“If I ever go looking for my heart’s desire again, I won’t look any further than my own back yard. Because if it isn’t there, I never really lost it to begin with.” ― Noel Langley, The Wizard of Oz
Welcome to Enneagram Paths! Today, I’m sending you light and love during these strange and disorienting times. I thought now would be the perfect moment to dive deeper into Type Sevens, who often get a bad reputation for being “the fun, shallow Type”. I ADORE the Sevens in my life, and while it’s true that they are so much fun and a source of adventure and delight, I also find they have depth, wisdom, and a wealth of emotional intelligence to share with the world. Suzanne Stablile says this about Sevens in her book, The Path Between Us : “By refusing to seek fulfillment by any path other than their own, Sevens model for us the satisfaction that’s possible when we acknowledge the inherent value in our uniqueness. That kind of uniqueness needs to be honored and celebrated.”
So, let’s look together at the differences between a 7w6 and a 7w8, to better understand the complexity and shades of expression that exist within each Enneagram Type.
The 6w of an Enneagram Type Seven shades the person with a dose of relationship energy. 7w6s often have a friendly frame of mind and appear externally warm and open towards people. They are still lively and vivacious, of course. You can’t take the zip and dazzle out of a Seven! However, the 6w does moderate some of the adventurousness of Sevens, making them more reliable and responsible. They are good problem-solvers, but in a light-hearted way. 7w6s take their problems less seriously, having a sense of humor about hardships, while also making sure important issues are addressed. They have a shade of mellowness, and connect with their emotions more easily than 7w8s.
7w6s have an extra dose of the Head Center of Intelligence. They will often experience greater anxiety and fear. Sevens generally don’t want anyone to tell them what to do, yet the 6w pulls them towards strong people and gaining security from authority. These conflicting forces create a lot of internal tension. The Seven will desire to do something, but the 6w will start to doubt themselves and analyze the risks involved. This makes 7w6s more indecisive. The 7w6 will come up with great ideas, but then want to control every aspect of their projects. In health, the 6w lets go and the 7w6 can commit to a task, be a team player, and complete projects to great success! Healthy 7w6s are amazing friends, colleagues, and partners. They’re loyal and committed, while also being spontaneous and delighted by all aspects of life. In stress, 7w6s can feel stuck between the individualism of Type Seven and the corporal loyalty of the Type Six. This can make them frustrated and angry. By moving deeper into their emotions and allowing space for all the internal dissonance to coexist, the 7w6 finds that they are able to balance zest and moderation, knowing the appropriate time and place for the complex shades of their character.
7w8s are the more unconstrained and individualistic of these Enneagram Seven wings. They are entrepreneurial and courageous, and go after their ideas with great energy and tenacity. The 8w brings in a dose of the Body Center of Intelligence, gifting 7w8s with good instincts. They trust their guts and act with decisiveness.
In stress, 7w8s can exhibit a good deal of aggression and assertiveness. They are pleasure-oriented to an extreme. The 8w helps the Type Seven get exactly what they want. Stressed 7w8s can seem demanding and pushy. They become increasingly irresponsible and excessive the further they disintegrate. There is a “more is better” mindset. Short-term thinking can take over so the 7w8 gains things immediately without assessing any risks. Stressed 7w8s care less about people who feel limiting or who will frustrate their plans, which can lead to a trail of wrecked relationships, work, and finances.
In health, the 8w moderates the Type Seven’s natural anxiety, producing a more grounded Seven. They think, act, and feel concretely and with a straightforward attitude. They are decisive and practical, and move in reality instead of in their fantasies. 7w8s don’t mentally travel as much into the future anticipating what might go wrong. Instead, the 8w adds future goals and the ability to reach those goals with a strong willingness to take charge. They can seem less friendly than the 7w6, but only because they care less about what others think and refuse to be put into boxes. This natural ability to be themselves then extends to others, creating space for healthy individuality and uniqueness. Healthy 7w8 are honest and oriented towards justice. They do the right thing no matter what.
*Be sure to check out my new Enneagram Self-Love Downloads you can print and use instantly!*