Finding your Enneagram type is usually very straightforward. But sometimes it isn’t as easy as simply taking a test. Below you will find everything you need to know to find your basic Enneagram type.
Countless people around the world have made the experience that finding your Enneagram type can be an incredibly liberating moment. It feels like someone finally gets you.
For most people, it’s pretty obvious what your basic type is. You read the type description of your personality type, and suddenly there’s a pit in your stomach, a chill down your spine, a tingle in your fingertips. In some way our subconscious usually lets us know when it feels understood.
Finding your Enneagram type is like the first step you set on a path that can lead to incredible self-growth.
But for various reasons, some people don’t recognize themselves instantly.
That’s okay. Let’s find out why and what you can do to find your Enneagram type.
There are a few reasons why some people have a harder time recognizing their type than others. Some types are simply inherently handicapped in getting clear scores on Enneagram tests. Other times, your level of personal development or cultural pressures to perform a certain role can interfere.
The Enneagram wants to tell you not just how you behave, but the deeper motivation behind why you behave the way you do. But any test can measure motivations only to a degree. That’s why no matter how well-designed a test is, it will ever only reach about 80-90% accuracy, and should always be taken with at least a tiny grain of salt.
Any test is reliant on how well the person taking the test knows themselves. People who have done almost no personal development and have barely spent a thought on who they are can in some cases score for almost any type.
Sometimes, we are temporarily (or permanently) locked in a situation that requires us to act in a different way that’s contrary to our basic personality. For example, someone having relationship problems will likely score higher for types that are more relationship-oriented, like Two, Six and Nine. Or, people with career problems could get higher scores for performance-oriented types like Three, Eight and One. This should normally not influence your test results enough to obscure your main type, but it can have an impact.
Three types especially are prone to scoring for multiple types: Type Three, Six and Nine. We will go into more detail below when we talk about the steps you can take to be sure of your type.
There’s always the chance that you’ve recognized your type but you just don’t like what you’re seeing, so you simply don’t admit it. In that case there’s not much we can do: The Enneagram doesn’t work as long as you’re not honest with ourselves.
The Enneagram isn’t about fixating you in your type, but showing you a personality pattern you’re fixated on so you become aware of it and know which other patterns are out there for you to discover and integrate. People who have already done a lot of this integration work will be less influenced by their personality and may therefore also score high for different types. But before you jump to this conclusion for yourself, let us point out that very few people have reached this level of integration. We know, we would like to already be there too. But we put this one last for a reason.
Now that you know where the uncertainty can come from, the obvious question is: What can you do? In short, this:
When you take our test, you get a detailed result of how you scored for each type. If the first one wasn’t it, check out your other two highest scores. One of your three highest scores will most likely hit the spot. Especially if you’re a woman and have typed for Type Two but aren’t comfortable with it, this is the place to look first. Our society pressures many women to behave like Twos even though that’s not their actual personality type.
We have prepared a whole section on this. You can find it here.
If this is the first time you’ve ever encountered this kind of personality work and feel like you simply don’t know yourself well enough to know which type you might be, ask someone you trust and who knows you very well to take the test for you. An outside opinion from someone who knows you well is always valuable.
You can also try to put your test results aside for a week or two and take the time to observe yourself. Maybe take notes. Look at how you make decisions, how you react to conflict, how you spend your time. Then go back and take the test again.
The “Wings” of your main Enneagram type play a big role in your life. Sometimes they have so much influence on you that you are forgiven to think your wing is your main type. Check out the descriptions of misidentifications for each of the wings next to the Enneagram type of your top test result. Maybe this might be the case.
In moments where we’re really stressed as well as when we’re in our sweet spot, we all “borrow” the behavior of certain types. True story. You can learn all about that here. All you need to know here is this: Look at the stress and peace points of the three types you scored the highest for. If you also scored high for one of those stress/peace types, chances are the type they are connected to is your main type.
If you scored high for a number of different types or your result is scattered among a bunch of types, you might be a Three, a Six or a Nine. These types tend to be all over the place for specific reason:
Type Threes invest a lot of energy into projecting an image that makes them fit in and be popular in a certain area – most often in their career. Depending on the image they choose, they can test higher in types which represent the person they want to appear to be even though that’s not actually them.
For example, Threes who want to be seen as artists may test high for Type Four, as intellectuals for Type Fives, as Entrepreneurs as Type Seven or Eight, as moral leaders as Type Ones.
If this sounds like it could apply to you, the most helpful (but also most difficult) question you can ask yourself goes: “Is that really me, or is that merely who I would like to be?”
Sixes often connect very strongly to the values and motivations of the people they choose as their authority figures. Unintentionally, they aren’t answering based on the values they have themselves arrived on but on those of others. Being confident in their own opinions and values is the main challenge of Sixes.
If you feel like you’re every type and none at the same time, ask yourself: “Whose voice is giving the answers to this test? Is it really my own, or is it the voice of someone I put a lot of trust in?”
Nines without question mistype themselves the most. This is due to the nature of the Type itself: Nines have the biggest capacity of all types to assume the views of other types because they are so unselfconscious. As a result, they have the least defined sense of self.
This can take many forms. It’s common for Nines who mistakenly assume the type of their partner because they so strongly identify with them. Cultural influences can also play a big part: Many female Nines think they are Twos because there’s still a misguided stereotype in our culture associating womanhood with the helping, self-neglecting nature of Twos. Male Nines on the other hand often think they are Fives because they mistake their unassuming thinking for the thinking nature of the Five.
If, similarly to Sixes, you feel like you can understand the view of every type in the same way, ask yourself this: “What’s my view?” If the answer seems vague and undefined (and not because you’re afraid of it, but simply because it doesn’t seem to exist), check out the description of Type Nine and see if you can find yourself in it.
Ultimately, most people describe the feeling of finding your Enneagram type as a moment of „Yes, that is so me!“ But there can also be a bit of a different feeling: One of being found out. To put it plainly: It should hurt a little. Our personality type grants us certain strengths, but it also comes with its limitations and dangers. Recognizing those can be a better indicator of your Enneagram type than anything else.