How & Why to start learning the Enneagram
A few years ago, I was driving with my friend Liz and explaining some challenges in my marriage. She listened and nodded and saw how upset I was. Eventually she kindly asked, “ Do you know what type he is?”
I knew she was an AVID student of Enneagram, she was always referring to it, but honestly, I had 2 small kids, a thriving yoga studio and NO time to learn a whole new thing. So prior to this car conversation I had always kind of turned away from this strange word, not knowing what it was or why I needed it in my life.
Fast forward to the day in the car, I was at the end of my rope with my husband and out of ideas on how to make it better. I didn’t know what type he was, but told her that day, I was going to go home, get a book and learn more.
That’s when I started studying and reading books- NOT FOR ME, but for him. FOR US.
Now, years later, I acknowledge this incredible system with being a huge part of what gave me clarity, courage, common language and a path to my husband and marriage in a way I had NEVER had before. A whole new understanding of who he is, who I am, and how that hurts us and helps us.
Now, I use the typology in my friendships and with my children, in how I see the world, use my strengths and truly honor the core of who I am which allows me to do the same for others.
It is a divine gift.
So many have asked about this wonderful holistic personality system that I talk about and study. I don’t study Enneagram bc I want to change who I am, it’s the opposite, really. It is all of our rights to live more fully into who we are , in all our relationships. I study Enneagram because there are people I love who I want to understand and there are difficulties and complications in relationships that the mind alone cannot figure out.
Here’s a really basic guide on how I recommend people get started with learning this dynamic system. Please understand, learning the Enneagram takes time. Study yourself, follow the basics below, and stay close to the wisdom and let it be part of your self- care, over time.
The Enneagram gives me a way to compassion, a way to reconciliation, a way to love.
Let me know how it goes for you.
- Take the Rheti. ******Please note, this is not the end all, be all to your type or the definitive answer. The quiz does not determine the whole depth of your life or your history or your past, it is just en entry way to get you common language, understanding and a place to start learning the patterns of the types and to give you a place to start. Your true type is the deepest core of who you are and if you have been living behind a mask or had to create a persona to survive, it may take time to really uncover the truth of who you are. I have studied Enneagram since 2014 and I have taken it once a year and my “ Type” has changed ON THE TEST, BUT in my real life- I KNOW my type that has always been my type, a source of strength and weakness. Ironically, my type is not even in the top 3 when I take the Rheti now! But my “ wings” and “subtypes” ( dont’ worry about that right now) ARE in the top 3. So I keep an eye on those versions of my healthy and unhealthy as well.
2. Once you have your RHETI results, READ them all. And then sign up for Enneathoughts to give you a daily hit of wisdom and advice. This is where you can start to ask yourself, is this me? Do I do this? Have I done this in the past? What does this feel like? Then you can get closer to knowing your true type and how that is playing out in your life. Get these for at least 3 months.
3.Listen to the Enneagram Panels Podcast now called the Art of Growth, which will give you an awesome overview of each type by sharing a panel of people who all are that type and how the types show up in real life. Yes, you can start with your type but then, listen to them all so you can see if you hear yourself in any of the other panels or the people you love. It’s important to understand the basics of all the types, since we have all of them inside of us as well. Go back to old episodes, there are plenty of gems! I also enjoy the Typology podcast as well.
4. This is the essential Enneagram book, with all that you need to study your type, people you love and to learn your growth suggestions and paths to balance and harmony.
Enneagram is growing so fast now! I LOVE IT! there are loads more podcasts and books that you can go to ( even a book and test for kids and parents) but start slow and enjoy the deep dive.
THAT’S IT! Start there and see what happens, shoot me an email and share with me, email@example.com
Lastly, if you do want a book to support your family, my favorite is this one. It’s easy to read, full of practical tips and charts and just a great guide for all who are interested. My husband has read this one, and my kids can too.
Enjoy your studies and many blessings to you-