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Discussion Starter #1
A lot of Sixes are mistyping as Fours. One of the reason for mistyping is due to how type 4 is frequently described. The picture of a romantic, feeling, artistic and melancholic type is especially appealing to all NF types regardless if they are actually 4s or not. On the other hand a lot of type 6 descriptions tend to give a rather SJ picture of a dutiful and loyal person. But even if you scratch off such rather stereotypical portrays there are a lot of 6s who will point out how much they can relate to the 4 descriptions.

The interesting thing for me is how many people relate to the 4 descriptions but interpret them in a sixish way. A while ago I realized that there are similar words used to describe 4s and 6s which makes for some confusion. After some great help I can hopefully make better sense of it now.

being different – being deviating
understanding yourself – knowing yourself
to be authentic – to be true to yourself

It’s not a matter which set of terms you like better but what pattern lies behind those.

Being different – being deviating
Fours have a deep-ingrained feeling that there’s something wrong with them. They don’t know what it is, but it’s at the root of their alienation and their feeling of being different. Sixes on the other hand are a relating type and notice how they deviate from the norm and how they are different from others. It becomes noticeable in how both types react towards a changing or fixing. For Sixes it’s about getting rid of their flaws and fixing the things that make them deviate (Of course there’s also the counter version 6 who is deliberately deviating from the norm), whereas Fours don’t know what’s wrong with them. So how could you fix it anyway? But even if it would be possible there’s a repulsion coming up because it is so deeply ingrained in them, it’s part of who they are and getting rid of it would mean getting rid of who they are.

Understanding yourself – knowing yourself
The core fear of Sixes is of not knowing themselves and of not having an inner guidance. Knowing themselves means for Sixes to get a better sense of their self, to know what they are and want and of not following someone else’s lead or idea. Understanding for Fours means to understand what’s wrong with them. In comparison with Sixes they have a strong sense of self though they don’t think they understand themselves because understanding themselves would mean they would understand what makes them wrong.
Getting healthy 6s will get a stronger sense of self while 4s realize there’s nothing wrong with them at all.

To be authentic – to be true to yourself
Being true to yourself ties in with the 6s fear of following someone’s elses lead and of not having an inner guidance. If they are in accordance with their own self and their own lead they are true to themselves. 4s as image-type are concerned about presenting themselves as authentic (being authentic) and of not showing off an artifical image.
 

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Hey thanks for that! As of the past few days, I took it in as a possibility that maybe I've mistyped myself as a 4, though maybe I'm really a 6. But this definitely clears matters up.
 
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Fours have a deep-ingrained feeling that there’s something wrong with them. They don’t know what it is, but it’s at the root of their alienation and their feeling of being different.

Understanding for Fours means to understand what’s wrong with them. In comparison with Sixes they have a strong sense of self though they don’t think they understand themselves because understanding themselves would mean they would understand what makes them wrong.

4s as image-type are concerned about presenting themselves as authentic (being authentic) and of not showing off an artifical image.
Oh yes, that all makes so much sense to me.

Especially that first description of having something indefinably wrong about you. That's why I worry about people getting too close. They will see my true self - something that is flawed and wrong. I remember trying so many times to articulate why I felt like a terrible person to my therapist and settled on vastly incomplete and superficial reasons.
 

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Discussion Starter #4
Writing my previous post I wasn’t thinking about a problem I’m now getting aware of. There’s some tendency to treat descriptions as some sort of ultimate truth and to look which one fits best. If this is what people get out of it I failed in what I was going about. I’m rather hoping at getting at the different patterns of type 4 and type 6 and getting people to look away from the surfacey descriptions and to the pattern that drives them.
It’s an attempt, not some unalterable truth and with more learning and understanding a better differentiation will maybe come about.

I’m interested in how 4s relate, how 6s relate.

Thanks, IndyAnnaJoan and Heartturnedtoporcelain
 
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Writing my previous post I wasn’t thinking about a problem I’m now getting aware of. There’s some tendency to treat descriptions as some sort of ultimate truth and to look which one fits best. If this is what people get out of it I failed in what I was going about. I’m rather hoping at getting at the different patterns of type 4 and type 6 and getting people to look away from the surfacey descriptions and to the pattern that drives them.[/SIZE]
It’s an attempt, not some unalterable truth and with more learning and understanding a better differentiation will maybe come about.
Agreed, each description is only an attempt to get at something that is really quite complex. The best way to go about it is to collect as much information as possible about the types that seem to cohere most strongly with your personality and then work out what fits best. I've disregarded quite a few posts in this forum as incorrect/inadequate in my attempt to type myself. What I'm trying to get at that I don't necessarily see the link between finding what fits best and considering enneagram descriptions as the ultimate truth or some such.
 

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this is pretty excellent.

i really resonate on the 6 side of all the 4 vs 6 descriptions, especially understanding vs knowing self. i have always had a solid sense of identity - i have a good picture of who i am - but not of what i want, or what i should do.

one little nitpick --
For Sixes it’s about getting rid of their flaws and fixing the things that make them deviate (Of course there’s also the counter version 6 who is deliberately deviating from the norm)
i think what we would like is to have control over our deviations, so that we can decide if we want to show them or not. like, i don't mind that i have a short temper - it's a little lame but it is what it is, i find it amusing somewhat - but i don't want to spontaneously explode in front of others because then they might reject me for that when i don't want them to. of course, if i want them to, it doesn't really matter. i don't want to be rid of my flaws - i don't want to be just like everyone else, i like being different! - but i don't want my flaws to rule me and determine my life for me. it sort of ties into not knowing yourself. i don't really know where i want to go, but i definitely don't want my flaws deciding for me before i can decide for myself.
 

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Oh, how this made my eyes water. I wish I could fully explain how much I personally relate to some of these points... but that will make this thread far too intense for passerby.

Thanks for this, Delphyne. You did a fine job differentiating here.
 

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I think the main difference is that fours are a heart type, and they react via shame. Sixes are a head type, so they're reaction is fear.
There is also the theory about four being ego fixated, and six super-ego fixated.


Type 4: Shame/counter-shame (Social subtype)


"In the social domain you easily can feel shame for not measuring up or being a “misfit.” You feel that your protective cover is removed and that your deficiencies or shortcomings will be exposed publicly. You mitigate your envy through shame. You want to hide your defects and deficiencies, keep your fatal flaws from being detected and avoid disgrace. Your shame also helps you feel or keep a connection to others: “They’ll notice me and my deficiencies, and I’ll matter.” This makes you feel special in the eyes of others. Shame also motivates you to do better – create an elegant image, produce pride of elitism, look unique and special, in short to develop counter-shame and a sense of honor for your integrity and what you do for the group. You may become an emotional truth-teller in the group. At your worst, shame can lead to retraction into self-absorption, depression or despair."


Type 6: Duty (Social subtype)


"In the social domain, you assuage your fear through your loyal duty to a group or cause. You feel safe bonded together with others in a common cause where you understand the needs and assure the code of behavior. You align with people you trust through mutual obligations and sacrifice: “United we stand, divided we fall.” You find power and hence safety in the group’s authority. Knowing the rules and creating clear agreements with friends and colleagues are vital for overcoming your fear. As a Loyal Skeptic, your tendency to project negative power onto the world makes underdog causes particularly appealing. You align with the needy, the oppressed and the persecuted. You work for the cause. The call to duty mobilizes you rather not personal gain, which would expose you. But at your worst, you give away your own authority and power." - Subtypes | Enneagram Worldwide


We are subconsciously driven by our emotional energy or passion(Anger, shame, or fear).

"Our evolution as human beings required three basic survival behaviors, referred to in the Enneagram as the basic survival instincts or instinctual energies:

The link explains it more in-depth.

Understanding yourself – knowing yourself
The core fear of Sixes is of not knowing themselves and of not having an inner guidance. Knowing themselves means for Sixes to get a better sense of their self, to know what they are and want and of not following someone else’s lead or idea. Understanding for Fours means to understand what’s wrong with them. In comparison with Sixes they have a strong sense of self though they don’t think they understand themselves because understanding themselves would mean they would understand what makes them wrong.
Getting healthy 6s will get a stronger sense of self while 4s realize there’s nothing wrong with them at all.
Who says there is anything wrong with the four? They do, but only because they can't seem to get over being so subconsciously drawn to their emotions. They're a heart(shame) type who is focused on their ego. This is why they feel defective and different, I do believe.

I think I just figured out something. Yea, so.. sixes feel like they lack inner guidance. Well, Ni, the function commonly associated with 4, it seems like the complete opposite of someone who would feel that they lack inner guidance. Although, I think we can all feel that way sometimes if life is going bad.
I completely agree with you about there being many who depend merely on surface descriptions to type, rather than looking in to what makes these types have the traits in the first freaking place.
 

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I think the main difference is that fours are a heart type, and they react via shame. Sixes are a head type, so they're reaction is fear.
No, that's about the social subtypes only.

In general, fours react via envy (not shame).

Check out the rest of the pages you quoted.
 

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Wow :) nice descriptions guys.

I can relate a lot to feeling inferior to others and having self image problems that are "in my head". I compensate for that which can feel depressing at times. Being criticized makes these worse. I did however notice not long ago that it is mostly in my head and should ignore it. It's been working lately and have regained confidence through that. I think mainly because the opposite of what I thought about myself has been shown to me.

Btw I detach from feeling too much when I'm confronted with a situation where another person is having an emotional breakdown. I understand what is happening to that person, where it is coming from and what I need to do :\...but I don't feel together with that person. The feelings rush in later when I allow them to or by that time they have dissipated. I feel very strongly thou when it comes to my own feelings and base decisions with those in mind. Have been looking at the INTP description due to this but it doesn't resonate much with me *sigh*.

Could this be a type 5 thing or it is just the huge amount of stress I'm under most of the time?
 

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No, that's about the social subtypes only.

In general, fours react via envy (not shame).

Check out the rest of the pages you quoted.
"In summary, while the suggestions from other teachers all relate to the Heart Center emotions in one way or another, I fully agree with the Riso-Hudson teaching that shame is the most meaningful, rich, and comprehensive choice for the core emotion of the Heart Center. Not only does it clearly connect with the Heart Center issues of “being seen,” but it is consistent with the ego compensation for the felt loss of Being as it is experienced in all three Centers. If I am identified with the ego self (and we all are to some extent), then I always risk the feeling of shame because part of me knows that this ego identification is not who I really am." Articles: The Essential Rationale for Shame as the Core Emotion of Heart Center

"Fours attempt to control their shame by focusing on how unique and special their particular talents, feelings, and personal characteristics are. Fours highlight their individuality and creativity as a way of dealing with their shameful feelings, although Fours are the type most likely to succumb to feelings of inadequacy. Fours also manage their shame by cultivating a rich, romantic fantasy life in which they do not have to deal with whatever in their life seems drab or uninteresting to them." How the Enneagram Personality System Works

I do agree with you that the fours passion is envy, but it's the shame in the heart that makes them feel that way.
All 3 of fours subtypes are based in the shameful feelings.

Btw I detach from feeling too much when I'm confronted with a situation where another person is having an emotional breakdown. I understand what is happening to that person, where it is coming from and what I need to do :\...but I don't feel together with that person. The feelings rush in later when I allow them to or by that time they have dissipated. I feel very strongly thou when it comes to my own feelings and base decisions with those in mind. Have been looking at the INTP description due to this but it doesn't resonate much with me *sigh*.
I do the same thing. Well, I try to convey that I actually care, but for some reason something cuts me off from really expressing my sympathy to them. It seems like it's self-consciousness. But even at times that I do care, I can do that. But I also see myself snapping if things lead up to it, and actually spilling out my emotions. It wouldn't be smooth, though.
I'm pretty sure it's common for fours to find it hard to express their deeper emotions. As well as fives...... haha.
Fours are known to notice the suffering of people, and really care when they're amidst them. (Seems like Feeling) They're still very self-absorbed, of course.
 

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I feel like there's something inherently wrong with me that I don't know, but I also try to improve upon the flaws I'm aware of that really bother me.
 

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incidentally, i feel shame relatively frequently too, but it's more about what i've done (or what internal expectations i've not lived up to) than it is an abiding sense of deficiency.

like, i was rather overweight for a while in high school, and i was very ashamed of that. but the truth is, if it had been okay to be overweight - like socially acceptable - i don't think i would have cared very much. it was more social embarrassment than anything.

of course, then there is the point that many overweight people are happy and well-accepted, but my little teenage brain wasn't quite that advanced :blushed:
 

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Discussion Starter #14
this is pretty excellent.

i really resonate on the 6 side of all the 4 vs 6 descriptions, especially understanding vs knowing self. i have always had a solid sense of identity - i have a good picture of who i am - but not of what i want, or what i should do.

one little nitpick --


i think what we would like is to have control over our deviations, so that we can decide if we want to show them or not. like, i don't mind that i have a short temper - it's a little lame but it is what it is, i find it amusing somewhat - but i don't want to spontaneously explode in front of others because then they might reject me for that when i don't want them to. of course, if i want them to, it doesn't really matter. i don't want to be rid of my flaws - i don't want to be just like everyone else, i like being different! - but i don't want my flaws to rule me and determine my life for me. it sort of ties into not knowing yourself. i don't really know where i want to go, but i definitely don't want my flaws deciding for me before i can decide for myself.
Constructive criticism is something I appreciate very much. How else would the understanding of the different patterns grow if not for people who tell of how they experience their type pattern or how they can relate to the descriptions? Much thanks.

My sentence about the flaws was due to a very sloppy thinking on my part. I should have left it out and had better concentrated on the deviation of Sixes.

A further try for which I’m grateful for more input:

I thought about how the deviation could lead to one of the dichotomies of type 6. With dichotomies I mean a deep-ingrained perception of only seeing two possibilities which are the opposite of each other. Each enneagram type has some typical dichotomies in which they are imprisoned in a black and white thinking.
Let’s say someone comes from a conservative family. With a 6 pattern he is imprisoned to fulfill the norms of his family and thereby to diminish the deviation or he can rebell against the norms and extend the deviation. It would be a 6ish pattern if you can only see these two options.

Fulfilling the norms (being dutiful) – rebelling against the norms (not being dutiful)

Control is a good keyword. Control over the decisions, to decide for yourself. From my outward perspective this is something which is very important for Sixes but as long as they are imprisoned in their dichotomy deciding for themselves is just a question of either fullfilling the norms and doing what others want or rebelling against it. So getting a stronger sense of their self and what they want is important for them to get out of the dichotomy.
 

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Discussion Starter #15
I think the main difference is that fours are a heart type, and they react via shame. Sixes are a head type, so they're reaction is fear.
There is also the theory about four being ego fixated, and six super-ego fixated.
One of my main points is that the words which are used to describe the types can be interpreted in different ways and that it’s the pattern behind the words which are the essential thing. So throwing about even more terms and descriptions isn’t going to help with this problem at all. On the contrary. It just furthers the tendency to pick for yourself the words and descriptions you like to identify with instead of realizing what the pattern is all about. Everybody knows shame and fear, so you would have to go to what’s a specifically fourish dealing with shame and a typical sixish dealing with fear. This would make the pattern more understandable but not just throwing around with terms.

Also the subtype descriptions are not meant to be read alone without having an understanding of what the enneagram type is about.
 

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:sad::crying:

I'm not going to quote everything...but...this actually really makes me think that I'm more of a 4 than a 6. Maybe I'm both, but...:crying:

Yeah, haha.. I'm actually crying... :tongue:
 

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One of my main points is that the words which are used to describe the types can be interpreted in different ways and that it’s the pattern behind the words which are the essential thing. So throwing about even more terms and descriptions isn’t going to help with this problem at all. On the contrary. It just furthers the tendency to pick for yourself the words and descriptions you like to identify with instead of realizing what the pattern is all about. Everybody knows shame and fear, so you would have to go to what’s a specifically fourish dealing with shame and a typical sixish dealing with fear. This would make the pattern more understandable but not just throwing around with terms.

Also the subtype descriptions are not meant to be read alone without having an understanding of what the enneagram type is about.
I believe the difference is the super-ego fixation via fear in six, and the ego fixation via shame in four.
I can definitely see how the combination of super-ego and fear can lead to feelings of shame. But we all have our fears and we all have feelings. These are some of the things that tie all of the types together. It seems like sixes feel as if they're having to pass a test and counter their fear of the super-ego judging force, while fours are focused on their feelings of shame based upon their ego.
The deviation and dichotomies of type 6 seem very super-egoish and definitely fits in to "Fulfilling the norms (being dutiful) – rebelling against the norms (not being dutiful)".

Well, I just said what they're about.. ego/shame and super-ego/fear. That's how they react to the instinctual demands.
 

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:sad::crying:

I'm not going to quote everything...but...this actually really makes me think that I'm more of a 4 than a 6. Maybe I'm both, but...:crying:

Yeah, haha.. I'm actually crying... :tongue:
Haha.. Hmm, do you think you're more worried about doing what you know is the right thing, or how your unique image is presented to people?
 

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Haha.. Hmm, do you think you're more worried about doing what you know is the right thing, or how your unique image is presented to people?
At the moment I don't know what a right thing would be. But maybe that's cause I'm crying. I'm trying to find my Enneagram type in order to find out what's wrong with me and how I "should behave" (aargh..."should behave" doesn't sound right...stupid language....sorry) according to who I am and then be accepted for who I am.

But I can't say that I'm not at all concerned about doing the "right" thing.

It's all just a great mess...
 

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Discussion Starter #20
:sad::crying:

I'm not going to quote everything...but...this actually really makes me think that I'm more of a 4 than a 6. Maybe I'm both, but...:crying:

Yeah, haha.. I'm actually crying... :tongue:
PlushWitch, if you are up to it write a bit how you relate. Best in your own words without quoting anything. Just take what was written previously as a starting point to tell how you see yourself.
 
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