It may seem unusual to start with the ENNEAGRAM 8 and not the Enneagram 1, but if you look at the photo you can see three color patterns that come with the Types. There is the red to the orange area with the Ennea 8, 9, and 1, which is the ACTION CENTRE.So let’s take a closer look at the Ennea 8. I have a lot of people very close to me that are Ennea 8 – the ACTIVE CONTROLLER. I don’t really like that name and I prefer to speak of them as the PROTECTOR or the CHALLENGER.

“The world is a tough and unjust place – only the strong survive. I am a rock; I must not be weak. I must be in control. Do it my way! ”


“From this arises the question whether it is better to be loved rather than feared, or feared rather than loved. It might perhaps be answered that we should wish to be both: but since love and fear can hardly exist together, if we must choose between them, it is far safer to be feared than loved.” — Niccolo Machiavelli, The Prince

I lovingly call them human steam rollers. Enneagram Eights are often a powerful and dominant type, self-confident, strong, and assertive. They often feel that they must control their environment, becoming confrontational and intimidating. They typically have issues allowing themselves to be close to others. Ennea Eights are very quick to respond and trust their gut, making quick decisions and getting things done. They also have huge hearts and are very protective of people and things they care about, always ready to fight against injustice.

Every Enneagram type has, what I call the four V’s – vulnerability, vice, value, and virtue. So this is what I would like to share with you for each Enneagram type. For the Ennea 8 they are:

Vulnerability (or core fear) – Vulnerability itself

The Enneagram 8 avoids being vulnerable, having the need to feel strong rather than helpless or without power. They avoid being controlled by others.

Vice – Lust

The term lust should be interpreted very broadly and can include physical wellbeing, pleasure, sustenance, shelter, power, or influence. This lust ensures they do everything in excess, often going to extremes and engaging in life as a constant conquest.

Value – Capacity

Enneagram Eights value strength, having a sense of control and being direct and impactful.

Virtue – Innocence

This might sound strange at first but when Enneagram Eights move into innocence, they become more open-hearted. In this state of innocence, they have the opportunity to appreciate and experience the nuances of life without judgment, and without the need for excess or intense experiences.

“Man must evolve for all human conflict a method which rejects revenge, aggression, and retaliation. The foundation of such a method is love.” — Martin Luther King, Jr.

So at their best, they are empowering and encouraging, using their strength to improve others’ lives. At their worst, they may be aggressive, domineering, and unstoppable, driven by their need to express themselves, avoiding all forms of appearing vulnerable or weak in a world they may perceive as threatening.

We all have our blind spots as do all the Enneagram types as well…

  • Because their energy may be stronger than they realise (here they are again my lovable steam-rollers), Eights may not be aware of how intimidating they may seem to other people.

  • Eights tend to move towards conclusions and act very swiftly and decisively. Other people may need a lot more time to see the big picture and decide what to do about it – in the meantime, an Eight has finished the task. The force with which Eights initiate and drive may, therefore, leave people feeling unprepared, overwhelmed, or intimidated.

  • Even though Eights may be working hard to keep their vulnerability from others, they may show it more than they realise, especially in moments of reflection or when anticipating future challenges.

  • Eights don’t react well to dishonesty or being blamed by others.

  • Eights don’t conform to rules and hate any attempts at being controlled. At the same time, their tendency to take control assumes that others will comply and conform to them. This can be the cause of a lot of tension in relationships.

As I mentioned, I have quite a few Enneagram Eights that I am close with and what I love most about them is that you can always rely on them. Even if they can be a tad intimidating at times or even too assertive. But when push comes to shove they are doers and will protect anyone they care for with the passion of a lion protecting their family. You can be sure that you can lean on them and they will not disappoint you.

To summarise, Eights seek independence and self-reliance. They want to need others as little as possible, to be their own person. They fear being controlled or dominated by others. They fear intimacy and becoming vulnerable by trusting or caring too much. When dealing with others they keep their guard up, not letting others get too close, and toughening themselves against hurt and their need for others.

“Power doesn’t have to show off. Power is confident, self-assuring, self-starting, and self-stopping, self-warming and self-justifying. When you have it, you know it.” — Ralph Ellison

🎶My Song of the Week

📚My Poem of the Week

Is by the English writer and poet Rudyard Kipling (1865-1936).


If you can keep your head when all about you   

    Are losing theirs and blaming it on you,   

If you can trust yourself when all men doubt you,

    But make allowance for their doubting too;   

If you can wait and not be tired by waiting,

    Or being lied about, don’t deal in lies,

Or being hated, don’t give way to hating,

    And yet don’t look too good, nor talk too wise:

If you can dream—and not make dreams your master;   

    If you can think—and not make thoughts your aim;   

If you can meet with Triumph and Disaster

    And treat those two impostors just the same;   

If you can bear to hear the truth you’ve spoken

    Twisted by knaves to make a trap for fools,

Or watch the things you gave your life to, broken,

    And stoop and build ’em up with worn-out tools:

If you can make one heap of all your winnings

    And risk it on one turn of pitch-and-toss,

And lose, and start again at your beginnings

    And never breathe a word about your loss;

If you can force your heart and nerve and sinew

    To serve your turn long after they are gone,   

And so hold on when there is nothing in you

    Except the Will which says to them: ‘Hold on!’

If you can talk with crowds and keep your virtue,   

    Or walk with Kings—nor lose the common touch,

If neither foes nor loving friends can hurt you,

    If all men count with you, but none too much;

If you can fill the unforgiving minute

    With sixty seconds’ worth of distance run,   

Yours is the Earth and everything that’s in it,   

    And—which is more—you’ll be a Man, my son!


The totem of the Enneagram 8 is the lion (not really surprising), always ready to roar, very protective with loved ones, and gentle loving pussy cats at heart.

If I piqued your interest to find out more about the Enneagram, your type, and yourself, and how it can transform you and your life, I would be happy to take the time for a speed coaching call that you can reserve right here, go to my website or simply hit reply and get in touch with me directly.

Wishing you a fabulous start to your weekend and don’t forget to keep in touch!


Tanja 🤗

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