This article will explain how enneagrams can help people in their day to day life. Furthermore, the article will introduce enneagrams in quite some detail and also include an interesting topic of why Christians are so fond of this unique personality system.
How Can The Enneagram Help Me?
Here are 5 ways the enneagram system can help you:
- It helps you understand yourself
- It helps you understand others
- It guides your behaviour
Let us take a look at each of these one by one!
It helps you understand yourself
The first thing the enneagram types help you do is understand yourself in a holistic manner. They identify what you are as a person and what your likes and dislikes are. Also, they describe what your traits are as a person and what sort of activities you may engage in. Although you may have an idea of what type of person you are, this personality system confirms that and gives you a level of confidence!
Furthermore, when it comes to the enneagram system, these types also have fears and desires and this can greatly help you understand what motivates you; if we know exactly what we want then it is easier to set goals to achieve it. Furthermore, if we know what scares us then we can come up with strategies or ways to cope with such things. In some cases, we have a vague idea of what we want and by looking at our personality type we can get some help!
It helps you understand others
Understanding yourself may indeed be a huge task but you still have access to your thoughts, feelings, behaviours and the decisions you take! However, when it comes to the other person in front of you, you may have the ability to see what they do but not what goes on inside of them! Hence, we are limited when it comes to understanding others.
However, if we have somewhat of an idea of the other person then we can use the enneagram system to see what personality they resemble the most and understand them even more without having to look too nosy!
Relationships are always something we all look forward to and they play a huge role in our life as well as our wellbeing. However, at one point or the other, you will face problems in your relationship especially if you are taking things forward or want to spend more time with the other person. This will sometimes pan out smoothly or possibly not!
Nevertheless, enneagrams are a great way to help you understand your partner and what makes them happy, uncomfortable, motivated and also fearful. If you know these things then you can guide your behavior in such a way that things improve between the two of you!
Enneagrams are a great way to learn more about your personality so you can choose the right career for yourself. Choosing a career is not easy and most of the time we end up in something we dislike and just regret the decision we took. Other times, we are able to make the right decision and land our dream job!
With enneagrams, there is much information about what jobs suit which enneagram! With the enneagram community growing, people contribute to the information that is present for each personality type and hence we learn more and more.
It guides your behaviour
When it comes to enneagrams, the best thing we can use them for is to guide our behaviour on a daily basis. The amount of information they give us with regards to our traits, fears, desires and strengths as well as weaknesses is enough to give us a heads up!
What Are Enneagrams?
The enneagram is a typology system which describes human behaviour as a set of interrelated parts with each part having unique characteristics and behaviours or a set of defining traits that distinguish it from other parts in the system. This typology has a total of 9 parts of enneagrams that have different personalities and hence titles. For example, there is the enneagram type 1 which is also known as the Reformer and they have unique traits such as strong moral values, strive for integrity and may at times be judgemental.
At the same time, this personality system assumes and believes that no one person is of a single type – that is they cannot be a type 1 or type 9 purely but will be influenced by other adjacent types that are also known as wings. These wings influence but do not change the overall personality type.
Are Enneagrams Real?
Enneagrams are not backed by any scientific evidence nor has extensive research been done on them. Despite this, they have been gaining widespread popularity and people use them everyday to study their own selves and others too. The popularity this personality system has gained shows that it accurately defines people and their traits and behaviours.
Not much is known about its history and it is rumoured to pull its roots from a number of traditions. A philosopher as well as mystic known by the name of George Ivanovich Gurdjieff has been identified and given recognition for bringing the Enneagram figure to the attention of the world, although he did not use it to categorize personality types. Oscar Ichazo, the founder of a school for human potential and self-development, assigned different personality types to each of the nine positions in the Enneagram diagram.
Later, psychiatrist Claudio Naranjo expanded the theory to expand the nine types in psychological terms.
Despite the clouded mystery of where this personality system came from, it has gained much worldwide popularity to the extent that it is used frequently by people all over the world!
Enneagrams – The Components That Make Them Up
In this section we will take a look at the components that not only make up the enneagram system but also make them unique from other personality systems like that of the MBTI.
Like other personality typologies, the enneagram one also highlights the traits of the personalities it has in its system. For every enneagram it has, it has highlighted a distinct set of traits that describe the enneagram in a detailed manner so people have an idea of how they behave. For example, one enneagram may be bold and courageous while another may be shy and quiet.
Each enneagram has a set of strengths that differentiate it from other enneagrams and adds to its overall personality. These strengths are also indirectly related to its desires that give it the motivation to move on in life. Some enneagrams may have strengths like being able to remain calm in a stressful situation while others may be great negotiators; each enneagram has their own set of strengths.
Naturally, strengths are accompanied by weaknesses so each enneagram also has a set of weaknesses that stem from its fears. Nonetheless, these weaknesses make the enneagram vulnerable to the outside world and may include ones like not being able to sustain relationships, becoming afraid of confronting someone about their behaviour or being unable to take a stand for themselves.
What is quite unique about the enneagram typology is that it highlights the fears of each enneagram. The fears of an enneagram are quite integral to their personality and affect other components such as desires and weaknesses. An enneagram usually has one central theme for a fear such as the fear of being controlled or the fear of not being loved.
It is natural to have desires and hence enneagrams also have their own desires. Similar to fears, the enneagram type usually has one central theme for a desire such as becoming quite powerful or gaining love and recognition.
A very unique thing about the enneagram system is the fact that it acknowledges that personalities may overlap and they represent this through the use of wings. Enneagrams may share traits from ‘neighboring’ enneagrams. So, for example, the type 5 enneagram may have a wing from either the type 4 or 6 enneagram.
Why Do Christians Love Enneagrams So Much?
Part of the faith of Christianity teaches its followers to be aware of the sins they are vulnerable to committing. This is in essence with the concept that if you are aware of your weaknesses then you are in a better position to tackle them. The same goes for sins; if we are aware of what tempts us more than we can focus on avoiding such situations that lead to that specific sin and hence restrain ourselves – this will help spread good in the world and prevent evil in turn!
Also, Chrisitians strongly believe that they can truly understand God if they have understood themselves first. In the words of the Reformer, John Calvin, “Without knowledge of self, there is no knowledge of God.”
Without honest, reflective introspection guided by the Spirit of God through the illumination of the Word of God, we as humans can be ignorant of sin and other hindrances to our spiritual growth and usefulness for Christ. Hebrews 12:1 exhorts us to, “throw off everything that hinders and the sin that so easily entangles [and] run with perseverance the race marked out for us…” (NIV). It is impossible to throw off hindrances and sin if we are unaware of them.
Hence, the reason why Christians are so attracted to the system of enneagrams is because they can better understand themselves and hence fully live their faith to please God and make the world a better place!
This article took a look at the significant role enneagrams play in our lives and how they are useful to us. Furthermore, the article provided an in-depth introduction to what enneagrams basically are and also explained why Christians are so fond of them.