The ‘Anxious Projection’ of the 6

Sometimes, you need to look back to be reminded of how far you have come and the progress you have made. I had that opportunity this week, when I realized I seem to have overcome my ‘anxious attachment’ issues, simply by being aware of my own tendency to project my insecurities onto other people and react to them.

Continue reading “The ‘Anxious Projection’ of the 6”

The Quiet Mind

The only way a 6 can grow is to learn to develop the quiet mind. How you bring yourself into balance is through developing your repressed center. 6s both have a disadvantage in that regard, due to all the lack of self-trust (thus we spin our wheels), and an advantage, because to become balanced, every type must first integrate their repressed center, and then their scrambled center… but for a 6, it’s the same thing.

Continue reading “The Quiet Mind”

Over-Thinking Menial Decisions

Seven years into my Enneagram growth journey and knowing my patterns means… I still do them. There’s no off switch. Being a 6 means I can agonize over the most unimportant things, in the way someone else might think about a life-altering decision. My brain can’t tell the difference, so it treats small decisions with the same anguish and weighing of options as it does “big” choices. Allow me to provide a recent example of when my brain woke me up by to “solve” a question I thought I had resolved days earlier.

Continue reading “Over-Thinking Menial Decisions”

The 3 in the 6’s Back Pocket

Someone asked me to talk about my line to 3, and what it looks like for good and ill, so ever since I’ve been thinking about it as a 6. And it dawned on me that in a way, 6s use a 3 type structure to avoid “doing the work.” 6s distrust their own insights and intuitions, which is why they look for an external source—a teacher, a faith, an author, the facts—upon which to base their argument. But in so doing, they avoid the hard work involved in forming their own argument. In other words, a 6 doesn’t have to come up with a reason they believe something and find facts to support it if they can use someone else’s work to do that for them. For example, if you want to win a theological debate, which theologian do you pull out of your back pocket to supplement or base your argument upon? It’s such an unconscious process, the 6 doesn’t even realize at the time they are doing it. “What’s the answer to this question?” “Well, Darwin said… C. S. Lewis wrote… Einstein theorized…” The foundation is coming from somewhere outside themselves.

Continue reading “The 3 in the 6’s Back Pocket”

What’s my type?? The 6’s Failure to Land

I am here today to talk about the 6’s failure to land. You can tell a 6 at a glance because it’s the only type who changes their social stacking, their wing, or their tritype on a regular basis. Each time, they are fully convinced of being right, absolutely sure in their assertion of being whatever they land on, and yet the process of self-examination starts over in a few days and within a week, they are asserting a different type. Those with higher 3 fixes start writing with authority from this new angle, as if last week being a 5 didn’t exist. And yet, the running on the mental treadmill never stops. Two days later they are a 4 or a 9 or an so/sx instead of an so/sp. But why?

Failure to land.

Continue reading “What’s my type?? The 6’s Failure to Land”

Fixing a 6: Using 9 to Grow Healthier

A reader asked me to talk about 6’s experience with their stress and growth lines, which are 3 and 9. Today we’ll talk about 9, the number 6s need to grow towards, to be at peace with ourselves. You don’t just go to one or the other, but use both on a daily basis to self-soothe or self-motivate. This means 9 and 3 can show up in positive and negative ways, but they are always under the influence of the super-ego.

Continue reading “Fixing a 6: Using 9 to Grow Healthier”

Making Sense of the World through the Mind

I remember the day I discovered Sherlock Holmes. I wanted to be this logical, detached detective, someone who reasoned everything through his intellect. That appealed to me, because it seemed like a safer way to live—by being intelligent. Little did I know he appealed to me because I live also through the mind, rather than the body or the emotions, as a 6, by trying to make sense of everything in my head.

Continue reading “Making Sense of the World through the Mind”

The Distinctions Between 6 and 9

“Am I a 6 or a 9?” seems to be a common question among people unable to land on their Enneagram type. Intellectually, it can be confusing, but when you play it out in reality, the differences are quite stark between 6s and 9s. As Richard Rohr once said, “Some 9s are aware of their inner anxiety and assume it might make them a 6, but are not aware of how calm and detached they seem to others, only of their nervous inner experience.” 6s are not able to conceal this inner anxiety and others are quite aware of it.

Continue reading “The Distinctions Between 6 and 9”

The Superego and a Desire for Support

The insult still rings in my ears to this day, thrown at me by an ex-friend on her way out the door: “You can’t stay friends with anyone who disagrees with you!”

At first, I got defensive and thought “at least I have standards.” But the more I sat with that accusation, the deeper my uncertainty grew. It felt like a character flaw, something I ought not to do. I felt bad about it. Thought about it. Prayed about it. Guilt-tripped myself over it. Twenty years later, I can now stay friends with people I disagree with, but I still see the world in terms of what I and others “ought” and “ought not” to do. Anything that seems “selfish” triggers a negative reaction in me.

Continue reading “The Superego and a Desire for Support”