Being A Type 9 Is Like Being Stuck In Groupthink

A Type 9 in my life has been going through some issues, so I thought I'd read about them this morning.  Type 9's, at the top of the triangle, represent the archetype of "going along to get along"- that part in all of us that wants to accomodate whatever's happening around us so as not to cause any conflicts.  But whereas other types are vulnerable to the phenomenon incidentally, Nines self-absent on a meta-scale with their very lives. 

"By accomodating others", says Beatrice Chestnut, "and avoiding conflict in order to achieve comfort, they end up becoming deaf to their own inner voice".  Nines have a naturally good beat on the energy in their environment and it pulls them away from their home of the self ("the root of all wanting and choosing" Chestnut quoting Homer) toward fusing with the group's goals.  It is very difficult for them to know what they want, and would prefer just to acquiesce to the group's decision.

Image from innovategov.org

Image from innovategov.org

I was thinking about groupthink the other day, and it provides a good analogy for how insanely difficult it is for Nines to pull away from the another's energy to their own "ground".   In the 1970's, Yale research psychologist Irving Janis demonstrated the tendency to suspend our own way of thinking for the sake of the group's cohesiveness with several studies, one of them being the American Soldier Project.  In it, he found that American soldiers' main motivation on the battlefield wasn't pride in their country or devotion to the idea of freedom- it was the connection the soliders felt with each other, having forged bonds under intense stress.  The unity they forged provided the foundation for subsequent decisions that they as individuals, they probably wouldn't have carried out had they not been part of the group. 

Where there's a cohesive group, there's pressure to acquiesce and ignore dissenting ideas.  Riso-Hudson's wake-up call for a Nine is when they outwardly accomodate themselves to others, but unconscious melding can happen to any one of us, and it's an invitation to be aware of when your voice may be needed.