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Enneagram Type 5 Center of Intelligence: Head or Fear Triad

Head/Head-Based Center

Type 5 Head Center

Type 5 is located in the 567 triad which is often described as the head center. The head types are focused on reasoning, analyzing, and other typical thinking functions concerned with future possibilities.

Type 5 mentally observes and analyzes from the sidelines of a situation. It's an attempt to understand what's going on before stepping in and participating, having a mental map of sorts to navigate the situation. It not only minimizes effort by being more efficient when taking action but also creates a role for type 5 to play by having knowledge to draw from. This mental objectivity may also be used to detach from any emotions at hand that might otherwise be overwhelming.

Type 5 Fear

Types 5, 6, and 7 may also be referred to as fear types, where fear can be thought of as a negative anticipation of future possibilities.

Type 5 fear is of being overwhelmed and not knowing enough to feel competent. They need time and space to process experiences. However, the world often doesn't allow for that. This can leave the type 5 feeling overwhelmed. Having the knowledge and competence beforehand eases that feeling.

Type 5 Mental Center

The core focus approach labels the 567 triad as the Mental Center and more clearly differentiates how types 5, 6, and 7 use that center.

  • Type 5: Mental Objectivity - observes the world by pulling back from it and watching.
  • Type 6: Mental Questioning - probes to alleviate doubts and find what can be trusted.
  • Type 7: Mental Anticipation - avoids limitations while exploring interesting possibilities.


You can take a test comparing the three head types here.


Enneagram Guide

This page is part of the Enneagram Guide available on this website. For more information about any particular Enneagram type or the many concepts and origins/history of the Enneagram types visit the Enneagram Guide main page.