Secrets About Unhealthy Enneagram Type 2s
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I have so many people ask me to interview someone who's an unhealthy version of their Enneagram type to help them understand what that looks like. And while I think that's a phenomenal idea, it's hard (even though I'm a blunt person) to tell someone I want to have them on the show because they're a great example of unhealthy. Yikes!
Instead, I'm starting a new series talking about what each Enneagram type looks like in unhealth. I give you actual (but fictional) examples of unhealthy humans based on people I've worked with or unhealthy patterns I've studied.
This will provide a mental picture of what it looks like when a specific type is entirely unhealthy. In Episode #84 of the Living Enneagram podcast, we dive into Enneagram Type 2s first!
What does an "unhealthy Enneagram type" mean?
"Unhealthy" is referring to not living in alignment with the Gospel or truth. The reality is, all of us can swing in and out of unhealthy and healthy patterns. It's a part of life, but the goal is that you and I continue to shorten that gap of being unhealthy. Why?
The more we understand the truth of God's Word, the more we apply it to our lives. We start to become this whole and complete human because we're living by the Holy Spirit and not by our flesh.
So, when we're unhealthy, it's not this huge thing to freak out about, but it is something to take seriously as warning signs. If you and I stay stuck in our unhealthy patterns, we're missing out on being an example of Jesus.
What an Unhealthy Type 2 Looks Like
The biggest motivation for Type 2s is their fear of being unwanted or unloved. They value their helpful nature and want to be desired by others. So, what we see in Type 2s is that they often want to advise, support, and be helpful to a fault. Let's go over an example:
Jane lives with her husband, and they have four kids. She loves being a mother, and it feels like her calling to pour into them. Jane also spends a lot of time and energy giving to the people in her life.
Now, if Jane were unhealthy, this is what a typical day might look like for her. The first thing she does when she wakes up is rush to get her kids going, probably check her phone in her spare moments. She got a text message from her sister that she has to respond immediately (or so she thinks).
She hustles to get the kids out the door, grabbing her coffee on the way. But while they're driving to school, Jane can't stop thinking about how weird her friend Sally sounded on the phone when she finally called her back. Jane accidentally forgot to respond to her text for over a day.
I bet she was so irritated with me…but really, Sally should not be irritated because I am so loyal to her. I am a good friend. I just got back with her and she just needs to get over it.
There are a couple of issues here.
1. Giving Too Much of Yourself as a Type 2
Jane is taking care of her kids so much to the point that she's neglecting herself. But in Jane's mind, she thinks, I'm being such a selfless mom. I'm doing so much. I was up all night and helping them all morning. Like, look at how much I'm doing!
These kinds of thoughts are only increasing her ego and sense of pride. Meanwhile, the Lord is over here saying, Jane, I want to spend time with you. I want time with your soul. I want to speak to you, but you are so caught up in trying to do all these things so people will love you and think you're fantastic and praise you. But you don't have to do that. I want you to come and find rest in me.
You might be thinking, "Hold up, Callie … aren't we supposed to sacrifice and take care of other people?" Yes, we are. But the Bible also says that we're to love our neighbor as we love ourselves. If you don't know how to love yourself, you won't know how to love other people.
God calls us to seek Him wholeheartedly that our heart position would be to honor him, that we would desire to please him over men.
It also says that we ought to meditate on the Law day and night. So we need to be rooted in truth. Now, I'm not saying you're a bad Christian if you don't read your Bible every single morning. But, if we don't put our hearts in a good position before we start our day, especially as an Enneagram Type 2, it's hard to get your heart set on the Lord before your focus drifts to other people.
2. Ego & Control with Enneagram Type 2s
When Type 2s are unhealthy, they often manipulate the people around them or push themselves onto others, but they don't realize it's manipulation. Unhealthy people often don't see these blind spots.
They think they should give others advice, dictate how they should behave, or make assumptions about what other people think. And this eats at them and creates distance and bitterness because people start to feel like the Type 2 friend is too much. They're overbearing and all up in their business.
But what's hard is when people start to create those boundaries with a Type 2, it validates the Type 2's fear of feeling unwanted and unloved.
So...what if Jane woke up and had an incredible time in the Word with God, He spoke to her, and she worshipped. Maybe she would be convicted about the conversation with Sally the day before, and that allowed her to confess to the Lord and also reach out to Sally and apologize, rather than get defensive about being a good friend. Then, when she takes her kids to school, and she's intentional about engaging with them.
Whether you're a Type 2 yourself, or you have a relationship with a Type 2, it's important to be aware of their unhealthy tendencies, so we can change our story and free ourselves from their bondage.
I hope this message encourages you and helps you realize where you need to take action on the things that you're learning.
Follow Callie's Instagram @callieammons