Enneagram FIVE Spiritual Practices

Develop and enhance your natural gifts: distance, sobriety, wisdom

Work on your main problem area: overinterpreting your experience






  • learn to experience your feelings;

  • learn the art of mindfulness, and be present to your actual surroundings; notice everything around you;

  • be aware of a scarcity mentality;

  • be more open with your life;

  • notice the range or narrowness of your areas of competence; how does it feel to relate to others outside your areas of expertise?

  • venture out of your comfort zone, away from your strategy of independence;

  • release yourself from the pressure of being an expert;

  • when you find yourself refining an idea too much, encourage yourself to actually move to action;

  • initiate contact with friends;

  • when you are with friends, and you find yourself disengaging through cynicism or sarcasm or criticism, see if you can ask yourself why you do that;

  • when you engage in a heated debate, ask yourself how important it is to drive your point home? What effect are you trying to produce in the other?

  • treat yourself with a luxury;

  • pursue an activity to connect with your body – yoga, martial arts, a sport, running;

  • cultivate your inner world in order to find the courage to devote yourself to the outer world

  • what kinds of situations cause you to detach emotionally? Can you figure out why?

  • spend time with your inner world until it is experienced as less threatening.

  • Spiritual practice:

    • Follow Jesus as Wisdom teacher

    • The compulsion of the FIVE is greed, hoarding material goods, time and affection as well. Matt 14:13-21, the antisocial stance of the FIVE is unnecessary since people share across economic, religious and ethnic lines. In this parable, people share and everyone gets enough.
    • Gospel contemplation: the story of Bartimaeus

    • See if you can let the stories of the Bible touch you without you having to do a critical analysis beforehand;

    • Read the Beatitudes and see how many of Jesus’ exhortations coincide or clash with your own attitudes;

    • Read the biography of a theologian or a scientist you admire, and pay attention to how they live out their faith;

    • As Lectio divina, spend time with Jesus’ admonishment that unless we be like children, we do not enter the Kingdom;

    • As Gospel Contemplation, enter the story where Jesus admonishes to overlook the straw in your opponent’s eye when you ignore the beam in your own.

  • watch out for warning signs that you are too stressed as a FIVE:

    • you find yourself increasingly isolating yourself from people who matter

    • you are increasingly neglecting yourself, your body, your health

    • you suffer from chronic insomnia, nightmares, and other sleep disorders

    • you refuse help and are downright hostile toward it

    • you find yourself thinking about ways to end it all

Examples to emulate: Glenn Gould, Georgia O’Keeffe, Stephen Hawking, Bill Gates, Isaac Asimov, Jane Goodall