Kassidy Van Winkle
Mary Bradley
27 February 2011

"What if there were a system that could enable us to have more insight into ourselves and others? What if this system showed us our core psychological issues as well as our personal strengths and weaknesses? What if this system solely existed for our advantage to concur and understand our personality patterns and our openness to explore ourselves? And after grasping an understanding of our personality, it then gave effective ways of dealing with it? A system consisting of these components does exist, it is called the Enneagram" (Riso 359). This geometric figure maps out nine fundamental personality types of human nature and shows their interrelationships to one another. The diagram shows numbers 1-9 on each different points of the figure. The word Enneagram comes from the Greek words "ennea" meaning "nine", and "grammos" meaning "figure". It's(It is, you don’t want to use contractions in your papers) greatest strength is providing a valuable insight on human beings(comma) and how we all function together with our different mental patterns, especially in today’s world. With help from the Enneagram, if we are black or white, male or female, Catholic or Protestant, straight or gay, rich or poor that if we are willing to search beneath the surface of our differences that separate us, we will find a whole new level of common humanity. The Enneagram is not a religion, though it concerns itself with one fundamental element to all spiritual paths and that is self-knowledge. As much as it reveals our spiritual heights we are capable of, it also sheds light clearly and nonjudgementally on to the aspects of our lives that are gloomy and unfree. The first step when working with the Enneagram starts when you identify your type. While you explore and read all nine different types, your most defining characteristics and behaviors are imbedded in one of these classifications.

Type One is titled "The Reformer", Ones strive to be as useful as possible to the people around them and maintain their strong sense of fulfilling their "purpose". Ones tend to spend a lot of time thinking about their actions. Some Ones come off to be highly self-controlled(comma) and even a bit rigid. They carry a strong knowing of right and wrong and live by "the rules". "Though Ones come off to be overly invested being in control of themselves and the people around them, they are well grounded and have much self respect" (Hudson 245). Most Ones tend to turn out to be great leaders and activists, mainly because of their powerful, dominant persona. On average, Ones tend to feel obligated not only to "do the right thing"(comma) but to then make up for the carelessness of others.

Type Two is titled "The Helper"; Twos are described to be very compassionate towards others in ways to draw people closer to them. They want to feel depended on and genuinely helpful and needed. When Twos are facing negative feelings, they focus their attention on to others; trying hard to please them. People of this type struggle with feeling responsible for others well-being and are typically emotionally strained when trying to express their feelings. "Twos are often referred to as the "care-takers" and the "people-pleaser" (Riso 135). Twos lean on "winning people over" with their caring traits when they sense someone seems indifferent with them.

Type Three is classified as "The Achiever"; Threes always strive to keep their "status of success", and whatever it may be. Threes are effective at self improving, great role models and inspirational figures. They focus mainly on being goal-oriented and do things that will attract positive attention onto themselves. Most cases in a Threes childhood, the nurturer in the family was the one they formed the greatest emotional bond with. Yet if "Threes who grow up in a highly dysfunctional environment they are left to struggle with pent-up rage and hostility because almost nothing they did was enough to please their unhealthy nurturing figure" (Riso 346). Threes fear that if they may fail at something(comma) they will be rejected and lose their sense of purpose.

Type Four "The Individualist", Fours carry on with the mindset that they are not rightfully understood by most people. They claim to have no clear identity, mainly in a social setting. Fours tend to dwell on "how unlike everyone else they are" and feel that everything has to be done on their own and in their own way. "One of the biggest challenges Fours face is learning to let go of feelings from the past; they tend to nurse wounds and hold on to negative feelings about those who have hurt them" (Riso 232). When Fours are at their best(comma) they let go of feeling flawed and are on the track of self renewing and stability.

Type Five "The Investigator", being a Five means you have an endless pursuit of knowledge. Fives invest all of their time into solving problems and finding other ways around issues. They strive to have a skill mastered to feel capable and connected to the world and on the journey achieving that they do not allow anything to get in its way. "The intense focus of Fives can thus lead to remarkable discoveries and innovations, but when the personality is more fixated, it can also create self-defeating problems" (Riso 221).

Type Six "The Loyalist", Sixes create security around their friends and their beliefs. They display a huge sense of protection to the ones who are closest to them and want to feel that there is something solid and clear in their lives in return. "The biggest problem for Sixes is that they try to build safety in the environment without resolving their own emotional insecurities" (Riso 343). Sixes make positive alliances with others, but yet they tend to dwell on problems that may arise in the future before they even occur. Average Sixes invest themselves in the people that they believe will help them as well but tend to feel indifferent about it. They constantly need reassurance and to be reminded that they play a major role in keeping everything in its place and keeping their friendship circle or family bond close.

Type Seven "The Enthusiast", Very spontaneous yet scattered-brained, Sevens are always looking for an adventure or a risk to take. They search for mental stimulation to avoid any anxiety that could put them down in any way. Since they are always on the go, Sevens are practical and get things done. They are constantly pursuing whatever might give them a sense of freedom and satisfaction. "Sevens get distracted by the possibilities of the next moment rather than being fully in the present one." (Hudson 200). Defined as the "Energizer" Sevens always knows how to inject energy and excitement into situations so everyone involved will feel the same as them. Most Sevens have a large friend pool because of their constant upbeat attitude. On a bad day, Sevens tend to panic when avoiding their pain in all ways.

Type Eight "The Challenger" Eights want to be in control. Whatever the situation is, they feel they own it and have the power somewhere within them to overcome the issue or solve the problem. Eights are reliable at all costs to the people they are closest to. They have a tendency to hold grudges against those who have betrayed them and in most cases they hold on to that forever. Eights are daring and want to strategically make you underestimate them. People of this type are very in charge of their family life and in their friendship circle. They are the ringleader and plan to keep it that way and will fight for that position.

Type Nine “The Peacemaker”, Nines are reassuring but demonstrate a tendency to run away from any pain and suffering by attempting to live in a state of premature peacefulness. Nines want to stay in a state of comfort and they crave a sense of security from the people who are close to them. Nines enjoy socializing and are attracted to losing themselves in sensuality and comforting routines. This type can be blunt and explosive though and then suddenly return to a state of calm.

After finding ourselves in the Enneagram, it allows us to become more aware of the people around us and how we all deal with social situations. After working with this material we will no doubt see changes in our lives and in ourselves. It can create peace and make us more grounded and down to earth about the people around us.

Very well written article! You really need a title but that’s a minor problem. Main idea was good. Finding what number you are and what find of person you are is really interesting. Your work was cited well so it supports your topic well. The quotes are really good. I found your paper to almost soothing. I believe this was the best point. The positive values are that it makes you understand other people around you. Back to you citing everything, I believe that made the strongest points. You have proof to back up what you are saying. You could have chosen different words instead of using for example “ones” a lot. For a few minutes into the article, I thought you were using singular and plural pronouns together. I believe everything was explained pretty clear. It really is a well written article. I felt enlightened when I read this. I know people who fit this perfectly. Only suggestions I have would be watch your comma’s (very common mistake) and try not to use one word over and over. It was cited well in the essay but I did not see where it was cited at the end with the author’s information and so forth.

Work Cited

Hudson, Russ. The Wisdom of the Enneagram. New York: AH Resource, 1999.

Riso, Don Richard. Understand the Enneagram. New York: Houghton Mifflin Company, 2000.