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Type 6

Enneagram Type Six

Personality Profile - Personal Growth Recommendations


The Committed, Security-Oriented Type:
Engaging, Responsible, Anxious, and Suspicious

Basic Fear: Of being without support and guidance
Basic Desire: To have security and support
Enneagram Six with a Five-Wing: "The Defender"
Enneagram Six with a Seven-Wing: "The Buddy"


Type Six people are great team players, hard-working employees and loyal friends. They are reliable, showing up for what they have committed themselves to and working for the welfare of the community. Sixes tend to hold traditional values, so family and friends, God and country, mean a great deal to them. They function well within organizations and like to have a clear idea about the rules according to which the organization functions. They like to have a leader and will step into the leadership role rather than deal with the anxiety associated with anarchy.

Usually, Type Six people grew up with a strong father figure who was the person "in charge" of the family. Even if that person was harsh or abusive, they grew to rely upon a sense of structure, rules, and consequences. It may be hard for Sixes to feel secure without an outer authority to respond to, whether their response is to be a true believer or a rebel, so they look for groups to belong to. They often spend time in the military, working in the public sector, or joining a religious community.

Type Six people describe themselves as worriers, always aware of what could go wrong. They begin to doubt themselves, fearing that they will make a decision that will undermine or destroy the security they work so hard to maintain. The inner child of the Type Six just wants to withdraw, pull the covers up, and be comfortable. They need to learn to accept that worry never solves problems and that the world will not fall apart if they take a break from troubleshooting. Then they can relax and really believe in the deepest sense that all is well.

FAMOUS SIXES: Woody Allen, Ellen Degeneres, Jack Lemmon, David Letterman, Richard Nixon, Janet Reno, Rush Limbaugh.


Personal Growth Recommendations
for Enneagram Type Sixes

  • Remember that there is nothing unusual about being anxious since everyone is anxious—and much more often than you might think. Learn to be more present to your anxiety, to explore it, and to come to terms with it. Work creatively with your tensions without turning to excessive amounts of alcohol (or other drugs) to allay them. In fact, if you are present and breathing fully, anxiety can be energizing, a kind of tonic that can help make you more productive and aware of what you are doing.

  • You tend to get edgy and testy when you are upset or angry, and can even turn on others and blame them for things you have done or brought on yourself. Be aware of your pessimism: it causes you dark moods and negative thought patterns that you tend to project on reality. When you succumb to this self-doubt, you can become your own worst enemy and may harm yourself more than anyone else does.

  • Sixes tend to overreact when they are under stress and feeling anxious. Learn to identify what makes you overreact. Also realize that almost none of the things you have feared so much has actually come true. Even if things are as bad as you think, your fearful thoughts weaken you and your ability to change things for the better. You cannot always mange external events, but you can manage your own thoughts.

  • Work on becoming more trusting. There are doubtless several people in your life you can turn to who care about you and who are trustworthy. If not, go out of your way to find someone trustworthy, and allow yourself to get close to that person. This will mean risking rejection and stirring up some of your deepest fears, but the risk is worth taking. You have a gift for getting people to like you, but you are unsure of yourself and may be afraid of making a commitment to them. Therefore, come down clearly on one side or the other of the fence in your relationships. Let people know how you feel about them.

  • Others probably think better of you than you realize, and few people are really out to get you. In fact, your fears tell you more about your attitudes toward others than they indicate about others' attitudes toward you.


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