Enneagram Type 6: The Loyalist
The Loyalist is the sixth personality type of the Enneagram. Type 6s value security and community and are committed to their beliefs and ideals. They are excellent at networking and fostering cooperation, so often have a large network of friends, but their popularity can hinder their personal growth. This is because Type 6s can lack a secure sense of self and give too much power to others when it comes to important decisions in their lives.
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Loyalists are committed supporters of the institutions that form their community. If there are poor institutions, they will be improving them. If there are no institutions, they will be creating them. They can't stand disorganization and are compelled to create systems to make things work in a more efficient way. Not interested in the limelight, they are happy to be the glue that holds things together and can enjoy entry-level jobs such as administration, data entry and customer service in ways that other people can't.
Generally Type 6s are submissive and respectful to authority and enjoy the stability of rules and regulations, but are not necessarily traditional in their loyalties. They could be revolutionaries or gang members or religious extremists, but wherever they are, Loyalists are the ones that facilitate and uphold their community structure. They are known as Loyalists because of their drive to defend those in the group they identify themselves with, much more than they would ever defend themselves. They are excellent at promoting others and championing others' strengths, and are likely to be found as talent agents and campaign managers.
Because of their need for stability, Type 6s are often thinking about the future and what it may bring. This makes them excellent at foreseeing problems and troubleshooting. They can be very thorough in their appraisal of how plans could potentially go wrong, but this intense attention to detail leads them to worry a lot. Often anxious, they can be overly cautious and quickly driven to panic.
Type 6s find it very difficult to connect to their inner voice and trust their intuition. Very indecisive, they can be unsure of their own ideas and need a lot of reassurance to get the level of confidence they need to make any big decisions. They will seek guidance from many different sources, but when they receive conflicting advice, find it hard to choose which road to go down and are susceptible to peer pressure.
Although they love to ask advice from people and enjoy a wide variety of relationships, their family bonds may be strained as their worry about stability can lead to poor communication. Their family members may stop confiding in them due to their panicky and anxious reactions. They can also become defensive and evasive when pressed to talk about their true feelings.
Although they might appear to others to be flaky and unreliable, they are, in fact, incredibly devoted. They will stick with relationships others wouldn't, determined to create stability. They endure many hardships to stand up for others because this is what they really crave for themselves. Their deepest desire is to feel supported and reassured. Loyalists feel like they are always on a shaky footing but their pressing need is to walk on solid ground.
Personal growth for the Type 6 begins when they can find a true definition of security. Often, a Loyalist is truly fearful and insecure without really having a concrete reason why. If they can work out what would truly make them feel secure, they can build tangible goals to work towards. Even just having these goals will decrease their anxiety and improve their overall well-being.
Faith and positive belief can be very difficult for the Loyalist to adhere to, as they are always thinking of the worst and letting their worries get the better of them. The realization that negative expectations can create negative outcomes is very powerful for a Type 6. Sometimes, is not so much that their worry predicts bad things happening, but more that it creates them. They can empower themselves by using their mental energy for self-development, making better things happen in their lives.
Loyalists really come into their element when they get in touch with their inner guidance. By developing confidence in their own decision-making abilities, they can stop living their lives based on the opinions and advice of others, and instead craft the life they truly want to live. Ironically, a typical Loyalist's strategy of taking advice from any and everyone in an attempt to make a good decision actually causes insecurity, the thing they fear most. By getting to know their own true feelings, they can begin to make decisions from a place of passion and confidence rather than fear and damage-limitation.
The most powerful lesson a Type 6 can learn is that true security and peace cannot be found by minimizing their own life or trying to change their environment until it doesn't cause them any anxiety. Peace comes from within and is a choice rather than an end goal. When Loyalists direct their mental energy away from worry and toward peace, they finally find the feelings of security that have eluded them for so long. They can then build their lives in an active and courageous way.
- Iman Mohiki
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