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The Details of Enneagram Type 1 Wings and Subtypes

The Details of Enneagram Type 1 Wings and Subtypes

Updated on Jan 10, 2023 | Published on Jan 02, 2023

Reviewed by Dr. Nereida Gonzalez-Berrios, MD , Certified Psychiatrist

The Details of Enneagram Type 1 Wings and Subtypes

In Enneagram type 1 wings and subtypes, the wings refer to the two personality types that fall adjacent to your primary enneagram number. For instance, Type Ones have enneagram 2 and enneagram 9 as their wing types.

To explain the subtypes, we can say that it refers to the primal instinctual tendencies that dominate the functioning of your core or primary enneagram type. 

All the nine enneagram personality types have wings and subtypes. The knowledge of these wings and subtypes for each personality type will help you understand the subtle details of yours’ and others’ behavior patterns.

Enneagram wings and subtypes have a large impact. It influences your primary type characteristics either by enhancing its overall flavor or demeaning the type in finer ways. It also adds depth to the primary type that you possess.

In this post, we will take a deep dive into the wings and subtypes of enneagram 1 and see how the other number types influence the inner world of enneagram Type 1s in more or less obvious ways.

Stay On….


Enneagram Type 1 Wings and Subtypes

The enneagram model of personality typing describes the 9 types of personalities or people to be found around us. The model is a comprehensive guide that helps you to understand how you stand out from others in the crowd. 

Similarly, it also gives you a detailed account of the growth possibilities that you can walk upon so as to make your primary type appear more balanced and stable in daily lives.

The enneagram wings symbolize the existence of the personality types just on the two opposite sides of your primary enneagram number. Therefore, if you have the primary enneagram number as Type 1, your wings will be enneagram 2 and enneagram 9.

For a type 1, the wings are 1w9 and 1w2. Understanding the wings is very important because wings add flavor to your primary type. Wings are the number types that belong to either side of your core enneagram number. Thus, it is obvious that it impacts the inner working of your primary number in varied ways, though unconsciously at times.

The primary enneagram type borrows energy from its wings. Thus, if you are type One, you tend to borrow energy from enneagram 2s and enneagram 9s respectively by imbibing some of their characteristics within your primary type. Resembling many of the qualities of the wings will add a new dimension to your primary type. 

A lot of debate came into force when personality experts started to analyze whether both the wings of your core enneagram number have similar influences. Thus, if you’re an Enneagram type 1 personality, will you be impacted in the same way by type 2s and type 9s? 

The answer is tricky. You will always remain your main enneagram type, but you will be influenced by your wing types in finer ways. The characteristics of your either side wings will influence your main type character traits in dominant or submissive ways. 

For any given circumstance, you may borrow the traits of enneagram 2 while in some other situation, it could be the flavoring from type 9. Thus, in short, wings add flavor and new dimension to your existing traits. It’s like adding salt and pepper to the main course that is already well prepared on the table. 

By adding salt and pepper, you are just enhancing the taste and not changing the core making of the dish. 

A recent study by American Journal of Psychiatry revealed that individuals are always influenced more by their one wing type than the other. However, the traits of both the wings have subtle influences depending upon the circumstances and challenges the person is experiencing.

Now, looking into the subtypes of Type 1s we can say that it is the combination of your primary type and the basic instincts that makes you who you are. No matter what your enneagram type is, you will be inclined or wired to one of the three subtypes in varied ways.

In the next two sections of the article, we will talk in detail about the wings and subtypes for your lucid understanding.  


Enneagram Type 1 wings

As already talked about, enneagram wings are the number types that lie just on either side of your core enneagram type. It lies adjacent to the two sides of the primary number and influences the functioning of the main number in significant ways.

Enneagram 1 has two wings. They are 1w2 and 1w9. Enneagram 1s possessing the type nine qualities are introverted and idealists. They are calm, peace-loving, and prefer to attain perfection in peaceful ways. Due to the influence of type 9 characteristics, Enneagram Ones will become less impulsive. They are gentler and wish to make the world by improving themselves and others in various ways.

It means 1w9s are more receptive and open-minded. You may find them taking refuge amidst nature. They will suppress their needs and desires to accommodate for others. Under the influence of enneagram 9, Ones will become considerate and easygoing. Hey will not press for changing others all the time.

Enneagram 1w2s are extroverts with empathetic qualities. Enneagram 2s are known as the givers. Thus, when they influence Enneagram 1, Ones tend to become more giving and gentler. They tend to become passionate about helping others, and may not dismiss others’ opinions openly.

Sometimes 1w2s are over controlling because they are on a mission to improve the lives of others and help them become their best selves. Iw2s also loves to be praised for their endeavors.

Enneagram 1w2 characteristics

Enneagram type 1 with a wing 2 is the ones who possess all the dominant traits of type 1 and share few of the subtle shades and flavors of enneagram 2. People with this preference usually have strong ethics. They are morally driven in all aspects of their life. They are just and loyal, considerate and compassionate as well.

These individuals are organized, planned, and typically consistent with type 1s. Moreover, they have fear of losing their moral conscience and thereby stick to the things that they believe to be true. Type 1w2s are emotional and may show signs of emotional upsurge in trying times. 

Some of the most dominant characteristics of 1w2s are as follows:

  • These individuals are helping hands to others in times of adversities.
  • 1w2s can crumble and meltdown in the face of criticism.
  • They will quickly judge people and situations that fall short of their expected moral code of behavior.
  • Keen to work towards social reformation.
  • These people are keen to make ethical choices in life no matter what hurdles come in their way.
  • Prefers to get the love and respect of their dear ones.
  • Always tries to defend the weaker sections of the community.
  • Keen to offer community help to the underprivileged.
  • 1w2s are emotionally sensitive and are aware of the needs and wants of others.
  • Highly principled in all aspects of life. Never falls short of ethical standards.
  • 1w2s can also sacrifice their own needs and self-interests to settle out things for others. In a way, they’re self-sacrificing in nature.
  • 1w2 never compromises on their righteous living. 
  • They’re very honest and can speak to others in a straightforward way.
  • Their communication style is always clear and never carries a double meaning.

Enneagram 1w9 characteristics

Enneagram type 1w9 is an intellectual with a rational mind. They are calmer, balanced with their emotions than any other enneagram Ones. People with 1w9 preferences are logical decision makers. They are just and noble in nature. These individuals are reserved, laid-back than 1w2s. 

Their inner sense of idealism is strong and that keeps them away from making even the slightest mistakes. Moreover 1w9 is less angry-prone. They never externalize their annoyances even if feeling burnt out deep within. 1w9s never like conflicts and confrontations. They are cheerful, poised, and emotionally mature than 1w2s.

As the 1w9s are driven by their moral ideology, they always remain loyal and just to their personal and professional pursuits. They are innocent, gentler, and prefer to maintain serenity around them.

The 1w9 is an introvert but they also prefer to defend the rights of others. Socially, they are silent workers and never want the spotlight on them. They will defend the rights of others and dreams of creating a safe and noble world.

  • Actively works towards maintaining their high ideals.
  • Feels pessimistic if others do not join them in their search for integrity and truth.
  • Alone time is soothing for an enneagram 1w9.
  • They’re analytical and deeply logical while resolving issues in daily life.
  • When 1w9s get angry, they become sarcastic and critical.
  • Wants to create the world a better place
  • Dislikes directing others.
  • 1w9s has vivid imaginations. Their ideas are always novel and out of the box.
  • They are unbiased and prefer fairness and justice.
  • People with 1w9 preferences keep emotions in check.
  • They are a little impersonal and stay aloof where there are chances of getting into emotional grove if possible.

 Enneagram Type 1 subtypes

In the enneagram system of personality typing, each of the nine personality types described has instinctual subtypes. These subtypes are body based needs that determine your survival and existence. 

This subtype also tells you how you will typically be influenced by your basic instincts as per the situation and circumstance you are put into. The subtype is formed by combining your primary enneagram number and the instincts. 

Each enneagram type includes all three instinctual subtypes. Although the person manifests all three to some degree, you usually express one of these subtypes predominantly than the other two. 

The environmental circumstances and your personality type’s structure influences their degree of expression, especially the core emotion that guides your adaptive strategy and the energy that you put into the process.

As these subtypes are unconscious, you may not be aware of their presence all the time. However, one of these survival instincts always dominates your type characteristics at a given moment of time.

Enneagram 1s have three instinctual subtypes. They are as follows:

  1. Self-preservation (SP) – Worry
  2. Social (So) – non-adaptable
  3. Sexual or One-to-One (SX) – Zeal

Self-preservation (SP)

In the self-preservation subtype, the attention and energy go into issues related to personal survival, such as food, shelter, security, adequate basic requirements, warmth, etc. This subtype of Enneagram One behaves like a worrywart. They get anxious if their values are violated or their basic needs are not met as per their expectations.

The self-preserved Enneagram One is disciplined, highly structured, and serious individuals. They will work hard and prepare themselves to face the hardest of times. 

These enneagram 1s are detail-oriented, focused, and believe in doing the right things at the perfect timing. For them, survival instincts are a way to keep a person value things that are important and purposeful.

Social (SO)

In the social subtype, the person’s focus moves on to community welfare and group membership. This instinctive tendency focuses on status, money, social worth, social acceptance, belongingness, social participation and fellowship. 

This subtype of enneagram 1 is morally just. They believe in showing equal treatment to all. They are emotionally controlled, prefer to accept everyone equally, and have a very strong sense of justice, truth, and integrity. This subtype of enneagram 1 can become good role models for others to follow.

Sexual or One-to-One (SX)

In this subtype, the attention and energy of the person go to issues connected to human emotions and relationships, such as intimacy and affection, or bonding with a special person, sexual intimacy and attractiveness, etc. 

This subtype of enneagram 1 is strict and sets out clear cut moral rules of conduct for their loved ones. Sometimes, they also act as reformers and noble advisors for their loved ones. 

Enneagram 1s are seen at telling people the right and wrong ways of doing things. They prefer displays of perfect behavior from their families and friends. 

Sometimes, they may become rigid and highly dogmatic as far as following the values are concerned in their intimate relationship. You may find an enneagram 1 giving suggestions on how things need to be arranged and prioritized in daily life.


To Sum Up

Enneagram 1s are morally inclined and believe that people are not accepted for who they are. Instead, all moral behaviors are appreciated; and bad behavior and impulses are either judged negatively or punished in certain ways. 

The wings of the enneagram 1s are meant to add a separate flavor to their core type. Likewise, the subtypes refer to the basic instincts that are essential for personality growth of the person.

Enneagram Ones are always ruled with honesty and righteousness irrespective of their core type, wings, and subtypes. They are referred to as perfectionists and reformers for a reason.