How do the three Enneagram Type Centers listen differently?

The Heart Center (Types 2,3,4) is also known as the Feeling Center. These types are primarily concerned with image and prestige; therefore, how they are seen and perceived by others matters greatly in how they communicate. The Heart Types are listening for how strong a connection is being made – or missed. They are looking for emotional subtleties and impact.  How’s so and so going to feel about it? How will our image be impacted? What will people say? 

The Body Center (Types 8,9,1) are also known as the Instinctual Types. The Body Types actively take in conversational clues from the kinesthetic world through physical sensations and the body. These Types are listening to what their gut is saying about what they are hearing.  They pay attention to the energy in the room, the power of an idea, the concrete actions needed for movement.  What’s the deadline? Who is doing what? How will it happen? What’s everyone’s gut saying about this?

The Head Center Types (5,6,7), also known as Mental Types, pay great attention to thinking things through logically and often focus on planning and knowledge. The Head Types listen for information – inconsistencies, data, facts, reasoning, and logic. These Types may want to know: What’s the background on it? What’s the strategy? Where’s the problem? Where are we going? How will we get there?

How often are we hearing – or overlooking – the real message in a conversation when we limit ourselves to listening only from our Type Center’s particular point of view? I invite you to expand your ability to listen by considering not only your Type’s perspective but those of the other Centers.

If you want to know how…ask us. We are happy to help.

Mary Anne Wampler