What is the Enneagram?

The Enneagram is an ancient personality typing system which can not only help us see ourselves and others more clearly, but also provides pathways for personal, spiritual, and relational growth. The word Enneagram comes from the combination of the Greek words ennea meaning 9 and gram meaning drawing or figure.  The 9 points on the drawing represent 9 basic personality types. Although individuals will have qualities from all the 9 types, one Enneagram style or type will usually surface as the primary. A persons primary Enneagram type can usually be identified by engaging with mindful reflection through a combination of learning methods. For example, you can read type descriptions or an introductory book on the Enneagram (recommended reading list here), listen to podcasts about the Enneagram, (try these!) attend an introductory Enneagram workshop or having an Enneagram typing session with a trained professional (Schedule a workshop or Enneagram coaching session here).

Why do I want to know about the Enneagram?

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The Enneagram is unique as a tool for spiritual growth and formation because unlike other personality typing systems it is not meant to be a static means of sorting psychological preferences or assigning fixed categories of being. The Enneagram when paired with Christian spirituality invites recognition of where we have been held in the grip of unconscious patterns and helps wake us up to our authentic selves. It gives us an opportunity to learn about blind spots and hidden motivations that keep us stuck in old patterns of thinking, feeling, and behaving. We become more able to actively participate in our faith journey when we become more self-aware. John Calvin said, “without knowledge of self, there is no knowledge of God.” Learning about the Enneagram allows us a window into understanding the feelings and behaviors of others, helping to build compassion and ease conflicts. Interested in learning more? I would love to discuss how learning about the Enneagram can improve your relationships and help you to know yourself and God more fully.