What is Concealed in Each Enneagram Type’s Shadow?

Kim Parker of WayfindingLife.org says this about Enneagram Shadow work, “The Enneagram shows us the shadow side of our gifts and reveals the games we often unknowingly play. Although these can be difficult to face, doing so is part of a path that leads us toward freedom. Taking an honest look at ourselves, through the lens of the Enneagram, provides us with the awareness needed to let go of our unhelpful tendencies and patterns of behavior. Furthermore, as we begin to practice ‘letting go’ we are set free to be a more whole and loving p/Presence in the world.”

I love this! Something I often say to my coaching clients is that not only are struggles and weaknesses hidden in Shadow, so are amazing strengths.

Our Shadow Sides are places and spaces in our personality makeup that can be unconscious on a regular basis. However, when we dig into the darkness, a whole lot of light begins to shine, and we’re made aware of a myriad of exciting and challenging aspects of each Type’s survival mechanisms. Be kind to yourself as you investigate your Shadow Side. Always enter the work with kindness and love—and feel free to get in touch with me if you need an Enneagram Coach to guide you along this process!

Concealed in Shadow: Type One

The Type One’s Shadow conceals true desires and the need for spontaneity, levity, and joy. To preserve order, the Shadow suppresses undesired emotions like personal pain, melancholy, and deep frustration.

Concealed in Shadow: Type Two

The Type Two’s Shadow conceals the paradoxical belief that they’re deserving of royal treatment and that they’re only as good as what they give. They have a hidden thirst for love and attention. A need to express anger is also in shadow.

Concealed in Shadow: Type Three

The Type Three’s Shadow conceals unconscious self-deception. They believe in the positive images they project, and suppress insecurity, fear, and vulnerability—all of which help them get in touch with their True Selves.

Concealed in Shadow: Type Four

The Type Four’s Shadow conceals an unconscious victimhood; a self-perpetuating cycle of lack and loss. It also hides a great wealth of happiness, satisfaction, capability, normality, and energetic action.

Concealed in Shadow: Type Five

The Type Five’s Shadow conceals a deep longing for connection, a vast wealth of wants and needs, fear of rejection, great power, emotionality, and a wise, unwavering strength that sources itself in Universe.

Concealed in Shadow: Type Six

The Type Six’s Shadow conceals a depth of connection to Source/Divine and self. There is a unconscious drive for ultimate security which can never be satisfied. Many actions are motivated by a fear of retribution from authority.

Concealed in Shadow: Type Seven

The Type Seven’s Shadow conceals the full spectrum of their inner emotional life, and a true ability to hone and focus attention. Feelings of insecurity and “unknown-ness” are also hidden in Shadow.

Concealed in Shadow: Type Eight

The Type Eight’s Shadow conceals the purest parts of themselves because they are the least accessed: softness, innocence, and vulnerability. Their Shadow also hides insecurities that Eight’s refuse to admit.

Concealed in Shadow: Type Nine

The Type Nine’s Shadow conceals a layered emotionality, often with a deep reserve of rage/anger that must be expressed…to then access a kind of grief over abandoning themselves for so long.

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