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The Enneagram

The Enneagram is a system of nine basic personality types. Although every person falls into one of the nine types, there are many possible variations within each type. The Enneagram holds a great deal of information regarding the strengths and challenges of each type, how each tends to see the world and themselves, and the motivations of each. It is an important tool for improving our relationships with family, friends, co-workers and ourselves.


The exact origin of the Enneagram is not known however, its roots go back many centuries to Sufi mysticism. It was introduced to Europe by the Russian teacher Gurgjieff and then taught in Latin America by Ichazzo.The study of The Enneagram was then brought to the United States by Claudio Naranjo, a Chilean psychiatrist and Gestalt therapist, in the 1960's. Subsequent and significant contributors to the study of the Enneagram, in the United States, include Helen Palmer and Don Richard Riso and Russ Hudson.


I consider the Enneagram to be extremely imporant because our Enneagram type serves as our ego or personality structure, it is the operating system with which we navigate the world around us. Our "Type" is the lens through which we see ourselves and experience the world. Because this process is unconscious and automatic, most of us believe that this operating system is truly who we are. Difficulties arise because this "programming" has some inherent bugs in it and often limits us from knowing our true identity and reaching our full potential. I work with a technique known as The Essence Process that enables clients identify and upgrade the patterns in their Enneagram programming that are causing them mental,emotional, and/or physical pain and distress.

A Brief Description of the Nine Types*

Type 1- The Perfectionist/Reformer- realistic, conscientious, and principled, strive to live up to their high ideals


Type 2-The Helper/Lover- warm, concerned, nurturing, and sensitive to others' needs


Type 3-The Achiever/Performer- optimistic, self-assured, goal oriented, creative, productive, successful


Type 4-The Tragic Romantic/Creative Individualist-sensitive, warm, perceptive, creative, emotionally deep, loving from the heart


Type 5-The Observer/Thinker- has a need for knowledge, introverted, curious, analytical, rational, and insightful


Type 6-The Security Seeker/Questioner- responsible, trustworthy, value loyalty to family, friends, groups, and causes, fight for the underdog, make good teachers


Type 7-The Epicure/Adventurer- fun, energetic, lively, optimistic, want options and choices, love variety


Type 8-The Boss/Leader- direct, self reliant, self-confident, protective, leaders


Type 9-Peacemaker/Mediator- receptive, good-natured, supportive, seeking union with others

There is no heirarchy among the nine Enneagram types. Each has its own strengths, weaknesses, motivations and perceptions. Additionally, each is influenced by its position on the circle and the types surrounding and corresponding to it. One's experiences in his/her family of origin also have an influence on how they are affected by their type.

There is no heirarchy among the nine Enneagram types. Each has its own strengths, weaknesses, motivations and perceptions. Additionally, each is influenced by its position on the circle and the types surrounding and corresponding to it. One's experiences in his/her family of origin also have an influence on how they are affected by their type.

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There are several online tests you can take to find your Enneagram Type. It is important that, when answering the questions, you answer as you would have when you were in your early teens so that your responses will be accurate. You can click on the links below to find your Type.


Eclectic Energies Enneagram Test


The Riso-Hudson Type Indicator 2.0


*Sources:

The Enneagram Made Easy by Baron Renee & Wagele Elizabeth 1994

Limiting Identities Handbook by Judith Swack 1999

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