Enneagram 2: Helper Giver
Updated: Jul 18, 2020
Twos enjoy being generous. This is why they are often called Helpers or Givers. They can be genuinely helpful and they value friendship, family, love, relationships and sharing above all else. Think of the perfect parent. They are compassionate and empathetic. They acquire a feeling of being loved by the closeness they establish through their giving. They care about others. They have warm smiles and open arms for anyone who needs a hug.
Their homes are open and welcoming. These are friends who listen and lend a shoulder to cry on. They will step in when someone is feeling down and their optimistic approach is a soft place to land. They focus on meeting the needs of others. Most of the Twos I know are incredible cooks who love to feed a hungry mouth.
On the dark side, these helpful efforts can become an indiscriminate type of people-pleasing that is a form of giving with strings attached. Twos secretly believe others have more needs than they do and would be unable to make it without the help of the Two. They think they have less needs than others. This hidden pride is the passion of the Two.
They are convinced that through flattery they can make anyone like them. This is exhausting. Twos can be codependent. They tend to be enablers if unaware. Others can experience their giving as manipulative, intrusive and suffocating.
Twos (along with Threes and Fours) are in the Emotional or Heart center of intelligence. The focus of this group is connection, affection, bonding, image and acceptance. They filter the world first through emotions. They can mirror the moods of others to stay connected to them. Sometimes this is genuine and healthy but it can disintegrate into something else. In order to receive love and approval, they create an appropriate image. They fear they are not lovable.
When Twos become aware, they learn to acknowledge, and express their needs. Then, they can receive from others. The practice of humility helps them develop their highest virtue. They don't feel the need to fake friendliness or helpfulness but can be sincere and tell others "no" when necessary. They stop trying to be everything to everybody. They don't need to be everyone's favorite. They realize they are worthy of love just as they are. They recognize that others will love them even without exorbitant giving and engulfing.
Healthy Twos give without expecting anything in return. They genuinely care about people. They will look at the dark places inside of them rather than only seeing the positive, loving side. They are cheerful, comfortable in their own skin and radically gracious and humble.
With no strings attached,
Jessica Morgan McAtee
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