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Enneagram Nines and Imposter Syndrome

Updated: Oct 27, 2022

Wanna know the sneakiest way that Enneagram 9s sabotage themselves? They dismiss themselves whenever they create something awesome. They downplay it. They spread the credit around when the credit should be all theirs. I catch myself doing this often. Do you?

So, what is Imposter Syndrome?

"The persistent inability to believe that one's success is deserved or has been legitimately achieved as a result of one's own efforts or skills."

-Oxford Dictionary

Imposter Syndrome involves feelings of self-doubt and personal incompetence that persist despite your education, experience, and accomplishments. It’s when we dismiss our accomplishments and spread the credit around to others.

How common is it with Enneagram Nines?

I polled the Nine community in my IG stories, asking them how they felt about some of their main endeavors like parenthood, job performance, or anything where they are putting themselves out there to achieve something. Roughly 960 people responded. Here are the results:

96% always feel like they should be doing it better.

66% feel like their successes are flukes.

86% often feel incompetent despite their competency.

78% are uncomfortable receiving praise or congratulations.

81% doubt their successes and

96% fear not meeting people’s expectations.

Why is Imposter Syndrome common with Enneagram Nines?

They are the most self-effacing of all of the Enneagram types. Even when they’re in a place of growth and they are achieving (like a healthy Three,) they feel uncomfortable taking credit, even in their own minds. It’s an unfamiliar feeling. Many have forgotten how to soak in their amazingness.

Why is it important to catch Imposter Syndrome when it’s happening?

If we don’t take ownership of the results that we’ve created, we’ll have a hard time creating them again.

We’ll worry about our success slipping away. We’ll keep believing the stories that make us play small and lose hope for continually creating success.