8w9: The Bear



Enneagram System  » Enneagram Wings

A Deep Dive into 8w9

"The Bear"

Strengths, Weaknesses, Desires, Compatibility and Love Languages

The Enneagram 8w9 type, also known as the "The Bear", is a unique blend of traits from the Nine and Eight types.

This personality type seeks control, assertiveness, and self-reliance, while also valuing peace and harmony like a Nine. The Nine-wing brings a desire for inner calm and stability to the assertive nature of the Eight. 

Strengths and Weaknesses

The Enneagram Type 8 with a 9 wing (8w9) has a unique set of strengths and weaknesses that may be typically found within individuals of this type. However, it's important to remember that the manifestation of these traits can vary greatly depending on the individual's level of self-awareness, personal development, and the healthiness of their psychological state.

8w9 Strengths

  • Assertive and Decisive: 8w9s are confident and proactive individuals. They have a natural ability to take charge and make tough decisions.
  • Adaptable and Open-minded: They are flexible in their approach and open to new ideas. Their willingness to consider different perspectives helps them navigate various situations effectively.
  • Empowering and Protective: 8w9s have a strong desire to protect and empower others. They can be fierce advocates and champions for the people they care about.
  • Steady and Calming Presence: Their blend of assertiveness and peace-seeking brings a stabilizing influence to their relationships. They can create a sense of security and support for those around them.


8w9 Weaknesses

  • Struggle with Vulnerability: 8w9s can find it challenging to be vulnerable and express their emotions openly. They may have a tendency to keep their guard up to protect themselves.
  • Resistance to Authority: They have a strong independent streak and can be resistant to authority or control from others. They prefer to be in charge and make their own decisions.
  • Conflict-Avoidant: 8w9s may avoid conflict and confrontations to maintain peace. They may suppress their anger or assertiveness to keep the peace, which can lead to internal tension.
  • Tendency to Suppress Needs: They might prioritize the needs of others over their own, neglecting their own self-care and personal desires.

Understanding these traits can help 8w9s in their journey of self-discovery and improvement. They can utilize their strengths and work on their weaknesses to create a more balanced personality.

8w9 Basic Desires and Fears

The primary desire of an 8w9, like the core Eight, is to assert themselves and maintain control over their environment. They strive for autonomy and resist being controlled or dominated by others. This desire for independence and self-sufficiency drives their actions and decisions, as they aim to establish their authority and protect their boundaries.

However, the addition of the Nine-wing introduces a unique dynamic to this desire. 8w9s not only seek control but also desire a sense of inner peace and harmony. They value maintaining a calm and stable environment and avoiding unnecessary conflicts or disruptions. This blend of assertiveness and peace-seeking can make them diplomatic and skilled at navigating tense situations.

On the other hand, the fundamental fear of an 8w9 personality type is the fear of being controlled or manipulated by others. They are wary of being dominated or restricted in their actions and decisions. They also fear being vulnerable and allowing others to take advantage of them. This fear often stems from a deep-rooted need for independence and maintaining their personal power and autonomy.

The Nine-wing adds another layer to this fear. While the Eight fears being controlled, the Nine fears conflict and disharmony. So, an 8w9 might have an underlying fear of both losing control and disrupting the peace in their environment.

Understanding these basic desires and fears of the 8w9 personality type can offer valuable insights into their motivations, behaviors, and interactions with the world. It can serve as a foundation for personal growth and improved self-understanding. 

Our Top 5 Compatibility

Recommendations for 8w9's

Remember, these recommendations are general and based on typical type characteristics. In real life, personal growth, mutual respect, communication skills, shared interests, and emotional maturity play significant roles in the success of any relationship. Compatibility can certainly exist between any types of the Enneagram.

Type 9w1 (The Dreamer): The combination of 8w9 and 9w1 can create a balance between assertiveness and peace-seeking. The 9w1's desire for harmony aligns well with the 8w9's need for control, as they both value maintaining a calm and stable environment.

Type 2w1 (The Helper): Type 2w1's nurturing and supportive nature can complement the 8w9's assertiveness. The 2w1's desire to assist others combined with the shared One-wing's need for rightness can resonate with the 8w9's values.

Type 6w5 (The Defender): The 6w5's loyalty and cautious approach can provide a sense of security and support for the 8w9. Their analytical mindset and commitment to stability can complement the 8w9's desire for control and autonomy.

Type 5w6 (The Investigator): This type's perceptive and independent nature can resonate with the 8w9's need for autonomy. The 5w6's analytical thinking and problem-solving abilities can also provide a valuable perspective for the 8w9.

Type 9w8 (The Referee): Despite the difference in wings, the combination of 8w9 and 9w8 can create a dynamic partnership. The 9w8's assertiveness can balance the more peace-oriented 8w9, while the 8w9 can bring out the assertiveness and confidence in the 9w8.


8w9's Love Languages

Love Languages are unique ways in which individuals express and receive love. They help us understand how we connect on an emotional level and can greatly influence our interpersonal relationships.

The concept encompasses five main categories: Words of Affirmation, Quality Time, Gifts, Acts of Service, and Physical Touch.

By understanding these languages, we can communicate love more effectively and create stronger bonds with those around us.

Derived from common characteristics and tendencies typically associated with 8w9s, here are the top 3 love languages that likely resonate with a person having Enneagram Type 8w9.


Words of Affirmation

Words of Affirmation can strongly resonate with the 8w9 Enneagram Type.

As an 8w9 is assertive and independent, they appreciate verbal acknowledgment and support from their loved ones. Encouraging words, compliments, and expressions of love can bring a sense of empowerment and validation to their relationships.

These affirmations help to reinforce their self-confidence and strengthen the bond they have with others.


Acts of Service

Acts of Service can be particularly meaningful for 8w9 individuals.

Offering practical assistance and support, such as helping with tasks, problem-solving, or taking care of responsibilities, shows them that you respect their autonomy and self-reliance.

By providing helpful acts, you demonstrate your commitment and reliability, which can strengthen the bond you share with them.


Physical Touch

Physical Touch is a love language that can also resonate with the 8w9 Enneagram Type.

While 8w9 individuals may appear self-sufficient and independent, they still have a need for physical connection and affection.

Touch, such as hugs, holding hands, or gentle physical contact, can provide a sense of intimacy, reassurance, and closeness in their relationships. Physical touch can also serve as a nonverbal expression of love, making them feel valued and cared for.  


Famous People with 8w9 Personality

Famous 8w9 personalities include Martin Luther King Jr., Malcolm X, and Eleanor Roosevelt, demonstrating the leadership potential within this personality type.

Betty Baker M.A. Psych, M.Ed

About the Author

Betty Baker is an awarded marriage and family therapist and contributor to the internationally renowned PeaceBuilders® Program - a science-based, research-validated violence prevention curriculum and professional development program for children, grades pre-K to 12.