Enneagram 1w2: The servant leader

There's a lot of personality profiles out there, but none have nailed my personality quite like the enneagram. Here's what I've learned about myself as a "1 wing 2" and ways you can find out your ennegram number.

Our journey to the enneagram

My husband insisted I take a quiz. He’d listened to the Liturgists podcasts and started calling himself a “peacemaker.”  Nearly overnight, it was as though he’d suddenly met himself and became comfortable in his own skin. 

He showed me a symbol that seemed to explain everything - the enneagram. Little did I know it would soon become the tool we’d use to understand most people around us - and ourselves. 

Initial test results

I took an initial test, it said I was a type 8. But that didn’t feel right - I wasn’t exactly a challenger.

So I took another, longer test. It said I was a type 1, wing 2, or a 1w2. The "advocate." I searched for blogs, books, podcasts and Instagram accounts to learn more about the 1w2 (something I’ve come to learn is typical of type 1). 

And I found it couldn’t be more true - the 1w2 is totally my personality. 

The type 1 - perfectionist 

When I saw it labeled as “perfectionist,” I struggled immensely. Not only because I hate this side of my personality - the kind that beats myself up if there’s one error on a page - but I’m not the conventional "perfectionist."

A walk around my house will show you why I say that. There are piles and clutter, mismatched furniture and stains. Some things, I let go of easily. But with other things, if I'm honest, I struggle to accept imperfections. 

Perfectionist tendencies don’t necessarily always show up in housekeeping, but they drive the mind and heart. If I'm honest, I do face stress if things aren’t perfect, polished, neat, organized and tidy. But, it's a growth opportunity as an enneagram type 1. 

The type 1 - reformer

I also saw type 1 labeled as “the reformer,” which I liked a lot more. I pictured:

  • Martin Luther - the ultimate reformer - nailing theses to a wooden door
  • Women in the suffrage movement marching for their right to vote.
  • Fellow Fight Colorectal Cancer advocates, other colon cancer survivors, advocating for patient's rights.

Reformer fit just fine. It explained why my blood boils when I see unjust actions, and why I’ve been a “flag-raiser” and the one to point out if something’s not right all my life. 


Embracing my Type 1, Wing 2

I've found peace with being a type 1, but I especially loved learning about the “wing 2.” When I took my “helper wing” into account, I became the 1w2, the “servant leader,” and I felt known.

Leadership style

As a type 1w2, I love to lead and organize people. But I’m the mentor and a buddy. I’d rather lead from the side rather the front. I’m quick to take the wheel and steer the ship if there’s a gap. But I’m also quick to turn it over if someone else wants a turn, or if someone with a stronger personality shows up. 

Knowing this about myself has brought a lot of clarity, peace and freedom in roles I do and don’t take on.

Type 1w2 tendencies

I’ve learned that, for me, the enneagram's wisdom and insights ring true. As a type 1, I tend to:

  • Look for the right answer - and do things the right way. (no wonder I love baking)
  • Struggle with the idea that some things may be gray - I usually see black and white.
  • Come down on myself pretty hard - I’ve even named my “inner critic” so I can recognize her.
  • Fight for the underdog, little guy and the least of these.
  • Get told I’m very wise.
  • Shepherd, disciple and mentor people in my life.
  • Stay organized, methodical and process-oriented.
  • Struggle with a sudden change of plans. (I'm working on it!)
  • Become fun and energetic on my best days. 

These are just a few observations I’ve made about myself and I'm continually learning. But overall, I've embraced being a type 1w2 and I'm loving it.

Good Enneagram tests

Now that I've found my number, I find a lot of people are curious to know theirs too! If you’re new to the enneagram or want to learn more about your type - here are resources that helped us and what we recommend:

My favorite enneagram tests

Understanding your ennegram number