The Wisdom of the Enneagram: The Complete Guide to Psychological and Spiritual Growth for the Nine Personality Types Paperback – June 15, 1999

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The Wisdom of the Enneagram: The Complete Guide to Psychological and Spiritual Growth for the Nine  Personality Types Paperback – June 15, 1999

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Reddit Reviews and Recommendations

  • 20 Reviews
  • July 24, 2018 Last Review Date
  • Sept. 4, 2013 First Seen Review Date
  • 7 Reviewed on Subreddits

    Enneagram (14)
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Discussion and Reviews on Reddit

Book recommendations about the Enneagram? [R]

1 year, 7 months agoatumbleweed posted submission on Enneagram.
July 24, 2018
1 year, 7 months agoatumbleweed posted comment on Enneagram.
July 24, 2018

“Wisdom of the Enneagram” is where I started and I’d highly recommend it as an intro. If you’d prefer a Christian perspective, “The Road Back to You” is a quick read. I’m currently working on “The Complete Enneagram” by Beatrice Chestnut which is denser but more in depth.

Enneagram Class - Please help [R]

1 year, 11 months agoKalinali posted submission on Enneagram.
March 13, 2018

I've been asked to do a class (1 or 2 hours) for business people on the Enneagram system 'for fun'. Other than an introduction to the system and its history, and of course an overview of the types, I'm not sure how to make it interactive enough to keep (possibly sceptical) people's interest.

Typing the class individually might be possible, but i'm unsure on the number of people. These will mostly be strangers, so whilst I have successfully typed numerous people that I know (and had them verify the results), it may not be possible to simply interview the attendees and arrive at a type, especially without some sort of test (electronic or otherwise).

Do any of you fine people have any ideas what you would include if you were asked to take such a class? And do you know of any simple questionnaires that might be useful?

The only other idea was to include some sort of thought provoking information on what roles each type might play in a company, and how to deal with people in different ways.

Thank you.

1 year, 11 months agoKalinali posted comment on Enneagram.
March 13, 2018

If you still have at least two weeks before the class, get the Wisdom of the Enneagram book and use their short questionnaires to get people to type themselves as one group activity. This book features 15 questions at the beginning of each chapter on each type compiled by the Ennegram Institute so it's pretty good reference material and starting point to discuss the types.

Has any ENTP here found an alternative heuristic/categorization system for personalities and cognitive functions at least equal or better than Myers Briggs in terms of relevance to ENTPs and insights gleaned? [R]

2 years agolilmalchek posted submission on entp.
Feb. 18, 2018

It seems we are all obsessed with Myers Briggs and for very good reason. ENTPs tend to relate quite well to being given a system to explain everyone as it is in their nature to discover with Ne and explain with Ti. But me personally as an ENTP I’ve not yet come across a better or even equal system. I find the big 5 and some of these other more modern systems to be quite un-insightful in comparison.

Yet, I’m sure if there was something appealing out there for ENTPs - then one of you would have found it by now! Thanks

2 years agolilmalchek posted comment on entp.
Feb. 18, 2018

Im INFJ, but I had a similar experience actually. Took me a while to really understand the enneagram, with the help of this book, a few events I went to, and talking about it with my ENTP boyfriend. I’d check out the wisdom of the enneagram if you’re interested:)

The Wisdom of the Enneagram: The Complete Guide to Psychological and Spiritual Growth for the Nine Personality Types

ESTJ characterized as a 5w4 [R]

2 years agoKalinali posted submission on Enneagram.
Feb. 3, 2018

I had to take the MBTI for work and I got ESTJ, I paid and took enneagram as well and received a 5w4. Ive heard that most 5s are introverted in preference. Are both results synonymous with one another? Can this be?

2 years agoKalinali posted comment on Enneagram.
Feb. 5, 2018

Likely a mistype. I get type 5 as my result on almost every Enneagram test I've taken. Took a while to work it out. Instead of taking tests I'd recommend reading Wisdom of Enneagram by Riso and Hudson and figuring out your triads (it's under menu->patterns and structures). There is a lot of misinformation and distorted information online, and no 15-minute test is a substitute for a thorough study.

Am I type 4 or 9? [R]

2 years, 4 months agoLikeatree7 posted submission on Enneagram.
Oct. 7, 2017

Hello, when I first learned about enneagrams, I took a quiz. I got 9, but as I started to learn more, 4 seemed applicable as well. I even received 6 once, but I know I'm not a 6. I do strive to make harmony and I try to avoid conflict. I like to be unique, but I don't want to be the centre of attention. I like to feel as if my input matters. I can wander on the past for a bit, but then I try to forget about it. My self-esteem used to be low, but I wouldn't say so anymore. Thanks for your help.

2 years, 4 months agoLikeatree7 posted comment on Enneagram.
Oct. 7, 2017

You do sound like a 9 to me. :)

This book is a great read if you are interested in learning more about your type (and other types) in depth. It will also help you confirm your type: [The Wisdom of the Enneagram] (

Seriously. I don't know who I am. [R]

2 years, 4 months agoOct. 5, 2017


2 years, 4 months agobookofthoth_za posted comment on Enneagram.
Oct. 5, 2017

Stop taking a gazillion tests.

Seriously, you aren't getting the point of the Enneagram at all.

The Enneagram is not supposed to be used to add one more thing to identify yourself with. It's here to help you get out of self-identification!

Read The Wisdom Of The Enneagram cover to cover. It doesn't matter what type you are (you have the rest of your life to find out). What matters is that you stop closing yourself down with self-identification and focus on increasing your levels of liberation.

Books about personality types? [R]

2 years, 4 months agobookofthoth_za posted submission on suggestmeabook.
Sept. 27, 2017

Or any book that explains human behavior?

2 years, 4 months agobookofthoth_za posted on suggestmeabook.
Sept. 28, 2017

My personal favourite is The Wisdom of the Enneagram.

It's based on the Enneagram classification of personality and unlike other personality type systems, it embraces spiritual and psychological growth in unison.

There's a test here which will help you understand what number you are (between 1 and 9. i'm a 4).

Deeper knowledge [R]

2 years, 5 months agohimalayansaltlick posted submission on Enneagram.
Sept. 24, 2017

Hello everyone. I am fascinated by the ennegram. But how can i get deeper knowledge on the enneagram.i have the book personality types which is great but so much more to understand and the internet seems to give very surface information.

So where do you guys go to go deep on the enneagram?

2 years, 4 months agohimalayansaltlick posted on Enneagram.
Sept. 25, 2017

is it possible for a 9 to be very interested in dark things? [R]

2 years, 6 months agoAug. 13, 2017

like spend hours researching these from the internet:

  • school shootings & school shooters
  • murders
  • suicide videos
  • suicides
  • accidental death videos
  • horror stories
  • depressing music
  • terrorists
  • pictures of dead bodies

(..but then spend a couple of hours researching happier things when it gets too intense)

2 years, 6 months agohimalayansaltlick posted on Enneagram.
Aug. 13, 2017

I highly recommend this book.

Help! Am I a type 4 or 9? [R]

2 years, 8 months agonowhearin posted submission on Enneagram.
June 23, 2017

I can't figure out for the life of me if I'm a 4 or 9! I've taken TONS of online quizzes, but can't seem to land on one certain answer. I'm also currently reading two books about the Enneagram written by Riso and Hudson in order to gain a little more insight.

My dilemma is that I feel like for the past year, I've exhibited mostly 4 traits, but all the years prior, I've been more like a 9. Let me explain:

As a kid, I was always one to go with the flow. I hated it when my parents argued (which they did fairly often) and I'd try my best to zone out. For the most part, I was pretty agreeable, easygoing, and reserved. (But also emotional, empathetic, and creative.) In college, I'd dissociate from any stress I had and I kind of felt numb when I should've, in reality, been really concerned about school assignments. I viewed the world through rose-colored glasses and trusted everyone and myself. Most of my friends described me as someone with a "sunshiny" disposition (though in complete honesty, I tried my best to project this version of myself).

However, about a year ago, someone close in my life revealed a painful truth from the past. My world was completely shattered. I originally thought my past was good for the most part, but after this revelation, everything seemed bleak and horrible. I no longer had a rosy view of the world.

Nowadays, I'm always ruminating on negative thoughts about the past. I feel like I wallow in sadness most days, and not because it's helpful, but because it's almost like I enjoy making myself feel sad. I feel self-absorbed and like I'm not giving myself a chance to live in the present! I know these are all VERY 4-like qualities, so I'm stuck.

Have I just always been a dormant 4, if that's even a real term? (I'm also an INFP for reference.)

Any help/insight would be appreciated!

2 years, 8 months agonowhearin posted on Enneagram.
June 24, 2017

I would suggest that you read this book and you make get a more in depth idea of the two types. My partner is a classic 9 and i'm a classic 4 (we both fit the types earily well) so I have a pretty clear idea of how each of them can look. It does sound like you have some aspects of both, but the motivations and fears of each type are pretty different.

Let us know if you figure it out! :)

Psychedelics helped me see that my life is a story I tell myself, and science has helped me build a better story. I've written a scientific and psychedelic inspired guide to constructing the most important aspect of our story; our suprapersonal goal. [R]

2 years, 11 months agoclaytonbarkley posted submission on Psychonaut.
March 8, 2017
2 years, 11 months agoclaytonbarkley posted on Psychonaut.
March 10, 2017

Have a watch of that, hes the best teacher of it Ive come across.

That's the best book then. This is something you'll be glad you ventured into, good luck.

Not sure if 6w7 or 7w6. [R]

3 years, 2 months agohimalayansaltlick posted submission on Enneagram.
Nov. 26, 2016

I'm unsure whether I'm a 6w7 or a 7w6 with abandonment issues from having moved 30+ times in my 29 years of life, and watched my mother's first two husbands leave when I was a small child.

Online quizzes have said 7. I have a hunch I'm a 6.

Reading the descriptions at the Enneagram Institute website doesn't seem to help much. I get lonely a lot when I'm alone, but also bored. I used to cry myself to sleep because I thought everyone hated me, or sit alone in my room and think I didn't exist unless someone else was observing or at least thinking about me.

These days I occasionally do the same, but no matter how depressed I go to bed, I wake up in the morning feeling either great or kind of neutral. I dance around my apartment when I'm alone, sing to myself songs I make up.

When I feel down, one way I comfort myself is getting in a hot bath with all the lights off, with my laptop on the bathroom counter and a snack on the side of the tub, and watch Netflix, like the comfiest movie theater ever.

I'm a graduate student in a lot of discussion-based classes, and I talk a lot in class for three reasons:

  1. I love being around people, and being excited makes me talk more.

  2. I want to impress everyone with how smart and funny I am.

  3. I learn better and formulate my thoughts better when I "think out loud" so to speak.

I'm told I'm charming and funny, but when I mess up in front of others, I feel like it's the worst thing ever, and often beat myself up about it later.

I have a tendency to procrastinate, and I have the remainders of dozens of hobbies that I've picked up and then quickly lost interest in.

I know for certain I'm an ENFP.

I really want people to like me, but sometimes I think more than that I want them to respect me.

I hate being told what to do. Absolutely hate it. And I hate telling others what to do. The entire concept of authority gets under my skin.

The idea of being a 6 also frightens me. It seems like the only type where your basic fear makes you a slave to other people, dependent on them for happiness. That is, it seems like if your biggest fear in life is to be disliked or unwanted, then ultimately all people have to do is threaten to withdraw their affection and you'll start kissing boots.

I don't really want to believe that about myself, because it seems inescapable. Or else like the only escape is to never make connections.

At one point, I made a joke and then when people laughed, I was anxious that they were laughing at me instead of with me.

I don't want to be a 6 because I don't want my entire existence to be wrapped up in other people's approval. I want to figure out what I want in life and then make it happen, not be sidekick to someone "better."

Anyway, I guess my questions are:

  1. What type am I?

  2. What does that mean?

  3. Any advice based on this information?

3 years, 2 months agohimalayansaltlick posted on Enneagram.
Nov. 27, 2016

Sure, step one, be gentle with yourself. The majority of people in the US are probably 6s. I dated 6 for eight years. Sixes have some really, really awesome qualities––they have a keen intuition for worthy authority figures, and they can have the decisiveness and strength to take down authority figures who aren't doing a good job.

I recommend listening to this podcast, or at least the relevant section for you. I also recommend the book The Wisdom of the Enneagram.

You can also read this website's description of the 6. Read about disintegration and integration, as well. In other words, when you're healthy, you start to take on some characteristics of the 9. When you're unhealthy, you engage in some of the behaviors of the 3. Read about those numbers, too. Then read about your wings––5 and 7. You'll pretty quickly see what applies to you and what doesn't.

Here's the beauty of the enneagram (if you hold it loosely! this isn't the end all in your life): it gives you a roadmap for coming through your weaker qualities by showing you what you naturally have the potential to do. It also can shed some light on deep truths in your life, truths that you might otherwise might avoid or never know.

Enneagram Type Logos (More in comments) [R]

3 years, 5 months agoKuujoe posted submission on Enneagram.
Sept. 20, 2016
3 years, 5 months agoKuujoe posted on Enneagram.
Sept. 20, 2016

Last spring, I spent three months reading the entirety of The Wisdom of The Enneagram and designing graphics in a Chicago Starbucks for my graphic design senior thesis.

I designed micro-compositions (what I've been calling them) for each type based on my research, as well as small format logos, posters outlining the relationships between types, and business cards that users can keep in their wallets for tough times.

I am by no means an expert, but I tried to be as accurate as I could. Here are some of my other posters if you want to read more about the mission, and here's the test I made to fit on a business card. Feel free to comment or message me if you want to talk!

Myers Briggs type and being "raised" by Ns [R]

3 years, 8 months agorigning posted submission on raisedbynarcissists.
June 21, 2016

So I ran into another ACoN on an MBTI subreddit I frequent.

I'm curious to hear if anyone else has experience with MBTI/ Myers Briggs and their N.

I am an INTJ, raised be an N INFP mother, with a GC ESFJ sister.

I really don't know if type plays into it. I'm a firm believer that there can be good and bad of any type and that non is "better" or "worse."

What I did say is people with N parents may be more likely to get an type of a more empathetic type, as they had to learn to predict the behaviors of an N to protect themselves. (But again, all people are capable of empathy, some people it comes more natural to than others.)

Thought? Examples of type you want to share? Examples where you weren't sure of your type?

3 years, 8 months agorigning posted on raisedbynarcissists.
June 22, 2016

it's from a book called "wisdom of the enneagram"

:) me too

Please type me!:) [R]

3 years, 8 months agoLogiWan posted submission on Enneagram.
June 7, 2016

Hey you all,

So my girlfriend and I typed me as a sx/so 9w1, but I recently took the full RHETI test and my results were Type 6 (21 points), Type 4 (21 points), Type 9 (19 points), Type 3 (19 points), Type 5 (18 points), Type 7 (15 points), Type 2 (14 points), Type 1 (10 points), Type 8 (7 points). This lead to me questioning if I am in fact a 9w1, so I thought I would fill out a questionnaire and see what you all think! All responses will be much appreciated.


What age range are you in? 19 Any disorders or conditions we should know about? None that have been diagnosed ;)

Main Questions

  1. What do you think your life is about? What drives you in life? This can be something like a goal or a purpose, or anything else that comes to mind.

Questions like this are always very hard for me to answer. I want to do something that truly matters in this world in life and I want to do it in the genuine way, but I am not sure what that is yet. I would say I value finding true love in a partner to share my life with above all else; someone to share myself with. I desire unconditional love and acceptance where I know no matter what I will be loved and never lose that love.

  1. What were you like as a kid?

I was generally quiet and behaved well. I always excelled in school and was viewed as the smartest kid in my classes always answering questions and trying to do the best, until high school, I started to care less about school and doing the best became a lazy procrastinator although I still did very well. My mother always pushed me hard academically. I remember I looked forward a lot to my birthdays and Christmas, loved receiving gifts. Spent time playing baseball, and even excelled at it at times, even though I wasn’t too passionate about it (I enjoyed it though). I was obsessed with maps and history, war, and politics. I spent unhealthy amounts of time on Sid Meier’s Civilization and Sim City. I always had a few very close friends, was never much of a social butterfly. Had trouble with dating in the puberty years. My childhood was good overall, I’d say.

  1. Describe your relationship with your parents. Does anything stand out about the way you interacted?

I’ve always had a good relationship with both of my parents though at times I would be at odds with my mother, especially in the teen years. When I was younger my dad worked a lot though he was still around and present in my life. I spent a majority of my time with my mom, doing almost everything with her. She was harder on me, always pushing me to be the best in school. My success and efforts where recognized but she always left me in with a sense of “good, but not good enough” which really affected me in my teens. There was always a focus on school or preparing for my future rather than emotional development. I have always felt like she never understood who I want to be and what I want to do and tried to conform to who she saw me as. My dad was supportive and more easygoing with me, at times almost as if he were a friend more than a parent.

  1. What values are important to you? What do you hope to avoid doing or being?

I hope to avoid becoming trapped in a mundane, empty life without a genuine feeling of aliveness. I hate the idea of working a pointless desk job at some corporation where the sole goal is making money rather than being proactive and doing something of substance. I don’t want to waste life. I also strive to be likeable, I hate the idea of being seen as inferior, especially socially inferior mostly when it comes to attracting a partner. I’d also say I value loyalty and relationships a good deal.

  1. Aside from phobias, are there any fears that characterized your childhood? Have they continued into the present day, or not, and if not, how have you dealt with them?

I was always afraid of certain things that could become very stressful at times, for instance in elementary and middle school I was deathly afraid of school shootings to the point I would have nightmares about them. I’ve always been afraid that no one will like me or accept me and I struggle to tell what those around me think of me, though this isn’t as bad as it used to be it still can be an issue. I’m not sure how I deal with these issues, I probably just ignore them. In social situations I can be very withdrawn when I think those around me don’t like me.

  1. a.) How do you see yourself?

I don’t know. I can’t think of an answer to this question.

b.) How do you want others to see you?

I want others to see me incomparable, funny, smart and above all someone to love.

c.) What do you dislike the most in other people?

I generally dislike self-important people and struggle to get along with aggressive, brash personalities. I also generally dislike ignorant and stupid people.

  1. Which habit do you most automatically act on? Rank the following habits from most to least automatic, on a scale of 1 (most) to 3 (least).

Strive for a sense of tranquility in yourself and the world around you --1 Decide what is right for the betterment of something or someone else. --2 Work for personal gain with more concern for self than for others. --3

  1. Where does the wandering mind take you? What provokes this?

I can daydream or drift off into though quite a bit. Especially in class, while walking, doing something mindless, or in social situations that aren’t engaging me or I’m not enjoying. I’m usually thinking about deeply over something someone said, something I read, or a situation I’ve encountered. I tend to fixate or almost obsess over certain interest, people, anxieties and they take up the majority of my thoughts. For example, when I first started playing guitar and getting into music I obsessed over starting a band and my favorite songs.

  1. What makes you feel your best?

I love listening to music and getting surges of hyper energy. I love being in naturally beautiful and striking landscapes. I feel best once I’ve overcome things that have been stressing me or work I’ve been put off and no longer have to worry about things and can spend my time how I want. Spending time with my significant other and cuddling with her always puts me in a good place. Also I love making people laugh and sharing bouts of gut busting laughter with them. It’s one of the best feelings in the world.

What makes you feel your worst?

When I feel like I’ve put my relationships in jeopardy or when I feel like I am losing the ones I love. Or when something I'm worried about comes true, mostly related to losing relationships however. When I anger or hurt others. Feeling unloved or incapable of being loved.

  1. Let's talk about emotions. Explain what might make you feel the following, how they feel to you or how you react to the emotion:

a.) anger: I rarely ever get truly angry, mostly just slightly frustrated or irritated. On the rare occasion I do get angry (betrayal, unjustness, when someone hurts me physically or emotionally) I feel it all over my body but mostly my gut, red in the face, and I get shaky hands. I get urges to break or crush things, (specifically wooden chairs). This kind of anger has happened less than 5 times in my life. I feel really alive by the energy if I ride it.

b.) shame: I’ll usually feel this in response to doing something stupid or when I’m wrong about something. Usually embarrassed more than a pure shame feeling if that makes sense. I once got so embarrassed by an event in my childhood that I hardly ever put myself in situations to be embarrassed, but when I do get embarrassed I feel red in the face and a swelling feeling in my gut/chest. I hate it.

c.) anxiety: I feel anxiety in my gut/stomach and sometimes my shoulders, like there’s a weight on them. It’s mostly this feeling in my stomach that something is wrong or going to go wrong. I’m not sure what causes anxiety but I can be sensitive to how certain people talk to me and the amount of affection I’m receiving and I get anxious that they don’t like me or I’ve made them angry or something. I also get caught up about fixating my thinking on certain anxieties. For example, I got really worried I was a sociopath or psychopath after watching Dexter (I don’t worry about this anymore haha) and I can get worried that I don’t have normal emotional depth.

  1. Describe how you respond to the following:

a.) stress – Depends on the stress. I almost always withdraw over attacking things head on. I am a terrible procrastinator and put off things until they absolutely have to be done, but I generally get them done. As much as I avoid it, I paradoxically thrive under pressure. I feed off the energy and I can almost always keep my head and cool.

b.) negative unexpected change –I haven’t had a lot of this so I really can’t say. When I was younger my mom developed kidney disease and I’ve always been troubled by how shallow my emotional response to the situation was. I think I might not have understood it exactly or numbed myself from it. I always believe things will work out in the end, I guess.

c.) conflict – I’ll make an effort to cause as little of conflict as possible, but I will face it when it is necessary, especially with those close to me. I won’t go out of my way for it and I’ll often sacrifice to avoid it if it isn’t something serious.

  1. a.) What kind of role are you naturally inclined to take in a group? Why?

It depends. In a social group of my friends I am usually more go with the flow, but in work or school related group I will take on a more active leadership role, especially if I have a personal stake in the objective of the group. I enjoy being a leader, but also enjoy being a more withdrawn, quiet and observing role.

b.) If put in power, how do you behave? Why?

I don’t normally seek power, even though I sometimes think I subconsciously desire it. When I am in a leadership role, I generally try and understand the points of view of everyone involved and formulate a solution that best fits the needs of everyone. I can be decisive and good at delegation when the objective is clear, however, I struggle to inhabit this decisiveness in my own personal matters.

c.) Do you tend to struggle with others who have authority over you? Why?

Rarely. I respect authority as a rule and only question it when there is pure corruption and unethical, unjust behavior. I would never have a direct, open confrontation with someone who has authority over me. I sometimes think I could do a better job.

  1. What do you see or notice in others that most people don't?

I almost always view people as innately good, even if I personally don’t like them. I would say it’s rare for me to not understand where someone is coming from if they explain themselves to me. I think I’m generally defensive and skeptical when I first meet people, but warm up the more I get to know them, which is strange because I’ve been called very approachable in the past.

  1. Comment on your relationship with trust.

I used to consider myself a very trusting person, but I’ve come to realize I am very slow to trust and guarded, especially in romantic relationships. I am generally quicker to trust in friendships, but it still takes a while for me to truly let my guard down.

  1. Briefly: What religious and/or political beliefs do you have? Do you think they influenced your responses in this questionnaire?

The religious description that fits me best would be agnostic, I had a period of strong atheism and anti-Christian beliefs in mid-teens, but I’ve settled down a little. I am pretty far-left liberal, by US standards I would be considered a socialist, but I also have some pretty libertarian beliefs. I'm not sure if they influenced my responses, maybe.

What's something you are: a.) thankful you have b.) wish you could have? Why?

I’m thankful that I am alive, I guess. Also, I am trying to appreciate the quality of upbringing and opportunities I’ve had a lot more now that I’m living away from home. I really thankful for the relationship I’m currently in because she has taught me a lot about myself and relationships in general. I wish I had a sense of direction of what to do with my life and who I am, because I’m feeling very lost as to what I should do and who I am. I really struggle with knowing who I am and can’t find the words to describe myself to others when prompted.

3 years, 8 months agoLogiWan posted on Enneagram.
June 7, 2016

Asking others is not a preferable method of discovering your type. Read all of the type descriptions closely, and if that doesn't do it for you, nonjudgmentally examine your behavior over the next few days. It can be a process, but the only one who can really type you is you.

Edit: I'd recommend using the Enneagram Institute's book, The Wisdom of the Enneagram if you can get your hands on it.

Can anyone recommend a great book on overcoming jealousy in a relationship? [R]

4 years agoreloadfreak posted submission on relationship_advice.
Jan. 28, 2016

Anything related to building trust, banishing insecurity and overcoming jealousy from the male perspective.

4 years agoreloadfreak posted on relationship_advice.
Jan. 28, 2016

books on the different type of personality based on fears and desires. it will help you understand more about yourself at a subconscious level. why you act the way you are and it shows you how to grow spiritually from it.

A personality system with locked potential [R]

4 years, 5 months agodopefinder posted submission on Enneagram.
Sept. 4, 2015

Hi people, I bought "The Enneagram - A Journey of Self Discovery" a couple of weeks ago because I wanted to know more about the Enneagram. Even though I'm an atheist, I knew the Enneagram was managed by religious people, and I was "ok" with it, mostly. I wanted to give it a try to see if there could be something to be learned anyways. And I did find something useful. I'm a 6w5, and I liked the book, overall, but I'm highly frustrated with it. The second chapter was about "how Jesus is all of the types and how it didn't give in to compulsion". And all I found is attempts to shoehorn Jesus with inadequate examples. Fundamentally a chapter wasted in to fitting Jesus even where it doesn't. The last chapter was the most infurating though, as after all those good suggestions on how to develop and go towards integration, there were no real suggestion on how to do it except for "Well, let God do it/Pray God/Have faith". Which even for a christian I find it would be really a bad suggestion, especially after all that the Enneagram taught. If you're a christian and read the Enneagram, ultimately you don't need it because "you can just let God guide you" (so all of this book is useless after all, a christian could say "But I already believe in God" like Celebok the ISTP youtuber said), leading to let your life in another's hand instead of making your life better and fundamentally letting go of any responsibility for your own spiritual growth.

If you're a non-christian, you have a wonderful system which told you what your compulsion is, and where you should go, but not how to do it in practice. Which leads you to being lost on how to improve.

I don't know how many good books on the Enneagram are there for people like me, but it feels like the Enneagram is a wonderful personality system locked down by theology and a "bet and wait" attitude that doesn't allow you to take change your life in an active manner. Wasted potential.

Could someone give me some advice on what to do with Enneagram? I mean...I don't want to let it go.

4 years, 5 months agodopefinder posted on Enneagram.
Sept. 4, 2015

For a better book check out

It seems you started with a poor reading of the system. Only that. Jesus was an 8 most likely.

Good luck with your journey.

As a 4 how do I become more self confident and learn to be happy with myself? [R]

5 years, 6 months agorosedemai posted submission on Enneagram.
July 31, 2014
5 years, 6 months agorosedemai posted on Enneagram.
Aug. 1, 2014

I also find this one incredibly helpful.

As a four still working on the confident thing.

What it's like to be a 7 [R]

5 years, 11 months agourbster1 posted submission on Enneagram.
March 11, 2014

In general

I like being a Seven. I am generally happy and am able to turn around even the worst situation with a creative vision and the right attitude. Probably the word I overuse the most is “interesting.” If something is interesting, it is fun, and I love to have fun. Fun is the opposite of boredom, and boredom is the worst feeling there is. I would rather be in screaming pain than bored to tears. As a mechanism for staying away from boredom, I have developed the capacity to be captivated by the little joys all around me. Many of my peers pull out their phones during a quiet moment, and I’m certainly prone to that too, but I don’t need a phone to entertain me. I can get lost in a pattern in the clouds or on the wall, twirl my thumbs and think about how the little ridges feel against each other, watch people pass by and imagine up scenarios about them, or daydream ridiculous “what if” situations. I am the one in my group of friends who (sometimes literally) gets everyone else to stop and smell the roses.

The subjects that interest me most are political/legal philosophy, music, theology, language, economics, and psychology. If money and years of my life were unlimited, I would want to get degrees in each subject. My Kindle is full of books on all those subjects, most of which I haven’t read yet because I’m busy on the five or six books that I am reading at the moment. Sometimes I wish there were more than one of me, not so I could get more done, but so I could become more proficient. But honestly, even though I’m plenty smart (or maybe because of it), I tend to get frustrated and move on to something else once I plateau in my learning of a subject.

I’ve been diagnosed with ADHD, both as a child and as an adult, but I’m not sure how much of that is actual pathology and how much of it is just my personality. (An MRI technician in a medical study I volunteered for once told me she could see it in my brain “just a little bit.”) In spite of this, I have tended to do fine in school by taking classes that were interesting enough for me with teachers who were tolerant of the fact that I might have to knit or play solitaire during the lecture so I could listen better.

At work

Even though I have some proficiency in a ton of different subjects, I don’t feel like I am close to mastering anything so far at 29 years old. I have always been precocious, learning to read before I was 2 and finishing law school in the top of my class at the age of 23. Oddly though, I sometimes feel like it was all a fluke and I don’t deserve the success that has come my way because it was not that difficult to come by. After being one of the youngest to pass the California Bar Exam, I felt pretty aimless, because I hadn’t really thought out what I wanted to do right after school. I had supposed I wanted to be a politician later in life and had gone to school because I was interested in learning about law. But the aggression and one-sidedness of practicing law and being a politician never really appealed to me. I am much more interested in pursuing truth and justice through the right ideas. Now I am trying to reorient my career so I am more on the side of research, analysis, and education.

I have worked here and there, but got bored and started performing poorly when supervisors tried to put me in a box and keep me from exercising my diverse talents to bring success to my firm. For instance, when one employer decided to redo its website, I took my own time at home to learn web design and color theory, looking into what elements give a website an air of credibility and compel the viewer to take action in procuring the service advertised. I took these findings to my boss, who dismissed them and told me to focus on what I was hired for. I’ve been unemployed for several months now, not because there is a shortage of jobs I can do, but because every job I see looks so confining. My biggest fear when it comes to my career is getting trapped in a soulless or meaningless job in which success requires being so immersed that I have no mental energy to figure out a way to escape the misery.

It’s hard for me to just do as I’m told when I feel like I can find a way to do it better. I absolutely hate being rushed, pressured, or micromanaged. Now I’m learning to fit in better by observing more and talking less. I still have a lot to learn, but sometime in the future I will be able to synthesize my areas of interest in a novel way unique to me. My ideal job would give me the freedom to do so. But in order to have a job like that, I need to learn to be more organized and have better follow-through.

In Relationships

In various stages of life, I have had a wide circle of friends, one friend I spent all my time with, or a small tightly-knit circle of friends. I prefer the latter. I love to know my friends closely, and an intimate conversation is heaven on earth to me. But I tend to want a lot of interaction, so if I spend all my relational energy on one person, it can be overwhelming for them. Right now, I have close relationships with about four family members and four friends, and about thirty or so acquaintances that I talk to on occasion, and that is just perfect for me. Although I consider myself an extravert, I do require time to myself, ideally a little bit every day, to exercise my creativity or let my mind wander.

I tend not to offer up personal information, but to be completely open about it when asked. This gives some friendships a serendipitous vibe, because we would have just been acquaintances if they hadn’t happened to ask that one question that revealed our commonality. At my best, I am able to get outside my head for a while and ask those questions of others too. That has been a helpful quality as an attorney, as I can get useful information out of clients that nobody else thought to seek. But if I’m feeling insufficiently stimulated, I can have a tendency to go a bit narcissistic and start telling stories about myself too much. People generally like my stories because I’ve done more interesting things than most people, so I get away with it, but it’s a habit I’m working on changing.

I love a good debate, but only with people who don’t take it personally. I don’t really care who’s right or wrong either, as long as we both arrive at an answer that makes sense. Most times when I seem to be challenging a position, I am really only requesting that the person convince me. If they can make a rational argument, I am pretty open-minded to it. I’ve been told that my conversational style can be a little like a cross-examination. I don’t mean to be like that, but my curiosity gets the best of me. If someone asserts a position that conflicts with another fact I know, I just want to know how or whether it can be reconciled. It is important to me to be ideologically consistent across multiple disciplines, or my thought life would be chaos. I ask questions because I genuinely want to know the answer, and other people just infer a pretext. Also, people tend to think I am being sarcastic when in reality I am just achingly earnest. In discussion groups, I have to hold myself back or I will dominate the conversation.

I don’t have the typical Seven quality of getting bored with relationships. But if a person doesn’t do anything interesting with their time and doesn’t have much of an inner life, we don’t tend to become anything more than acquaintances in the first place. To avoid boredom, I like to continually learn new things about the person and share new experiences with them. When I am learning something, I want to share it with them, see what they think, and maybe have a fun little verbal sparring about it to sharpen my perception. To me, intellectual closeness and emotional intimacy are intertwined, and I like a healthy dose of both. Some friends are better at doing something together than having meaningful conversations. I tend to fall out of touch with those people once we no longer live in close proximity.

I married as a teenager, and got divorced this year. My husband was a Six who stopped making much of an effort to connect with me when he blamed me for the difficulties we encountered. I felt like this lack of connection was a violation of the intent of our marriage, and got aggressive in trying to get him to do the right thing in coming back to me emotionally (going toward One in my direction of stress), but his conflict-avoidant style made him withdraw even further, which drove my impulse to do even wilder things to try to bring him back. We probably would have divorced much sooner, but his Six loyalty and my religious upbringing had us holding on until it became absolutely destructive. Even so, we were separated for a couple of years before he filed for divorce. I have a lot of regrets about things I did wrong, but they seemed natural at the time.

Now I am in the early stages of a relationship with a Five. I love the talks we have, and he interests my mind to no end. He is also a great kisser and looks into my eyes with such tenderness. When we are together, I am able to be immersed in the moment fully and completely without distraction. With his Four wing, he is also very emotionally available, unlike my old stoic Six. My main difficulty at the moment is that my mind is racing with possibilities for the future, but he is taking it very slowly and deliberately. I know I need to hold myself back and be gentle with him so that he can progress on his own time. Also, we haven’t told our mutual friends of our relationship yet, so I feel like all my thoughts and feelings that I want to discuss are bottled up inside. I have been journaling a lot and writing song lyrics in order to express it somehow. His depth and insight blow my mind, and I find myself thinking about him all the time!

Inner Life

My brain is like having three browsers open with dozens of tabs among them. I’ve always got several ideas percolating in there. I think this is what makes me so good at seeing connections others miss, and envisioning possibilities for the future. This keeps me interested, and being interested keeps me happy. But I’m not always happy, even though friends see me that way. When the facts of my life don’t line up with how I want them to be, and any way out I can think of will take hard work or a long time, I tend to engage in some pretty serious escapism. That can come in the form of sleeping a lot, playing video games that make me feel powerful, drinking too much, procrastinating, overeating, or overindulging in media consumption. I have done all of that while unemployed, but then I will see my friends and feel upbeat again because they give me energy, so they never know anything is wrong. I find it difficult to talk about my struggles with friends because I want to inspire them, not bring them down or make them worry. I have found therapy very useful for sorting these things out. Even there, though, I tend to find a silver lining immediately after I express a problem. This may sound like a good thing, but it is a form of escapism as I am imagining the future reward of working through a problem without necessarily doing any of the draining tasks involved in getting there.

At times, I have had more emphasis on feelings than others. I can be very empathetic, even feeling physical pain as a result of another’s pain. But when it comes to my own emotional pain, I am pretty good at dissociating with anything that makes me feel sad or fearful, and that can cause kind of a paralysis where I’m not moving forward because I’m ignoring the problem. During intense difficulties like the ones in my marriage, I will think I have my feelings in check and then they will explode out of me. As scary as that is, I’d rather have that than feeling nothing, which has happened when I dissociated way too effectively. These days, I try to look at things objectively so that I can have feelings about them but not allow them to completely take over. I’ve been told that I’m unique for a woman in that I am able to subject my emotions to rationality. I like to not only feel my feelings, but understand them as well. I never quite know how to answer when asked if I tend to go with my heart or my head, because a little reflection will usually line them up.

When I’m engaged in something, I have no problem with extended periods of focus, but my lack of focus on things that I don’t want to do can be frustrating. How can I be a revolutionary visionary if I can’t get my taxes done on time? I combat this by having multiple stimuli so that the task brings less deprivation. When I was in school trying to study the more boring subjects, I would sit on the beach watching the surfers, sipping coffee, and listening to music—sometimes playing two different genres of music at the same time. Although it seems crazy, it worked quite well for me.

I can have a hard time making a decision when doing so cuts off other opportunities. I am not averse to risk or change, but I am averse to loss. I especially hate when I did something that felt like work (took time and effort I could have spent on something interesting) and then it was all for nothing. They say deprivation is a Seven’s greatest fear, and that definitely rings true for me. Ironically, this can lead to impulsivity, as I just want to make any old decision and get it over with so I can enjoy myself again. I’ve ended up broke abroad before with this attitude, but I never doubted that I would pull through somehow, and I did.

Being enthusiastic about life’s possibilities and spreading that enthusiasm to others is the best part of being a Seven. I genuinely enjoy life, even when the circumstances aren’t so good, because my optimism is a self-fulfilling prophecy. I have no idea where I will be in the next season, but I have no doubt that my drive to explore will make my life epic.

Edit: AMA, of course. Also I'm not sure if I'm a 7w6 or 7w8 and would welcome any insight.

5 years, 11 months agourbster1 posted on Enneagram.
March 18, 2014

In that book, that is all. However from The Wisdom of the Enneagram, it says this:

7w8: The Realist

Healthy People of this subtype truly enjoy the world and are "materialistic" in the broadest sense of the word. They combine quickness with drive, often leading to material success and positions of power and prominence. They are determined to get what they want from life; they think strategically and can rapidly organize their internal and external resources in pursuit of their desires. They are earthy, practical, and tough-minded. Their sense of humor expresses itself in a biting wit and a taste for the outrageous.

Average People of this subtype apply their energies in many directions, multitasking or even "multicareering." They can be aggressive and have the willpower and drive to take care of their own needs. They tend to be more workaholic than the other subtype, coming from the strong desire to accumulate possessions and experiences. ("I'm worth it!") Their focus is more on generating activities than on connecting with people. Hence they tend to be pragmatic about relationships—looking for a partner, not a romantic fantasy figure. They are not afraid to be alone and are clear about their own expectations and how much they will tolerate. Directness can verge on bluntness and on pushing people out of the way to get what they want. They can be jaded and callous, in contrast to the childish hyperenthusiasm of the 6-wing.

What's up Wednesday! [R]

6 years, 5 months agomono_pete posted submission on stopdrinking.
Sept. 4, 2013

Hey everyone it's Wednesday that means the week's half over! How's it been going? Share your triumphs, struggles, or just general chat!

Triumph: Spoke to my sponsor about an amend that was weighing on me. In his opinion I did nothing wrong, and bringing it up may hurt the person more than help. I feel pretty relieved.

Struggle: Personal struggles with a member in AA. I've tried to be friends with them over the last year, but it's time to accept I don't like being around them.

General chat: Goodbye Summer, we hardly knew ye.

Have a great 24 hours folks!

6 years, 5 months agomono_pete posted on stopdrinking.
Sept. 4, 2013

There's a book, The Wisdom of the Enneagram, if you want to dive deep. There's some insight into different types and how they may relate or have difficulty doing so. It's been a long time since I read any of this, but for me, like anything else, it was a kind of tool that I could use to ask questions and frame stuff (as opposed to revealing some ultimate truth). I've approached tarot in a similar way--as a tool for reflection and meditation.