Enneagram 5 – The Sage

Enneagram Five, Enneagram Fives, Enneagram 5, Enneagram 5s, The Investigators

You are inquisitive, and on a search for right and wrong. You ask questions and explore new ideas inside yourself or in the world around you. Some 5s are highly focused, searching expertise. Some are more broad-minded, learning a little about everything.

The Enneagram 5 type finds it hard to feel happy. Often, they will overthink a situation. Their desire to understand and their general tendency to question everything can keep them from feeling happy or relaxed about a situation. An Enneagram 5 fears being put on the spot or being caught unaware or oblivious of something. Competency is key to this type, but this type never feels truly competent in anything. Instead, they feel that there is always more to learn.

Enneagram 5 Short Description

Nickname: The Sage, The Scholar, The Hermit
Mindset: “I just need a little bit longer to figure this stuff out.”
Negative emotion: Self-doubt
Positive emotion: Wisdom

Enneagram 5 At Their Best (And Worst)

It can be hard to get close to an Enneagram 5 type because they bond with their head, rather than their heart. While they are as capable of having emotions and attachments as any other type, they will often seek to withdraw to process and explain their feelings to make sure they are fully secure. And while this can be healthy, at times it can also keep them from connecting with other people.

While they are stuck thinking about and processing something, the people around them are forced to keep living life and eventually have to make a decision on whether to move on. Missed opportunities will typically leave a big scar on this type. Unlike the type 7, this type hates being in a rush and would preferably remain on the drawing table indefinitely.

Growing up, this type may have felt that their parents or close ones never gave them enough attention. No matter how good they did, their parents would never compliment them or show appreciation towards them. Perhaps they would even experience direct rejection, being called stupid, ignorant, slow or clumsy.

This kind of criticism would get them to withdraw or become overly cautious. In school, they’d sit in the back or away from everyone so nobody would ask them anything. At work, they’d let other people take the lead, because they were afraid of saying or doing something stupid. Often, because they would speak with doubt or uncertainty, people would not take them seriously and would assume they must be wrong.

Do you agree with this article or do you know a 5 that would? Share it or comment down below!


  1. Khanyiso Theophilus Tshali

    Greetings eric, I fully agree with everything written on it. The only fact or rather say statement is towards the reason why we don’t like the spotlight is not to come across as too intimidating, as we note it in our early lives that majority of the people do not like to act with their thinking faculty rather than how they feel. I also say the reason why we kind of cut people it is because we don’t like to be dependent of our personal control. Most people once they know you like or love them they take an advantage of that. It is a self preservation mechanism. I like everything stated in this information, I thus above and beyond resonate with it all. Coking towards my cognitive functions and subtype: (Intj – T) resonating with the (estj) subtype. I find my mental faculty under the (super intuitive type), I am really in need of getting a grasp of its insight as I really struggle to deal with sensing. I am even diagnosed with a disability of (physiological disorder/dissability). When I was young I struggled to speak, I was stuttering. My psychiatrist said my mind moves faster than my body and I struggle to regulate my mind. Can you please advise me. I am in desperate need of it, I yet love being intuitive when it comes to process system design, engineering 3d modeling and modernism architecture in all sorts of degrees. I am somebody who struggle in social dimensions even when it comes to small talks. I feel like I only flow with other engineers or scientists. I don’t know if I am mad or just not in at the right space of existence. I just struggle to be around people. I only have very few number of people in my life. Only two real best friends. They also struggle at times with me but they understand me. Please make me understand the indepthness of these cognitive functions and subtypes, as I understand the correlation to my enneargram. Thank you, your kind assistance would be of paramount value, thank you in advance.

  2. Leora

    This is spot on- it describes me well. Ironically, I am a Virgo which is represented by the Hermit in the tarot deck which is one of the archetypes you used to describe this type of personality.

  3. Aleksandra

    Hey Eric! ENFP here ? I would agree with all things except for one, and that is that we run alway from spotlight because we are afraid. See, while I was a kid, I was one of those kids that are great in everything( probably like everyone with this enthusiastic type) any subject in school, music, sports, etc. but my friends were left behind in the school rehearsals, plays, in the music school, with their grades and all the parents would compare them to me. I didn’t like that because I felt like all of them are really good at something. I had to make a choice and back down in order to make some of my close friends feel good about their passions. It sounds bad when I say it like that, but that was the truth, simply because I was always so curious and outgoing, so it was easier for me to learn a new skill or develop a good communication with anyone. Then I learned that I don’t really need to be in the spotlight to feel good about my studies, music or any form of art that I did back then. It’s still the same plus I don’t feel like I want to be in the center of attention, because people usually want you to entertain them, and I don’t feel like doing it. As for taking charge at work or on a project, I usually do it. Especially when there is a problem to be solved. I hope this helped. Btw, I love what you’re doing! Keep it up! It really helps me and my friends! ?

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