Know Thyself Part 2: Enneagrams and Coping with Your Personality

woman taking photo through textured glassoriginally published in Limestone Post

These days, it seems everybody has advice on how to live better and be more successful. Much of this “help” seems centered on correcting something about ourselves or acquiring some book, drink, diet, or machine to “fix” our problems. But, in this series, we will explore accessible, thought-provoking ways to cultivate a deeper sense of ease and clarity of purpose by drawing from methods rooted in both scientific and spiritual traditions from East to West. Click here to learn more about goals, values, and intentions by reading Part 1.

How we cope with the world reveals as much about our personalities as it reveals about the things we value in our lives. Our personalities comprise a complicated mix of genetics, experiences, emotions, values, and the ways in which we perceive and process the world around us.

In this second installment of “Know Thyself,” we will use a personality test called the Enneagram (pronounced IN-ee-uh-gram) to explore the ways in which we filter our values through the lenses of our personalities. Variations of the test’s geometric symbol date back to Plato, and its arithmological influence is seen in medieval Judeo, Sufi, and Christian philosophies. Today, the Enneagram has a broader appeal as a tool for recognizing and understanding our personality type, interrupting conditioned patterns of behavior, and taking advantage of our inherent strengths. Read on. . . 


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