Full & Free Enneagram Co. https://kristirowles.com/ Finding freedom and fullness through the enneagram Thu, 14 Jan 2021 05:01:35 +0000 en-US hourly 1 https://wordpress.org/?v=6.1.1 https://kristirowles.com/wp-content/uploads/2019/09/cropped-Screen-Shot-2019-09-26-at-4.53.27-PM-32x32.png Full & Free Enneagram Co. https://kristirowles.com/ 32 32 “How I Show Up in Relationships” https://kristirowles.com/how-i-show-up-in-relationships/?utm_source=rss&utm_medium=rss&utm_campaign=how-i-show-up-in-relationships Mon, 15 Jul 2019 21:58:50 +0000 https://kristirowles.com/?p=1406 How Each Enneagram Type Shows Up in Relationships! by Kristi Rowles More than ANY other questions I get asked, I get “Why is this person the way that they are?” or “Help! How can I understand my partner/child/boss/friend?” If you are brand new to the Enneagram, you’ll find all the intro need-to-knows about your people […]

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How Each Enneagram Type Shows Up in Relationships!

by Kristi Rowles

More than ANY other questions I get asked, I get “Why is this person the way that they are?” or “Help! How can I understand my partner/child/boss/friend?” If you are brand new to the Enneagram, you’ll find all the intro need-to-knows about your people right here! 

I partnered up with artist and creator Nicole Mauck on a super fun project where she crafted incredibly fun art that depicts how each Enneagram type shows up in relationships! Check ’em out below with some commentary from ya’ girl!

Type 1s in relationships:

Enneagram 1s:

👍🏼 are incredibly reliable
👍🏼 value fairness and justice
👍🏼 are thoughtful and full of care
👍🏼 pursue excellence
👍🏼 will do the right thing even when it’s hard
👍🏼 are perfectionistic of their inner and outer world
👍🏼 show love through acts of service and being responsible

Type 2s in relationships:

Enneagram 2s:

🌟 are sensitive and empathetic
🌟 are encouragers, lovers and supporters
🌟 are wildly thoughtful gift-givers
🌟 can be soft and strong
🌟 are scared of rejection and can be possessive and in need of regular reassurance
🌟 tend to lose themselves in relationships and in their care of others
🌟 sometimes expect others to read their minds and sense their needs

Type 3s in relationships:

Enneagram 3s:

✨ run on attention and praise
✨ wants to be, have and provide the best
✨ are hard-working multitaskers
✨ tend to be charming and attractive
✨ are highly image conscious
✨ are champions driven to achieve greatness
✨ can sense your feelings but are often out of touch with their own
✨ are unsure if their authentic self is enough, so they tend to become chameleons shapeshifting into who they think you want them to be

Type 4s in relationships:

Enneagram 4s:

🌟 are idealistic fantasizers
🌟 are deep feelers and empathy connoisseurs
🌟 are tenderly romantic
🌟 feel incomplete and defective
🌟 are nostalgic
🌟 are marvelously creative
🌟 enter rooms heart-first
🌟 tend to push/pull in relationships because they’re nervous about being abandoned

Type 5s in relationships:

Enneagram 5s:

🌟 be independent
🌟 be knowledgeable
🌟 be about facts, not fluff
🌟 view quiet and privacy as sacred
🌟 avoid emotional drama
🌟 have thick boundaries
🌟 utilize significant time to process feelings

Type 6s in relationships:

Enneagram 6s:

👍🏼 are skeptical and trust is earned over time
👍🏼 are in need of and willing to give lots of support
👍🏼 are witty, playful and affectionate
👍🏼 can be scared and courageous simultaneously
👍🏼 are reliable, prepared and responsible people
👍🏼 are scared of being left alone or abandoned
👍🏼 play devil’s advocate with alllll the questions which makes them great problem solvers
👍🏼 long for “optimal distance” meaning they want closeness but not so much they feel suffocated

Type 7s in relationships:

Enneagram 7s:
✨ have lots of exciting ideas
✨ have limited availability for darker emotions
✨ feel suffocated by boredom
✨ are high energy 90% of the time
✨ are positive and optimistic
are flexible
✨ want to experience life with others (aka. prefer not to be alone most of the time)

Type 8s in relationships:

Enneagram 8s:

👊🏽 are strong and bold
👊🏽 communicate directly
👊🏽 are fierce debaters
👊🏽 are deeply passionate and protective
👊🏽 can be stubborn and antagonistic
👊🏽 are very tender with people who have proven safe
👊🏽 are nervous about being betrayed, which is why they like to be in control

Type 9s in relationships:

Enneagram 9s:

❤ unify people like no one else can
❤ are incredible listeners
❤ are kind, caring and encouraging
❤ will merge with your opinions without even realizing
❤ experience conflict as larger than others do
❤ are not convinced they or their presence truly matter
❤ have less energy (especially emotionally) than others
❤ are not naturally intuitive initiators but usually are glad to help, when asked

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Superpowers by Enneagram Type https://kristirowles.com/enneagram-superpowers/?utm_source=rss&utm_medium=rss&utm_campaign=enneagram-superpowers Sun, 23 Jun 2019 17:20:47 +0000 https://kristirowles.com/?p=1385 Owning Your Enneagram Type’s Superpowers!​ by Kristi Rowles Part of doing your work with the Enneagram is becoming aware that sometimes our greatest strengths can become our biggest weaknesses when we’re out of balance. However, when we are grounded, self-aware and killin’ it, our strengths become our SUPERPOWERS.  Each Enneagram Type has unique gifts they […]

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Owning Your Enneagram Type's Superpowers!​

by Kristi Rowles

Part of doing your work with the Enneagram is becoming aware that sometimes our greatest strengths can become our biggest weaknesses when we’re out of balance. However, when we are grounded, self-aware and killin’ it, our strengths become our SUPERPOWERS. 

Each Enneagram Type has unique gifts they bring to the table (whether at work on a project, as a romantic partner, as a friend or just as a human living in a community!) No one else can offer that gift quite like them, which is why it’s SO important to draw these gifts out of each other and show appreciation for them! This blog highlights those incredible qualities of each type and offers a little word of gratitude to each of you for your superpower! Let’s get to it!


No one has eyes quite as keen on details and refinement as our Type 1s! They can make crappy things great and great things greater. In the last month, two Type 1s have told me they feel like fun people stuck in serious people’s bodies. I laugh a little, but my heart also aches a bit over this! Y’all we’ve gotta shake stereotypes of all the types but this one feels especially important lately!

1s can be both fun AND utilize their superpower of refinement, and the rest of us need to give them permission for that. People who love Ones will do them a favor by helping to draw out their fun side while also thanking them endlessly for making everything we do even more excellent than we could have imagined!


“I’m able to read a room, help people feel heard and translate it to others.” ”I love that I’m able to make others feel good.” I hear this from Enneagram 2s often, and we love these things about you too, Twos! Y’all are warm, friendly and sensitive to others. The ability to sense others’ needs without them even stating them is your superpower, and it is unique to you! Twos always challenge me on this – “but can’t everyone do this?” Y’all… I’m telling you the answer is no. Just you! Enneagram Twos truly are wildly gifted at helping others feel seen and cared for, for hosting and embracing, for savoring and nurturing a sense of togetherness and family, even among complete strangers! 


Thou hast not seen more laser focused eyeballs and energy than those of an Enneagram 3 working on a project! A 3’s ability to rally their team, focus in on the task at hand and knock it outta the ballpark is unmatched!

When I asked my community on Instagram what part of the 3’s personality they cherish most, they said, “focus” – right alongside the 3’s unique ability to keep others on task, driving towards a goal. Threes, you do it in a way that not only is easy for others to be a part of but that others DESIRE to be a part of. You cast vision, clarify mission and target tasks to bring an idea from dream to reality like few others can. When a 3 is grounded, their ability to champion others with compassion and truth is stunninggg.


Fours embody the creativity of our world. Their ability to see, feel, and experience deeply is unlike any of the other eight types. Fours, whether you express your creative magic through ideas, paint strokes, unique art pieces, writing words, moving your body, graphic design, baking, your appearance, or some other way, the world would be HELLA LAME without you!

The creations Fours bring into this world are gifts that many of us would struggle to ever bring about ourselves and yet, they are the often voice of our souls. Fours speak for the rest of us in ways that we long to ourselves, and we’re indebted to them for that. A Four’s superpower is all about depth and intuition shown through their creative expression.


When I asked the Enneagram 5s who follow me on Instagram, “What’s the thing about your personality type that you won’t apologize for? You know it’s your unique gift to the world and you see such value in it – what is that characteristic?” They replied: “my objectivity.” 

Fives can easily step back from a situation, see it clearly, analyze the facts and make a wise decision that would stump so many others. They don’t get swept away in emotions, fear, other’s opinions, people-pleasing, their image or nostalgia.

Fives teach the rest of us how to live in the middle space between impulsivity and analysis paralysis, and that is where their greatest gifts lie!


Despite often feeling unsure or unsafe themselves, Type 6s are a well of warmth and care for others they love. They are a safe haven for “their people” and the communities that have supported them.

The superpower for the 6 is their deeply running loyalty and commitment. Other types cannot ride the natural waves of relationships and still feel solid like a 6 can. It’s a beautifully striking strength when this loyalty shows up in a healthy relationship!

Type 6s also truly want what’s best for the group – the “collective good” is what they advocate for, and their (sometimes “hypersensitive”) intuition is usually very wise and trustworthy. Sixes are a gift to every other type in how they show up, support, and champion their people. 


NO ONE sees a best-case scenario quite like (or as quickly as) an Enneagram 7! They easily turn the darkest days into ones of connection, compassion and wild optimism. 7s have a unique ability to see the absolute best in everyone and everything. They truly want what’s best for everyone, and they believe that we all have the power within us to create the lives we dream of!

Healthy 7s can be generous, carefree, and adventurous and are so gifted in their ability to liven up a room and bring joy to everyone within it! Their energy and delight in life is precious.


More than most others, Enneagram Eights know how to advocate for others. I’ve said it before, and I’ll say it again – I never feel safer than with an 8 who has my back! Their choice to stand up for me, remind me to use my voice and speak up, and to demand justice for those who are being wrongly treated – it’s their superpower! Eights are passionate and throw their energy and attention into making the humans they care about feel valued, competent and seen.

As our Type 8s (mind you, their name is the Protective Challenger) lean into their healthiest self by letting compassion and love drive their advocation, their influence becomes more powerful and world-changing than ever! Their strength becomes a wing others feel safe under, not one that intimidate or scares them away.


This superpower is chosen with intention, although many Nines may resist or deny when they first see it. Nine’s superpower: positive leadership. Healthy 9s discover the energy to rise up with their voice, claim their authority, and confidently lead to powerful change.

9s lead with grace and tenderness. They are a unifier of people, teams, staffs, families and friend groups. They have a unique ability to see everyone’s perspective with understanding and grace, even if it’s different than their own. (Other types can’t do this like a Nine can!) They naturally encourage others and genuinely want others to be happy. Egos rarely exist where a 9 is leading, and the world and businesses are richer and more successful because of them!

Reading through but feeling like “Uh… oh dang. No idea what my type is…” I GOT YOU! 

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How to Love Each Enneagram Type https://kristirowles.com/how-to-love-each-enneagram-type/?utm_source=rss&utm_medium=rss&utm_campaign=how-to-love-each-enneagram-type https://kristirowles.com/how-to-love-each-enneagram-type/#comments Mon, 27 May 2019 17:17:59 +0000 https://kristirowles.com/?p=1223 How to Love Each Enneagram Type We tend to love others the way WE want to be loved, but our relationships transform when we begin loving others the way they actually experience and feel love!

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How to Love Each Enneagram Type

by Kristi Rowles

I get asked about relationship combinations maybe more than any other topic! Everyone wants to know, “Are my partner and I a good fit?” “Will my mother and I ever get along?” “Why is my coworker like this!?”

Here’s the straight-up honest answer: ANY types can get along well if both people are self-aware, doing their work, and want the relationship to work. Seriously. 

Another piece to keep in mind is the way we love each other. NEWSFLASH: We tend to love others the way we want to be loved. Another newsflash: that’s ineffective A LOT of the time. Part of understanding the Enneagram is that we’re all different with different desires, needs, feelings, thoughts and self-expressions. As a Type 6 myself, I long for safety and trust in relationships, so I try insanely hard to be a safe and trustworthy person for people in my life. Now, that’s not wrong, but if you’re a Type 2, for example, and gifts are how you feel loved, then I could miss you entirely. 

It’s our job to teach others how to love us and learn how to love them in return. This is non-negotiable if you want fulfilling relationships. Read on below to see how each Enneagram type longs to be loved. Ask the loved ones in your life if these are true for them, and then practice loving them in those ways! You’ll watch your relationship transform and deepen right before your precious eyes.

So I’ve compiled this short go-to list. If you want the FULL list of How to Love & Communicate with All Nine Types, you can GRAB IT HERE!

How to love Type 1s,
the Moral Perfectionist

  • Please be responsible with your part, so it doesn’t all fall on me.
  • Be gentle with criticism. My inner critic is already so loud and cruel to me. Realize that when I’m being critical about others, I’m being harder on myself internally.
  • Understand that change can be difficult for me. Give me time to adjust.
  • Graciously remind me not to compare myself to others and that I’m loved even if I’m imperfect or done something bad.

How to love Type 2s,
the Supportive Helper

  • Thoughtful gifts show me you really know me and that you’ve been paying attention to what’s important to me.
  • Sandwich your feedback with affirmations. I can hear hard things if I know you still love me and value our relationship. It’s excruciating, otherwise.
  • Understand that relationships mean everything to me and are my top priority. This is where most of my energy goes. 
  • Help me set limits, even with you. It’s extremely difficult for me to say no to someone who needs me.

How to Love Type 3s,
the Successful Achiever

  • It’s difficult to believe that I don’t have to earn or achieve your love. I’ll need reminded of this often.
  • Please do not interrupt my work, especially with emotions. Give me a heads ups when you need support so I can clear my mind and be there for you.
  • Efficiency and productivity are my middle names. Understand that I like to move quickly and get lots done. It’s hard when you get in the way of that.
  • Point out and celebrate my accomplishments, even the little ones. It’s music to my ears and is how I feel seen and appreciated.

How to love Type 4s,
the Romantic Individualists

  • Acknowledge and affirm the unique qualities you see and love in me.
  • Being melancholic is comfortable for me. Don’t try to cheer me up or fix my problem when I don’t ask you to.
  • Remind me my needs are not too much and you’ll be there when I’m ready to share them with you.
  • I tend to push and pull in relationships when I get nervous. Know that it’s because I fear being abandoned. 

How to love Type 5s,
the Investigative Thinker

  • Do not cling to me or expect me to cling to you. I value my independence.
  • Be direct with me. Please don’t expect me to read emotional hints.
  • Kindly remind me you’d like to know my feelings and that they help you feel close, but don’t push and prod. My privacy is sacred to me. I’ll share when I’m ready.
  • Value my gifts of analyzing, being objective and problem-solving.


How to love Type 6s,
the Loyal Guardian

  • Be clear and direct. Don’t leave me guessing what you mean or where we stand. Reassure me our relationship is secure, especially when we are struggling.
  • Don’t dismiss or ignore my anxiety. Ask me about my worst-case scenarios. Most of the time, it helps me realize that they aren’t so bad, then I can move on.
  • Loyalty and trustworthiness mean everything to me. Please don’t break trust. If you do, I may not be able to continue our relationship.
  • I’m constantly aware of all that needs to be done. Remind me I’m allowed to rest even before all the things are done. that needs to be done. 

How to love Type 7s,
the Entertaining Optimist

  • Join me and all the fun, spontaneous, stimulating conversations and activities. I love sharing joy with others!
  • Allow me as much freedom as possible. Don’t limit or try to control me.
  • Assure me you’ll be there with open arms on days when I’m feeling less than great. Sometimes it feels like those parts of me aren’t wanted by others.
  • Remember that heavy conversations during my energy. I’m not able to stay there as long as others can.

How to love Type 8s,
the Protective Challenger

  • Vulnerability is very difficult, so if I show you my softer side, do not betray me or manipulate me to show more.
  • Don’t shrink down around me. I need to know you’re strong enough to hold your own.  Otherwise, how will you be able to ever protect me or fate for me, if needed? 
  • Understand that I speak very directly. I’m not intending to extend you. I prefer you be direct and truthful with me too.
  • I enjoy a good debate where we can go head-to-head. This feels like intimate connection to me. Join in with me!

How to love Type 9s,
the Peaceful Mediator

  • Please don’t dump expectations on me out of the blue. It squashes my peace.
  • Many times, I don’t have preferences. When I do though, please here and honor them.
  • Confrontation and conflict is the worst. Please speak kindly and check in with how I’m doing. I tend to merge with others and lose myself without even realizing. I may need space away to get clear on my opinions, then I’ll come back to finish the conversation.
  • Understand that obligations take a lot of energy from me, so I need to balance with lots of downtime.


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Arrows: Each Type at their Best & Worst https://kristirowles.com/best-worst/?utm_source=rss&utm_medium=rss&utm_campaign=best-worst Mon, 29 Apr 2019 21:43:26 +0000 https://kristirowles.com/?p=1191 Get clear on your path towards growth and the red flags that you're starting to spiral into a destructive place! The Arrows of the Enneagram are a GAME-CHANGER!

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Each Enneagram Type at their Most Healthy & Unhealthy

by Kristi Rowles

Q: Why is the Enneagram a GAME-CHANGING tool when it comes to personal growth and development?

A: That’s easy. The Enneagram is the only personality typing tool that tells you what you’re like at your absolute best AND your absolute worst. The mountain-top and the utter pits, y’all.

Thanks to the “Arrows” of the Enneagram, we can understand the full spectrum of our personalities, from us at our best to us at our worst. If you know your primary type on the Enneagram, then you can also discover the path towards growth specific to your personality type! Because let’s be honest, growth for Passive Penny and Aggressive Aaron ain’t the same! Arrows also help pinpoint the red flags that show up in our lives so we can see we’re heading to a destructive place before we crash and burn. [Insert all the hallelujah hands!] If only our boss, partner or kids would get their shit together before they hit unhealthy-land, right? Yeah. They wish the same about you.

So, how do they work? Let’s get down to business! Arrows, as you can see below, connect us to two other numbers on the Enneagram. One of them is called our Stress number or the “arrow of disintegration”, and the other is called our Health/Security number or the “arrow of integration”.  The arrows on this design point towards the stress number for that type. So for example, the 9 is connected to both Types 3 and 6. The 9 points to the Type 6 which means when a Type 9 is slipping (whatever you want to call this: struggling, experiencing stress or beginning to disintegrate) they “take on” or “move towards” the average to unhealthy qualities of the Type 6. The arrow pointing towards the 9 (coming from the Type 3) is the 9’s health/security number, which means 9s take on/move towards the average to healthy qualities of the Type 3 when they are thriving and living into their full potential!

Want to know more about what it ACTUALLY looks like for your type!? Check out the description below for all nine types!


Type Ones who constantly feel the pressure to be better and more excellent, I love that the healthiest version of you actually resembles the high side of the Type 7 which means cultivating more freedom, spontaneity and joy!

At your best, you realize that part of being responsible means taking good, tender care of yourself. You become more self-forgiving, optimistic and fun-loving. You take vacations because you know that a little sun, a  nice drank and a bathing suit is worthy of your time!

As you sink into a less healthy place, you look like the unhealthy side of the Type 4, becoming utterly lost under the brutal judgment of your inner critic. You buckle down into darker feelings and resist any sort of fun or bid for connection from others. You start believing you’re unlovable which only further sinks you into suffering.

Ones, what would it be like to give the middle finger to your inner critic by choosing to claim the belief that you’re worthy of affection and joy, even in moments when it feels like you aren’t?


At their best, Enneagram Twos are kind, warm, nurturing, generous, empathetic, joyous and they love others with no strings attached!

They resemble the healthy qualities of the Type 4 by being in touch with their own feelings, opinions and needs. They allow the pressure to “love everyone” to fall away and instead invest in who and what they truly enjoy. Healthy 2s often have a hobby or creative outlet in which they simply enjoy their own presence outside of being in a helping role.

As Twos experience more stress though, they further deny their own needs and become absorbed with others’ in hopes that showing others how much they care for them will somehow ensure love to them in return. When they don’t receive the affection they long for, they become aggressive, demanding or controlling like the low side of Type 8. This leads to them being possessive over relationships and people which can leave others feeling smothered and inadequate.

Twos need remember that they are loved for who they are even if they stopped serving. They need to remember that their needs are worthy of their own attention, and that they have to learn to care for themselves before others can. As they proactively and directly speak out their needs with safe people, they’ll find the love they so desperately seek.


At their best, Threes are the authentic, honest, self-honoring role models they want others to see them as.

As they move towards their health number – the high side Type 6, they become more focused and engaged with the people around them rather than being obsessed over the tasks and work that “need to get done.” They begin accepting that they are loved for who they are, not what they’re doing and producing. They become less competitive and instead become the champions of others, believing that we’re all better together.

As they disintegrate towards the low side of Type 9, they become wildly people-pleasing and self-forgetting, sometimes at the cost of their integrity. Their energy is absorbed by unproductive busywork or totally zoning out of life and lazying around. Their confidence and optimism slip away.

Threes need to regularly re-evaluate what success truly means. Does it mean getting lots of things checked off the list? Having thriving relationships? Others’ constant approval? Being their true, authentic self? What a Three believes about this question will determine a great deal about how they show up in life, relationships and at work.


When Type 4s are thriving, they resemble the high side of the Type 1 by being emotionally grounded, disciplined and implementers of all of the incredible visions their imaginations have dreamed up!

They become less dependent and ruminative on the past and instead live in the moment, experiencing it in its fullness. They remain aware of their feelings yet have a healthy separation of KNOWING but not BEING those feelings. They allow themselves to feel more positivity and joy as they live in the present moment. When 4s begin to slip into a less healthy space, they can become excessively dependent on others, feeling deeply unstable and unsure of who they are on their own, like the unhealthy Type 2. Envy rises as they become even more convinced that they are defective and missing some essential part of life.

4s must remember that the identity they seek is already within them, not something that needs to be manufactured. Learning to sort through their feelings without being consumed by them is essential.


Fives, at your absolute best, you find energy, inner strength and confidence much like the healthy side of Type 8s. You trade the role of “observer” for “engager” in social situations and begin to share more of who you are with the people around you. Showing up this way is such a gift to those around you who long to know you and the parts of you that you generally keep private and stored within.

As you experience more stress, you take on characteristics of the unhealthy Type 7 by becoming scattered and frantic. Your typical calm demeanor becomes tightened and rigid as you wrestle through being distracted and disoriented. You will likely white-knuckle everything around you – your resources, time, energy – as you become more fearful. To others, you can become harsh and condescending, truly hurting those you care about.

5s need to work on trusting that they know enough, have what it takes and have the energy to make it through rather than operating from a scarcity mindset. Finding an assurance in these ways will help them show up more often as an “engager”.


At their best, Type Sixes start to belief in the goodness of life and give a rest to the constant scanning of the environment for danger. They trade their anxiety and pessimism for trust and an internal peace that they are safe and secure.

They move towards the high side of the Type 9 by being more optimistic and relaxed. They quiet the “inner committee” of voices in their minds and instead are able to get in touch with their gut and make decisions without needing affirmation from others or an authority.

As Sixes disintegrate into unhealthy levels, they begin to look like the low side of Type 3s by becoming arrogant and competitive. They work to manage their intensifying anxious energy by controlling, restricting and/or obsessively working. They become either completely passive and blindly following of authority or aggressively rebellious.

When Sixes notice themselves moving towards that unhealthy space, they need to practice pausing, breathing and actively finding ways to calm their mind. Whether it be through mediation, yoga, a call to a friend, a run, or whatever else, Sixes must learn to manage their anxiety, not be consumed by it.


What up, Sevens? At your fullest potential, you exchange your insanely fast paced life for a slower, more peaceful one. You learn to find joy in stillness, silence and solitude as you engage in true, deep gratitude for what you already have. You understand that true joy comes from living in the present moment, not in anticipation of the future.

As Ian Cron says, grounded 7s “stop consuming and start contributing” like a healthy Type 5. Rather than shoving more activities and experiences in your bucket in hopes that it’ll fill your longing for satisfaction, you learn to create more space to feel and appreciate what’s happening right in front of you with focus and fascination.

As you experience more stress, you flip from positive and fun to critical and perfectionistic like the unhealthy Type 1. You can become judgmental, harsh, blaming of others and controlling, trying to force others to get out of your way and just “do what they’re supposed to” so you can live the exciting, fun life you want.

Sevens, many of you struggle to see why anyone would want to give up fun for stillness, yet you miss the depth and richness of experiences because you’re constantly rushing from one to the next, especially mentally. You must work on cultivating a more current-moment presence.


Strong, powerful Eights become positively influential as they reach for the compassion and helpfulness of the healthy Type 2. At their best, Eights become more open and accepting of others’ perspectives and opinions and can let go of the need to be right and in charge. They allow others to take care of them without feeling vulnerable or at risk, which is a gift not only to themselves but also to those who care for them.

As Eights feel threatened, they move towards the unhealthy side of the Type 5 by withdrawing and becoming even more disconnected from their feelings and the impact they have on those around them. They are more rigid, more fearful and further convinced that others are out to get them. They white-knuckle their stance and refuse to entertain different ideas as an attempt to maintain some level of power.

Eights need to learn that vulnerability with safe people is courage, not weakness. They need to learn that other’s opinions are simply that – a different opinion; not a betrayal against them. It’s vital that Eights find at least a few people in their life that they can let their guard down with and let their true tenderness be seen and held. This will allow them to step back into difficult situations feeling safer and less reactive.


Type Nines, at their best, discover an energy and drive within them that awakens a greater sense of purpose and meaning in their lives. They achieve a level of confidence and assurance that their presence not only matters but is desired by others and the world.

They get more in touch with their passions, talents and interests and develop them by setting and achieving goals. They exchange their role of “passive passenger” to the “engaged activator”.

As Nines experience stress and disintegrate, they resemble the unhealthy qualities of the Type 6. They become overcome with anxiety, fear and become paralyzed from taking any sort of action. They can shift from their typical calm demeanor to what feels like a volcanic eruption of anger and resentment, which can shock themselves and those around them.

Nines grow by developing a steady sense of self-awareness. As they develop a stronger sense of their feelings, opinions and desires, they can express them regularly rather than shoving them down and then exploding later. Nines also benefit massively by routines as they keep you on track and in motion.

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Enneagram for Entrepreneurs & Business Leaders: Blind Spots and Tips for Success https://kristirowles.com/enneagram-for-entrepreneurs/?utm_source=rss&utm_medium=rss&utm_campaign=enneagram-for-entrepreneurs https://kristirowles.com/enneagram-for-entrepreneurs/#comments Sat, 27 Apr 2019 20:33:59 +0000 https://kristirowles.com/?p=1158 Invest in your strengths. Identify your blind spots. Reach the success you dream of! So what REALLY makes an entrepreneur successful? Everyone wants to know! In a study published by Cornell University, the number one predictor of success for high performing CEOs is...

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Enneagram for Entrepreneurs & Business Leaders

by Kristi Rowles


So what REALLY makes an entrepreneur successful? Everyone wants to know! In a study published by Cornell University, the number one predictor of high performing CEOs from major companies is… you guessed it: self-awareness

Here’s the deal: entrepreneurs are smart people. They know how to hustle, they think critically and usually they’re beyond capable of finding a solution to any problem that arises. Their biggest issue: themselves. 

We get in our own way ALL THE TIME, wouldn’t you agree? Our mindset needs a shift, our attitude needs a tune-up and our emotions are out of whack. The problem isn’t that these things happen – I mean, we are human! The problem is when we don’t realize they’re happening, and we wind up spinning our wheels for hours, days or weeks unable to conquer the project or problem in front of us or we bulldoze and hurt the people who work with and for us because we don’t realize how we impact them.

Introducing: The Enneagram personality typing system. It’s sweeping the US right now and it is unlike any other personality tool out there. Why? How? Three major reasons:

1. It’s about INTERNAL MOTIVATION – WHY you think, feel and act the way you do

2. It shows us who we are in STRESS and HEALTH. It provides a path of growth and red flags for when we’re disintegrating towards a destructive place.

3. It helps us understand how we IMPACT and INFLUENCE. So many tools say “Oh, here are your strengths! Yay!” and yet they don’t mention that if your strength is commanding a room but you don’t understand how to utilize that strength effectively, you may also wind up dominating and stomping all over your team, losing the trust and influence you desperately need.


We have to understand how we show up as leaders and entrepreneurs if we want to lead our business, teams and customers effectively.

So let's break it down:

They are driven by the desire to make the world right. They often start businesses around an area of the world they feel responsible to help improve. Their businesses may also support a social cause in some way. Above all, the Type 1’s goal is to do work that is moral, ethical and done excellently.

BLIND SPOT/PROBLEM: Their desire for excellence and longing for perfection stops them from actually completing things. Things are never “perfect enough”, so they push deadlines back hoping to improve the project just a little more. The problem is that could go on forever.


PRACTICAL TIP: 1s need to set and abide by deadlines. Unless there is a massive problem outside of their control that has nothing to do with making the product better, their deadlines need to be non-negotiable. 1s must remember that imperfectly done is better than perfectly undone and seen by no one. 


Driven by the desire to help others and be seen as selfless supporters, Type 2s are compassionate, loving people who often hold a service role directly helping their clients. They are the most “people-people” of any of the types, so they love doing the people-centered parts of their work!

BLIND SPOT/PROBLEM: Sometimes their need to be with people gets in the way of them actually growing their business. They tend to lack boundaries, and they struggle to say no and can be obsess with people-pleasing


PRACTICAL TIP: Twos need to get crystal clear on business goals so that their boundaries are already set in place when people ask them to do something that doesn’t support their long-term goals, but feels hard to say no to in the moment. Twos need to remember their goals are just as important as others’ and they are worthy of the investment in their own work even if it sometimes means not being there for others in ways they have been before. 


Driven by the desire to be and appear successful to others, Type 3s are wildly dedicated to their work. Type 3s excel at nearly everything they try, and once they find the work they want to commit to, they’ll hustle hard and continue to reach new heights many others dream of. 

BLIND SPOT/PROBLEM: There are two major issues related to work for 3s – First, they can easily shift from an achiever to a workaholic. When work becomes obsessive, 3s can easily find themselves stuck in sickness, major anxiety and they may find themselves losing relationships or their marriage in the process. Secondly, because the thrill of checking of a task off their list is so invigorating, they often choose quantity over quality with their work. 

PRACTICAL TIP: 3s need to implement structure to ensure they take time for self-care, fun and relationships with people they love. While others must force themselves to work, 3s must force themselves to take breaks. Secondly, 3s need to SLOWWW DOWNNN and remember that doing one thing well is more effective than doing lots of things mediocrely. 


Driven by the desire to be see as unique and special, Type 4s are incredibly gifted at creating and contributing beauty to the world, often in some art form. They have the ability to turn the mundane into something beautiful and aesthetically pleasing. 4s are deep feelers and tend to express that in their work. 

BLIND SPOT/PROBLEM: While the emotional depth of 4s is what makes their work so impactful, it’s also what can keep them paralyzed. 4s tend to compare their work to others’ and then feel less than. They wind up spending an astronomical amount of time thinking about the past rather than what’s right in front of them.

PRACTICAL TIP: Stop comparing today. Do this by staying in the present moment, remembering that building a successful business happens in front of us, not behind us or beside us (while we’re looking at others’).


As the most inventive number on the Enneagram, 5s are able to objectively see problems and find a workable solution to fix them. They tend to prefer to work alone – they don’t want to depend on others or have their energy depleted by others. They are capable, competent and incredibly gifted critical thinkers.

BLIND SPOT/PROBLEM: Because of how much time they spend in their heads, 5s are the emotionally detached of all Enneagram types. Since we know that so much of selling our services, products, etc. is based on speaking to the customer’s emotion, 5s can struggle with messaging their business in a way that others relate to or get excited about.

Find someone who is differently gifted and can help you fill the gaps in your business, specifically around messaging and marketing. Meet with this friend/person/colleague at least twice per month and let them help you.



While most Sixes prefer to be second in command, not the top leader, Type 6 entrepreneurs use their hard work, detailed minds and inner courage to grow their businesses. They are driven by the need to feel safe and secure, and they tend to be trustworthy leaders.

BLIND SPOT/PROBLEM: Sixes have an “inner committee” within their minds. It’s like their brains have a board meeting over every decision at hand. While this allows them to think through things thoroughly, it also lands them in analysis paralysis and unable or unwilling to make decisions or take action.

Get your thoughts outside of your head! Once you get them out, you can sort them and make a logical, objective decision. Create what I call a “Decision Navigator”, use a white board, mind-map on paper. Externalize the inner committee’s opinions then make the objective best decision for your business.



Sevens love being entrepreneurs because they get to be in charge of their time. Type 7s don’t like being told what to do or being restricted, so being their own boss is quite appealing. 7s are passionate visionaries and could get people excited about the lamest product with their optimistic, fun-loving and creative energy.

BLIND SPOT/PROBLEM: They struggle with anything that isn’t fun, so the business details that feel “lame” often get left by the wayside. They also love starting things but get bored and leave them unfinished. 

Sandwiching! Learn to sandwich boring tasks between fun ones and reward yourself with extra time on a fun project after you’ve done something that feels life-sucking. “Boring” things are often still important things for overall business success, so sandwiching them between fun things will help you do what needs done without hating your life!



The most passionate, energetic type on the Enneagram, 8s have a fire that burns deep inside that drives them to conquer whatever is set between them and what they want. Their heart – deep inside – is tender and often plays a part in the mission of their work. They are often fighting to protect something that matters to them.

BLIND SPOT/PROBLEM: 8s make decisions from their gut- it’s instinctual. They generally don’t pause to consult their minds, feelings or anyone else. Sometimes, this immediate-action is a great thing. Other times, when they’re working with others, whether colleagues or customers, it comes out as arrogant, controlling and dominating.

Learn to take 1 solid deep breath before reacting. Since you often struggle to read a room, make eye contact with a trusted person in the room and let them interpret the feel for you. Does anyone care about this decision? No, then go for it! Are there very strong opinions, sensitive feelings around this issue? Yes? Then slow down and tend to your people before taking action.  If 8s want to maintain their influence, the people they’re trying to lead must feel cared for.



9s have the unique ability to see things from multiple perspectives, even often at the cost of their own. They have the least amount of energy of all the types and don’t tend to be that ambitious, but when a Type 9 actually gets clear on their dream and believes they’re worthy to make it happen, they can be incredible, positive leaders. 

BLIND SPOT/PROBLEM: While 9s have great ideas, they often struggle to believe their dreams are worthy of attention or that they matter at all. 9s tend to be fairly passive in life and finding confidence and consistent energy can be difficult. 

PRACTICAL TIP: Steady routines, especially in the mornings, can be a game changer for Type 9s. There is a saying mirroring the Law of Inertia: “A 9 in motion stays in motion. A 9 at rest stays at rest.” If Nines can get up in the morning, get their body moving and yet leave their minds somewhat at rest, it will keep them moving throughout the day. A slow morning often means a slow moving day.


Not sure what your Enneagram type is, but ready to find out, so that you can perform better at work and stay in your lane of genius? I'VE GOT YOU!

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