Enneagram 4w5 Personality Type (4 Wing 5) Explained

17 May 2023


Is it possible to even understand these self-absorbed, yet lovely 4w5 bohemians? They often seem like they hold the secret of the entire universe but don’t want to share it with you. Moreover, they are one of the Enneagram types with the greatest thirst for knowledge, that much is certain.

If you are curious to know more about this type, you are in for a treat. In this article, we will explore what’s behind the 4w5s’ thirst for knowledge, what they dream about, what they fear, what they desire, and much more.

Ready? Let’s start!

Enneagram 4w5 (4 Wing 5) Personality Type

Enneagram 4w5 (4 Wing 5) Personality Type

Fours are one of the biggest individualists in the Enneagram. Their world and identity are structured around their emotions. But, since emotions are so fluid and ever-changing, their sense of identity is often very fragile. In light of this, Fours are highly motivated to explore their emotional reality and inner world. In other words, they are on a quest to find their true selves.

On the other hand, the brilliant Fives keep their emotions at bay while exploring the world with the curiosity of a child. Emotions get in their way of understanding everything, so they sometimes seem detached, but they want to master life by knowing as much as possible about it.

When these two types combine into one, the result is a rare personality that is curious to explore the depths of both the inner and outer worlds. In 4w5, the incredible imagination of Fours fuses with the rationality and logic of Fives, so it’s no wonder this type is one of the most creative and unique types of the Enneagram.

What Does Wing Mean?

If you scored highest for Four on your Enneagram test, but you also got a very high result for Five, then type Five is your wing, meaning you are a 4w5 Enneagram type.

Every type can have one wing, which is one of the two types that surround it. Based on that, Fours can have a Three or a Five wing.

So, what effect does the Five wing have on Fours? Firstly, as both types are very introverted and self-sufficient, 4w5 will surely not be a social butterfly. Also, both types despise superficiality—when they are interested in something, they want to dive deep into it.

And, finally, since Fives can successfully control their emotions, the 4w5 type will be less subjective and dependent on their feelings than a core Four.

Enneagram 4w5 Strengths & Weaknesses

Enneagram 4w5 Strengths & Weaknesses

Since Fours and Fives already share many characteristics, those shared traits will combine and become the sources of 4w5s’ biggest strengths. Unfortunately, the same goes for their weaknesses.

4w5 Strengths

Maybe not all, but many of the 4w5s’ most impressive strengths are actually the result of the mix of Fours’ imagination and emotionality and Fives’ logical mind.

So, here are some unique virtues of this personality type:

  • Insatiable thirst for knowledge. There’s nothing this type can’t learn when they set their mind to it. They are attentive and smart, and they connect facts and details well, combining intuition and intellect.
  • Powerful creativity. Since they usually understand things deeply and acquire a lot of knowledge throughout life, their imagination is fueled by their insights, and their creativity is fascinating.
  • Inquisitive and intuitive mind. Thanks to the Five wing, a 4w5 can control their emotions, not letting them influence their judgment. Exactly because their head and heart are in balance, they can hear the voice of their intuition more clearly than others.
  • Ability to stay in touch with their core. The rationality of the Five wing provides inner structure to the Fours’ emotions, making it easier for 4w5s to stay connected with their essence.
  • Huge capacity for accumulating and connecting facts and details. Perceptive, curious, and deeply motivated to learn, this type uses their intuition and intellect spontaneously, thus accumulating huge amounts of knowledge along the way.

4w5 Weaknesses

Despite having many positive aspects, the 4w5s' intense inward focus actually leaves them vulnerable in some other facets of life. It is safe to say that the majority of their other weaknesses are grouped together under this tendency toward self-isolation.

With that in mind, let’s present the most critical 4w5s’ weaknesses:

  • Overthinking tendency. These people live in their heads, and it may be hard for them to switch from thinking to doing things.
  • Losing contact with reality. As they explore their inner depths, artistic projects, or scientific concepts, they lose track of time and place.
  • Struggling to adapt to the rules and social cues in their environment. Since they are so concerned with their inner content, they fail to pay attention to common social rules and rituals and therefore seem odd occasionally.
  • Inability to recognize when they need help and support. Although they are very into their emotions, they struggle to express them since they do not communicate them with others.
  • Withdrawal in the face of emotional turbulence. The urge to withdraw gets the best of them when they feel insecure, leading them to miss opportunities to grow in a relationship.

Enneagram 4w5 Fears & Desires

Enneagram 4w5 Fears & Desires

4w5s are spiritual seekers, and it is safe to say that their fears and desires generally revolve around finding or not finding the truth they seek.

4w5 Fears

Made of pure emotions and intellect, this fragile type has many fears, including the ones of:

  • Never belonging anywhere
  • Never being able to express the richness of their inner world
  • Not getting the understanding they need from other people

4w5 Desires

The greatest desires of 4w5s are actually fueled by their biggest fears. Because these people have so many fears, they try to get rid of them by acquiring more knowledge and through creative endeavors. Therefore, their core desires will be:

  • Understanding themselves as well as the world around them.
  • Expressing and communicating their feelings through creative endeavors
  • Finding their way of belonging somewhere by creating something unique

Enneagram 4w5 vs. 4w3 Comparison

Can you imagine a bohemian and an aristocrat hanging out together?

Though essentially they are both Fours, 4w5 and 4w3 are so different that it is almost impossible to confuse them.

A 4w3 will be more similar to a Three because the Four's desire to be recognized as unique corresponds well with the Three's desire to achieve something extraordinary. In addition, the Three wing helps Fours become friendlier and more grounded in reality.

The Five wing, on the other hand, emphasizes the polar opposite, making Fours even more reclusive and self-centered. In contrast to a 4w3, a 4w5 is not looking to impress anyone. They don't seek fame and admiration; they seek to understand the meaning of life.

What Motivates 4w5 Personality Types?

woman reading a book while sitting

For 4w3s, who find so much inspiration in their inner world, it’s crucial to spend enough time alone reflecting, exploring, and pondering life. A good book, a good movie, an artistic project, or another similar creative endeavor lights their fire and keeps it burning for a long time.

These people deeply enjoy investigating the ideas they have and collecting facts to create unique concepts and explanations. When they think they have made a big step forward in their understanding of life, they will want to share what they have learned through art, books, or other creative means. This way, they seek to connect with others.

They also suffer from chronic loneliness, so when they find someone who truly gets them and shares their interests and with whom they can communicate, they will also be very motivated.

Finally, even though they rarely admit it and frequently aren't even aware of it, they have a strong desire to belong somewhere. Their motivation increases once they feel like they can fit in without having to compromise who they are.

What are 4w5 Personality Types Like Under Stress?

stressed out 4w5 person with books flying around

A 4w5 is a very creative, out-of-the-box person who needs a lot of freedom to explore and show what they can do. If they are stuck in a setting that is too rigid, conservative, and stereotypical, they may feel more stressed.

In such circumstances, they will tend to withdraw and dive even deeper into their own world. And though their aloof and sometimes arrogant image may trick people into thinking they don't need anyone, that's not nearly true.When they are caught in situations like those mentioned above, they need someone who understands them.

Other sources of stress for this type come from spending too much time with people. As they are very introverted, having to make small talk with a bunch of unknown people for too long or too often puts their nerves under strain. They enjoy the company of a few chosen individuals who really get them—amusing other people is senseless and exhausting for them.

Though the 4w3 personality type loves solitude, a special kind of danger comes from spending too much time alone with their thoughts. Because they lose touch with reality so easily—if they are left alone and isolated for a long time, for example—they may feel lost and confused.

Generally, the direction of their emotional reactions during stress is inward rather than outward. They will not cause scenes or act inappropriately, but rather suffer in silence.

What are 4w5 Personality Types Like at Work?

4w5 is a prototype for an artist, an expert in the field, or a specialist. They need to be independent and a bit challenged to give their best. Therefore, they will thrive as freelancers, independent associates, and consultants of all kinds.

They can be good team players if given enough freedom to explore their ideas, but they generally lack people skills and struggle to fit in socially. Nonetheless, they are usually highly regarded because they usually hold a lot of knowledge about the business they are in.

Furthermore, they are excellent problem solvers who frequently come up with rather creative solutions. With that in mind, they can contribute significantly to a team if they are accepted for who they are and not subjected to overly strict corporate rules.

These people are not interested in managerial positions, nor do they dream about becoming leaders. They excel as independent workers who are expected to contribute with creativity, knowledge, and strategic thinking.

Enneagram 4w5 Best & Worst Career Choices

Man holding a professional camera

4w5s are usually knowledgeable, educated individuals with a wide array of skills, and they never get tired of learning. On top of that, they are often exceptionally creative. For this reason, they can be a great addition to all kinds of businesses and companies.

4w5 Best Career Choices

The agile mind of a 4w5 needs to be preoccupied with complex concepts and creative challenges. With that in mind, here are some of the best career choices for them:

  • Creative Writer
  • Graphic Designer
  • Architect
  • Psychological Researcher
  • Artist
  • Videographer
  • Biologist
  • Editor
  • Lab Analyst
  • Microbiologist
  • Art Teacher
  • Web Designer

4w5 Worst Career Choices

Considering that too much contact with people drains 4w5s and that they can’t stand repetitive work, the worst career choices for them include:

  • PR Manager
  • Clerk
  • Call Center Agent
  • TV Show Host
  • Accountant

Enneagram 4w5 Famous People

It is obvious that a secluded type such as a 4w5 does not dream of fame. Still, their knowledge and talent often make them famous, though. Speaking of that, here are some of the most famous 4w5 celebrities:

  • William Blake is a legendary English poet, painter, and printmaker. He used to illustrate his own works, which have a unique, magical quality.
  • Virginia Woolf was an English novelist, critic, and essayist. She is considered one of the greatest writers of the 20th century.
  • J.K. Rowling is a widely famous English writer and one of the most influential people in the world. She’s also the author of the legendary Harry Potter book series, which has also been filmed.
  • Sylvia Plath was a brilliant poet whose work raises many controversies even today. She was very productive considering how short her tragic life was.
  • Fyodor Dostoyevski wasaRussian author and one of the best writers in the world whose works are taught at schools all over the planet. Because of the extraordinary talent he used to portray his characters, he is also regarded as the forerunner of psychoanalysis.

Key Takeaways

That’s it—now you understand why 4w5s are so special!

Before you go, let’s take just one more look at their key traits:

  • 4w5 is a creative, talented, intellectual, and lifelong learner—their thirst for knowledge never diminishes.
  • These people are in close contact with their deepest emotions. Their rich inner life is their greatest source of inspiration.
  • Under stress, they tend to withdraw even deeper into their world. Therefore, their biggest lesson is to learn to talk about their issues with the people they love.