Whether it's with Jesus, horoscopes, the Myers-Briggs test, prayer or a heightened level of spirituality, it seems as though everyone is currently on the "self-discovery" train. And to be honest, I'm here for it! Knowing yourself gives you the opportunity to function at your absolute best.
For all of those who truly want to be provided with the tools to uncover their authentic selves, there's a new resource that's been all the rage on Instagram lately, and that's the enneagram.
The enneagram is a self-discovery personality typing system that provides insight into who you are and why you operate the way you do. It teaches that there are nine distinct personality types in this world and that everyone identifies with one of the nine types. Have you ever wondered why you react to certain things the way you do? Well, enneagrams explain all of that, including the things you never knew about yourself. Talk about being in your business!
Though not a new personality typing system (the enneagram was discovered by a Christian monk in the early 1900s), it's still very much relevant and useful today. It literally offers you the key to getting unstuck by helping you peel back the layers that have shaped you in order to get to the core of who you are. Once you're self-aware, you're able to avoid the roadblocks that prevent you from your performing at your best.
After you discover your personality type and research it, you'll have tons of a-ha moments, with answers to questions you've always had about yourself. The Road Back to You: An Enneagram Journey to Self-Discovery beautifully explains that the purpose of knowing your type "is to develop self-knowledge and learn how to recognize and dis-identify with the parts of our personalities that limit us so we can be reunited with our truest and best selves. The point of it is self-understanding and growing beyond the self-defeating dimensions of our personality, as well as improving relationships and growing in compassion in others." I'm warning you now that enneagrams come for your WHOLE life all while helping you get yourself together!
It's also important to point out that no number is better than another number. Each type has amazing and not-so amazing qualities. Your type doesn't have to define you. You can choose this knowledge of self as a resource to break free from the weights that try to hold you down so that you can soar into the beautiful you that you truly are.
Finding Your Type
The nine personalities of the enneagram system are equally divided into three triads with the gut, heart and head triads. The gut triad houses type 8, 9, & 1; the heart is home to types 2, 3, & 4 while 5, 6, & 7 are in the head triad. The triads indicate what motivates you whether it's instinct (gut), feeling (heart) or fear (head).
The 9 Different Types
Type 1: the perfectionist is rational and idealistic.
Type 2: the helper is caring and interpersonal. generous, people-pleasing and possessive.
Type 3: the performer is success-oriented and pragmatic.
Type 4: the romantic is sensitive and withdrawn.
Type 5: the investigator is analytical, detached and private.
Type 6: the loyalist is committed and security-oriented.
Type 7: the enthusiast is adventurous and fun.
Type 8: the challenger is commanding and confrontational.
Type 9: the peacemaker is easygoing and accommodating.
Identifying Your Wing, Stress and Security Numbers
Okay, so I know you may have been a bit skeptical. I mean, how could this world that hosts more than a billion people only have nine distinguishing personality types? Sounds a bit insane, right? Don't worry, enneagrams dig deeper into your life than just giving you a number. No one is purely one type. There are also wings, stress and security numbers that further personalize your personality type. Because there's just no way that every one out nine humans are exactly the same.
Wings are the two numbers on either side of your number. You'll find that you identify with one of the two numbers more than the other, the number whose characteristics you mostly share is your wing. Most people describe their type as such, for example, "type 4 wing 5".
Stress and security numbers are the numbers you tend to embody when you are under stress or at your best. When you're stressed, you'll pull from the more negative qualities of your stress number, while you'll pull from the positive qualities from your security number when you're most secure. For instance, though you may be a type 3, you might act more like a type nine (peacemaker) when you're stressed and a type 6 (the loyalist) when you're at your best. A combination of your type, wing, stress and security numbers make up the fabric of your unique identity.
Discovering Your Enneagram Type
There are tons of tests on the internet that you can take to find out your enneagram. A great test is from the EnneagramInstitute.com which costs about $12 per test. You can also click here to take a free enneagram personality test.
To dive deeper into the world of enneagrams, some great Instagram accounts to follow are @brushandbarley, @enneagramandcoffee and @justmyenneatype.
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