Integration & Disintegration (Arrow Movements)

The movements from number to number within the Enneagram are also peculiar and attention must be paid to these forward and backward arrows and what they mean. The exploration of how these behaviours manifest in our lives will be explored later but for now, let’s just quickly understand how these movements function within the system.

Stress Points

Stress happens when demands and pressure are put on us either based on our own sense of duty or by duress from others like colleagues and bosses, family & friends. Our freedom is threatened and tension ensues. Let’s start with the Stress Points between Types 9,6 & 3. Since we haven’t gone into understanding what each Type number means, perhaps at this point, you should just take note of the movements. These Stress points are sometimes called Points of Disintegration. It must be mentioned though, that stress can also bring out the best in us so it may not mean that these Stress points are always bad since some people function best under stress.

When 9s are stressed, they may demonstrate some of the qualities (thoughts, feelings and behaviors) of the type 6. When the 6s are stressed, they will demonstrate those of the 3 and when the 3s are stressed, they may demonstrate thoughts and behaviors similar to those of the 9s. Likewise, in the Hexad which include all the other numbers in the Enneagram, 1s who are stressed move to 4 ( as in display some T4 qualities), the 4s move to 2, the 2 to 8, 8 to 5, 5 to 7 and the 7 to 1. (Following the direction of the arrows)

Security Points

Security or Integration happens when one is relaxed or is mentally & emotionally balanced. This is also called the Points of Integration or Growth. The points move opposite the arrows when the Types are in balance or relaxed. For the Inner Triangle, it is now reversed and 9s move to 3, 3s to 6s and 6s to nine. For the Inner Hexad, the 1s move to 7 when relaxed, 7s move to 5, 5s move to 8, 8s to 2, 2s to 4 and 4s to 1. Do note that when one is relaxed, feeling complacent or too comfortable, they may not display the best behaviours, but have the potential to also show unhealthy or less developed sides of the type.

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