Enneagrams

enneagram diagram

Enneagram diagram

Today I got to attend my second Enneagram class at the LifePath Center in San Miguel. I skipped last week, b/c I was at the beach.

It’s strange, but enneagrams have been a part of my life for nearly nine years, but I’ve never had any real groups or training. Occasionally, I’ll run into someone who’s interested, and we sort of nudge each other along the path. So it’s a real treat to be around a group who is interested in learning & sharing information.

I’ve added a link to the diagram above. There are many systems, but my favorite at this point is Riso-Hudson. The link takes you to a very clear explanation of the system, and here is a free test. We are using their book: Wisdom of the Enneagram, which I’ve found very useful over the years (It’s one of my “most used” books.)

They are very clear that each type has so many variants that it really does reflect individuality and each individual’s path. And their explanations of the types, their strengths and challenges, are all very upbeat. (Unlike Palmer, who makes every single type feel like an outcast loser, IMHO.)

One of the oddest things I’ve found is that almost no one (including myself) has been able to type themselves correctly the first time. Sure, there’s a quiz. But often it’s just a pointer, not the answer. (“Inquire within,” as my yoga teacher says.) Once you think you know your type, go to eclecticenergies.com (link below) and look up that type. At the bottom are the common ways people may misidentify themselves as that type.

As I’ve used the Enneagram system over the years, I’ve begun to understand myself better. As a Nine, I know that harmony is a priority for me.  So I purposely stay out of situations that are rife with conflict, and generally don’t have argumentative friends.  And sometimes to avoid conflict, I tend to go along with the crowd. Since I know that, I can guard against it, and check in to see what I really want.

It’s inadvisable to “type” someone else, but it certainly becomes possible to notice someone “acting like a 2” or some other type. And that leads to better communication; you know what they tend to do or want, and can “speak their language.”  It’s being used in education, the workplace & other applications for just that reason.

Our facilitator, Katrina, has led us to some other very good resources.

Wikipedia

eclecticenergies.com is especially good. Once you think you know your type (from Riso-Hudson), use this one to be sure. They are very strong in misidentifications. They also have suggested accupressure points for each of the nine types.

Sandra Maitri is an enneagram expert whose accent on the spiritual dimension is recommended & used by our facilitator.

2 Responses to “Enneagrams”

  1. Brad says:

    Sara, I find this fascinating. Haven’t decided yet to plonk down the price of four good coffees to take the test, but I’ll probably give in to my curiosity. What will you do with the insights the enneagram philosophy and practice give you?

  2. Sara says:

    Hi Brad, One of the really fascinating things we learned is that the enneagram’s popularity was driven by the Roman Catholic church, which has been using & teaching it since the 70’s.

    I updated the post to add a specific link to the FREE test. That would be where to start. No need to deprive yourself of caffeine! I’d be willing to bet that PT’s library has some books as well.

    I think I’ll add my insights to the post as well, b/c I really have rec’d a lot of benefits from the enneagram over the last 9 yrs I’ve been using it.