Goodreads helps you keep track of books you want to read.
Start by marking “The Enneagram” as Want to Read:
The Enneagram
Enlarge cover
Rate this book
Clear rating
Open Preview

The Enneagram

3.84 of 5 stars 3.84  ·  rating details  ·  863 ratings  ·  46 reviews
It would be impossible for most of us to spend a day without coming into direct or indirect contact with dozens of people family, friends, people in the street, at the office, on television, in our fantasies and fears. Our relationships with others are the most changeable, infuriating, pleasurable and mystifying elements in our lives.

Personality types, based on the ancient
ebook, 416 pages
Published November 22nd 2011 by HarperOne (first published 1988)
more details... edit details

Friend Reviews

To see what your friends thought of this book, please sign up.

Reader Q&A

To ask other readers questions about The Enneagram, please sign up.

Be the first to ask a question about The Enneagram

This book is not yet featured on Listopia. Add this book to your favorite list »

Community Reviews

(showing 1-30 of 1,484)
filter  |  sort: default (?)  |  rating details
Shawna Foster
If you want to hate yourself a lot, read this version of the enneagram.

I know that the enneagram is different than other psychological tests because it focuses on what your faults rather than your strengths. I also know that this is a definitive book of enneagrams.

However, I refuse to believe my base needs are out of anger, guilt, or lust or other's base needs are out of this way either. While some of it may ring true this book is phrased in such a way, such loathing of human beings and bathed i
Mrs. Lahti
May 02, 2008 Mrs. Lahti rated it 5 of 5 stars  ·  review of another edition
Recommends it for: those interested in psychology & spirituality
I've been studying this book for years, and it has been one of the most influential books in my life. The Enneagram is a psychological system that explains 9 personality types. As human beings, we all suffer, and this book explains how suffering is connected to type. However, we are more than our personality, so freedom from suffering is available. It has helped me to grow personally and develop more compassion for the people in my life. I've been to numerous workshops presented by the author, H ...more
This book is in many ways an unpleasant read. An enneagram expert told me what my type was; this book is not the best for that.

Mostly in the sections about one's type it reads 97% negative. It's all about the dysfunctional coping mechanisms one uses to get by. In each type there is also a very small section talking about the possible translation from ignorance to wisdom of this particular way of dealing with the world.

In the introductory portions that talk about the system the possibility of thi
Duygu Ece
An introductary book that I'd reccommend to my friends just beginning to enneagram. The insights at each chapter offer many a ha moments. The reader will come across the traits that he is unaware of or hard to admit& prefer to keep to himself. Her language is clinical, but as a physician; I am more in tune with Riso: He divides each type into 3 grades -healthy,average,unhealthy- and each grade into 3 level of developments; then puts the faults&gifts at certain levels at lenght. However P ...more
Diana Connick
If an individual is searching for answers, this is the Best book to begin to understand reasons for our behavior patterns as well as your loved ones and the people you know. Not only does one get insights into patterns of behavior, Helen breaks each personality down to where we pick the behaviors up as children and why! From there, she discusses practices to change unwanted behaviors. This is a book, unlike any other. This was the first written record of the Enneagram, an ancient Sufi tradition.
a second reading. excellent analysis and very well presented. clear, insightful, and helpful. will be giving this one a third reading in about six months. i learn more each time plus i am more fully aware with each passing day so more of this method has a place waiting for it in my mind and in my heart.

self-help at its BEST.

second reading december 2011 ... it only gets better and more helpful the more i absorb ms. palmer's descriptions on the nine types.
Christopher Conroy
Pretty dense book with tons of A three does this, a six does that. If a 2 is a boss and 7 is the employee they will interact in X and Y ways. Its a lot to digest. However, I found it uncanny how some people I know fit perfectly into one or another type. I had to read the whole book before I got my own type. But, I saw shades of myself in multiple types.
James M. Madsen, M.D.
This is meant to be one of the best explanations of the enneagram, but although it was interesting, it wasn't particularly useful to me. Then again, I see so much of most of the proposed personality types in myself that my test results for these types of classifications are not very reproducible.
Mark Long
Superb insight to the variety of types that the Enneagram explores. A most helpful read, and a book that I will return to from time to time.
Anne Walbridge
Very insightful, though I'd skip most of Part 1 and skip straight to the personality types. There is a LOT of information in here.
Katja Vartiainen
I need to add a psychology shelf...It's the first book I've read about enneagrams and it was very revealing. Accurate description and the writers psychologist's professional background makes this book clear. it's practical and it deals a bit with the deeper, spiritual growth side of the enneagram system. I recommend this to everyone, since we all live with each other and this shows how we act and react so often as we do.
Skvělá kniha o typologii osobností. Systém Enneagramu je součástí starého súfíjského učení a od systémů, na které jsme zvyklí, se liší tím, že všech devět typů osobností, které jsou popsané jako ideál, typičtí představitelé svého typu, jsou vzájemně propojené a ovlivňují se. Různou mírou propojení typů se pak vysvětlí individualita osobnosti. Systém mi přijde krásně ucelený.
Alicia Mitsch
3.75 stars. The first half of the book explains the origins of the Enneagram, intertwining it with the roots of modern psychology. At times the writing was vague, and in other parts complex and/or repetitive. The author seems to be trying to establish a more grounded, Western scientific approach to the Enneagram (in contrast to its roots in Sufi mysticism) . The second half of the book explains each of the nine types, thrir ficus, and their blind spots. This part, while still overly wordy or vsg ...more
This was great fun to listen to while wandering up Sierra roads. I'd encountered the enneagram system before, but hadn't spent much time with it. A discussed by Palmer--and her reading does have an interesting quality to it that makes it feel like a conversation or very thoughtful lecture rather than a mere reading--the enneagram is less about "diagnosing" types, a la Meyers-Briggs, but more about learning to recognize the manifestations a type tends to exhibit as the individual becomes more or ...more
Katie Jensen
Excellent book on the Enneagram. She offered helpful examples and clarifying language that I have not found in other books. Her explanation of the arrows--particularly as points of stress and safety--was much more complex and helpful than in other books I've read. Same with the subtypes of each number. I also enjoyed her feminine pronouns throughout. Excellent book on the enneagram --thoughtful, complex, but not too dense to take in in large quantities. Very well done.
Jennifer Brukiewa
This was the first book I read about the enneagram. I prefer the Riso/Hudson books because the desriptions of the types allow more of a spectrum. Palmer tends to tight peg some of the types a bit more. Because of that I had a hard time discerning my type from her book. I am a four, but I am not a materialistic four and am not overly concerned with fashion, though I do care how I look. Because of her focus on that aspect of a four, one that really looks more like a four with a strong three wing, ...more
I've been reading this book for, probably, about a year now, off and on. The Enneagram is a lesser-known personality system than Myers-Briggs, dividing the population into nine broad categories, based not on personality preferences, but core failings and desires.

The style is a bit heavy, but not too academic, and there are some fairly good pictures of each of the types, along with pointers for growth, and things to be aware of. I could certainly see myself in 'type 9', as well as (in part) in t
Dijon Chiasson
I've never been that big on the enneagram, but my interest in pseudoscientific personality systems compelled me to read it. A good introduction, if you actually are interested in the subject matter.
Illimar Kaasiku
Amazingly accurate! Also, very simple to understand, but in the same time pretty sophisticated typology system. I recommend for everyone.
Chris Garcia
Jun 09, 2008 Chris Garcia rated it 3 of 5 stars  ·  review of another edition
Recommended to Chris by: Lee Granas
Very interesting. Not exactly scholarly, but thought-provoking. I've started typing everyone I know in order to explore the framework. Basically, you're one of nine types, you're also like an adjacent type, when you get stressed out you become like the worst of another type, and when you feel secure you become like the best of yet another type. All the types are based on an ego dysfunction that can make you (and others) miserable but which is also the basis of your most fundamental personal grow ...more
Palmer isn't my fave Enneagram guru, but she still shares an interesting perspective on the system.
essential reference
If you have any interest in personality typing and reflection, this book might be for you. It discusses the 9 enneagram, or personality types, and helps you explore why you are the way you are. It's a pretty in depth book, so if you just want a quick overview of the Enneagram, there is probably something better out there. This book contains quotes from people of all the types, which is helpful b/c you can identify with what they've said to determine what type you may be.
Dogamatic black and white far beyond reality descriptions of the types. For example a Type 6 is caged into his/her negativ projections and is not able to control it to any degree or just to think posetive. There are misleading and totally false accusation made which arent necessarily related to an Enneagram Type but put into one of the 9 Types which arent necessarily typed correct. Terrible, really terrible now I need to burn it! ...more
Michelle Marvin
I did not read this whole book, but skimmed through most of it. It is not for me, I think it is mostly bad psychological hogwash. It would be great to put our lives and our personalities into nice little categories and then interpret our actions and thoughts this way ... but there are so many grey areas, so many exceptions, that I found this psychology to be very forced and inapplicable to real life.
Though she is like the MOTHER of the modern enneagram, I find her style hard to follow and not really into the whole Christian 7 Sin Model. I think I prefer Eli Jaxon Bear's take on it and I lean towards the Sufi/Kabbalah/Mystical heritage and personality trait model than hers.
If you want to learn the Enneagram, read this book.

And then read this one.
ok, maybe I need to give this book another chance, but it's more confusing than helpful. I've had an Enneagram personality test before and this book doesn't echo what I read before. I didn't finish the whole book. More reference than reading.
Dan Burke
I could not finish this book! A silly look at personality types! The thought processes used in this book are outdated by about 100 years! Poorly researched by pseudoscientists with no clue of how real research is constructed.
Pamela M.
I read this book out of curiosity, to find-out which personality type I might be and then, to increase my awareness of my own personality as well as how it affects the way I experience my relationships and the world around me.

« previous 1 3 4 5 6 7 8 9 49 50 next »
There are no discussion topics on this book yet. Be the first to start one »
  • The Essential Enneagram
  • Personality Types: Using the Enneagram for Self-Discovery
  • The Enneagram Made Easy: Discover the 9 Types of People
  • The Spiritual Dimension of the Enneagram: Nine Faces of the Soul
  • Facets of Unity: The Enneagram of Holy Ideas
  • The Enneagram: A Christian Perspective
  • The Hero Within: Six Archetypes We Live By
  • Just Your Type: Create the Relationship You've Always Wanted Using the Secrets of Personality Type
  • Type Talk: The 16 Personality Types That Determine How We Live, Love, and Work
  • Gifts Differing: Understanding Personality Type
  • Children on the Oregon Trail
  • Personality Type
  • How to Read the Akashic Records: Accessing the Archive of the Soul and Its Journey
  • Shamanism
  • Prohibited Book 1
  • The New Personality Self-Portrait: Why You Think, Work, Love and Act the Way You Do
  • Why You Act the Way You Do
  • I'm Not Crazy, I'm Just Not You: The Real Meaning of the Sixteen Personality Types
A Fish Out of Water (Beginner Books B-23) The Enneagram in Love and Work: Understanding Your Intimate and Business Relationships The Enneagram Advantage: Putting the 9 Personality Types to Work in the Office Inner Knowing The Pocket Enneagram: Understanding the 9 Types of people

Share This Book

“It is important to stress the ways that people are different from each other, because so much of the suffering that we experience in our relationships with other people is caused by the fact that we are blind to their point of view.” 3 likes
More quotes…