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The Enneagram 2w1 Type in a Nutshell

What is the Enneagram 2w1 personality type? What are its key traits, strengths, weaknesses and fears? We’ll answer these questions in this article.

This is one of the 18 Enneagram Wing Types, which don’t exhibit traits of just one profile, but are blends of two adjacent types. The 2w1 is a blend of a Heart type (the Enneagram 2) and a Body type (the Enneagram 1). Only one other wing type, the 1w2, resembles this Heart-Body combination.

We’ll start by talking about how the 2w1 is composed of Types 2 and 1, then talk about its core traits. We’ll round off with at a field manual for the Enneagram 2w1, a summary of its core strengths, weaknesses, fears and desires.

What is the Enneagram 2w1?

First, let’s clarify what the Enneagram 2w1 is. It means an Enneagram 2 with a 1 Wing. It helps if you understand the 9 Enneagram Profiles in some depth.

If you have a 2w1 personality type, it means you’re predominantly an Enneagram 2, but exhibit some traits from the adjacent profile, number 1. It’s also possible to be a pure 2, or a 2w3.

If you want an approximation of what a 2w1 looks like, take the core 2 and 1 traits and blend them together, with 2 dominating. If you know somebody who is primarily a 2 but has significant traits of 1, they might well be a 2w1.

The folks at found that 32.8% of Enneagram 2s exhibit a 1 wing: a significant amount. 61.1% are pure 1s, while the other wing type, 2w3, makes up the remaining 6%.

Remember, the 2w1 is predominantly a Type 2 but shows significant Type 1 traits.

Type 2s (Helpers) are empathetic, caring, and desire to be loved and appreciated, while Type 1s (Reformers) are driven to instigate positive change in the world.

The 2w1 is predominantly a 2, so are empathetic and caring, but the 1 wing means they show some of the core Reformer traits. This helps 2w1s to focus on a larger cause beyond their immediate interpersonal sphere. They tend to be a little more persistent, thoughtful, self-concerned and stable than a typical Type 2.

In a nutshell, the 2w1 desires to help, protect and care for others, while contributing to a bigger cause. It helps the less fortunate while fighting for broader change in the world.

For your information, I refer to personality types as “it” because they’re abstract profiles derived from real-world data, detached from any one person. Though the Enneagram possess huge explanatory power, nobody is a cookie-cutter 2w1 type.

The Core Traits

2w1 is typically called the Companion or the Servant. This type is caring and empathetic. It’s compelled to try to satisfy and please others and it goes out of its way to help the less fortunate. These are people who in childhood learned that to be loved and appreciated they must sacrifice their own needs and put other people first. Naturally, this has positive and negative repercussions.

On the positive side, they have highly developed emotionally intelligence. This allows them to determine what people need and adequately provide it. It helps them read people and get a handle on their intentions. They rely on it for decision-making, rather than reverting to intellect and logic. The 2w1 type is kind and warm, a loveable member of any group or team.

On the other hand, the 2w1 puts its self-worth in the hands of others. For this reason, it’s sensitive to rejection and unreciprocated love because their self-worth depends on it. They can become sycophantic, seek praise and try to placate others at the cost of their own values or sense of well-being.

As for career, this personality type flourishes in roles that involve helping rather than commanding, directing or controlling. It works for the benefit of the organisation and clients, and thrives on close contact with people. Suitable career choices include counselor, aid worker, paramedic, psychotherapist, vet, social worker and nurse.

The Enneagram 2w1 Field Manual

The core fear of the 2w1 is to be unwanted, regarded as unhelpful, being criticised, feeling shameful, unworthiness and, loneliness.
Its core drives are to feel accepted, to protect and support those in harm, companionship, praise and belonging.

The strengths of the 2w1 are its emotional intelligence (EQ), its awareness of the needs of other people, the fact it sacrifices self, defends the vulnerable, provides non-judgemental support, and keeps sight of bigger picture (from the 1 influence), along with its listening skills and marked ability to read people.

Its weaknesses include its desire to help when it’s unsolicited, its seeking of praise and validation, and its people pleasing, lack of boundaries and sensitivity to criticism.

The 2w1 is at its best when it feels supported and secure in its relationships, when it feels that it belongs, is helping others, and recognised by them.

Master the Enneagram with my series of articles on the Enneagram Wing Types