How We Function in All Three Centers

While each of the 9 primary Enneagram types lies in one of three Centers (Instinctual, Feeling, Thinking), every individual functions in all three!

Instinctual 8s, 9s, and 1s have a Heart/Feeling and Head/Thinking center.

Feeling 2s, 3s, and 4s have a Head/Thinking center and a Gut/Instinctual center.

Thinking 5s, 6s, and 7s have a Gut/Instinctual center and a Heart/Feeling center.

It may seem like a trivial distinction, but it's one that's easy to lose sight of when learning the nuances of the Enneagram.

Russ Hudson teaches that while each type represents an overall personality pattern dominated by issues of a certain center, the scope of that type's pattern includes distinctive Thinking, Feeling, and Instinctive styles. So for example, an individual of Type 9 will fixate on certain "Type 9" mental strategies and manipulate their instinctual drives in certain "Type 9" ways in order to deal with their "Type 9" emotional pains.

The Enneagram gives a framework of growth that entails balancing the patterns each type follows in each of their centers.

But the study of the centers goes even deeper!

Tritype® (Used with permission from Tritype® creator, Katherine Chernick Fauvre) is the study of how each individual uses distinctive styles in each center.

Rather than someone with a Core Type of Type 9s having a "Type 9" heart and "Type 9" head, Tritype® shows us how that person develops a more unique personality style by blending their "gut type" of 9 with a "heart type" of either 2, 3, or 4, and a "head type" of 5, 6, or 7.

See below directly from Katherine Fauvre herself!


What are Tritypes®? What is the Tritype® System? How do I find my Tritype®? ©1995-2021 Katherine Chernick Fauvre | Creator of Tritype® and Tritype® Archetypes

“Tritype®, a 27-point personality system coined and created by Katherine Chernick Fauvre in 1995, is based on the theory that an individual uses three Enneagram Types, not just one. These three types occur as one in each of the three centers of intelligence: head (5,6,7), heart (2,3,4), and gut (8,9,1) and are used in a preferred, continuously oscillating, descending stacking order, which creates a “new" type unto itself with its own worldview, coping mechanisms, and defense strategies. The dominant type in the Tritype® Stack is still the core Enneagram type.

Extensive research with tens of thousands of international participants has confirmed that each Tritype® Archetype is made up of the character traits of the three types within the Tritype®. These traits, within the Tritype®, combine to create 27 unique Tritypes®, each with its own set of core values, needs, fears, and concerns that include: a specific focus of attention, idealized image, core triggers, core fears, desires, blindspots, sense of purpose, and growing edge, adding significant precision, accuracy, and scope to the Enneagram Typing process.”


To learn more about Tritype®, visit Katherine's websites:

(Used with permission from Tritype® creator, Katherine Chernick Fauvre)

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