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Enneagram vs Myers-Briggs. Are they the same thing? What are the differences? Is one better than the other?
The Enneagram might be the newer kid on the personality block but Myers-Briggs has a longer standing reputation. Both are ways people use to help understand themselves and others.
Today we’re looking at the Enneagram vs Myers-Briggs.
First let’s learn what exactly these two popular personality typing systems are.
Enneagram vs Myers-Briggs
What is the Enneagram?
The Enneagram is a personality typing system that shows us the nine ways that people in the world default to in order to live their life.
Type 1 | Type 2 | Type 3 | Type 4 | Type 5 | Type 6 | Type 7 | Type 8 | Type 9
The Enneagram explains the why of all that we do, think, and feel. The motivation behind everything that we do.
These nine types are based on our core motivations and when we delve into the Enneagram we can better understand ourselves and begin to grow.
Typing others is not possible because Enneagram type is based on internal motivation.
What is Myers-Briggs?
The Myers-Briggs Type Indicator (MBTI) is a personality typing system that has 16 personality types based on how you perceive information and how you make decisions.
ENFJ | ENFP | ENTJ | ENTP | ESFJ | ESFP | ESTJ | ESTP
INFJ | INFP | INTJ | INTP | ISFJ | ISFP | ISTJ | ISTP
Myers-Briggs explains the how of all that we do, think, feel.
The Myers-Briggs Type Indicator (MBTI) has long been believed to be pretty straight forward by the masses. You are either one of 4 sets of letters (Extrovert/Introvert, iNtuitive/Sensing, Thinking/Feeling, Judging/Perceiving).
But I’ll let you know that there is actually much more nuance and depth to the MBTI than just those 8 letters…. just like there is much more nuance and depth to the Enneagram than just the 9 types.
Typing others is possible as the MBTI is much more trait evident based.
Whether you use one or both of these great personality typing systems, you’ll want to do your due diligence and really dig deeply into them in order to get the full benefits they offer!
What’s the Difference Between the Enneagram and Myers-Briggs?
Enneagram has 9 types
Myers-Briggs has 16 types
Enneagram explains the why of what we do
Myers-Briggs explains the how of what we do
Can’t type others with the Enneagram as it’s internal
Possible to type others with Myers-Briggs.
Is the Enneagram or Myers-Briggs Better?
Neither personality system is “better”. I personally like to use both (even though I only write about the Enneagram).
I love to use the Enneagram to get to the heart of the matter. It helps me understand why I’m reacting to something, why certain things are so important to me, and how to better relate to others (just because someone doesn’t have the same core fear as me, doesn’t mean I can’t understand that their core fear is just as scary as mine!)
I love using Myers-Briggs (MBTI) using for a quick method of understanding people. While the MBTI has so much depth to it with its cognitive functions (did you know that the MBTI can tell you how you react when stressed? It’s not just an Enneagram thing!), the simplicity of the 8 letters makes it easier and quick to understand how people work.
Using both together can also be very helpful for those who don’t fit the stereotypes. Some MBTI types are very rare for certain Enneagram types.
This is one reason why you may have the core motivation of an Enneagram type but not act out that motivation in quite the stereotypical way.
Curious to see more about how Myers-Briggs and the Enneagram work together? Check out my post on the most common Enneagram types for each Myers-Briggs type!