What is the Enneagram?

I sat in a circle of 24 strangers. Each of us had come from all over the country. Eager to learn about one thing. What is the Enneagram thing and how can we learn to coach with it? If you’ve been following me for a while, you may have noticed an uptick in the posts and comments on the Enneagram.

All this may have led you to some very important questions. What is it? And how can it help me live a life of faith and lasting impact?


All good questions. But first…

You don’t find the Enneagram, it typically finds you.
— Ginger Lapid-Bogda, Ph.D.

What is the Enneagram?

So first things first. What is it? The word enneagram comes from two Greek words ennea which means nine and gram which is something written or drawn. The Enneagram typing system identifies 9 different ways of showing up in the world and interacting with it. The nine different Enneagram styles or types reflect distinct habits of thinking, feeling, and behaving and each type is connected to a unique path for development.

My Enneagram story

Many of my regular clients ask about how I found the Enneagram and why I love using it. To be honest, I stumbled across the Enneagram for practical reasons. Most coaches have an assessment they like to use when they coach clients and as I looked at several different assessments I had used in the past (Strengthfinders, DISC, MBTI) i didn’t find one that matched my philosophy of coaching.

I found the Enneagram from someone I follow on social media and the more I learned, the more I leaned into using it in my coaching practice. The more I studied, the more I could see using the Enneagram as a tool to guide clients in taking the next baby step to spiritual growth, aligning their faith and life, and experiencing authentic life change. It just fit with the One Foot Coaching model.

How the Enneagram can guide you


I love that each of the nine styles/types has a unique path for self-awareness and growth based on how they see the world. Your enneagram type will reveal why you do what you do so you can embrace what you do well naturally while addressing those things that get in your way of becoming more like Jesus and making a lasting impact.

Mostly, I love the progression from learning more about yourself, to self-awareness of your motivations, to stepping onto the path of growing to become who God created each of us to be.

Ready to learn more?

If you love things like this - learning about how you’re wired and how God wants to use that wiring - you may be all in. But for some of us we’re a little skeptical. Is it really accurate? Or will this put me in a box?

Here’s my coach up. The Enneagram is about investing in you and understanding why you do the things you do and how to become better at being you. It was never designed for you to stake your claim on a number/type and wear like a badge.

We may be tempted to assign value to one type over another, but they are all of equal value. The point isn’t to be the type you want, it’s to discover the type you are so that you can take an honest look at your next steps for authentic transformation.

So what’s next?

If you’re ready to learn more, I’d love to help! I’m currently offering Enneagram typing and coaching sessions to help you better understand your type and your next steps for development. I believe this…the path to spiritual growth and emotional health leads through self-awareness.

Danielle Allen