Enneagram Type 8: The Leader

The Challenger

Triad: Gut

Purpose: Leadership

Quest: To be self-reliant, in control

Lesson: Surrender



Values: Strength, power

Talent: Management

Challenge: Lust for power

Fear: Submitting to others

Childhood parental dynamics: Ambivalent to mother


Healthy: Assertive, confident, strong, “can-do” attitude, inner drive, ambitious, natural leader, decisive, authoritative, commanding, provider, sponsor, promoter, masterful, courageous, protective, enterprising, entrepreneur

Average: Direct, skeptical, self-sufficient, forceful, empire builder, power broker, proud

Unhealthy: Controlling, insensitive, domineering, self-centered, aggressive, rebellious, egocentric, arrogant, confrontational, belligerent, bullying, defiant, adversarial, threatening, oppressive, ruthless, violent, immoral, hardhearted, dictatorial, tyrannical, delusional ideas of grandeur/omnipotence/ invincibility, reckless, vengeful, brutal


Roles: CEO, military commander, father archetype

Examples: Fidel Castro, Muammar Qaddafi, Martin Luther King, Mao Tse-tung, Joseph Stalin, Franklin D. Roosevelt, Al Capone, Lee Iacocco, Sean Penn, Johnny Cash, Darth Vader

ISFP—The Artist

ISFP, The Composer.

Most artistic, kind, and gentle

8% of U.S. population

Traits: Loves and is sensitive to others, serene; sympathetic; appreciates life; in touch with self and nature; non-imposing; often invisible; creative; artsy; sells self short; quiet; subtle; expresses self through art; in tune with beauty and harmony of the senses (color, texture, etc.); generous; trusting; receptive; least visible/understood of the types; expresses self through action not speech; looses self in action/art

Occupations: Nurse, social worker, veterinarian, hair stylist, makeup artist, composer, painter, dancer, fine artist, chef, decorator, animal rights activist

Examples: St. Francis of Assisi, Beethoven, Rembrandt, Frodo

ISTJ—The Inspector

ISTJ, The Inspector.

Most private and critical

9% of U.S. population

Traits: Responsible, dependable, reliable, “bottom line” mindset, demanding, dutiful, “should”-driven, “macho” type, efficient, no-nonsense, schedule-oriented, traditional, honorable, strong integrity, “the rock”, actions speak louder than words, fiercely loyal, decisive in practical affairs, quiet, serious, thorough, just/fair, practical, stable, respectable

Occupations: Administrator, manager, policeperson, military/soldier, accountant, auditor

Examples: Henry Ford, Calvin Coolidge, Johnny Carson, George Washington, George H.W. Bush

Enneagram Type 7: The Adventurer

The Enthusiast

Triad: Head

Purpose: Joy for life

Quest: To be happy/satisfied and avoid pain

Lesson: Moderation



Values: Fun, happiness

Talents: Energy, gratitude for abundance

Challenge: Gluttony/excess

Fear: Being deprived

Childhood parental dynamics: Negative to mother


Healthy: Fun-loving, spontaneous, enthusiastic, quick, curious, excitable, vivacious, stimulating, resilient, lively, multitalented generalist, “Renaissance person”, versatile, awed with life, joyful, ecstatic

Average: Unfocused, undisciplined, restless, materialistic, connoisseur, trendsetter, sensation seeker, hyperactive, superficial, dabbler, outrageous, outspoken, loud, brash, uninhibited, extravagant, escapist, impulsive

Unhealthy: Manic, addictive tendencies, erratic, out of control, volatile mood swings, compulsive/manic actions, panic attacks, self-centered, selfish, demanding, impatient, unsatisfied, insensitive to others, excessive


Roles: “Jack of all trades,” generalist, “Renaissance man”

Examples: Leonardo Da Vinci, Barbara Streisand, Robin Williams, Sarah Ferguson, Zsa Zsa Gabor, Miss Piggy

INFP—The Healer

INFP, The Healer.

Most nondirective

3% of U.S. population

Traits: Idealistic, noble service to aid society; defender of the people/causes; easygoing; gentle; congenial (until their ideal/ethics/rights or those of others are breeched, then very assertive); reflective; gentle exterior masking an assertive interior; needs to please and avoid conflict; sensitive; deep capacity for caring; strong sense of integrity; concerned for others; self-critical; perfectionistic; calm; pleasant outside/passionate inside; profound sense of honor; deep commitment to the positive and the good; moral; ethical; loyal to and protector of family values and ideals; empathic; benevolent; authentic

Occupations: Psychologist/therapist, psychiatrist, social worker, teacher, nonprofit staff worker

Examples: Joan of Arc, Sir Galahad, Don Quixote, Isabel Briggs Myers, Carl Rogers (psychologist), Princess Diana, Counselor Troi (Star Trek)

ESFP—The Entertainer

ESFP, The Performer.

Most generous and whimsical

11% of U.S. population

Traits: Lives for the present; most in touch with the here and now; “live and let live”; focuses on the positive, denies the negative; ignores problems; needs action, people pleaser; “dizzy blonde”; avoids conflict; warm; supportive; easygoing; optimistic; popular with both adults and kids; enjoys life; “life is a party” attitude; loves luxury; exciting; unpredictable; impulsive; self-indulgent; sociable; playful; fun-loving; lively; witty; pleasure-loving

Occupations: Teacher (especially elementary school), actor, athlete, PR person, nurse, social worker, salesperson/ performing artists

Examples: Edith Bunker, Richard Branson, Hugh Hefner

Enneagram Type 6: The Realist

The Loyalist

Triad: Head

Purpose: Security, order

Quest: To be secure

Lessons: Independence, self-trust



Values: Safety, grounding

Talents: Responsibility, courage

Challenge: Doubt

Fear: Being abandoned

Childhood parental dynamics: Positive to father


Healthy: Loyal, likeable, caring, practical, helpful, responsible, friendly, committed to “tribe”/family, cooperative, reliable, trustworthy, hardworking, dependable, independent and interdependent

Average: Hypervigilant, worrier, edgy/testy, anxious, distrustful of others, seeks approval/assistance of an authority figure, suspicious, traditionalist, “team player”, dutiful, obedient

Unhealthy: Insecure, cowardly, worthless, incompetent, overreacts to everything, exaggerates problems, anxious, controlling, judgmental, defensive, rigid, feels persecuted and attacked by others, self-defeating, self-punishing, masochistic, belligerent, mean-spirited, rebellious/ aggressive


Roles: Security guard, stunt person, private detective, home inspector

Examples: Woody Allen, Richard Nixon, Adolf Hitler, Joseph McCarthy, J. Edgar Hoover, Andy Rooney, Boy Scouts, Cowardly Lion (Wizard of Oz)