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When I was a teenager, I lived for the silly quizzes in teen magazines. I remember one of them even had a whole issue of quizzes! It was the best thing ever! See, I was a teen before the internet completely took off and before Buzzfeed was a thing. I had to rely on magazines to tell me what summer trend was perfect for me or what kind of best friend I was.
As an adult, these silly quizzes were replaced with personality tests. Oh, yeah! Am I an introvert or an extrovert? What’s my color or my gemstone? What animal am I? All. The. Tests! (For the record, I am an introverted, yellow-green, pearl horse.)
I feel like the problem with many of these tests is that some circles assign a hierarchy of types. One is ideal and if that’s not you, YOU ARE flawed. And as you can see, I’m definitely not what many would consider ideal.
When I first heard about the Enneagram it was totally over my head. Sometimes I decide I have enough info in my brain and there is no room to learn anything new. For months, I proclaimed how much I hated the Enneagram! I wanted to love it, but I couldn’t.
I had taken the tests, even paid for a test! They were inconclusive. I tested exactly equally a 6 and 9 with 5 right behind them. Everyone else knew their number (and their wing! What?) without a doubt and I was waffling and confused!
I don’t remember exactly what changed it for me, but I know I was giving it another stab and it hit me, I was a 6! I. was. a. SIX!!! Finally!
Every single description resonated with me. I felt like someone had walked into my life and found out my inner feelings, thoughts, and….no, get out! It was too real but it was then that I fell hard in love with the Enneagram.
I have long said that I felt like personality tests were just a way to excuse your poor behavior. But the Enneagram is not that way! It tells you what your type looks like when you’re healthy and also when you’re stressed. So your behavior is understood but not excused.
I’m not exaggerating when I say this has changed my life! I had validation for my feelings but also a direction to move to improve. As a 6, I know that I want to be safe and secure (which is something I identified a few years ago even before knowing my number!). I also know that when I am doing well I will have some qualities that healthy 9’s have. My anxiety will be replaced with being at peace. And I know when I’m stressed I’ll take that anxiety and multiply it by an unhealthy 3’s feelings of worthlessness.
The Enneagram focuses on your motivations more than just your actions. This has helped me really understand myself. Rather than focus on fears and anxiety, I now recognize that I am just searching to feel safe and secure. I don’t have to beat myself up when fear stops me in my tracks, instead, I can identify what would help me feel safer, do that, and then move forward tackling whatever is scaring me! I also know that being a 6 means I want input from those I love. This explains why I spend a lot of time asking for advice and running ideas past people before I jump (I want to feel good and safe, see?). That’s also why as soon as I’m done writing this, I’m gonna send it to my bestie before I hit publish!
Gone are the feelings of being weird and alone. Instead, I just feel like a 6 and I know there are lots of other people out there feeling just like I do! I also don’t feel like being a 6 is any better or worse than any other number. Being a six comes with gifts and struggles just like every other number.
It Takes Us ALL!
And here’s the big secret, it takes ALL of us to make this world work! The Enneagram illustration itself shows us how interconnected we all are! What would the world be like if there weren’t people like me questioning every decision, thinking through every possible scenario, and making sure everyone is safe? Or what would happen if we didn’t have 2’s to make sure we’re all taken care of and happy? Or 7’s to keep us spontaneous and loving life? It takes ALL of us!
So if you hang around here long, you’re likely to hear more about the Enneagram. I’m not an expert yet but we can learn together!
Can I have your number?
Do you know your number? If not, I do still suggest taking a test, this free one will do! Then once you have 2 or 3 top ones, read about them a lot. One day, it will hit you square in the eyes! You will feel exposed and vulnerable but then you will feel exhilarated and understood! Really!
Tell me below what your number is or if you don’t know, let’s chat and see if we can figure it out so your life can be changed too!