Enneagram 9 Profile
I’ve seen firsthand how the Enneagram has influenced my therapy practice, my clients, and my own personal growth. In order to better understand its impact, I interviewed a representative of each number to see the world through their lens.
What do you love the most about your number?
This number. What is number Nine? It’s identified as the following: Nines are accepting, trusting, and stable. They are usually creative, optimistic, and supportive, but can also be too willing to go along with others to keep the peace. They want everything to go smoothly and be without conflict, but they can also tend to be complacent, simplifying problems and minimizing anything upsetting. They typically have problems with inertia and stubbornness. At their Best: indomitable and all-embracing, they are able to bring people together and heal conflicts.
That definition. Those words. They don’t identify me entirely as a person but they help me build my identity. They help me know the light and life inside of me and help me understand me and build from there. I love this about my number because I see myself in there and I see myself in those words and it is both comforting, frustrating and healing. I do neutralize conflict. I can be complacent. I can sacrifice myself for peace. And I see those as strengths, as weaknesses to build on, and most important, as me.
What is the hardest thing about your number?
The hardest thing about my number Nine is everything. It is almost the same as what I love about my number Nine. It’s me and it drives me crazy. It’s me and I absolutely love it. I think what makes my number hard is that so much of this number, so much of how it helps build and define me has been me for as long as I can remember and that hasn’t necessarily always been good. Because being complacent and being someone who sacrifices my needs for others before my own has caused myself and others pain, sadness, and loss of hope. But with that struggle, I’ve learned more about myself than I ever thought possible. And I’ve learned it’s okay to learn, and it’s okay to be me, and it’s okay to take time for me. My voice is important. My self is important.
How have you used the knowledge of your Enneagram number to grow toward your best self?
This is a tough one for me. I think going into therapy, I didn’t really know the Enneagram at all. Nor did I totally buy-in at first. But after taking the tests, reading the materials, and truly studying up on it a bit it clicked. And once I was identified I felt like it was time to get to work. It was time to take pieces from being complacent and see how that applied to my divorce. Take pieces from neutralizing conflict and see how my sister and mother have bulldozed me my entire life with my feelings and trying to make everyone happy, while losing myself. How stress can provide anxiety from within me and how I’m an anxious person during stressful situations, which forces me to shut down and close off. My knowledge of being a Nine was a gateway for me. It was the way I could finally dig in and really reflect on my life, myself, where I came from, and how I got to where I am. I feel like I’m on the path to becoming my best self, but it took moments of ugly digging at times. And there’s still plenty of digging ahead.
How has the Enneagram been useful to you during the therapy process?
Oh wow. This is a heavy hitter. I think it’s been so incredibly useful in so many ways. But I feel the way it has been most useful is the way it has opened my mind, heart, and soul. The way it has taken me on a journey to self-discovery and self-acceptance. Knowing that I'm a Nine and knowing that my character traits may involve things like squelching conflict, feeling for others, or even closing myself off from myself, have allowed me to find a voice within my mind and body that says it’s OK to feel these things. It has allowed me to reflect within myself when evaluating certain situations. Being someone who loves to keep the peace and spent a good portion of my life not caring about myself, it is now important identifying myself and caring for myself. Sometimes, I now feel empowered to not keep the peace. To speak up in an argument and allow me to express, to defend, and to feel. While much of this may seem like more life usefulness, it is also life and therapy usefulness. It has allowed me to enter sessions knowing who I am or who I want to be, to reflect on things happening in my life and identify them as moments of strength, moments of weakness, or moments to build on. Being able to share that in the therapy process has been so incredibly hard and exhausting in the absolute best way.
What advice would you give to other people of your same number?
Learn yourself. Learn what it is to be a Nine and be confident in all of it. Not every part of being a Nine may be you. Not every part fits your mold. And what some may see as negative you may see as a positive or as you. And as long as that’s what is in your heart and your soul, embrace it. Learn yourself and be yourself. What I’ve learned most about being a Nine and what I learned most about this process is that being a Nine is a part of me but it isn’t all of me. And that’s just perfect in my mind.