In the Enneagram we categorize each of the triads as identifying with a primary emotion.
The heart triad (types 2, 3, 4) correlates to SHAME.
The head triad (types 5, 6, 7) correlates to FEAR.
The gut triad (types 8, 9, 1) correlates to ANGER.
Anger seems like the black sheep of the family. As soon as it's expressed or verbalized, most of us experience the instinct to shut it down. Tell it to be quiet. Lock it up. Throw it in out of sight. There seems to be less compassion. Less understanding. Less room for sitting with and understanding anger. This is never more apparent than how we treat children who express anger (especially compared to how we treat children who feel ashamed or afraid).
I think asking why we feel the way we do, around anger is an important conversation to have. Especially as we are all navigating life experiences that stretch us beyond anything we have lived through before - and anger (along with shame and fear) are popping up. I am nervous...
"When the Enneagram is not coupled with compassion it can become a weapon."
Read that again.
One more time.
Ok. Listen, this is true not only in how we use the Enneagram with others, but JUST as importantly, how we use it with ourselves.
Compassion must increase along with our understanding of the Enneagram, or it will wound us.
Here are a few simple ways you can practice compassion (and self-compassion) as you move along your Enneagram journey.
1) Let the Enneagram meet you (and others) right where you are at.
There is so much peace in admitting that you aren't ready for the Enneagram to be anything more than a fun tool for classifying yourself.
There is so much space for simply using it to help you do better work with your team.
If you partner doesn't care to learn more than just his/her type (or isn't even interested in that) that's ok.
Just because the Enneagram is a deeply spiritual and healing tool doesn't mean you have to be ready...
What I do
How I feel
What I think
What I'm angry about
What makes my heart hurt
What I'm afraid of
There is a hierarchy to human behavior.
Usually when we seek growth or transformation we are looking at our BEHAVIOR, we are looking at what we do and something about it makes us angry (or upset). We feel the pain of being stuck in our own actions or habits.
I often am hired by my clients to help them deal with behavior.
But behavior is never where we start our work.
Behavior is the RESULT of the layers beneath.
We do what we FEEL like doing.
We FEEL because of what we THINK to be true, about ourselves, God and others.
And so, if we want to change behaviors, there are a few steps we must take, and these steps seem to take us BACKWARDS and deeper INTO pain rather than forwards and out of pain, and this is often why we stay stuck a lot longer than we need too because the way out is THROUGH. Not around, over or away, but THROUGH....
"I know my number, but I want to go deeper...so what is the best way to learn the Enneagram?"
I get this question ALL THE TIME, and I love it because it shows me that the person asking the question has the sense to see this "personality typing system" as something so much more. Of course here at The Enneagram Workshop, this is what we are all about.
Before I get into all of the various ways to learn the Enneagram, can I put on my "teacher" hat and go back to an even earlier question: "Why should I learn the Enneagram in the first place?"
Well, I've been doing a lot of research on the brain lately (I'm definitely a nerd, bear with me) and it turns out as we grow up and make our way in the world, our brain establishes instincts and patterns of behavior. These patterns of behavior were created through a process that began with a stimuli, some sort of event that we needed to craft a response to, as we created our response, our brain would take note...did this response...
What are subtypes and how do they influence your core type?
First of all, let's take a step back and consider the push back that is often hurled at Enneagram fans and teachers which is: "There can't possibly be only nine types that all humanity in the entire world fits in to. We are too diverse, and have too many varieties of humans for everyone to be categorized as one of nine types."
One way of addressing this concern, has been wide-spread but it's worth mentioning again, and that is to think of the color wheel. There are only a certain defined number of primary and secondary colors - the ROY G. BIV if you will - however, WITHIN each color there is a wide spectrum of shade and variations. Some of them look nothing alike, but still contain the same root color.
But also, maybe the way my strange brain works will be helpful here, I like to think of this as a meal. Your Enneagram type is like the protein - there are only a...
When it comes to REAL lasting growth, it's less about forcing ourselves into some new, unfamiliar ground and more about allowing ourselves to make shifts at the deepest levels of our consciousness. Redefining who we are in the most profound ways.
When this happens, at the very root of who we are, life-long transformation is possible.
When we focus on changing external manifestations, it's only a matter of time before it all goes back.
Here are a few shifts that each type can consider and make and I promise you, if you make these shifts, parts of you that you NEVER thought could change, will transform right before your eyes.
All ones can do self-evaluation around WHY there is a need to create perfection or excellence. When you find that the root of this compulsion is based in a fear of being defective, then you can press into a deeper love that reminds you that you are ok, and this breeds compassion, which changes EVERYTHING.
You don't need to stop being a...
One of the most frustrating parts of the Enneagram is when you can't seem to nail down which type you are.
I want for you to get to experience ALL the amazing benefits of knowing and working with the Enneagram and you can't really do that if you aren't sure what your type is.
Before I get into the three reasons why you might be having trouble, I want to say that this journey is YOUR OWN. No one can type you, no one can tell you what type you are, and even certified Enneagram teachers and coaches can only guide and ask illuminating questions for YOU to work through because this journey is your own.
Ok, let's start into the first reason why you may be having trouble finding your type, and I say this with all the love in my heart: you may not know yourself as well as you think you do. It's not you, it's all of us.
The way the human psyche operates is through patterned behavior. A situation arrises, we try out a response, if that response works we try it again,...
As with almost anything, when it comes to goal setting, each Ennagram type will have it's strengths and potential for downfall.
Our type gives us the best in us and the worst in us at the same time and of course, a deeper understanding of our instincts is what helps us live with awareness so we can chose with grater intention and move into health.
Let's jump right in.
Type 1's are natural goal setters and goal getters. They love having a clear and measurable plan for self-improvement. Remember, the core motivation for type 1's is to be good and do what is right. Type 1's may get lost searching for the "right" goals to have. Searching and agonizing as to where they should try to improve and what is the best way to go about doing it. A great way for 1's to pursue growth is to realize that there is no ONE set of PERFECT goals for each person. There is no master list of self-improvement for all humanity. What would be a great goal for one person, may not be the best...