Enneagram tests a fun way to break down personality traits

Many Enneagram tests are free to take online and can use your answers to reveal personality traits about yourself.

Sierra Hoeger

Do you have a Type A or Type B personality? What did your horoscope tell you this morning about the relationships in your life? What Harry Potter house are you? Do you watch “The Office” or “Friends?” Are you more of an introvert or an extrovert? Are you the advice giver or receiver in your friend group?

Based on how you choose to describe yourself, there’s a personality test available to provide you with numbers representing personality types and breaking down specific traits. 

The Enneagram test divides each personality type into nine categories, with wings stemming off the general personality types. 

The rules to Enneagram tests are simple. One cannot change from one Enneagram type to another, however, not every trait may apply to you all at once because individuals tend to fluctuate between traits.

“A lot of personality types are very much structured, whereas Enneagram types have different wings, and everyone has something unique about their personality, so it’s really hard to say you’re just one type,” said Katie Bailly, junior in psychology. “I really resonate with my type.”

Bailly said she’s a type three, meaning she’s adaptable, excelling, driven and image-conscious. 

“A type three is someone who overachieves in everything, and they also seek validation in everything they do,” Bailly said. “My whole life I’ve sought out validation from people, and it’s taken a really long time to realize that I didn’t need people to tell me I’m a good person to know that I’m a good person.” 

The numbers are meant to provide individuals with a way to identify each type, not to create a hierarchy within types. For example, one who identifies as a type seven doesn’t have better qualities or tendencies than those who identify as a type one.

The numbers are there to provide a name for each type. Each personality type is meant for all genders, meaning the descriptions and archetypes apply to anyone and everyone.

“I definitely resonate with it,” Bailly said. “A personality type three is someone who overthinks — I overthink everything. I feel like even the smallest things get me. It’s just more about my personality, not my personality type that I think about.” 

To find out which type you are and to receive a more in-depth breakdown of your type, a number of Enneagram tests exist online. Be prepared to answer a number of questions covering a wide range of topics in order to properly identify your type.

Enneagram types have become popular within younger age groups. Multiple celebrity figures have revealed their types on social media, connecting with others who share the same type. 

Sadie Robertson, most known for her brand “Live Original” and as a member of the “Duck Dynasty” family, wrote a blog post about her take on the Enneagram test and what it means to her. 

Robertson took a more philosophical and religious route with the personality types and decided to delve more into the three centers. Each Enneagram type is grouped into one of the three centers.

Types one, eight and nine are in the body center, meaning they’re formed as a response to anger. Types two, three and four are in the heart center, formed as a response to shame and create a self-image. Types five, six and seven are in the head center, formed as a response to fear or anxiety. 

Being a type six, Robertson said she decided to turn to the fact she’s a head center and find resolution to her worries by learning more about her type and its center. 

Best known for starring in the reality TV show “Little People Big World,’’ Audrey Roloff shared on Instagram her takes on Enneagram tests, saying it’s like “spilling the secrets to my soul.” 

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Spilling the secrets to my soul😅 Let’s talk Enneagram numbers. I’ll tell you mine if you tell me yours? If you don’t know your number or what I’m talking about, go get the book Road Back To You. Thank me later😉 👇🏻 I am an Eight. (with a lottt of 3 in me😅) Here’s what the book has to say about 8’s: The defining feature of an Eight is the oberabundance of intense energy they radiate wherever they go… 🏃🏼‍♀️Eights lust after intensity – they are high-voltage human dynamos who want to be wherever the action and energy are, and if they can’t find any, they’ll cook it up. They are firey, zestful, earthy, full-throttle people who drink like down to the dregs and then slam their glass down and order a second round for everyone at the bar…. ✔️ Eights don’t come equipped with dimmers. They are on or off, all in or all out. They “go big or go home.”🙈 ✔️ Most folks go to parties hoping to have fun and talk to interesting people, not to find themselves verbally sparring against the wunderkind captain of the Harvard debate team. Try not to take it personally. As strange as it sounds, what feels like intimidation to you, feels like intimacy to an Eight. For them, conflict is connection (sorry babe 😬💗). ✔️ Eights don’t want you to protect them from facts or coddle them by leaving out the unpleasant details. ✔️ They have no problem speaking truth to power. 📢They love debates, risky adventures and getting people riled up. 😋 ✔️ They’ll bristle when you say it, but Eights need to be reminded that moderation is a virtue not a restraining order. 🤫 ✔️ They are finite creatures trying to manage an overfulk tank of infinite desires. 🙋🏼‍♀️ ✔️ Eights don’t feel like they have to be the person in control – they just don’t want to be controlled. Eights assume others are’t trustworthy until they’ve proven otherwise. 💯 ✔️ Eights are eggar to support people who want to realize their potential. They know how to empower and bring out the best in others, and they’ll block or tackle to help someone get to where they want to go in life. All they ask is you show up and give 150 Percent of yourself to reaching to goal. 👋🏻#alwaysmore “ ✔️ WHAT’S YOUR NUMBER?! Let me know in the comments👇🏻

A post shared by Audrey Mirabella Roloff (@audreyroloff) on May 31, 2018 at 9:54pm PDT

Roloff is a type eight, meaning she’s self-confident, decisive, willful and confrontational. She then went on to share how she sees traits from the descriptions of type eight’s in her own life. 

The band Sleeping At Last created the album “Atlas: Enneagram” with nine tracks to accompany each personality type. Each track provides individuals with reassuring lyrics and tells them what they need to hear. The band also created a podcast, which dives into each type more specifically and explores topics surrounding Enneagram tests. 

However, with a number of personality quizzes, tests and ways to describe or label oneself out there, are Enneagram tests an accurate representation of one’s personality? How can we be sure? 

“In my experience, I think the personality quizzes are kind of like horoscopes: they’re very generalized,” said Caitlyn O’Conner, senior in psychology. “There’s going to be something you can tie to and be like, ‘oh yeah, that makes sense, that’s me,’ or with your internal state, you’re able to connect with it, even if you’re not outwardly like that as your personality. So I think they can be accurate for everybody, and I think that can be an issue with them, but they’re fun, and that’s why everyone likes them.”

The Enneagram test is 72 percent accurate, according to Statistical Solutions, which is a high number for personality tests. 

“I feel like it’s generalized, but it just helps you see where you fit in, personality wise; self-improvement purposes is why I think people take them,” said Collin Smith, senior in management. “They see ‘I’m a helper, here are my strengths and weaknesses,’ then they play off those to become a better person or see how different people think if they’re different from you, say ‘oh, that’s where they’re coming from.’”

O’Conner and Smith agree personality quizzes or tests are used as icebreakers within large groups to help establish and identify oneself as well as to feel more comfortable with those around you.

O’Conner also said she believes personality tests help us realize certain behaviors about ourselves and allow us to explain why we have certain tendencies or traits. 

On the other hand, Zlatan Krizan, professor of psychology, doesn’t buy into the Enneagram test’s results. 

“There is no scientific evidence that this system says anything meaningful about personality,” Krizan said. “Even the proposed ‘types’ are often contradictory.”

Krizan has the same take as O’Connor and Smith in that individuals take these kinds of tests because they’re “fun” and reveal parts of ourselves we find interesting. 

“It is like [a] horoscope, an interesting and fun way to talk about people and their differences,” Krizan said. “But it does not have any meaning except that assigned to it.”