Archive for February 1st, 2009

The Wisdom of the Enneagram

Have you ever played with the Enneagram?  It’s basically a personality profile, with the numbers 1-9, for instance, I’m a 7 with a 6 wing.  (sevens can either have 6 or 8 wings, does that make sense?

Well, it’s kind of creepy how textbook my personality is.  I am Personality type 7 is called the Enthusiast, which is one of my favorite words.  I get really enthusiast about most everything.  The book says that sevens are “enthusiastic about almost anything that catches their attention.  They approach life with curiosity, optimism, and a sense of adventure like a kid in a candy store  who looks at the world in wide eyed rapt anticipation of all the good things they are about to experience. …They have a quality best described by the Yiddish word chutzpah – a kind of brash nerviness.”  Tonight I was really enthusiastic about the 3-D glasses for the super bowl commercial.  My enthusiasm often leads to disappointment, i.e. the 3-D glasses and the lame commercial.

The Enthusiast is “the busy, fun-loving type: spontaneous, versatile, acquisitive, scattered.”

I thought this was interesting – “Sevens deal with anxiety in two ways.  First, they try to keep their minds busy all of the time.  As long as they can keep their minds occupied, especially with projects and positive ideas for the future, they can, to some extent, keep anxiety and negative feelings out of their conscious awareness.”

In the margin it says – “I still haven’t figure out what I want to be when I grow up.”

Ahh, and this – “Furthermore, as sevens speed up their pursuit of whatever seems to offer freedom and satisfaction, they tend to make worse choices, and they are less able to be satisfied because everything is experienced indirectly, through the dense filter of their fast paced mental activity. ”

But then it goes on to say that sevens are extremely optimistic, exuberant and upbeat people, and that when balanced, their joy and enthusiasm  for life naturally affects everyone around them.

Gah, I know y’all are tired of this, and some of the other things this books says are so dead on and not positive, it sort of makes me want to not read it anymore.  But it’s interesting, because if the basic pattern is true, I guess the bad parts are also things to think about.

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