overreacting!

    What I Like About Being a Four

    * my ability to find meaning in life and to experience feeling at a deep level
    * my ability to establish warm connections with people
    * admiring what is noble, truthful, and beautiful in life
    * my creativity, intuition, and sense of humor
    * being unique and being seen as unique by others
    * having aesthetic sensibilities
    * being able to easily pick up the feelings of people around me

    What's Hard About Being a Four

    * experiencing dark moods of emptiness and despair
    * feelings of self-hatred and shame; believing I don't deserve to be loved
    * feeling guilty when I disappoint people
    * feeling hurt or attacked when someone misundertands me
    * expecting too much from myself and life
    * fearing being abandoned
    * obsessing over resentments
    * longing for what I don't have

    Fours as Children Often

    * have active imaginations: play creatively alone or organize playmates in original game s
    * are very sensitive
    * feel that they don't fit in
    * believe they are missing something that other people have
    * attach themselves to idealized teachers, heroes, artists, etc.
    * become antiauthoritarian or rebellious when criticized or not understood
    * feel lonely or abandoned (perhaps as a result of a death or their parents' divorce)

    Fours as Parents

    * help their children become who they really are
    * support their children's creativity and originality
    * are good at helping their children get in touch with their feelings
    * are sometimes overly critical or overly protective
    * are usually very good with children if not too self-absorbed

    Fours

    Four With a 3 Wing
    Fours with a 3 wing can sometimes seem like Sevens. May be outgoing, have a sense of humor and style. Prize being both creative and effective in the world. Both intuitive and ambitious; may have good imaginations, often talented. Some are colorful, fancy dressers, make a distinct impression. Self-knowledge combines well with social and organizational skills. When more entranced, often have a public/private split. Could conceal feelings in public then go home to loneliness. Or they could enjoy their work and be dissatisfied in love. Tendency towards melodrama and flamboyance; true feelings can often be hidden. Competitive, sneaky, aware of how they look. Some have bad taste. May be fickle in love, drawn to romantic images that they have projected onto others. Could have a dull spouse, then fantasize about glamorous strangers. Achievements can be tainted by jealousy, revenge, or a desire to prove the crowd wrong.

    Real-Life Fours With a 3 Wing: John Barrymore, Kate Bush, Mary Chapin Carpenter, Judy Collins, Neil Diamond, Judy Garland, Martha Graham, Billie Holliday, Julio Iglesias, Janis Joplin, Naomi Judd, Jessica Lange, John Malkovich, Mary McCarthy, Rod McKuen, Anas Nin, Nick Nolte, Laurence Olivier, Edith Piaf, Anne Rice, Liv Ullmann, Robert James Waller, Tennessee Williams.

    Movie Fours With a 3 Wing: F. Murray Abraham, Amadeus; Anne Bancroft, The Turning Point; John Barrymore, Dinner At Eight; Judy Davis, Impromptu; Jill Ireland, From Noon Til Three; Vivien Leigh, A Streetcar Named Desire; Winona Ryder, Mermaids.

    Four With a 5 Wing
    Healthy side of this wing brings a withdrawn, complex creativity. May be somewhat intellectual but have exceptional depth of feeling and insight. Very much their own person; original and idiosyncratic. Have a spiritual and aesthetic openness. Will find multiple levels of meaning to most events. May have a strong need and ability to pour themselves into artistic creations. Loners; can seem enigmatic and hard to read. Externally reserved and internally resonant. When they open up it can be sudden and total. When entranced or defensive, Fours with a 5 wing can easily feel alienated and depressed. Many have a sense of not belonging, of being from another planet. Can get lost in their own process, drown in their own ocean. Whiny - tend to ruminate and relive past experience. Prone to the emotion of shame. Air of sullen, withdrawn disappointment. May live within a private mythology of pain and loss. Can get deeply morbid and fall in love with death.

    Real-Life Fours With a 5 Wing: Diane Arbus, Marlon Brando, Richard Brautigan, Jackson Browne, Kurt Cobain, Leonard Cohen, Isak Dinesen, Pink Floyd, Harvey Keitel, Philip Larkin, Thomas Merton, Sylvia Plath, Edgar Allen Poe, Arthur Rimbaud, Anne Sexton, James Taylor, Vincent van Gogh, Virginia Woolf, Neil Young.

    Movie Fours With a 5 Wing: David Andrews, Cherry 2000; Albert Finney, The Playboys; Claude Rains, The Phantom Of The Opera; Winona Ryder, Beetlejuice; Campbell Scott, Dying Young; Meryl Streep, The French Lieutenant's Woman, Out Of Africa, Plenty.

    --------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------


    World View: Something's missing. Others have it. I'm different from them because I don't.
    Basic Desire: to understand self
    Basic Fear: of being defective

    Healthy loop controlled by Basic Desire:

    Need for self-understanding -> examine self -> understand themselves -> Need for self-understanding

    In the healthy state, the need for self-understanding induces Type Fours to allow their emotions to surface and examine these emotions in order to understand themselves. When Fours achieve self-understanding, their need is satisfied and a balance is reached.

    In the average state, when Fours' do not examine closely their emotions, they start to not understand themselves. This increases the need for self-understanding, which helps Fours to again examine themselves. Thus the balancing loop can help Fours to recover.

    Unhealthy loop controlled by Basic Fear:

    Fear of being defective -> indulge in fantasy -> understand themselves -> Fear of being defective

    In the unhealthy state, the basic fear of being defective can cause Type Fours to ignore their true selves, allow their emotions to overwhelm them, and indulge in wild fantasy about themselves. This means they will understand themselves even less, and further increases Fours' basic fear. The cycle continues to build up.

    Insight:

    We can see from the diagram that a way to help break the control of the basic fear is to weaken the unhealthy loop. Fours can refrain from indulging in fantasy and start examining themselves. This will help Fours to understand themselves, and reduce the fear of being defective.
    I personally am a 9w8 and I can't relate to 4's at all on this forum or that I know in real life, the two types are very different. You sound 4w5 most definitely but you just hate conflict, which is normal for an INFP and a 4, but there is more to 9's than just hating conflict. I suppose I'll help since I'm a 9.

    As a 9 I have no desire to really express myself, it's not something that I think about at all. By you saying you entertain unpleasant thoughts about yourself, that sounds 4, since 4's directly take on negative emotion to understand themselves more by it. I just don't really care about thinking of the negative aspects of myself, I have thought them out and am not bothered by them, I accept that they are there and know what happens as a result of these bad things. But I don't let it torture me like a 4 would. When I withdraw, I'm thinking of my real life, and not the one I'd rather be living.
    () 9w8-3w4-7w6 tritype.

    sCueI (primary Inquisition)

  3. #3
    Junior Member faultyideal's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by BlackCat View Post
    I personally am a 9w8 and I can't relate to 4's at all on this forum or that I know in real life, the two types are very different. You sound 4w5 most definitely but you just hate conflict, which is normal for an INFP and a 4, but there is more to 9's than just hating conflict. I suppose I'll help since I'm a 9.

    As a 9 I have no desire to really express myself, it's not something that I think about at all. By you saying you entertain unpleasant thoughts about yourself, that sounds 4, since 4's directly take on negative emotion to understand themselves more by it. I just don't really care about thinking of the negative aspects of myself, I have thought them out and am not bothered by them, I accept that they are there and know what happens as a result of these bad things. But I don't let it torture me like a 4 would. When I withdraw, I'm thinking of my real life, and not the one I'd rather be living.
    Thanks!

    Expressing myself almost feels like a need to me. Whether or not I actually do it is another thing. It just depends on the situation and how comfortable I feel. Usually after I express myself I feel amazing.

    And when I think about my negative aspects, I just dig deeper and deeper into them making me just feel worse. It's only after I let go that I feel better and find a way to work through/around the negative without thinking of them as road blocks.

  4. #4
    Shaman BlackCat's Avatar
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    Yeah I don't do any of that at all, you're a 4w5.
    () 9w8-3w4-7w6 tritype.

    sCueI (primary Inquisition)

  5. #5
    Junior Member faultyideal's Avatar
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    I feel a little bit more sure of my type now.

    The only thing I really identified with in 9s were their apparent inertia problems and conflict-avoidance. I'm not exactly conflict-avoidant; tactful would be a better word.

    I also didn't see much of the dramatics I thought were present in type 4s. But if I am a 4w5, who's emotions are a little bit more hidden, I could see me being that.

  6. #6
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    Default my thoughts re 9 or 4

    My impression Faulty Ideal from reading your posts is that you are more likely to be an Enneagram 9 than a 4. Nines like fours harbour a deep desire for self expression, and also have some of the same capacity for artistic expression, but the inner motivations are different. Whereas the four has a deep emotional compulsion to exteriorize themselves through their creative activities, for the nine the desire is more muddled and beset by self-doubt.
    The nine's big issue is deciding and getting round to acting on his or her drive for self-expression. The later being fueled by an often hidden desire to be noticed favourably by others as a tonic to feelings of not being properly recognized or being sufficiently appreciated by others. These feelings are usually tamped down and minimized as a way of getting rid of them the moment they creep into the nine's awareness.
    You are mistaken in thinking that nines are an essentially peaceful type, what we are is a type that values peace at almost any price, but we consequently get readily pissed off by anything we see as disturbing of "our peace". Nines actually harbour a lot of anger, and its often a deep source of confusion. You might reflect upon how an 8 or a 1 wing can add colour to the way a Nine experiences and expresses anger. As a Nine I can and have gotten into fights, some that have escalated way beyond anything I consciously intended. I can report that there is a shadow side to the peacemaker type. On the good side we rarely hold grudges and are quick to want peace with those we may have been in a fight with
    Best wishes in your quest for self-understanding. There is a lot of subtlety in the dynamics of each type and where we are at any particular time in our level of development subjectively varies quite a bit. Its also useful to reflect upon the directions of integration and disintegration of your type.

  7. #7

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    This has got me thinking I'm a 9 or a 4 again. hmmm...

    (I will give opinion on his type also, but sleep time now)
    Freude, schöner Götterfunken Tochter aus Elysium, Wir betreten feuertrunken, Himmlische, dein Heiligtum! Deine Zauber binden wieder Was die Mode streng geteilt; Alle Menschen werden Brüder, Wo dein sanfter Flügel weilt.

  8. #8
    Shaman BlackCat's Avatar
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    4 vs 9: Fours use separation to proudly affirm how different they are while nines fear being separated from others.

    9 vs 4: Nines don't use separation from others to exalt themselves like fours do. Fours like to bring attention to themselves unlike nines. Fours unlike nines are comfortable taking the initiative to make themselves heard.
    () 9w8-3w4-7w6 tritype.

    sCueI (primary Inquisition)

  9. #9
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    to the OP, you sound very much like me. childhood is a bit different: mine was also generally happy, but as an INFP only child of older parents i had some difficulty fitting in. i was also pretty precocious and teased as a little one.

    i'm not a practicing artist, though aesthetics are important to me.. very. i did the 9 vs 4 thing forever, but i'm pretty confident in my 4ness. i think i masqueraded as a 9 in high school because i was afraid to make waves. sounds pretty 9, but the important thing is that i WANTED to make waves deep down.
    "Develop interest in life as you see it...the world is so rich, simply throbbing with rich treasures, beautiful souls and interesting people. Forget yourself." -- H. Miller
    -- -- -- -- -- -- -- -- -- -- -- -- -- -- -- -- -- -- -- -- -- -- -- -- -- -- -- -- -- -- -- -- -- -- -- -- -- -- -- --
    Johari the good..
    Nohari.. the bad, and the ugly

    I'm a FiNe SiTe to see!

  10. #10
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    Maybe it would be useful for some to reflect upon the fact that as Riso and Hudson put it "No matter what type you are, you have all nine types in you, to some degree." We should also remember that our type is a distorted filter that skews our thinking, our feelings and our actions. To use Demimondaine's analogy (un gros bonjour by the way)its a role we have taken in part to cover up a deep insecurity at the level of self. But unlike what she is suggesting you don't have the option of changing your fundamental type.

    As a nine I cannot become a Four. I can misidentify myself, there can be a lot of four-ish notes to my nine-isheness, but the core passion I struggle with doesn't change.
    Likewise the Four does not become, nor can be a Nine. When we are in the grips of that passion or state of mind is when our thinking and reacting are purely habit/instinct and we are at our most unconscious expression of our personality type.

    Riso and Hudson in the Wisdom of the Enneagram highlight the following:

    For the four that passion is ENVY-- its based on the sense that something fundamental is missing. Envy leads them to feel that others possess qualities that they lack. Fours long for what is absent but often fail to notice the many blessings in their lives. They have a deep desire to be themselves that can readily deteriorate into self-indulgence.
    Their unconscious marching order that they internalized early in life was that its not OK to be too happy. ( For fun I imagine this as arriving at a funeral in too good a mood. The smile and happiness you exude is simply not viewed as appropriate to the circumstances. You end up getting the message pretty quick to wipe that smile from your face, and that there "must be something wrong with you".

    Now for the Nine the unconscious childhood message they were affected by was that its not OK to assert yourself. Here the key passion/problem/sin is Sloth in the sense of a profound desire to be unaffected by life. It is an unwillingness to arise with the fullness of one's vitality to fully engage in life. There is a basic desire to be at and stay at peace which unfortunately can deteriorate into avoiding dealing with problems and a neglectful insistence not to be bothered by what is really happening.
    To use the funeral analogy again, the nine child notices something amiss and wants to bring it to a parents attention. Instead of responding to the child and the problem, the message sent is don't bother me, can't you see now is not the time. If the child persists and insists, it can easily provoke anger and rejection on the part of the parent. This is made all the more confusing and troubling for the child whose parent earlier turned on him in anger with threats of punishment if he didn't shut up, then later blame the child for not insisting enough that the church was on fire. Damned if you do, damned if you don't, the nine is usually understanding of others and sensitive to their needs, but a bit lost to themselves.
    My last point I would like to make is that there are levels of development for each type and ranges of health. Within those parameters or personality dynamics there is a wide range of behaviour and attitudes towards oneself and life. In order to understand your type you have to appreciate the ride it takes you on in both the ups and downs. The key to the Enneagram in my books is that it doesn't provide a one-dimensional view of personality that focuses on your purely Samsonlike strengths, it also insists you reflect upon your weaknesses and the blind spots to your self-awareness.

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