Healthy Enneagram 5: Patiently waiting for a future that others anxiously await or look to others to bring about, a healthy 5 can confidently stay grounded in dispassionate facts that give themselves and others a sense of confidence. The healthy 5 will know when it’s time to participate and when it’s time to observe and will comfortable in both.
Unhealthy Enneagram 5: The unhealthy 5 may be defensive and secretive about what they know and perhaps cynical of others’ observations. Distancing themselves from others, they find safety in solitude rather than the tension of healthy relationships.
Healthy Stress Move to 7: The world is unfolding, not static. While that’s stressful for a 5, their healthy response is one of a more comprehensive understanding, complete with tension. They have confidence in unpredictable moments.
Unhealthy Stress Move to 7: Like an unhealthy 7, when a 5 is disorganized and disconnected, he is experiencing unhealthy stress. The unhealthy stress move may also look like pessimistic assumptions about the future, unfinished tasks, and biting sarcasm.
Enneagram 5’s and Grief: Grief cannot be reasoned away. It is unanchored and unsafe.
COVID 19 and Church Leadership
It seems there’s a joke in everyone’s social media feed that 5’s either didn’t notice we went to shelter-in-place or are secretly celebrating it. Their common introversion is an easy target for a funny joke and they’ll laugh along with us. However, while we were laughing, they were learning.
Enneagram 5’s who are leading churches, we need your considerable ability to observe, learn, and respond dispassionately. We need reframing built not on wishful thinking or short-sighted actions. We need an honest assessment of our circumstances. We need informed leaders who will guide us though uncertainty with just enough adventure to overcome our discomfort with risk because we have someone with us whose preparation we trust. When we are emotionally and thoughtfully ready to act, your healthy stress will benefit us all.
When we come looking to you for immediate reassurance, you may find it tempting to think, “it’s not the right time for me to respond.” Instead, can you offer a response that helps us take a deep breath? Can you let us inside your hardworking mind to know what questions you’re asking right now? Can you be our teacher and mentor, inviting us to ask the same questions?
A COVID-19 world and a post-COVID world will be uneasy in their own ways. Our instinct is now and will be to look to our more aggressive numbers to perform what looks to us like leadership. However, church leadership in this moment will require a solid anchor in the past so that we can know what was faith and what was form. We need to discern which was which and move forward with confidence and compassion for one another. The future will look different, but we need companions and teachers for whom it will be less surprising. That’s a perfect job for an Enneagram 5.
Here’s a few questions for you:
What are the underlying questions that others are asking that are leading them to anxiety? Have you shared the questions you’re asking instead?
How well-refined is your instinct for when to patiently learn and when to respond? Do you lean too hard to waiting and learning? Where can you learn a sense of adventure? Finding adventure will teach you when to trust your gut and when to trust your mind.
Are you using your observation skills as a safe place where you can protect yourself? Or are you patiently waiting for the right moment to respond (though it may not be the moment you anticipated)?