Saturday, April 5, 2014

Enneagram Of Personality - Crafting Characters #AtoZChallenge


     The Enneagram is a set of nine personality types, with each number on the Enneagram representing one particular type. You may find a little of yourself in all nine types, but one number should be closest to an honest assessment of yourself. This is your basic personality type. Major Enneagram authors believe that we are born with a dominant type.  This inborn orientation largely determines how we grow, learn and adapt to our childhood environment. Your inherent basic personality type does not change.
     The Enneagram uses numbers rather than labels (which some professionals believe are construed as pejorative). No number is better than the others, although society or culture may appreciate or desire one personality type over another.
     These personality types can be further described as sets of traits. 
Type One: Reformer. Principled, perfectionist, vice/passion is anger.
Type Two: Helper.  Generous, people-pleaser, vice/passion is pride.
Type Three: Achiever. Driven, image-conscious, vice/passion is deceit.
Type Four: Individualist. Dramatic, temperamental, vice/passion is envy.
Type Five: Investigator. Perceptive, secretive, vice/passion is avarice.
Type Six: Loyalist. Responsible, suspicious, vice/passion is fear.
Type Seven: Enthusiast. Versatile, acquisitive, vice/passion is gluttony.
Type Eight: Challenger. Decisive, confrontational, vice/passion is lust.
Type Nine: Peacemaker. Reassuring, resigned, vice/passion is sloth.
     In addition, there are centers, dominant emotions, basic fears, ego fixations - far too much to go into here.  For more information check out the full personality grid on Wikipedia
     You can try free Enneagram tests at Eclectic Energies  for yourself - or for your character!

Adjectives for the day:  ebeneous, echinate, edacious, eldritch, epistolary, erumpent


  1. OK...I can see someone taking this Enneagram idea and using it as the basis for a murder mystery. Learning a lot with this series.

    And this time I know two of your adjectives!! YAY

    1. It seemed really confusing to me. And I don't really seem to fit any of the types. But yes, a murder mystery - perhaps a murderer who chooses one victim from each type?

  2. I never knew about the Enneagram. How fascinating!

  3. The personality color is another good one!

  4. I've never heard of Enneagram, but it sounds like it might be helpful in trying to develop characters.

    AJ's AtoZ wHooligan
    Tales of a Pee Dee Mama

  5. Surely this is a site well worth seeing.

  6. Interesting chart and characteristics. Sometimes, I think we're all a little bit of each of these things, though we favor one group or another most of the time.

    MJ, A to Z Challenge Co-Host
    Writing Tips
    Effectively Human
    Lots of Crochet Stitches

  7. I see my characters bleed back and forth between the catagories. I like to have the flexibility to move back and forth through these personality traits as the story dictates. After all, I may outline the book in bullet point fashion. But as I fill out the book, the story tends to write itself in a most elegant manner.

  8. Interesting post.

    I find enneagrams and personality charts useful to analyze characters after a first draft, before editing. But I couldn't use them to "build" a character, because I believe they make poor blueprints.