Barack Obama Enneagram Type 9

Thu Mar 09 2023

Barack Obama

Barack Obama

Disclaimer This analysis of Barack Obama’s Enneagram type is speculative, based on publicly available information, and may not reflect the actual personality type of Barack Obama.

Barack Obama, the 44th president of the United States, is an Enneagram Type 9, "The Peacemaker"

In personality psychology, few tools can rival the insight and understanding the Enneagram provides. It examines a person’s core motivations, fears, and desires, offering a fresh perspective on human behaviors. Today, let’s delve into the fascinating journey of Barack Obama and ponder the possibility of him being a Type 9 - “The Peacemaker.”

TL;DR: Why Obama is an Enneagram type 9
  • The Unity Advocate: When we think of Barack Obama, his unwavering advocacy for unity comes to mind. As the 44th President of the United States, his commitment to inclusivity and consensus-building aligns with the Type 9 Enneagram's core characteristic of seeking peace and understanding.
  • The Inner World of Calm: Beyond the public eye, Obama's daily demeanor could be described as calm and controlled, traits associated with Type 9. His ability to maintain composure amidst the chaos and the value he places on treating others with consideration and respect reflects the harmonious inner world of Type 9.
  • Controversial 'Inaction': Critics have often targeted Obama's perceived lack of aggressive engagement, framing it as inaction. Seen through the lens of Type 9, however, this could be his way of avoiding conflict and disruption to maintain peace. This approach aligns with Type 9's core fear of disconnection and their childhood wound of neglect or dismissal of their preferences, warranting our empathy.
  • Motivated by Harmony: Every action of Obama can arguably be traced back to a motivation to create unity and harmony, the quintessential Type 9's drive. His 'soft power' diplomatic and global approach and his famous emphasis on an undivided America all point towards the Type 9's core motivation - a desire for internal and external peace.

The Enneagram Type 9: The Peacemaker

Type 9s are the serene, accepting, and reassuring personalities.

They desire inner and outer peace and it drives them to avoid conflicts and embrace harmonious environments. Often marked by a laid-back demeanor, they seek unity and stability, valuing everyone’s perspective in their quest for common ground. Does that sound like Obama?

Barack Obama: A Type 9 in the Spotlight

Obama’s presidential campaigns and his time in office were characterized by an overarching theme - “progress.” He wanted to bring people together and push towards a better future while being unified. He made it his mission to champion inclusivity, emphasized the need for consensus-building rather than divisiveness. This bears a striking resemblance to the classic Type 9’s aspiration for peace and understanding.

Even under the most intense scrutiny and criticism, Obama’s calm and controlled demeanor further suggests a Type 9 personality. He consistently portrayed a sense of composure and balance, often treating others with consideration and respect. His ability to remain unfazed in the face of chaos, an attribute often admired in Type 9 individuals, was a hallmark of his presidency.

Controversies and the Type 9 Perspective

Obama’s criticisms revolved around his perceived inaction or unwillingness to engage aggressively with opposition.

  • In 2014, Obama warned Putin against further aggression in Ukraine after Russia invaded Crimea and backed separatists in the Donbas region. However, when Putin ignored these warnings, Obama responded primarily with sanctions and diplomacy rather than direct military action or significant aid to Ukraine.
  • Obama cautioned North Korean leader Kim Jong Un against conducting nuclear tests and missile launches. However, when North Korea defied these warnings and continued its provocations throughout Obama’s second term, Obama focused on tightening sanctions and pressuring North Korea through China rather than taking direct action.
  • Obama promised to withdraw U.S. troops from Iraq and followed through in 2011, despite concerns about a potential power vacuum. When ISIS subsequently seized significant territory in Iraq and Syria by 2014, Obama relied mainly on airstrikes, special forces, and local forces rather than redeploying U.S. ground troops.

All these accounts show a lack of willingness to get involved.

However, through the lens of Type 9, this could be interpreted as a deep-seated desire to maintain peace, adopting a “soft power” approach rather than confrontation - a quintessential Type 9 strategy.

Obama’s Desire for Unity and Harmony

One of the most compelling arguments for Obama being a Type 9 is his pursuit of unity and cooperation, both domestically and internationally.

He consistently emphasized bridging gaps and mending fences. His diplomacy-first approach resonates strongly with the Type 9’s preference for negotiation over conflict.

His famous quote, “There is not a liberal America and a conservative America - there is the United States of America,” embodies the essence of Type 9, where unification and acceptance reign supreme. Such a statement reflects a deep understanding of the interconnectedness of all things, a characteristic often associated with Type 9.

Obama’s Enneagram and His Political Priorities

Barack Obama’s Enneagram type 9 personality can be seen by looking at his political priorities.

From healthcare reform to climate change and racial equality to international diplomacy, Obama’s political agenda reflected a Type 9’s desire for harmony and its drive to create an inclusive and balanced society.

Healthcare Reform: Obama’s push for healthcare reform, culminating in the Affordable Care Act, also known as Obamacare, manifests the Type 9’s desire for peace and equilibrium. By advocating for accessible and affordable healthcare, Obama aimed to bridge the health disparities among various social and economic groups, fostering a more harmonious society.

Climate Change and Environmental Policy: A Type 9 individual seeks harmony among people and the environment. This is evident in Obama’s commitment to addressing climate change. His efforts to reduce greenhouse gas emissions and his role in the Paris Agreement reflect his understanding of the interconnectedness of all things and his desire to achieve a peaceful coexistence between humanity and nature.

Racial Equality: Obama’s dedication to racial equality and social justice aligns well with Type 9’s yearning for unity. As the first African-American President, he used his platform to address systemic racism and promote inclusivity, demonstrating his deep-seated aspiration for a society where all voices are heard and respected.

International Diplomacy: At the global level, Obama’s diplomatic approach to international conflicts, such as the Iran nuclear deal and the restoration of diplomatic relations with Cuba, exemplify Type 9’s preference for negotiation and compromise over conflict. His belief in building bridges rather than walls speaks to Type 9’s quest for a peaceful, interconnected world.

In essence, Obama’s political priorities and his potential Enneagram Type 9 personality share a common thread of seeking peace, harmony, and unity. His commitment to resolving conflicts, whether societal, environmental, or international and creating a more inclusive world reflect the innate characteristics of a Type 9 personality.

How Each Enneagram Type Perceives Barack Obama

Just as we speculated about Barack Obama’s Enneagram type, it’s interesting to consider how individuals of different Enneagram types might perceive him.

Type 1- The Perfectionist:

They may admire Obama's measured, thoughtful approach to decision-making, appreciating his commitment to principles. However, they might criticize instances where they believe he compromised on ethical standards or failed to execute perfect solutions.

Type 2- The Helper:

These individuals might appreciate Obama's efforts to help the underprivileged, like through the Affordable Care Act. They may be drawn to his empathetic communication style while occasionally questioning whether he did enough for those in need.

Type 3- The Achiever:

They could admire Obama's success in reaching the highest office in the land, especially as the first African-American President. They might, however, scrutinize his handling of economic issues and job creation, key measures of success.

Type 4- The Individualist:

This type may resonate with Obama's narrative of a unique journey from a multiracial upbringing to becoming President. However, they might critique him for not embracing more unconventional solutions to societal problems.

Type 5- The Investigator:

They may admire Obama's analytical, information-driven decision-making style. However, they might need to question whether he delved deeply enough into issues or relied too heavily on consensus rather than independent thought.

Type 6- The Loyalist:

They could appreciate Obama's steadiness and dependability. However, they might critique his handling of national security and foreign policy issues, probing whether he provided enough reassurance in the face of threats.

Type 7- The Enthusiast:

They may be drawn to Obama's optimism and charisma, especially his focus on positive societal change. Yet, they might question whether his administration sufficiently addressed the desires for freedom and adventure inherent in the American spirit.

Type 8- The Challenger:

They might respect Obama's ability to assert power and command respect globally. However, they could challenge his tendency towards diplomacy and compromise, preferring more assertive, confrontational strategies.

Type 9- The Peacemaker:

This type could deeply resonate with Obama's inclination towards peace, unity, and consensus. They might appreciate his calm demeanor in the face of adversity, although they could critique him for not asserting his perspectives more forcefully.


Barack Obama’s possible Type 9 personality has provided us with fresh insights into his leadership style, making us question and explore the role of personality in shaping our world. What other public figures could be Type 9s? Or what is Michelle’s Enneagram type? If you are interested, check out this blog describing Michelle and Barack’s relationship from an enneagram perspective.

At 9takes, understanding the Enneagram opens doors to empathy and mutual respect. We can bridge divides and build a more compassionate society through meaningful discussions.

If you like diving into personality, explore our questions and go deeper with the Enneagram. 🚀

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