Enneagram Core Need Inquiries

As the author of Chapter 8, Self Awareness, Reducing Stress with the Enneagram in the book, “The Ultimate Guide to Self-Healing Techniques”, I created this complete set of Enneagram Core Need Inquiries. These inquiries are designed to support your self discovery based on the strategies that emerge from the fundamental core needs of each Enneagram type.

You are invited to reach out me for a complimentary 15 minute coaching session to further explore any insights that arise from completing the inquiries at Gerise@GerisePappas.com.


The idea here is to understand your unconscious sources of stress. By looking within and getting to know how your core needs drive your personality, you can take your power back in ways that you can’t even imagine right now. You can benefit from engaging in the inquiries below whether you know your Enneagram type or not.

The following inquiries are designed to shift your state from being stressed to centered and grounded. With the Enneagram we do this by aligning our three Centers of Intelligence. There are three Enneagram types, or portals, for healing that arise out of each of these centers: the Head Center, the Heart Center, and the Belly Center. While one type is our home base, which has its own particular growth path and challenges, the healing energetic gifts for each of the nine Enneagram types live inside all of us.

These inquiries are designed to guide you to consciously become more curious about parts of yourself that have been hidden. Existing defense mechanisms and survival strategies get in the way of being whole and healthy. Each type develops strategies around their core need. Understanding the origin of your own strategies will help you discover whether they are facilitating your growth or keeping you stuck. When you discover what triggers your strategies, you create opportunities to make new choices. For example, if I am doubting myself and catch myself doing it, and say to myself, Hey, stop that, trust yourself, and then begin again from a more grounded and centered state, that’s powerful.

Each type is a portal of self-awareness. If you know your type, I would recommend doing the inquiry for that one first. There is value in doing the inquiry for any type to which you are drawn. If you are new to the Enneagram, these inquiries may assist you in discovering your type. You don’t need to do the inquiry for every single type. Use the list below as a menu and consider them as options for discovering the possibilities for healing inside you.

Journaling Guidelines

  • Using a journal, answer these questions without editing or censoring yourself.
  • Let your stream of consciousness flow. When nothing more comes, ask the question again and see if any more comes.
  • Notice sensations that arise in your body as you reflect on your responses.
  • Bring your breath to any sensation you notice in your body. Don’t force anything. Stay with yourself with kindness and gentleness and allow what is.
  • Tell any inner critics that they are “off duty.” This is a non-judgment zone.
  • Be curious and open to receive your inner wisdom.
  • Look within through the lens of curiosity, kindness, and compassion.

Fundamental Core Needs of Each Enneagram Type

(from The Sacred Enneagram by Christopher Heuertz)
Use the links below to access all nine Enneagram Core Need Inquiries.