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Enneagram 8 Wing 9: Mixing Challenger With Peacemaker

In the deeper analysis of, Enneagram types, it becomes evident that this personality model is not simply about establishing an Enneagram number. That, in the greater scheme, would not accomplish much—most people know who they are, or at least, they’re aware of their basic traits.

Learning the Enneagram number is just the beginning, because this model is designed to show people who they can become. Or, more specifically, how to become the best version of themselves.

In this system, wings allow for an expansion of traits, since it would be impossible to box every individual into one of nine personalities. Some people lean toward one wing—the two numbers adjacent the dominant Enneagram type—and some, to the other.

Whichever bears more traits of an individual is their dominant wing. In this example, 8w9 Enneagrams would have a dominant type of Eight and a dominant wing of Nine. Let’s talk about the Enneagram 8w9, their fears, desires, weaknesses, and more.

What does 8w9 mean?

Enneagram 8w9 refers to the dominant Enneagram type, in this case, Eight, and the dominant wing, being Nine. The ‘w’ abbreviates the word, ‘wing’. So 8w9, is therefore the shortened version of Enneagram Eight with a dominant wing of Nine.

Enneagram 8 Wings - 8w7 8w9

Key Characteristics

8w9 Enneagram types will, in most cases, present with the traits common to Eights. When those characteristics directly contrast one another, however, the dominant features may come through a little diluted.

Personality Traits

Listed below are some of the key characteristics of 8w9 Enneagram types.

Primary Personality Traits (Enneagram type 8)

  • Enjoy challenges and excitement.
  • Seek and take ownership of power.
  • Have a high need for security of self and others.
  • Extremely high universalism and benevolence scores. This means they are highly driven to protect and enhance the wellbeing of others.
  • Not particularly conscientious.
  • Pretty much emotionally neutral.
  • Disagreeable, which is why they’re so confrontational.
  • Low scores in tradition, meaning they may not be accepting of cultures, beliefs, and religions.
  • Rather dominate than be dominated.

Secondary Personality Traits (Enneagram type 9)

  • Dislike change and confrontations.
  • Reliable partners.
  • Avoid committing to an opinion, one way or the other.
  • Non-competitive and compromising.
  • Love unconditionally and excellent at organizing or negotiating.
  • Will prioritize the needs of others over their own.


Unlike many other personality models, Enneagram typing explores the emotions that drive or motivate people. In 8w9 Enneagram types, these would incorporate the fears and desires of both Eight and Nine:


8w9 Enneagram types would lean toward the worries that affect Eights, being:

  • Others assuming control over them.

8w9 Enneagram types would be less affected by the concerns of Nines, namely:

  • Rejection, loss, and change.

As a whole:

  • This possibly results in 8w9 Enneagrams not giving themselves entirely to relationships of any kind, in case of being rejected, as this would put them at the mercy of their partner—thereby giving away their hard-earned control.


8w9 Enneagram types would face the hopes of Eights, being:

  • To protect themselves and those close to them.

8w9 Enneagram types may have a diminished amount of the needs of Nines:

  • To find peace in themselves and offer it to others.
  • Seek their place in the world through being likeable and agreeable, often losing sight of themselves.


Enneagram 8 wing 9 has many strengths. Here are just a few:

  • Compassionate.
  • Will fight passionately for the oppressed or underprivileged.
  • Great at leading, organizing, and negotiating truces between conflicting parties.
  • Confident with a strong sense of purpose.


Some of the weaknesses Enneagram 8 wing 9 has to work on are:

  • Averse to following orders and will likely change things to suit them.
  • Could be overly impassive or apathetic.
  • Alternatively, may have a short fuse, and have temper outbursts.

Direction of Growth and Stress

Direction of Stress and Growth for Enneagram Type 8 and Type 9

Integration (growth)  and disintegration (stress) arrows lead toward the growth and stress Enneagram types, respectively. In 8w9 Enneagrams, this would stem from both the dominant type, being Eight, and the dominant wing, being Nine.

8w9 Enneagrams would take on the best traits of Eights and Nines integration types during growth periods, and the worst characteristics of Eights and Nines disintegration types in times of stress.

Growth Arrow to Two and Three

While the Eight growth arrow (Two) will take precedence, some of the Nine growth (Three) traits will likely emerge.

In growth, 8w9 Enneagram types will show the positive aspects of:

Two (Eight integration):

  • Considerate.
  • Philanthropic.
  • Modest and unassuming.
  • Empathetic.

Three (Nine integration):

  • Genuine.
  • Altruistic.
  • Forthright.
  • Genial.

Stress Arrow to Five and Six

While the Eight stress arrow  (Five) will take precedence, it’s likely that some of the Nine stress traits (Six) will emerge.

In stress, 8w9 Enneagram types will exhibit the negative qualities of:

Five (Eight disintegration):

  • Disassociate with people.
  • Uncharitable with their time, information, and energy.
  • Seek predictability.

Six (Nine disintegration):

  • As their doubts and fear mount, they fixate on the worst outcome.
  • Lose confidence and sense of self-worth.
  • Distrusting of people and the world around them.

Healthy vs. Unhealthy Enneagram 8w9s

It’s natural during the ups and downs of life to experience personal highs and lows. When in a high emotional state, people extend their healthier personality traits. During periods of stress, unhealthy characteristics will be present. And likewise, in neutral times, individuals express their most average bearing.

A Healthy 8w9 Enneagram type

  • Healthy 8w9 Enneagrams, while a little less controlling and domineering, are determined, driven, protective, generous, and loving.
  • Nines can step back and observe with no bias, making them unparalleled in mediating.
  • The combined positive attributes of Eights and Nines can result in a well-rounded and powerful yet gentle and kind individual.

An Average 8w9 Enneagram type

  • High-spirited, decisive, and controlling leaders.
  • Powerful and determined to achieve while pushing others aside in their pursuits.
  • Excessive and indulgent during times of stress or unease.
  • If the non-assertiveness in presence and opinion, finds its way into this Eight, a significantly milder 8w9 Enneagram will emerge.

An Unhealthy 8w9 Enneagram type

  • During an unhealthy state, 8w9 Enneagrams may show the worst traits of both Nines and Eights. These can range from being vengeful, loud and abusive, manipulative, bullying, emotionally detached and anxious, passive-aggressive, or even full-on aggressive. In short, 8w9 Enneagram in an unhealthy state is not a fun company.

Growth Recommendations

Here’s how Enneagram 8w9s can become a better version of themselves:

  • Open yourself to the traits of your less dominant, Seven, wing. The playful side of Sevens might help you not take things so seriously, and entertaining the positive aspects of both wings allows for tremendous personal growth.
  • Let the non-assertive side of Nines rein in your domineering tendencies. You don’t need to control everything in your life. Sometimes, things play out the way they’re meant to when left to take their own course.
  • Help that charity you’ve been thinking about. The excellent organizational skills of both Eights and Nines, as well as the compassion present in Nines and the protective side of Eights, can make a powerful ally for the underdog.

Famous people who are Type 8w9

Noteworthy 8w9 Enneagram people:

  • Walt Disney, artist, animator, and American entrepreneur.
  • Henry Ford, founder of the Ford Motor Company and American business magnate.
  • Diogenes, Greek philosopher (around 400 BC).
  • Robert De Niro, American actor, producer, and director.

Enneagram 8w9 vs 8w7

Key similarities

The similarities between 8w9 Enneagram and 8w7 Enneagram may be found in their common connection.

Both 8w9 Enneagram and 8w7 Enneagram will likely be:

  • Excellent organizers, since Eights are natural coordinators and directors.
    • 8w9—With the head-down and tuck-into-the-details nature of Nines, this ability is enhanced.
    • 8w7—If Sevens find intrigue in a project, they are quick and accurate in getting things together.
  • Power and Security are both important to Eights, though the lack of this trait in both Sevens and Nines might subdue the inclinations in Eights.
    • 8w9—Ascribe little value to either power or security.
    • 8w7—Are not power hungry, nor do they have the need for security in relationships or the workplace.

Key differences

The differences noted between 8w9 Enneagram and 8w7 Enneagram will arise from the varied personalities of 8w7 and Eight.

  • Enneagram 8 wing 9 may not show the independence present in 8w7 Enneagrams. This is because both Sevens and Eights have the two highest independence in thought and action of all Enneagram types. Nines, on the other hand, have the lowest.
  • 8w9 Enneagrams will likely be more complacent than natural Eights or 8w7 Enneagrams. Although Sevens and Nines are both non-confrontational types, Sevens have high energy levels, while Nines are more passive and reserved.
  • With Enneagram 8 wing 9, the Nine aspect will likely make this Eight less extroverted than 8w7 Enneagrams, since both Eights and Sevens are extremely extroverted in nature.


Enneagram 8w9 personalities have almost opposite core traits. It makes for a fascinating personality combination. Nines are inherently anti-conflict, while Eights embrace it as a part of their core.

Nines like to blend into the background, don’t have strong points of view, and avoid asserting themselves. Eights, on the other hand, know what they want and take control of situations and people.

But just because they’re opposites, doesn’t mean they’ll be half one way and half the other. Eight is still the dominant wing, so will have a greater impact on the overall character.

To discover your Enneagram type, complete the Enneagram Personality Test.