How To Read The Enneagram Diagram Like A Pro

The Enneagram diagram reveals the powerful teachings of the Enneagram. It provides you with a path to physical, emotional, mental and spiritual health.

Exploring this powerful image shows you a path to your best self. It helps you become self-aware, and with practice, you can catch yourself before you move into unhealthy behaviour.

Enneagram Diagram:

The Circle represents unity, oneness, and wholeness. It reminds us that we are part of something greater.

The Enneagram diagram originates from the Abrahamic faiths that believe in one God.  Everything stems from the triune God, and this tradition includes the Jewish, Christian, and Islamic faiths.

This oneness and unity remind us that we are connected to people and all of life, animate and inanimate.

The Circle demonstrates how life is physically and spiritually continuous. It never ends.  It may change form, but it continues in some way.

The Triangle refers to the Law of Three. This Law reminds us that everything in life comprises three energies: the active, passive, and neutral. 

The Law of Three is a non-dualistic way of thinking.  It reminds us that there is always a third way.  This way of thinking allows us to go beyond the limitations of our personality.  

In the Christian tradition, this Law is called the Trinity.  It reminds us that God works in the world in three ways.  God is active through our bodies, our emotions, and our minds.  God is dynamic and always moving, changing, and creating.

In his fourth-way teaching, George Gurdjieff understood the Law of three as a transformation process, which requires affirmation, denial, and reconciliation.

The Hexad is a six-pointed line.  The Hexad represents the Law of Seven.  This Law considers the path of movement is not a straight line.

This energy movement, represented by the Hexad in the Enneagram diagram, demonstrates how life is always shifting and changing. Nothing is ever static.  

enneagram diagram

The Triads

The instinctive Centre, located in the gut center, helps you be grounded in the here and now.

If your Enneagram type has its home in the instinctive Center, you will get your first feedback through your body’s sensations.  You might find that you have a strong intuition. Everything goes well when you pay attention to your intuition.

The Enneagram types represented in the Instinctive Center include Type Eight, the challenger, Type Nine, the peacemaker and Type One, the reformer.

The Feeling Center,  located in your solar plexus, helps you get in touch with your feelings.

If your Enneagram type has its home in the feeling center, you will get your first feedback through your emotions.

One way to know if your heart center is open is to put one hand over your heart and notice if it feels warms and active. 

Your emotions are always changing. If you get stuck in a feeling, you are probably caught in what your head thinks you should feel.

The Thinking Center, located in your head, helps you connect with a higher power when your mind is quiet.

When your mind is quiet, you will know what you need to do, what you need to say, and whom and what you need to prioritize.

Your quiet mind can help you notice what is going on within yourself and those around you.

It won’t make your life easy, but you will know when you are on the right path.

enneagram diagram

The Nine Types:

Each of the types in the Enneagram diagram represents nine ways to survive in the world.  It is like each type sees the world through a different lens.  Each of us will notice different things because we view the world through the lens of our type.

Your type shows you where you get stuck when you are under stress. It helps you to get out of the box in which you often live.

No one type is better than another. Each type represents different ways to experience the world.

You have all nine types within you. As you get healthier in your type, you get better in all of them. 

Here are brief descriptions for each type:

Enneagram Type One: The Reformer

The reformer knows the world can be a better place and how they can make a difference. They intuitively know the best ways to heal the world.

They are natural teachers, always inviting people to join them in making the world a better place for all.  Some Ones take on the immense task such as world peace while others focus on their family.

When under stress, Type Ones can be tough on themselves, worrying that they are not doing things well enough. As they get harder on themselves, they get more critical of those they love.

Enneagram Type Two: The Helper

The Helper can notice what others need. They get great joy from helping. At their best, they not only care for those around them; they are good at self-care. 

When the two are healthy, they offer to help others without any strings attached.  It is no problem for them if the person they offer to help turns down their offer.

As the Two gets stressed, they will do whatever they need to get another person’s love. They will manipulate family and friends so they can be the Center of their lives.

If a person refuses their help, they will often get angry and aggressive if their offer of support is not appreciated.

Most of all, the two will forget they have their own needs.  They will forget themselves and live vicariously through another person.


Want to Learn More about How to Balance Mind, Body and Spirit Based on Your Enneagram Type: Click Here

Enneagram Type Three: The Achiever

The Achiever has lots of energy. They are creative, playful, energized and want to make things happen in the world.

They want to be successful and be seen as successful.

They can be great mentors, whether at home, work or anywhere else.  They know how to help people to enhance their skills and build self-confidence.

Their enthusiasm for life is contagious.  They want to be movers and shakers in this world. They can envision the possibilities that many people can not see.

As the Achiever gets stressed, they start to disconnect from their true self.  They will morph into whatever they think they need to be to succeed in any group or organization.

Enneagram Type Four: The Individualist

The Individualist wants to find their true self and connect with others at a deep level.  They want to be their authentic self and enjoy time with those who want to be real with them.

Fours are creative, emotional, playful, and unique.  Fours will find beauty in surprising places, and their creativity will be expressed through their home decor, clothes, and accessories.

When they get stressed, they will get moody because they are afraid of not feeling enough emotion. Fours will find one of their favourite sad moods that are easy for them to get stuck in.

Four’s greatest fear is to get stuck in the ordinary. People of this type are on this endless journey to find out who they are.

Enneagram Type Five: The Investigator

Fives have a hunger for knowledge.  They don’t have to know a broad range of things that would help them play games like Trivial Pursuit. They have a passion for a particular area of expertise and will work for days, months and years to become experts in this field.

Fives are fantastic observers. They may seem quiet and private but do not miss anything going on around them.

As they get stressed, they will have a hard time sharing what they are learning with people because they fear looking like a fool.

In relationships, they can be a mystery to their partner because their partner has no idea of what is going on in their head.

Enneagram Type Six The Loyalist

Loyalists can see problems before they happen.  Sixes make sure the issues get addressed before anyone finds themselves in danger.

People count on them because they know they can trust them.  Sixes are friendly and have a great sense of humour.

They love to get everyone working together.  People who identify as type six feel more comfortable when they and those they work with are clear about their roles and responsibilities.

As sixes move into stress, they start to see problems where there is no trouble. It is easy for them to get caught in anxiety, worrying about things they have no control over.

Enneagram Type Seven The Enthusiast

Enthusiasts love to get the best out of each day.  They love adventures and will try anything new, even if just once. 

Sevens want to have a good time. They want everyone around them to have a good time too.

They are big picture people. They can see possibilities in any group or organization that most people are not able to see.

As they get stressed, they quickly get bored and find it hard to complete projects. Sevens often double or triple book themselves because they fear missing out on any exciting opportunity.

Enneagram Type Eight The Challenger

Challengers have big hearts and powerful intuitions. They want to make a difference. Eights have great compassion for those who have suffered at the hands of other people.

Eights are movers and shakers.  They don’t want to waste time. When they know within themselves what they want,  they make it happen. Nothing is worse for them than a person trying to slow them down.

They stand with people who face injustice. Eights have a big heart but often hide this part of themselves because they are afraid of people trying to control them.

As they move into stress, the eight can become like a bull in a china shop. Their energy and intensity often intimidate others because they use more force than needed to force their will.


 Want to learn How Enneagram Types Impact What You Observe in Your Self (And Others)? Click Here

Enneagram Type Nine The Peacemaker

Peacemakers can help people resolve conflict.  Nines can understand people’s different points of view. They can see what others have in common, enabling them to help people come to a win-win solution.

They are great observers.  They have a great sense of humour. People feel comfortable hanging out with them because of their peaceful energy.

As they get stressed, nines appease others at all costs to avoid conflict. Over time they forget their own needs.


You rarely find yourself exactly on one particular Enneagram type on the Enneagram diagram. Usually, the type you are close to is considered your predominant type and the type you are further from is called your wing. 

For example, a type five with a four-wing will be different from five with a six-wing. You will experience ways of being that connect with both your primary type and your wing.

enneagram diagram

The direction of Integration:

The Enneagram Diagram reveals how the energy of life is continuously moving and changing.  As people move in the direction of Integration, they become healthier in their personality.  For example, a type six moves to the healthier behaviours of type nine. As they get healthier in their types, they get healthier in all nine types. See the diagram below to see the different combinations.

The Direction of Stress

The Enneagram diagram reveals the direction of stress. The movement toward stress is a sign of being constricted in the personality.  However, this is not negative. The point of stress is like a safety valve; it prevents you from going down a level of health.  Type six goes to the average behaviours for type three.  See the diagram below to see the different possibilities.

You can benefit from learning about the average and healthy behaviours for the integration and stress point.

The Enneagram diagram reveals its powerful wisdom. It shows us how to become healthier. It helps us to catch ourselves when we are getting stuck in our personality. It enables us to be at our best and allows us to get along with other people.

To benefit from the Enneagram takes time, study, self-reflection and honesty.  If you make an effort, you will find new life, courage, self-respect and joy.

If you want to take this journey seriously, you will benefit from courses, coaching, books, video and learning together with friends and family.

When you make an effort, you will not be disappointed.  You will discover a life you never dreamed possible.

I am Roland Legge, an Identity Life Coach here to help you use the Enneagram to find purpose and joy in your life. You can join my private newsletter list for Free Advice and access your Free Online Enneagram Test

Originally posted on — used with permission

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