The Best Holiday Self-Care Based on Your Enneagram Type

Self-care is the name of the game for 2020, and the need to support your mind, body, and soul goes to a whole new level as we enter the holiday season. As if we weren’t frazzled enough with working from home, social distancing, wearing masks, and rearranging almost all aspects of our lives, now we need to navigate the holiday season where our nerves are frayed even in the best of environments. 

It’s easy to overreact and create unnecessary drama during this time so let’s not do that. Instead, there are steps you can take to keep yourself in a relaxed and expansive state of mind as we sail through December of 2020. Here we offer you a guide to self-care based on your Enneagram type.

Type 1: The Perfectionist

Be goofy. Your attention goes to getting things right, and your focus on the details means you’ve spent a lot of time planning and preparing for perfect holiday gatherings. You’ve taken the lead in lots of areas this month from well-executed menus to thoughtful and appropriate gifts. Nailing down all the details so that everyone has a memorable holiday uses a lot of your precious energy, and we appreciate that. We love your serious side, but it can’t be all work and no play. 

Give yourself permission to be goofy for an afternoon. Pinball, air hockey, Mad Libs, board games—the goal for you, Perfectionist Type 1, is to laugh until your belly hurts. When you laugh hard for over a minute, your mind shuts off, and the laughter becomes medicine, similar to meditation. Self-care for you is this joyful laughter.

Type 2 The Giver

Be alone. Your attention goes to the needs of other people so the holiday season has a huge potential to take its toll on you. We love how thoughtful you are, and we appreciate that you are willing to sit next to difficult Uncle Joe during the family dinner, but managing all the social dynamics tires you out and drains your energy. 

You are able to offer your best support when you are well nourished so take a night off, run a steamy bubble bath, turn on your most soothing music, pour a glass of your favorite beverage and relax. If bubble baths aren’t your thing, find something else that soothes you. All that we ask from you, Giver Type 2, is that you practice this self-care alone. We know your attention floats to whoever else is in the room, and we want you focused completely on yourself.

Type 3: The Achiever

Be indulgent. Your attention goes to being successful and creating the perfect holiday season so this can be a really busy time for you. We know you love crushing your goals, and we see how your competitive nature drives you to try to outdo everyone around you, but the holidays are about joy so take an afternoon to indulge yourself.  

Close the curtains, eat that dark Valrhona chocolate you adore, watch the trash TV you secretly love, stay in your comfortable sweatpants, and just relax for an afternoon. No one is watching. Our goal for you, Achiever Type 3, is to relax and waste some time. You aren’t going to get behind, and we love seeing you enjoy yourself.

Type 4: The Individualist

Be grateful. Your attention goes to what is missing so the holiday season can create a deep sense of longing in you. It’s seductive to self-isolate and spend time creating a rich, moody fantasy world in your mind, but this isn’t always healthy for you. 

Instead, take an afternoon to focus on gratitude. You can start by journaling about the things you feel grateful for but if you really want a boost of energy, write some thank you letters to the people in your life who have helped you or who inspire gratitude in you. Our goal for you, Individualist 4, is to focus on what you do have. You’ll be surprised how nourishing this exercise can be.

Type 5: The Investigator

Be comfortable. Your attention goes to scarcity and demands from the outside world so the holidays and the related socializing can really be a drain for you. All the extra activities can feel intrusive and exhausting. You are sensitive to your environment so find your favorite chair or sofa, sit down with a snack you truly love and spend a few hours reading that new book you bought. 

Our goal for you, Investigator 5, is rejuvenation. While you get drained very easily, you are also the master of self-regeneration and a few hours alone with your books can be enough to re-energize you for the next round of holiday cheer.

Type 6: The Skeptic

Be connected. Your attention goes to threats to your security so this has been a doozy of a year for you. It won’t be any easier with the holidays as you are concerned about all of the things that could go wrong and how best to navigate the potential perils and pitfalls. 

You get a lot of nourishment from one-on-one connections with people you feel safe, secure and connected to. Pick up the phone and arrange a lunch date with your best friend, your sister, your son. Our goal for you, Skeptic 6, is to remember that you have lots of support around you. Connection really heals you.

Type 7: The Enthusiast

Be in nature. Your attention goes to what is positive, fun, new and exciting, and that means it is pretty easy to get overstimulated this holiday season. Parties and social gatherings, both in person and online can dominate your time and scatter your energy, and fear of missing out can leave you anxious. 

We know better than to tell you to stay home to relax so take an afternoon to hike in nature and reconnect with yourself. Our goal for you, Enthusiast 7, is to become centered. Nature feeds your soul and disconnecting from your phone and your social network can be extremely healing for you.

Type 8: The Challenger

Be gentle with yourself. Your attention goes to power dynamics: who is in charge and who is weak and might need your protection. This year has likely been a big struggle for you since there is so much you can’t control, and you’re not always one to recognize your body’s need for care. 

We know better than to recommend a day at the spa so instead start with a gentle at-home spa style massage. Body rollers, massaging shower heads, foot massages, back rubs - all of these things are good for you. Our goal for you, Challenger Type 8, is to connect with the softer side of your body. Recognizing how much you push yourself and being kind with your body is extremely beneficial for you.

Type 9: The Peacemaker

Be in your body. Your attention goes to maintaining harmony, and it takes a lot of energy to maintain peacefulness in the middle of the holiday season during a global pandemic. 

You are famous for forgetting your own priorities so this time, focus in on that spin class or dance lesson you’ve been eyeing for a while. Invite a buddy because we know you’ll lose energy to do it alone. Our goal for you, Peacemaker Type 9, is to move your body and get your energy flowing. You are an instinctive type, and you heal a lot when energy moves through your body.

Practicing self-care has a huge ripple effect on your life. Your health improves, your moods stabilize, your mind clears, your decision-making improves, the list goes on. And while these recommendations might take a few hours of your day, if you find you only have a few minutes, try these 3-minute meditations based on your Enneagram type.  A little bit goes a long way so give yourself the gift of self-care this holiday season.

Lynn Roulo

Lynn Roulo is an Enneagram instructor and Kundalini Yoga teacher who teaches a unique combination of the two systems, combining the physical benefits of Kundalini Yoga with the psychological growth tools of the Enneagram. She has written two books combining the two systems. Headstart for Happiness, her first book is an introduction to the systems. The Nine Keys, her second book, focuses on the two systems in intimate relationships. Learn more about Lynn and her work here at

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