Communication

How 9 Enneagram types perceive communication

communication
Communication and the Enneagram

Eighty percent or more of communication is not the words we use, but the patterns of our speech and the non-verbal ways we communicate. But communication is a 2-way street between the communicator and the listener, and communication always exists and is interpreted within a context – for example, the culture of the organization, region, or country; the tacit or explicit hierarchical structure; and the history of the individuals involved.

The Enneagram’s communication application allows you to understand how communication styles develop from Enneagram types, with both strengths but also unintended distortions in both the sender and the receiver of communication. Even more, the Enneagram helps honor our communication strengths and minimize our communication distortions in order to be understood and to understand others more accurately.

Find out about the communication strengths, challenges and development tips for each Enneagram type.

Strengths

One
Cordial, polite, honest, thoughtful, poised, well-formulated opinions and ideas
Two
Listen carefully, offer assistance, ask questions, highly relational, compassionate
Three
Confident, clear, concrete, efficient, solution-oriented, enjoyable, straightforward
Four
Deep, intense, empathic, establish emotional resonance, non-superficial, curious
Five
Respectful, stimulating, interesting, non-intrusive, subtly amused, observant
Six
Complex, inviting, serious, questioning, witty and ironic
Seven
Light hearted, fast-paced, lively, engaging, tell exciting stories, upbeat, talkative
Eight
Candid, direct, authoritative, straightforward, action-oriented
Nine
Relaxing, open, affirming, supportive, establish rapport easily

Challenges

One
Easily irritated, use judgmental words such as should and ought, opinionated, visibly display displeasure
Two
Overly indirect or too direct, angry or complaining when tired or upset, offer unsolicited advice
Three
Impatient with lengthy discourse or emotional exchanges, angry when frustrated, not fully disclosing
Four
Overly intense, moody or remote, redirect conversation to self, using words like Imemine, frequently
Five
Reluctant to share personal information or feelings, controlled speech and body language, overly brief
Six
Overly reactive in responses, excessive skeptical questioning of others, become agitated or angry easily
Seven
Tell overly long stories, can be hard to follow in a linear sequence, become easily distracted, talk quickly
Eight
Commanding and demanding, challenging, dismissive, become deeply angry quickly
Nine
Low expression of feeling intensity, not forthcoming with own options or perspectives, ambiguous

Development tips

One
Be more aware of your body language and the message you communicate through non-verbal behavior
Two
Maintain a clearer boundary between you and the other person, express your feelings more directly
Three
Listen to others longer so that they feel heard, express yourself in a more completely genuine way
Four
De-intensify your need for deep connectivity with everyone, reduce self-referencing words and stories
Five
Ask more questions, share more personal information, worry less about intruding on others
Six
Question others’ motives less, breathe before your react too quickly, trust your own insights more
Seven
Listen until others have completely finished what they are saying, tell fewer stories, ask more questions
Eight
Listen even to those whom you don’t respect, explain your thinking and instinctual reactions more fully
Nine
Share your own thoughts and feelings sooner, recognize that your saying uh huh indicates agreement

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