Enneagram Types: Get Uncomfortably Real With Our New Favorite Personality Test

I think I’d only been dating my girlfriend for approximately two minutes when she first communicated her urgent need for me to know my Enneagram type. I’d never heard of this particular personality test, which is odd, as there’s nothing I enjoy more than taking tests about myself and then reading descriptions of myself and then talking about how very MYSELF I am. It turns out that I am an 8. It’s so me!

Then! Later that very same week, my therapist asked me if I’d heard of Enneagrams and I was like HAVE I EVER, and it turns out she’s very into it as well and it’s actually been an integral element of my therapy since then.

So it was only a matter of time before I brought up Enneagram types in casual conversation and Heather (1) and Laneia (4) wanted to partake, which led to me AGAIN having more opportunities to think about myself as it turns out their website includes an accurate description of my relationship with Laneia and an accurate description of my relationship with Heather! Then of course Rachel (2) and Yvonne (4) joined in and then we decided we hated ourselves but also loved ourselves and I think Rachel cried at some point and so obviously we wanted to spread this emotion to as many people as possible.

. There are a few ways to figure out your type:

The “Enneagram of Personality” body of teaching was developed by Bolivian psychoanalyist Óscar Ichazo in the mid-fifties. Ichazo was looking for a deeper understanding of mechanistic and repetitive thought and behavior processes in order to help people transcend their identification with said patterns. He identified nine Enneagram types, representing how one’s ego becomes fixated within the psyche in an early stage of life, thus becoming the core of one’s self-image around which their psychological personality develops.

The whole scheme is much more complicated than simply determining your type because there are also wings and stress lines and levels of development and all this other stuff that I cannot explain to you because I did not take a class in this topic like my therapist did.

You can read more about the nine Enneagram types here. Okay now go find out who you are!

Riese is the 37-year-old CEO, CFO and Editor-in-Chief of Autostraddle.com as well as an award-winning writer, blogger, fictionist, copywriter, video-maker, low-key Jewish power lesbian and aspiring cyber-performance artist who grew up in Michigan, lost her mind in New York and then headed West. Her work has appeared in nine books including "The Bigger the Better The Tighter The Sweater: 21 Funny Women on Beauty, Body Image & Other Hazards Of Being Female," magazines including Marie Claire and Curve, and all over the web including Nylon, Queerty, Nerve, Bitch, Emily Books and Jezebel. She had a very popular personal blog once upon a time, and then she recapped The L Word, and then she had the idea to make this place, and now here we all are! In 2016, she was nominated for a GLAAD Award for Outstanding Digital Journalism. Follow her on twitter and instagram.

Riese has written 2683 articles for us.

112 Comments

  1. I took the practice one and tied between #9 and #5, which were the ones that sounded the most like me when I read them, so that’s good. But it was so stressful! Half the time my answer for the either/or questions was both! I need context! Doesn’t this test know we’ve evolved past the binary??

      • Yes, that one was much easier for me to fill out. Plus it gave me a much wider spread of scores, unlike the first one, which gave me an annoyingly balanced spread that left no clear leaders.

      • I had a better time with those tests for sure, thank you for linking them!

        I took the regular one and the instinctive one and both indicate I’m a 6w5 (which I still don’t entirely understand tbh.) Mostly I accept the 6 since the description was basically “very anxious and often mistyped as 5s 4s and 9s” so…yeah.

        • “Sixes, failing to recognize their anxiety, can mistype as Nines, but Nines have the ability to relax and to trust in others, neither of which come easily to Sixes. Sixes can mistype as Fours, especially if they have artistic inclinations, but they lack the Four’s self-absorption. They can mistype as Fives, especially if they are intellectual, as many Sixes are, but unlike Fives, Sixes tend to be practical.”

          So basically every issue I had with every other number I got typed as. THANKS, TEST.

        • 6w5 here also! With 9 as my second closest, but definitely missing the ability to relax here also. I am glad that test worked out better, on the first one I didn’t feel confident in several answers and while 6 was on top by one point, I had 2,9 and another number that were all one point less so I didn’t feel like the results helped me.

      • Oh, god, I’m on page 9 of the “classical enneagram test” on that page and the questions are getting alarmingly insightful! “I don’t let it show, but if I’m with someone who is as unique as I am, I get a bit jealous.” get out of my head!! that’s the Secret Emotion, you’re not supposed to know about it!!

        Looks like I’m a 5 with my 4 and 6 wings equally balanced… sounds about right from what I can tell??

  2. To my complete lack of surprise, the free quiz told me I’m a 4. I feel SO called out by the longer description (though I really need to take a closer look at what the hell all the arrows etc. mean).

    “Basic Fear: That they have no identity or personal significance
    Basic Desire: To find themselves and their significance (to create an
    identity)”

    “When dreams fail, become self-inhibiting and angry at self, depressed and alienated from self and others, blocked and emotionally paralyzed. Ashamed of self, fatigued and unable to function.”

    O_O

    *whistles and sidles away*

    • AND. AND.

      “Avoid putting off things until you are ‘in the right mood.’ Commit yourself to productive, meaningful work that will contribute to your good and that of others, no matter how small the contribution may be.”

      “Fours typically never feel that they are sufficiently ‘together,’ but they must nevertheless have the courage to stop putting off their lives.”

      I mean, I could just quote the whole thing, for the love of fuck, but I won’t.

      Don’t mind me, going to go sit with my feelings EVEN THOUGH THEY ARE “NOT A TRUE SOURCE OF SUPPORT” TO ME.

  3. I’m type 2, which I would have expected. I will say that based on my runners up I think my being polyamorous may have messed with the test just a bit in regards to questions about negotiating independance? Hmm.

  4. Wow.

    I’m typically a bit skeptical about short personality tests, but this is so much like me it almost hurt to read:

    Type #9

    “Sloth: A siphoning off of energy into inessential activities. Not paying attention to own needs and desires. When #9 gets close to something that matters, they ‘turn the flame down’ so as to diminish desire as a defense to the pain of not getting their needs met. Focus goes to creating harmony and comfort; avoid making changes or taking necessary action.”

  5. A good friend introduced me to the Enneagram earlier this summer, and I’m not at all surprised by the strong responses I’m seeing here!

    Figuring out my numbers (2 with a 1 wing) and reading their descriptions quickly got real for me. VERY REAL. It’s eerie to see some of your deepest desires and fears laid bare before you on some website!

    I’m feeling pretty introspective lately and I’ve been curious to revisit my Enneagram results in more depth. This article is one more sign that the world (or at least AS) wants me to keep making progress in figuring out my shit ?

  6. I just did one of these a couple weeks ago, and it said I was a 2 (helper/caretaker) wing 1 (reformer/perfectionist).

    So I like to help people… get things right. Pretty apt description for a teacher 🙂

  7. I’m a 4 and everything is so uncomfortably accurate, it’s fascinating.

    “Avoid lengthy conversations in your imagination . . . These conversations are essentially unreal and at best only rehearsals for action—although, as you know, you almost never say or do what you imagine you will.”

    ?

  8. I’ve taken this quiz a number of times. Each time, I’m wowed by how accurate it feels. That being said, my personality has changed a lot over time.

    I just checked my old Livejournal, and as a high school freshman in 2002 I was a type 5, with 4 coming in second, and commented “they hit the fucking nail on the head, huh?”

    Just now I took the 38 question version, and was clearly a type 4 with 9 coming in second, and that makes me feel very seen.

    I don’t think this is a confirmation bias thing, because I went and read about type 5 and it does not read true for my current self (also I was so very much not a type 9 as a teenager).

    Also it could change again in a few years – in general I think that personality quizzes are less a Universal Truth or Data-Based Science and more definitely a useful way to evaluate your self-perception.

    • Hm, so, on the one hand I agree with you that personality typing systems aren’t science but rather a way to engage with your personality and how you relate to the world and understand yourself better. Over-relying on a personality typing system or over-identifying with a personlity type can in fact hinder your understanding of yourself and other people.

      But on the her hand, I’ve always gotten the most out of these systems when I’ve engaged with them on their own terms, and the systems two systems I know best (Jungian function theory type MBTI and Enneagram) both have maturing and growing and changing built into the systems. And as such I truly believe that for as far as the ystem is useful at all, it is possible to find the one, true type that fit your personality the best over your whole life (and I also believe that it’s the most obvious in youth, before all that maturation and growing and stuff).

      I also don’t think that taking a test is the best way to determine that true, life long type (which, yes, still is ore of a helpful fiction than an Actual Truth) – I’ve tested all over the map for Enneagram and have “mistyped” as a 7, a 4 and a 3 before realising that I’m actually a 5 (and this even though I’ve always fit the stereotypical image of a 5 extremely well, go figure). The Enneagram system isn’t about tests and descriptions, but a system built on core fears, vices and virtues (to oversimplify, each type comes with an opposite pair of a vice and a virtue, and a core fear that keeps people of that type from reaching their virtue and instead traps them in their vice), and no test can peer down into your core self. For me, really acknowledging my core fear was what helped me realise that I am a 5, I’ve always been a 5 and I’ll always be a 5. But that acknowledgement came over a period of years, through introspection and some painful honesty and willingness to be vulnerable with myself, and not from a test.

      I hope this doesn’t come off as condescending. I do definitely agree that all personality typing stuff should be taken with a grain of salt.

  9. I’ve been obsessed with the enneagram for a while and am pretty familiar with how the numbers behave and interact. As a long-time straddler, when I saw the article my heart exploded with joy.

    9 with an 8 wing.

  10. This is exactly what happened when I met my GF. I was impressed by how accurate it was too, given the detail. But then I just found it obnoxious because GF used it as an excuse for things. “I CAN’T HELP IT I’M A FIVE.”

    That’s been years though, I should read up on it again while I am changing jobs.

  11. Thank you for bringing this into my life, Riese! I too greatly enjoy “taking tests about myself and then reading descriptions of myself and then talking about how very MYSELF I am.” (Best description ever, I had to borrow it.)

    I took the free test and I am a 2 with strong throughlines to 6 and 7, all of which are 100% accurate and boil down to “love me and tell me I’m pretty” coupled with crushing self-doubt masquerading as a superiority complex. Contradictions abound!

  12. I took the free test and got predominantly 2, followed closely by 7.

    I consider myself mainly 7, Enthusiasm is actually my favorite word! A few of my friends are going through break ups right now so maybe my answers skewed a bit towards 2 because helping is how I respond in times of need and its happening very actively right now.

    Ive never read Harry Potter so I always feel left out during which house are you convos so I’m pretty pumped about this and I’m going to send it to all of my friends.

  13. Per the mini-test I’m a six and like others here I feel called out to an unexpected degree. I was SURE I would be a two, but that’s only my third highest score (my second highest score is four).

    “Try not to overreact to my overreacting.” <– basically

  14. Yeah. I’m a 5. My partner has identified as like four different types in the last 10+ years. I can’t keep track.

    I’ve mostly seen this in spiritual circles so it’s interesting to see it here at AS.

    When I first learned about enneagram it really helped me understand one of my ugliest friendship breakups with my former (platonic) roommate. Realizing that a lot of conflict came from her being a 2 and me being a 5 -and neither of us being particularly healthy versions of our types – was incredibly helpful. (She kept trying to take care of me which made me want to withdraw which made her want to take care of me more which made me withdraw more, etc).

  15. oh my god i just learned about enneagrams last week and spent 2 days reading about it obsessively. I’m a 4w5 and the Riso-Hudson test gave me 3 subtypes that tied. So I have no idea what the means but it’s interesting!!

    i want all of my friends and my partner to do this now

  16. A SIX here. This is my favorite in the long list of personality tests one inevitably comes across in Corporate. I also recommend StrengthsFinder (http://strengths.gallup.com/110440/About-StrengthsFinder-20.aspx) which is built on the premise that people should find roles in their careers that allow them to nurture their top five strengths, instead of spinning their wheels trying to minimize their weaknesses (which is where most companies typically focus employees’ professional development).

    • I like Strengthsfinder, but as one high in Intellection (or whatever) I also resent it, because you have to answer within 30 seconds. This is meant to make you “go with your gut”, but sometimes just leaves me with random salad when I finally figure out the perfect answer 10 questions later. 😉

  17. I wish I could’ve taken this before the election! I used to be chill and full of hope and now I’m bitter and full of rage and it probably skewed my results. ¯\_(ツ)_/¯

    Except, apparently I’m still pretty chill and hopeful compared to most people, because I’m a 9. I was mad at first not to be a 4 but it read me into the grave with this:

    “Nines are usually creative, optimistic, and supportive, but can also be too willing to go along with others to keep the peace…At their best, intensely alive, fully connected to self and others…At their worst, can be highly repressed and incapable of facing problems: becoming obstinate, dissociating self from all conflicts.”

    WELP!

  18. Almost too INTP to function that’s who I am.
    Took 3 tries to finish that 38 question thing with two opposite ending options as answers.
    I need middle ground options. A none of the above option at least, or I feel like I’m Leroy Jenkinsing it and going to make Rabbid noises at it.

    Suffice to say I managed to score a majority in the 5th type The Thinker.

  19. Oh! My mum and her sisters went through a short but intense Enneagram phase when I was twelve. Had forgotten all about it but I was so intrigued back then! And am now! Apparently I’m a 3 or 7? Or 6? It seems to depend on if I’m answering more job related or not.

  20. I’m a 4,5, and 9. I guess I’m a creative, go with the flow bleeding heart caretaker who keeps her feelings closely guarded but is softer on the inside than I show on the outside. That’s kinda what I’m getting out of this, or maybe that is what is catching a little too close to home.

  21. I didn’t do a test, but I read a tome of like a thousand pages a decade ago, at my partner’s insistence (“I won’t tell you what I think you are until you’ve read it!”) and came to the conclusion that I was a type 7 with an 8 wing.

    My partner is a type 4 with a 3 wing.

    It was a useful way of thinking about people we’re close to as well, in order to be more sympathetic to their points of view, but over the years I’ve pretty much given up on the enneagram. It wasn’t useful enough to motivate me to remain informed of all its complexity, so I took my new insights, catalogued them and moved on to bigger and better and more useful things, as a 7 with an 8 wing does.

  22. YES. I’ve been obsessed with the Enneagram for YEARS and have given it to half my camp cabin and all my family and friends and I keep the book on my bedside table!!! I’m so happy you’ve written an article about it!!!! Anyways, I’m a self preservation 9w1. And yeah it really calls you out on your BS, but it’s so helpful and necessary. I just love it so much. I even gave it to my cat, who is an 8w7.

  23. Took the test, got 1, opened the page on the app, saw “passion: anger, fixation: resentment” and went OH WHOOPS THAT’S ME, read the rest of it and went OH WHOOPS THAT’S ME, sent some screenshots to my friend who was like “That’s… you literally. That whole list”

    so suffice it to say I feel extremely called out right now and also maybe understand a little better why I relate to certain characters on certain TV shows

  24. I fiddled with a few of these quizzes last night and I honestly can’t figure out what I would be? 6 seems to come up pretty high in the list of results, but I also relate to 4 a lot, and then there are aspects of 1… Oh, what complex beings we are!

  25. Omg yes! I’ve loved the Enneagram since I was a teenager. I thought I was a 5 for many, many years because my mind was always whirring inside a world of my own creation and that seemed to align with 5’s more than any other type. Then, the summer before my senior year of college, I re-took the Ris0-Hudson test and it typed me as a 1 and I HAVE NEVER LOOKED BACK. Turns out all of the “intellectualizing” I was doing was really my way of getting my head to catch up with my feelings, which rule all. I have since learned that is a Very One Thing.

    One of my favorite things about the Enneagram compared to the Myers-Briggs is the built-in dynamism/interconnectedness of the system (probably also why I love astrology). Maybe it’s because I’m a visual person, but I love seeing the physical links between different types, which makes the notion of, say, 1 integrating to 7 to become more spontaneous/care-free really simple to understand and internalize. I also appreciate that Enneagram experts make a point to note that the goal is not to become “the best” version of your type, but to understand and aim to embody some of the greatest things each of the types has to offer. The fact that the types are displayed as different points on a circle really drives that concept home for me.

    Anyway, I’m a 1w2 and my instinctual variant is sexual! Thanks for posting this and letting my teenage (and adult) heart nerd out.

  26. I might need the longer test as well. Mine came back with equal parts 1, 5 and 7 (Perfectionist, Observer, and Adventurer). I could definitely see this. I’m a very objective observer, but always insist on following my moral compass, no matter the personal cost. This has led me to be dedicated and focused, but also sometimes led astray when I realize what I’m doing is not right or just. From the outside, this makes me appear nomadic, reluctant to engage in relationships, and unwilling to settle on one career.

    I hate large parties, and always feel skeptical at people’s warm welcomes if they are being too overly enthusiastic, because it doesn’t seem genuine. I communicate best when we can each speak freely in a straight, forward manner and say what is really on each other’s minds. I bring out the best in others, but as such may demand too much of myself. I’m torn between 1 and 5, because while I need to help others, sometimes I want others to acknowledge my work and contributions, which is a part of myself that I am working on.

    I tend to have almost impossible moral standards for myself and others, and need to be reminded that we are all works in progress, and that I am fine just the way I am in this moment. As such, I have a tenancy to view things too seriously, and get disappointing when I see others not trying as hard as I am. I take absolute responsibility for my actions, and expect others to do the same. I function best when I have others in my life to balance my uncompromising passion adventurer spirit. I need others to help me realize that although my visions are epic in scale, that it’s important to laugh, tell stories, and caution me to keep from being caged by my own ambition.

    I am a Myers INFP for reference.

  27. I never comment but I just took the free test and holy crap was it on point

    Also apparently I am an Enneagram 5 on top of being an INTJ and a Sagittarius with Virgo rising and Pisces moon so really how am I supposed to function in this world

  28. “Sixes cannot stop second-guessing themselves, doubting what they know and consulting what amounts to an “inner committee” of contrary voices. … With their minds revved up in a hypervigilant
    state, it is almost impossible for Sixes to relax so that they can perceive clearly how to
    attend to the actual challenges they need to address at any given time. What Sixes really
    need is more inner quiet.”

    This is real, this is me.

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