Enneagram 1 – The Reformer

Critical thinking is the lead word for this type. Nurtured since a very young age into believing they have to be perfect, they believe the world should be arranged logically and that you should show caution and reason when reflecting on what to do and what is best. The Enneagram 1 Reformer is known for their high standards of excellence. They typically expect themselves and others to meet difficult criteria. There is little room for error in this type, perhaps caused by parents with high expectations.

Nickname: The Reformer
Cognitive Function: Introverted Thinking
Negative emotion: Frustration
Positive emotion: Satisfaction

Mindset: Perfectionism

Enneagram 1 types tend to have the mindset of a perfectionist. They expect the best possible. As an Enneagram 1, you can often struggle with frustration and disappointment when reality does not match up to your expectations. Still, you care very much for things to be improved and fixed. I said this mindset is most noticed in dominant introverted thinking types. In them it’s a natural thinking pattern, something you feel secure and positive about. For Extroverted Feeling types, it is a big source of anxiety and dissatisfaction. Something you “have to do” be perfect

You try your best to improve and to learn and to do better the next time. The Enneagram 1 can sometimes delay or take unnecessarily long time to complete a task. They may also be resistant to start to begin with. It can feel easier not to do anything all, then to do something and then be disappointed.

When you have the mindset of an Enneagram 1 type, you primarily focus on the problems and issues you see in the world. You can appear overly negative or critical of others or of your work. When other people see promise, you see problems. You always know where you can improve and how you can get better.

Enneagram 1 at its best and worst

At its best, we see people with this mindset slowly build themselves up and improve, hitting results and standards we would normally think impossible. At their worst, these types slowly break themselves down, seeing more and more flaws and problems with themselves.

These types can sometimes set unrealistic standards for themselves and others. When you are around an Enneagram 1 who is unhealthy, you can feel like you are constantly put down when you want to feel happy and proud for something you have done.

When looking at healthy versions of this type, there is always a theme of forgiveness and acceptance. This type will have to learn to accept themselves for the mistakes they make and the times when they couldn’t reach the perfect outcome. When looking at unhealthy versions, we see them repeatedly holding on to feelings of failure and disappointment.

This feeling can only then build up and increase, as nobody is perfect. That means with every failure, it becomes more and more heavy to carry on. The type can slowly drive themselves to burn out or may break themselves apart trying to keep going.