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How To Play More, Based On Your Enneagram Type

Are you ready to add more play to your everyday life? The enneagram is such a fun tool to explore yourself and your life.

On Playground to Purpose, we talked to Enneagram Coach, Steph Barron Hall, all about her childhood as it relates to her career passion for helping people use the Enneagram to learn about themselves.

Listen to the episode here:

▶︎ Listen on Apple Podcasts | Spotify | Google Podcasts | Stitcher

Steph says, “Enneagram is a motivation-based personality system oriented around nine core types.

I use the word personality. It’s really a lot more than that. It’s deeper than that. It’s really about your blind spots and understanding that in more depth and, and clarity, so that you can actually grow. I think that’s the most important thing about it. And so what I do with that is I take this big complex system and try to make it really clear and simple for people without losing all of the nuances.”

If you haven’t taken the enneagram test, you can take it on Truity.*

I’m not even close to the enneagram expert level that Steph is, but I had some fun with what I’ve learned about it through books and Steph’s course, Enneagram IRL, to break down some play ideas for each of the enneagram types.

It’s a fun addition to the episode, which we hope you’ll have fun listening to along with learning your enneagram play style.

First, why does every enneagram type need more play in their lives?

Play isn’t just for kids! It benefits us in adulthood in numerous ways, through our relationships, our work, and in our overall happiness.

It allows us to be more present, have more fun, and to allow ourselves to reconnect with our inner child. A lot of us have ignored the kid inside of us, who grew up way too fast.

How each of the enneagram personality types can play more:

Ones: The Reformers

Enneagram ones can be a tad more serious and perfectionistic, so it’s helpful to get out of your head and find an activity that allows you to get out of the perfection mode.

Play a board game, or do a cooking class with clear guidelines.

And if you feel like you’re needing to get OUT of your comfort zone, try stretching yourself and leaning into the fear of imperfection.

One way you could do this is through an improv class. Improv still has rules to it but allows you to expand your horizons. Or, maybe it’s time for a night out to let loose with a little karaoke.

Twos: The Helpers

While enneagram twos are often helping everyone around them, it’s important to take time to nurture yourself too. If you can do both at the same time, even better.

Try baking cookies, decorating your space to feel more inviting, or creating a bullet journal to explore your creative side. Scrapbooking might also be a fun option, for you to create something with your hands from the fun memories with your favorite people.

Threes: The Achievers

Enneagram 3s are probably the type to win the award for “most likely to turn almost any activity into a side hustle” – and one of the most likely types to struggle with play.

Steph jokingly said her first reaction toward us talking about play was something like, “What’s play? I don’t even know what that is.”  

Resist the urge to monetize everything, and try to make time for an activity that doesn’t become a job – at least, not right away. In the episode with Steph, she said she bought a guitar – something that she knew she wouldn’t be good at and could do just as an outlet.

Other ideas? Make a TikTok account just for fun, change up your style, try out a painting or ceramics class, or buy some supplies to start some hand lettering.

And if your play does turn into a little side hustle, we won’t judge!

Fours: The Individualists

As creatives, fours are already often engaging in creative hobbies or random things that interest them. But often the creative mind can be non-stop and even feel a bit draining, so if you’re a 4, try some play activities that allow you to get in the zone and stay present.

Try an activity where you’re using your hands, like making candles or soaps.

Or, because 4s can be prone to sadness, it might also be good to explore some outdoor activities, especially when the sun is shining! Play some frisbee at the beach, play a game of tennis, invent a new game with friends, or plan a hike!

Also, as a 4 myself, I love heading to plant shop and picking up a new plant for my home, or just exploring new places, like vintage shops, around town.

Fives: The Investigators

Fives love a little intellectual stimulation, so try some problem-solving types of games.

Head to one of those bars that have board games and invite some friends along. Or head to an escape room, if you have the capacity for social play.

If you’re feeling drained, try doing some art – maybe some sketching. Or lean into your curiosity and watch a new documentary or read a book about a topic you’ve never dug into.

Maybe have a little fun with creating your own stories, based on what you’ve been learning.

Sixes: The Loyalists

For enneagram sixes, our reliable and anxious-prone types, you might find yourself craving a calming activity for your play.

Grab an adult coloring book, read a good book, listen to your favorite murder mystery podcast, or start a puzzle. Maybe add a little more fun to it by doing something outside your normal routine.

Pick up a new candle scent, or head to the bookshop and try out a new book genre.

playing an instrument

Sevens: The Enthuisiasts

Sevens are no stranger to finding play in every day life, so if you’re a different type, find a seven and you’ll be sure to add more play into your life pretty instantly. ;) But even sevens can find themselves in a play rut!

Grab some friends and go to karaoke, throw a dance party, plan some wholesome pranks, or rollerblade around town for a little extra social play.

Or maybe jump in the car or bike, jam out to a fun playlist, write a song, or pick somewhere on a map and go there on a whim.

Eights: The Challengers

Because eights love a good debate, try attending a trivia night or get a little competition going with a game night.

Or if you’re at home, choose a cookbook and spontaneously pick a recipe to try out. Try some creative activities that aren’t repetitive like picking up an instrument or getting into a sports league in your city.

Nines: The Peacemakers

As peacemakers, nines love to spend time relaxing – and are the type most likely to already be playing in the lowkey sense. Pick up a guitar or new instrument, start a puzzle, read a fiction book, or play The Sims.

If you have a puppy or animal around, play with them a little longer than normal.

On the topic of 9s, interestingly enough, I read this in a Washington Post article about Play:

“In other words, for our earliest ancestors, play wasn’t just about adding fun to their lives, it may have been a way of keeping the peace, which was critical for survival.” 

Keeping the peace, for their own feeling of calmness, is what nines are all about – and I feel that they may prioritize play in a way of keeping peace more than any other type.

What type are you? What’s your favorite way to play?

(*We’re Truity affiliates, so we’ll receive a small percentage if you decide to buy something from them, at no cost to you.)

how to play for your enneagram type