Observers believe they must protect themselves from a world that demands too much and gives too little. Consequently, Observers seek self-sufficiency and are non-demanding, analytic, thoughtful and unobtrusive; they also can be withholding, detached and overly private.
Focus of attention: Intellectual understanding, accumulating knowledge, and potential intrusions from others' agendas, needs and feelings.
Life Lesson: To reconnect to the vitality of your life force and your heartfelt feelings, realizing that ample energy and resources are available.
Perfectionists believe they must be good and right to be worthy. Consequently, Perfectionists are conscientious, responsible, improvement-oriented and self-controlled; but can also be critical, resentful and self-judging.
Focus of attention: What is right or wrong, correct or incorrect.
Life Lesson: To change what can be changed, to accept what cannot be changed, and to develop the wisdom to know the difference.
Welcome to our tour of the nine Enneagram types. This is a great place to start if you are new to the Enneagram and want to get a sense of what each type looks like and which style suits you best.
The tour begins with the three centers of intelligence and perception: the head, heart and body. Everyone experiences all three, but each personality type has a particular strength or "home base" in one of them. This primary center influences our way of being in the world, and is an important key to overcoming blind spots and developing our potential. Balancing the three centers helps us achieve a more balanced life.
Feeling-based types emphasize the heart for positive and negative feelings, empathy and concern for others, romance and devotion. Their focus is on success and relationship, performing up to expectation of the job or of other people. Also known as the Emotional Center.
Mediators believe you that to be loved and valued, you must blend in and go with the flow. Consequently, Mediators seek harmony and are inclusive, amiable, easygoing, comfortable and steady; they also can be self-forgetting, conflict-avoidance and stubborn.
Focus of attention: Other people's agendas and the external environment.
Life Lesson: To reclaim yourself and wake up to personal priorities.
Givers believe you must give fully to others to be loved. Consequently, Givers are caring, helpful, supportive and relationship-oriented; they also can be prideful, intrusive and demanding.
Focus of attention: Others' needs, feelings and desires.
Life Lesson: To develop the humility that comes from allowing yourself to be loved without being needed and to have needs of your own.
Epicures believe you must stay upbeat and positive to keep your possibilities open to assure a good life. Consequently, Epicures seek pleasurable options, and are optimistic and adventurous; they also avoid pain, and can be uncommitted and self-serving.
Focus of attention: Multiple options and idealized future plans.
Life Lesson: To reclaim and accept all of life, the pleasures and the pains, in the present moment.
Loyal Skeptics believe you must gain certainty and security in a hazardous world that you just can't trust. Consequently, Loyal Skeptics are intuitive, inquisitive, trustworthy, good friends and problem-solvers, but also can be doubtful, accusatory and fearful.
Focus of attention: What could go wrong, worst-case scenarios and how to deal with them.
Life Lesson: To reclaim trust in yourself, others and the world, and live comfortably with uncertainty.
Protectors believe you must be strong and powerful to assure protection and regard in a tough world. Consequently, Protectors seek justice and are direct, strong and action oriented; they also can be overly impactful, excessive and impulsive.
Focus of attention: Injustice, not being controlled by others, and getting things moving in work or play.
Life Lesson: To harness the life force in productive ways, integrating self-assertion with vulnerability.
Performers believe you must accomplish and succeed to be loved. Consequently, Performers are industrious, fast-paced, efficient and goal-oriented; they also can be inattentive to feelings, impatient and image-driven.
Focus of attention: Tasks, goals and recognition for accomplishments.
Life Lesson: To reclaim the truth that love comes to you because of who you are, not because of what you do.
For a more in-depth look at each of the types, and to take a short test to determine which Enneagram style suits you best, visit
Body-based types lead with the body for movement, sensate awareness and gut-level knowing. Their focus is on personal security, control, social belonging and taking right action. Also known as the Instinctual Center
Thinking-based, head types lead with ideas, gathering information, figuring things out and rational decision-making before acting. Their focus is on creating certainty and safety, or finding multiple options. Also known as the Intellectual Center.
Romantics believe you can regain the lost ideal love or perfect state by finding the love or situation that is unique, special and fulfilling. Consequently, Romantics are idealistic, deeply feeling, empathetic and authentic; they also can be dramatic, moody and sometimes self-absorbed.
Focus of attention: What is missing.
Life Lesson: To reclaim wholeness in the present moment by appreciating what is here and now, feeling the experience in their bodies rather than over-indulging in the story of what is happening, and accepting themselves as they are without needing to be special and unique.