Examples - Quotes - - Video - Description - Equivalents - Misidentifications - Variations - Wings - Instinctual Variants - Health - Levels of Development - Levels of Integration and Disintegration - Growth Recommendations
"There is a computer disease that anybody who works with computers knows about. It's a very serious disease and it interferes completely with the work. The trouble with computers is that you 'play' with them!" - Richard Feynman
"I don't believe in happy endings, but I do believe in happy travels, because ultimately, you die at a very young age, or you live long enough to watch your friends die. It's a mean thing, life." - George Clooney
"I'd think,'In a relationship, we should never have his kind of fight.' Then, instead of figuring out how to make it work, I looked for a way to get out of it. The truth is, you shouldn't be married if your that kind of person. " - George Clooney
"You have only a short period of time in your life to make your mark, and I'm there now. " - George Clooney
- Riso and Hudson's Overview "The Enthusiast"
It is no great difficulty to see why the life of diverse hedonism is unsatisfactory even on its own terms. Boredom, its ultimate enemy, is unavoidable...A life devoted to the collection of enjoyable or 'interesting' experiences is an empty life. It is not a life of spirit, but one in which spirit disappears in the multitude of diversions....When we think of it, we all know that those who are in a position to sample life's sweet diversions are no better off in any fundamental way than those who are not. We know that those who have thrown themselves into lives of self-indulgence are often racked with emptiness, loneliness, self-hatred, nostalgia, and yet are unwilling to change. Knowing all this, however, we would be reluctant ourselves to pass up the opportunity for such a life. Why is this so? Because we convince ourselves that we would be judicious in our use of pleasure. We would practice restraint....The life of superficial diversions has great attraction, as does the pastry table for the child. In the latter case it is, we know, because the child is not serious about his eating habits. So it is, also, with us....To throw oneself into indulgence is to say, 'All I am is a potential for pleasure. The more pleasure that exists, the greater I am.' No one can believe this in earnest, of course, and this is why such a life must rest upon self-deception. (John Douglas Mullen, Kierkegaard's Philosophy, New York: New American Library, 1981, p. 100-1.)
- Palmer's Description "The Joyful Person"
Enneagram type 7s are upbeat and energetic, and have minds that don’t quit. The Seven mind is always busy making connections between different ideas, which can make them seem scattered, but also funny and entertaining. Sevens are good at brainstorming new ideas and beginning new projects, but can have trouble with followthrough. In average levels of health, Sevens can seem ADD and manic, and many sevens get asked if they have been diagnosed with these disorders. While sevens like to live in the world of ideas, they also like to implement those ideas in practical ways.
- Ocean-Moonshine.net's Description
People of enneatype Seven are essentially concerned that their options remain open, their lives unconstrained, and their ability to find happiness unfettered by what they see as the largely petty concerns which seem to consume most people. Sevens are determined not to allow their lives to succumb to boredom or inertia, or to the lethargy of a dull, pedestrian existence. Sevens want more than that. They always want more.
- Myers-Briggs Equivalents
ESTP "The Adventurer" - Active, pragmatic, outgoing, fun, realistic accomplishers.
ESFP "The Joker" - Sympathetic socialites generously meeting needs in a fun, lively way.
ISTP "The Realist" - Quick adapter and planner, seeking freedom from strict structures.
ENTP "The Innovator" - Adaptable, innovative, freeing self from structure for action.
ENFP "The Visionary" - Love the fluid and changing, expressing creativity and charisma.
7w6 - Seeking Stimulation and Security
Healthy Sevens with a 6 wing are responsible, faithful, lovable, nervous and funny. They are generally more oriented to relationship and want to be accepted by other people. Can be steady, more willing to stick with commitments; the 6 wing brings a longer sense of time. Usually funny or enjoy a good laugh - an amazing number of comedians are Sevens with a 6 wing. More openly vulnerable, have an unguarded, tender sweetness. Some have trouble expressing anger even when they are justified. May evade or finesse authority but still aware of it like a 6. Canny and practical, they look for the deals and the loopholes. When more entranced, may have surprise episodes of sensitivity and insecurity. Their feelings can be easily hurt sometimes. Sensitive especially to comparisons. May avoid putting themselves to the test. Grow dependent and addicted to other people, afraid to be alone, suspicious and skittish. Can feel guilt easily, may project their conscience onto others and then act irresponsibly. Make themselves shallow, fall in and out of love easily. Sometimes breezily betray others by running away. Can be reckless, unstable, and self-destructive. When Sevens have a counterphobic 6 wing their idealism can motivate a sincere desire for social reform. May work hard for a cause. Can be antiauthority, passive/aggressive, flippant, defiant. Some report hating to be told what to do. Clashes with Ones likely. May call down trouble on themselves. Complain about the status quo. The realm of hippie rebellion.
When healthy, Sevens with an 8 wing are often generous, gregarious and expansive. Tend to be exceptionally loyal to their friends, especially when social subtype. Leap aggressively to the defense of those they care for. Might seem loud or boisterous although some are urbane and witty. Enjoy social celebrations, storytelling, jokes, food and travel. Generally have a strong self-confidence for worldly matters and getting what they want. Talent for making something out of nothing - entrepreneurial. Usually share what they have when healthy, want everyone to enjoy their sense of bounty and wide range of interests. When more entranced, they may be demanding, displaying a selfish impatience and a self-justifying narcissism. May want what they want right now. Aggressive, hasty drive to acquire money and material options and recognition. Can demand that the people in their lives say only what the Seven wants to hear - sugarcoated truth. Lash out angrily if reality doesn't meet their expectations; sometimes vengeful. Often perfectionistic as parents (low side of 1). Moralize to others and then are themselves irresponsible. Amnesia for promises made in an expansive moment. Particular difficulty with sexual fidelity.
- Udit Patel "The Neophile (Ichazo's "Suggestibility")"
Sexual Sevens seek stimulation, especially the stimulation of whatever is new, cutting edge, or exotic. They are extremely curious and often intellectually avid, and they bring the same searching engagement to their relationships. Sexual Sevens love to meet new people, to learn about them, and to get intensely involved with them—whether through conversation, shared adventures, or sexual experiences. They are often highly charismatic, having no trouble capturing people's attention with their energy, wit, and genuine desire to connect with people. They often frustrate themselves and others, however, because their attention is easily captured by what promises excitement. Sexual Sevens can shift from one intense focus to another too quickly for their own good. They can also become easily enthused about a new idea, person, or experience without checking it out thoroughly, often leading to regrets later on either in business or in relationships. When less healthy, they may indiscriminately pursue relationships or unusual, even dangerous, experiences for the excitement that it brings and to counteract boredom and inner deadness. The search for a variety of exotic and intense experiences can leave them burned out and dissipated.
Intimate Sevens tend to garnish and embellish reality with fantasy. Intimate relationships are often thought of as shared experimental adventures, and the Seven perceives their partner through a veil of imagination. May romanticize others as a way to avoid the limits and boredom of mundane life with the same old someone. Can be more involved with their fantasy of the partner than with the real person. Tentative, distractible, impersonal, may have a wandering eye. Some have great difficulty with commitment and seem fickle as they move on to the next fantasy projected onto the next new person. Don Juan scenario. More generally, intimate Sevens have a tendency to be suggestible. They may especially seek the new with the fascinated enthusiasm of a faddist, stepping into future fantasies to avoid the present.
- Udit Patel Missing Out (Ichazo's "Social Sacrifice")
Social Sevens are highly people-oriented and somewhat idealistic, so they are sometimes mistaken for Twos. They like entertaining and gathering "the gang" for various outings and adventures. They love conversation, launching new projects with others, brainstorming, and initiating creative endeavors. Social Sevens are also looking for a place to invest their idealism—they feel they have much to offer the world but are forever searching for the perfect vehicle through which to express their talents and aspirations. While Social Sevens like being involved with people and activities, because they are Sevens, they also tend to feel that they are losing options when they commit to a particular person or course of action. Thus, they tend to have problems with making a commitment because they want to be involved but feel trapped once they get involved. One way that Social Sevens navigate this conflict is by agreeing to do too many things with too many people. They also tend to make back-up plans regarding agreements. ("If lunch with Sarah falls through, I'll invite Mike, too, just to make sure someone's there….") Naturally, others are often caught off guard by sudden changes of plan, and, oddly, no one really gets the Social Seven's attention. Social Sevens may also sabotage good relationships while secretly hoping that someone better will come along.
Social Sevens often feel a tension between duty to others and the desire to escape. Tend to feel responsible for the people around them and experience that as a confining burden. They then react against the weight of obligation, seeking variety and craving change. When entranced, can be highly irresponsible. When awakened, they make peace with commitment and sacrifice and are often very stable and generous. Often an idealism, sometimes a stronger connection to 1. Serving something beyond themselves, dutiful. Can be from a large family where they had lots of responsibility, eldest child. With an 8 wing they tend to fight the sense of burden harder.
- Udit Patel "Getting Mine (Ichazo's "Defenders")"
Self-Preservation Sevens are the most materialistic Sevens. This does not necessarily mean that they are always accumulating possessions, but they do thoroughly enjoy the things of the material world. They also enjoy thinking about acquiring possessions and experiences. Thus, reading catalogues, restaurant guides, movie reviews, travel books, and brochures is often a favorite pastime. Generally, however, they are not daydreamers: they want to actually do or buy the things they are thinking about. Exploring the different pleasures the world offers seems to Self-Pres Sevens what life is about. They love shopping and are especially thrilled by the prospect of getting a great bargain—obtaining the desired object or experience at well below the "normal" cost. Thus, they tend to be the person to consult for a good hotel in a particular city or to find the best place to buy a new laptop computer. Often, they will cultivate other friends who are knowledgeable about mutual interests to exchange information about bargains and to stay up with the newest developments available. Many Self-Pres Sevens like to "live large" and may spend more than they can afford to sustain their appetite for experience and luxury. Unconsciously, they may have unrealistic expectations that the world should provide them with whatever they need on demand. To the extent that Sevens succumb to this expectation, they are likely to be frustrated and disappointed.
Self-preservation Sevens are a little confusing since they tend to be highly social. Characterized by a drive towards family and shared group experiences. Enjoy operating within their real or chosen family, checking in with a group of like-minded people. Chronic sharing on a circuit. People in the group are the source of interesting information and stimulation. Don't feel burdened or trapped by duties like a social Seven. Loyal to family, often have a 6 wing. Defend their circle and castle. Barricade, find safety in numbers. This subtype goes with the image of the "party animal."
Levels of Development
- Riso & Hudson's Levels of Development
Level 1 (Most Healthy - The Level of Liberation): Assimilate experiences in depth, making them deeply grateful and appreciative for what they have. Become awed by the simple wonders of life: joyous and ecstatic. Intimations of spiritual reality, of the boundless goodness of life.
Level 5 (Average - The Level of Interpersonal Control): Unable to discriminate what they really need, become hyperactive, unable to say "no" to themselves, throwing self into constant activity. Uninhibited, doing and saying whatever comes to mind: storytelling, flamboyant exaggerations, witty wise-cracking, performing. Fear being bored: in perpetual motion, but do too many things—many ideas but little follow through.
Level 9 (Most Unhealthy - The Level of Pathological Destructiveness): Finally, their energy and health is completely spent: become claustrophobic and panic-stricken. Often give up on themselves and life: deep depression and despair, self-destructive overdoses, impulsive suicide. Generally corresponds to the Bipolar disorder and Histrionic personality disorder.
- Riso & Hudson's Levels of Development In-Depth
- Healthy and Unhealthy "Loops"
Healthy loop: controlled by Basic Desire: Need to be happy -> explore and appreciate world -> happy -> Need to be happy. In the healthy state, the need to be happy induces Type Sevens to explore the world and genuinely appreciate what they find. They derive great happiness as a result, thus their need is satisfied and a balance is reached.
Average state: when Sevens' are not exploring and appreciating the world, they become restless and unhappy. The the need to be happy increases, which helps Sevens to again reach out to the world and find things to appreciate. Thus the balancing loop can help Sevens to recover.
Unhealthy loop: controlled by Basic Fear: Fear of being being deprived -> numbly seek sensations -> happy -> Fear of being being deprived. In the unhealthy state, the basic fear of being being deprived can cause Type Sevens to numbly seek new and different sensations and adventures without truly appreciating the experience. This means they will derive little happiness from all the highs, which further increases Sevens' feeling of emptiness and basic fear of being deprived. The cycle continues to build up.
Insight: We can see from the diagram that a way to help break the control of the basic fear is to weaken the unhealthy loop. Sevens can refrain from jumping into the next project, and appreciate more what they experience. This will cause them to be more happy, and thus reduce their fear of being being deprived.
Integration (Seven Goes to Healthy Five)
- Udit Patel
As Sevens learn to relax and to tolerate their uncomfortable feelings more completely, they stop using their restless minds to distract themselves. Their minds become quiet, clear, and focused, allowing Sevens to tap more deeply into their reserves of creativity and insight. They are able to prioritize not by imposing some arbitrary order on themselves but by following their true interests and staying with them. Thus, they become far more productive, satisfied, and really satisfying as companions. Their capacity to find connections and to synthesize information is not drawn off into tangents—they produce results, and this gives them grounds for real confidence in themselves and in life. As they experience the world more deeply, they find each moment fascinating, profound, and revelatory. The idea of boredom becomes absurd as they savor the incredible mysteries of existence, moment by moment.
- Wake-Up Call
Awareness of feeling that "something better" is available somewhere else—so that they can rise to a true resting in the moment and a joyous celebration of life.
Security (Seven Goes to Average Five)
- Udit Patel
Sevens often feel it is their duty to entertain others and to keep their environment positive and exciting. Over time, this can be exhausting—even for Sevens. When they are tired of being "on" for everyone, they may choose to withdraw even from their intimates and seek seclusion and noninterference. This can come as a shock to others. ("You've been out having fun with everyone else, so why are you so quiet and unavailable with me?") They no longer want to put out energy for anyone else, and can become almost obsessively focused and preoccupied. They can also be surprisingly withdrawn and isolated, like Fives. Their body language and aloof responses let others know that they want space and privacy. At such times, Sevens make no effort to entertain or energize others. Like Fives, they retreat from contact and attempt to restore their energy.
Disintegration (Seven Goes to Healthy Five)
- Udit Patel
Sevens value their spontaneity and so tend to follow their impulses, for better or for worse. As a result, they can become scattered in their attention and energy, leaping from one promising idea to the next, from one activity to another. While this can be exciting, it often leaves Sevens frustrated with themselves because they feel that they are not accomplishing as much as they would like to. At such times, they begin to behave like average Ones—pulling in the reins on themselves and trying to get more organized and self-controlled. But because they are trying to impose order and control on themselves, they begin to feel trapped and restricted. This only makes them more frustrated, impatient, and irritable. They may, for instance, become critical of their own creative ideas before they have really had a chance to develop them. Similarly, they cannot avoid feeling disappointment with people and many aspects of their environment. Nothing seems to meet their expectations, and they can become harsh and perfectionistically critical with themselves and with others.
- Riso & Hudson's Wisdom of the Enneagram (edited)
"The seven disintegrating to 1 grows more restless and scattered, or more self-controlled and rigid, their usual vivaciousness giving way to grim seriousness. They may attempt to educate others, debating or critiquing the views of others, becoming 'short,' impersonal, and highly impatient with any degree of incompetence. They may vent frustration by scolding and nitpicking, or via withering sarcasm."
- Riso & Hudson's Personal Growth Recommendations
Sevens grow by recognizing that real happiness is available anytime, anywhere: the price of admission is their willingness and ability to be quiet, to be still inside themselves, and to open their eyes to the wonder and richness of life all around them. Once Sevens understand this, they are able to assimilate their experiences in depth. They discover that every moment can make them feel deeply grateful and appreciative—truly awed by the wonders of life. Moreover, their openness and inner quiet brings them a sense of life beyond the physical, a spiritual reality, that begins to shine through the material world. The healthy Seven understands that by being still within, a quiet joy begins to pervade all of life—a deep satisfaction in existence that cannot ever be taken away.
- Palmer's Exercise for Type 7s
Find a way to get out of your head and to stop living in your future plans. Do Tai Chi and really be present and feel your body. Or take a walk and feel the air moving in and out of your lungs. Breathe deeply into your belly and into your heart space. Smell the flowers and trees, or the dust. Look at what is around you right now. Be with the experience that you are living right now.
One of the simplest ways to learn to turn off the spinning mind, is also one of the most difficult for sevens, who like to stay in motion. It is called mindfulness meditation: Sit quietly and notice your breath. Notice where your mind goes. Stop the thoughts and focus on your breath. After a time you will learn to turn off the spinning of the mind and be with your present experience.