“When you align your personality with your purpose no one can touch you .” – Gary Zukof
The Enneagram, pronounced ‘any a gram’, is a personality profile that identifies a person’s personality type. The Enneagram model contains nine distinct personality types.
In the context of a major change like retirement, the Enneagram us a practical method for rediscovering our true nature; our core motivation, our gifts and how we sometimes get in our own way. Knowing these things helps us to develop and accomplish new aims in alignment with our personality.
This series of blogs will address a few ways you can use the Enneagram to improve the quality of your life. At the bottom of the blog, you will find instructions telling how you can do the Enneagram questionnaire and get a report for free.
Later if you want to go deeper you might consider a personal coaching session. I find the biggest value I bring as a coach is helping people to sort out the puzzle of creating a purpose that aligns with their personality.
What is the Enneagram?
“The Enneagram identifies nine personality types. Each one possesses its own set of characteristics and its own way of looking at the world. It is as if each personality type has its own pair of lenses with their own special colour. Under those circumstances, and without noticing that they wear those filters, most people go through life fighting with one another to try to establish “who’s right.”
This is similar to the situation of a fish in water. If the fish could answer the question, “What is life like in the water?” it would respond, “What water?”
That’s how we perceive the world when we are on autopilot, completely taken over by our type, without even knowing that it exists.
The Enneagram can help us to discover it, identify it, understand it and consciously take control over it .”
How Is It Relevant to You?
Self-observation is the most powerful tool my wife and I learned in our Enneagram training. She is a Reformer and I am a Helper. We quickly learned to see our respective autopilot egos in reaction and how we would get triggered by the need be right and to win.
Maybe you can see this in your own life. Can you see how it creates resentment that results in a lasting mood of resentment that destroys intimacy in your relationships?
Having a shared understanding of the Enneagram gives us a language to see what we could not see before and to avoid the hurtful trap of resentment build up. It’s not perfect but it a lot better. We both remain vigilant.
Try this for a week and then, the rest of your life:
Observe your conversations and notice when you get hooked on wanting to be right. You may be right from looking through your lens. But the other person thinks they are right too. Where is that taking you? Maybe you will win, but at what cost?
Perhaps you can smile to yourself as you see “ here I go” needing to be right. That can open many options. You can gently back off, or you can let of the conversation go altogether. You might ask some questions to understand the other person’s point of view. “Tell me more” is a tool you might try.
Note: If you would like to learn your Enneagram Type and get a free report, contact me and refer to this blog. I will send you the questionnaire to complete and subsequently a report.