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Enneagram Type 9 Personality: Harmony and Accommodation

Enneagram type 9

Enneagram type 9 is given a variety of names by those who teach and write about the Enneagram types such as The Mediator, The Peacemaker, and The Peaceful Person. While these names allude to some common characteristics that often appear in the type 9 personality, they only provide a hint of what's going on underneath the surface. What's going on can be found in the core focus.

Enneagram type 9 has a focus on being in harmony with the world and others by way of an accommodating behavior. This produces a habit of attention that tends to negate personal agenda and opinion in favor of going along to get along. 

Initial Self-Belief: “I am not harmonious as I am.”

Compensation: "I must accommodate others agenda and opinions in order to feel at ease when with them."

Habit of Attention: Type 9 attention is on smoothing over situations. This starts with negating or minimizing one's own agenda but extends to finding common ground between people. Disagreeableness or conflict within the environment or around other people is felt as a conflict within oneself.

The Enneagram types evolved from Oscar Ichazo's ego-types into Claudio Naranjo's enneatypes. The goal with the ego-types was to identify an individual's fixation in order to work on transcending it. The enneatypes fleshed out the ego-types in terms of modern psychology and personality traits.

Type 9 Ego: Ego-In

Below are descriptions of Oscar Ichazo's ego type 9 fixation, trap, holy idea, passion, and virtue reinterpreted for today's personality types.

Type 9 Fixation and Trap

Fixation: Indolence is about resisting demands and expectations that disrupt a feeling of harmony and continuity.

Trap: A seeker of harmony by accommodating others and not rocking the boat.

The fixation points to the mental preoccupation of the ego and the trap seems like the way out but keeps the individual stuck in the fixation. 

Type 9 Holy Idea

Holy Idea: Holy love is realizing that love comes to you not by negating yourself for the sake of others but by discovering and pursuing your own path.

The holy idea is the actual way out of the ego fixation.

Type 9 Passion

Passion: Laziness is a difficulty with defining and accomplishing goals. I tend to go along with what others are doing and lose myself in routine and comfort.

The passion is the emotional energy that serves the fixation and trap.

Type 9 Virtue

Virtue: Action appears when you pursue what's meaningful to you instead of simply going along to get along or falling into habitual routines and comfort.

The virtue is what appears when the passion subsides.

Type 9 Personality Traits: Enneatype IX

Claudio Naranjo's enneatypes expanded upon Oscar Ichazo's fixations and passions by referring to modern psychology and other sources.

What follows is the trait structure for type 9 as outlined in Naranjo's book "Ennea-type Structures."

Enneatype IX
Going with the Stream - Accidia, the Passion for Comfort and the Overadjusted Disposition

  • Psychological Inertia
  • Over-Adaptation
  • Resignation
  • Generosity
  • Ordinariness
  • Robotic Habit-Boundedness
  • Distractibility
The relationships and movements between types can be explored by way of the triads, arrows, and lines as seen on the Enneagram symbol or diagram. These elements of the Enneagram are often described as the centers, the stances, stress/security points, and directions of integration/disintegration.

    Type 9 Center

    Gut/Body-Based Center

    Type 9 is located in the 891 triad which is often described as the body-based or gut center. Type 9 has a tendency to go along with the agenda of others in order to avoid tension and conflict. In other words, a going along to get along. There can be a seeking of comfort, both bodily comfort and a non-disruptive flow of activity and routine.

    Types 8, 9, and 1 may also be referred to as anger types. Type 9 anger is said to go to sleep in the sense that anger is negated by forgetting one's own agenda in favor going along with the agenda of others. However, when pushed too hard a resistance or stubbornness against movement in that direction can appear that may even turn into passive-aggressiveness or outright anger.

    The core focus approach labels the 891 triad as the Behavioral Center and differentiates how types 8, 9, and 1 use that center.

    • Type 8: Behavioral Assertiveness - pushes through obstacles to get what's wanted.
    • Type 9: Behavioral Accommodation - yields to or joins in with the flow of movement.
    • Type 1: Behavioral Correctness - discerns right from wrong and acts accordingly.

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

    Type 9 Stance or Hornevian Group

    Withdrawn Stance

    Type 9 is in the withdrawn triad along with type 4 and type 5. Type 9 is withdrawn from setting and pursuing their own goals and agenda. It can be hard to know what they want when around others because other people's agenda can seem more important. Without their own agenda there's a tendency to go along with what others are doing and not rock the boat.

    Type 9 Stress and Growth

    Enneagram type 9 arrows

    Movement against the arrow from type 9 to type 3

    Movement against the arrow is sometimes described as movement toward a type's security point or direction of integration or growth. Type 9 is said to take on characteristics of type 3 when feeling relaxed or secure or moving toward health and growth.

    Movement with the arrow from type 9 to type 6

    Movement with the arrow is sometimes described as a movement toward a type's stress point or direction of disintegration or stress. When feeling stressed and pressured or not in control, type 9 is said to take on characteristics of type 6.

    Connecting points from type 9 to type 3 and type 6

    Some teachers ignore the arrows and simply describe the lines as connecting points. In this case, someone identified as type 9 is said to sometimes take on characteristics of type 3 and type 6. Or to put it another way, type 9 may move to type 3 and type 6 at times when the type 9 concerns are not dominant.

    Although you have a basic or primary Enneagram type there are many subtle variations within type. These variations are defined by such concepts as wings, instincts, tritype, and levels. They're often used to explain why people of the same Enneagram type can look different.

    Type 9 Wings - 9w8 and 9w1

    Type 9 Wings

    The wings are represented by the numbers on either side of a given type as seen on the Enneagram symbol or diagram. These types are said to have an additional influence upon the type being looked at. The wing types for type 9 are type 8 and type 1.

    Although type 9 is influenced by both wings, an individual will generally be influenced more by one of the wings than the other. The wing with more influence is said to be the preferred wing.

    Type 9 wing 8 (9w8) - preferred 8 wing
    Common Name: The Referee

    • merges more with their surroundings
    • can have angry outbursts then forget
    • wants to keep things comfortable


    Type 9 wing 1 (9w1) - preferred 1 wing
    Common Name: The Dreamer

    • filters for the consensus opinion
    • more reserved and less adventurous
    • more of an observer and thinker


    Click here if you'd like help finding your preferred wing.

    Type 9 Subtypes

    Type 9 Instinctual Subtypes

    The instincts of the Enneagram types are self-preservation (sp), sexual (sx), and social (so). They are traditionally used to define three instinctual subtypes or variations of a basic type (e.g., SP 9, SX 9, and SO 9). One of these three subtypes is called the counter-type because it can look different from the basic type. Below are brief descriptions of the three type 9 instinctual subtypes.

    SP 9 - Appetite, Collector: numbs oneself through eating, physical comfort, and routine activities; collects things and may have trouble deciding what to throw away; substitutes essential needs and wants with non-essentials.

    SX 9 - Union, Fusion: sense of being comes from merging with significant others; can have difficulty individuating and standing on their own without reference to other; tendency to lose sight of own needs and desires in favor of other.

    SO 9 - Participation (counter-type): participates in order to feel a part of the group; prioritizes group needs above their own and works hard toward those needs; fun-loving, sociable, congenial, doesn’t weigh others down with own woes.

    While an individual may be identified with type 9 in general, that same individual may be more specifically identified with one of the three instinctual subtypes as well. 

    A more recent approach to using the instincts is instinctual variant stacking which can be used independent of Enneagram type.

    If you'd like to find your instinctual subtype or instinctual variant stacking then click here.

    Type 9 Tritypes

    Enneagram type 9 tritypes

     

    With tritype you are not simply one type but three, one type from each center. There is also an order of preference for the three types (which type is 1st, 2nd, and 3rd).

    The type 9 tritypes have type 9 as their first type and gut type. The second and third types come from the heart (2, 3, or 4) and head (5, 6, or 7) centers.

    Tritype® Archetype goes a step further by also looking at tritype in terms of the three types alone (independent of order of preference). Below are the Tritype® Archetype names if Enneagram type 9 is your primary type.

    The Problem Solver - 925 or 952
    The Good Samaritan - 926 or 962
    The Peacemaker - 927 or 972
    The Thinker - 935 or 953
    The Mediator - 936 or 963
    The Ambassador - 937 or 973
    The Contemplative - 945 or 954
    The Seeker - 946 or 964
    The Gentle Spirit - 947 or 974

    For a description of any Tritype® Archetype above click the name. If you're not taken to the correct part of the web page when it appears then scroll down to the middle of the web page and look for the Tritype® Archetype you're interested in.

    If you'd like to find your tritype, tritype with wings, dominant type in a given center, or order of preference then click here.

    Type 9 - Enneagram Levels of Development

    Enneagram Levels

    The Levels of Development create a vertical dimension within each Enneagram type.

    There are nine levels ranging from healthy (levels 1-3) to average (levels 4-6) to unhealthy (levels 7-9). A person will operate within a range of levels (e.g., levels 2-4, levels 6-8, etc.). This range will vary throughout a lifetime. Two people of the same type will look different when they're operating from different levels.

    Below are two words associated with each level for type 9 as described in the book "The Wisdom of the Enneagram" by Don Riso and Russ Hudson.

    Healthy Levels

    Level 1 - Self-Possessed, Indomitable

    Level 2 - Unself-conscious, Peaceful

    Level 3 - Unselfish, Comforting

    Average Levels

    Level 4 - Self-Effacing, Agreeable

    Level 5 - Disengaged, Complacent

    Level 6 - Resigned, Appeasing

    Unhealthy Levels

    Level 7 - Repressed, Neglectful

    Level 8 - Dissociating, Disoriented

    Level 9 - Self-Abandoning, "Disappearing"

    Click here for descriptions of all nine type 9 levels. If you're not taken to the correct part of the web page when it appears then scroll down to the middle of the web page and look for the section on Levels of Development.

    Even though Enneagram tests are not 100% accurate they can provide a starting point for finding your Enneagram type and variations of type by narrowing down and validating your choices. The tests below can be useful if you think you might be a type 9 or you know you are a type 9 and want to explore the type 9 variations.

    Enneagram Mistypes - Type 9 Comparison Tests

    Some people correctly identify their Enneagram type on the first try. For most other people typing yourself correctly can take some time.

    If you feel that you may have wrongly typed yourself as type 9 and have one or more alternative types in mind then click on a link below to take a quick Enneagram test comparing type 9 to another type.


    To find some alternatives to type 9 you can take the type preference test below. Afterward you can compare these alternatives using the links above or the type comparison test.


    Enneagram Variations - Tests to help find Type 9 Wing, Subtype, and Tritype


    Find your type 9 wing preference by comparing the two wings of type 9.


    Find your type 9 subtype by comparing the three instictual subtypes of type 9.


    Find your missing tritype heart or head type by comparing the three types in a center.


    Find your tritype order by comparing your 2nd and 3rd tritype types.


    Quick Guide to the Enneagram

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

    The Nine Enneagram Types x
    The Nine Enneagram Types