Enneagram 2.0 podcast

03. I Know my Type. Now What?

 

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Beatrice

Hello, and welcome to the Enneagram 2.0 podcast. I’m Beatrice Chestnut.

 

Uranio

And I’m Uranio Paes.

 

Beatrice

And today we’re talking about?

 

Jingle

What is the topic today?

 

Beatrice

What to do once you know your type.

 

Uranio

Yeah, that’s very important. Grateful to be talking about this. What about you Bea?

 

Beatrice

Yes, I encounter people all the time who say to me, you know, I learned my type. But now what do I do?

 

Uranio

Yeah, I also see many people saying that. But I also see people who say the opposite, like “Oh, I found my type and that changed my life.” And I don’t like that. Because finding out what you’re type is may bring you a an “aha” moment, but not transformation. After knowing your type, you need to commit to sets of practices and know exactly which are the most important ones. And then, after doing a little bit of hard work, you will perhaps get to a point when you can say you have been transformed.

 

Beatrice

So what I hear you saying is that finding out what your type is, is really the beginning of a process, not the end or not an end in itself.

 

Uranio

Thank you for saying this. That’s what I meant.

 

Beatrice

Because when you find your type, if you just stop there, then the enneagram becomes just about diagnosis or description. It’s easy for it to become a defense. As in, you know, “Well I’m a two, of course I did that. You just have to get over it and realize who I am”. When really, we’re much more than our type and the enneagram is all about growth.

 

Uranio

Yeah, we can feel very interested, attracted to the descriptions. But it’s actually even more than what you said, I think Bea. Because when we find out our types, our mind works in a way that we put ourselves in a box even further. It’s not the enneagram, it’s any typology. And the enneagram is driven, as our beloved teacher David Daniels used to say, it’s not to put anyone in the box. It’s for us to get out of the box that we have already put ourselves in. Right?! So, the idea is not to stereotype and see that it’s not because you’ve just learned what your type is, that you’ll start to do even more of that or ask people “Now you need to understand me. It’s because I’m a two or five”. That would be justifying. You’re saying, “This is just the way I am, and I’m not going to change.” When the enneagram is really all about change. For better, not for worse.

 

Beatrice

Yes. Maybe worse temporarily, sometimes.

 

Uranio

But it’s not really worse. It’s just an impression that it’s worse. It’s hard. Sometimes it’s not the thing that makes us happy to find out our patterns.

 

Beatrice

it can be a vulnerable experience to find out your type. And it makes sense that some people might want to run away from that.

 

Uranio

Or get distracted by the shallower parts of enneagram descriptions of type.

 

Beatrice

Right. It can become a parlor game or something people play with. And actually, the enneagram is a very powerful system that can facilitate a lot of personal growth. But we do need to learn to use it the right ways. And we need to be motivated to really grow.

 

Uranio

Yeah. And on the other hand, it doesn’t need to be boring. Like, after knowing what our type is, the work to be done doesn’t need to be boring. It can be engaging, right?! Because it’s hard enough in itself. So, it’s also nice to make it a little funnier, for instance, doing it with other people.

 

Beatrice

Sure, exactly. I once told a friend of mine in graduate school about the enneagram and she loved it. She used to say I love talking about it. It’s just fun to talk about. But of course, talking about it is just one level of really putting it to use in your life. So what do you think some people can do if they have learned their type and they want to start to use the enneagram in a sincere way to develop themselves? What are the things they need to do first, to really use it right?

 

Uranio

Well, I think that understanding the type patterns in the right way is essential as a first step.

 

Beatrice

Yeah, I like it when people say that the enneagram is a sense making framework. We can use it to help make sense of the things that we observe in ourselves. Because the main method is self-observation. And by self-observation, we mean something really specific, right? Like really watching everything you do all the time. To the point where you learn new things about what you’re doing in the moment.

 

Uranio

Yeah, once I had a student at a workshop, who was an engineer, and he said that he found out that the enneagram descriptions were like user manuals for the nine types of people.

 

Beatrice

Exactly. You got your user manual.

 

Uranio

So, finding out your main patterns is very critical. And this is the reason why you and I really try to stick to what is most important to be understood about each type. And we usually talk about the type’s passion, the type’s fixation, or the attention pattern, and not much more. If we talk about too much, we will lose the necessary focus on what to work on. Now, when we know those essential core parts to observe, then we need to see the multiple ways that they play out in our lives, both directly and indirectly. Do you agree with this? What’s your take?

 

Beatrice

I do, I think that we need to start with the basics. When we’re using the enneagram, we need to use it to help us know, what do we pay attention to when we’re developing what they call an inner observer. When we self-observe, we’re really studying ourselves in an interesting way. Just like scientists study the natural world. Part of using the enneagram is using it as a guide to study yourself to the point where you know more and more consciously what you’re doing, and you make more of your unconscious patterns conscious.

 

Uranio

So, I love when you say in different courses that we teach together that the first task is developing the inner observer or the self-observation skill, right? Or the observant eye as Gurdjieff used to call it. Would you mind talking a little more about that on how it works? What specifically people could do?

 

Beatrice

Sure, I think this is one of the things I like most about the enneagram, is the way it gives us a way to both conceptualize and actually do the work of self-observation. So, the way I think of it is sort of like, you need to go to the gym and lift weights if you want to make your arm stronger. And if you want to make the inner observer stronger, you practice meditation, you practice mindfulness, you practice observing yourself, then doing the things that you do every day. So just noticing more. when I was a psychotherapist, I used to give a first homework task to new clients, a task of noticing, you know, watch what you do and start to study yourself and learn. So, you see, you know what you’re doing in a whole new way. And I think the enneagram is really good as a guide for self-observation, telling us what to look for. Because if you start from nothing, just sort of trying to observe yourself, you know, you’ll be doing some good mindfulness, but you may not be really knowing what to look for. And it can take you a while. So, in a way I think of the enneagram is kind of a shortcut to understanding yourself in a more efficient way.

 

Uranio

Right. And soon, during this podcast, we’re going to talk about what to look for at each type. But first, I think it’s important that we differentiate between self-observing and self-criticizing.

 

Beatrice

Oh, good, yes.

 

Uranio

Because many people who come to know the enneagram patterns, when they find out their own type, they start a very damaging process of self-blaming.

 

Beatrice

It’s self-observation without self-judgment, that’s really key. And sometimes I think we forget to say that, but it needs to be neutral. That’s why the inner witness, as they call it, or the internal self-observer is, by definition, nonjudgmental. So, it’s a kind of neutral witness saying, watching what you do, so that the you that is observing and the you that is actually doing what you do, are two separate things inside yourself. And as you build the muscle of the inner witness, you develop more and more of an ability to truly observe yourself from a slight distance. And in that space between the part of you that’s observing, and the part of you that’s just doing or thinking or feeling is the space in which you have to make a different choice at one point. And that’s when you start becoming more conscious, and not more mechanical. When we’re in our type pattern, we just do the same thing we do all the time, without really seeing that we’re repeating ourselves, until we look. And then we can sometimes realize, wow, I always pay attention to this, or I always get angry about this, or I always avoid feeling sad about this. And once we start recognizing that we’re doing, we can make a lot of progress on our growth path.

 

Uranio

Yes, so if you, who’s listening to us right now, are familiar with meditation techniques, then you will know that you observe your thoughts, your emotions, and your sensations, without fighting against them. You will also know that you need to work on relaxation, acceptance and non judgement. And this is all that is included in the self-observation method that we are talking about. So, the idea is to really witness your patterns playing out and don’t even try to contain them, at first, just see them. Because they’re too strong in the beginning, if we go completely against them, or if we try to change all of a sudden, you know, personality will react against that. A little bit like what psychologists call abreaction. But it’s slightly different than that. And that means that the personality will claim her space back.

 

Beatrice

Right. Another way to say it is, you know, when we’re in personality, a lot of our habits are mechanical. Right? When you press a certain button, a certain person reacts a certain way. So, getting less mechanical, involves watching ourselves, understanding what we do, starting to understand why we do what we do, and building that ability to observe yourself, and when you’re ready, to make a different choice. But I think what you’re saying is really important, we can’t change too quickly, really, because as Gurdjieff said, and Gurdjieff is one of the mystical teachers behind the enneagram, he would say, don’t try to change what you do too quickly, just self-observe. Because if you try to change something, another part of the machine that is you will go out of whack. So, you need to be able to recognize what’s going on with the person and sort of time what your interventions are.

 

Uranio

And he also said something funny, but smart, he said that we need to do things differently for the sake of transformation. But after a while, before personality starts fighting against your change, you allow personality to restructure and give it a treat. So, deal with personality like you deal with your pet. Give it a treat, and say “Now you can reestablish, dear personality. And by the way, next time I do the self-observation work, allow me to stay for five more minutes”.

 

Beatrice

Right, because our personality is a defensive self-structure. But it also interestingly, resists change when we try to grow and change our personality. You know, it asserts Itself, it wants to stay in power in a way. And so, we may not recognize what we all need to do to both respect personality as the defense system that helped us survive, but also challenge it at the right moments.

 

Uranio

Yeah. So, identify the main patterns, observe them in action in subtleties, then self-observe, negotiate with personality. What else Bea? What else comes right after finding out what our enneagram type is?

 

Beatrice

Well, you know, I think there’s a whole list of things that you can do after you find your enneagram type. And I think we could probably put them in a list of priorities from simplest to more complicated. So, it depends on where you are in your path, how long you’ve known the enneagram, if you’re just new.

 

Uranio

Or someone can have been doing inner work before knowing the enneagram, and it’s perfectly valid to do inner work without knowing the enneagram. The enneagram is not completely essential. It’s more like a booster for inner work, and it’s a shortcut.

 

Beatrice

Yeah, exactly. But I think after observing yourself, sometimes I think the enneagram can help you get a window into why you do what you do. That’s kind of a step further, it’s sort of what I did as a psychotherapist, what you might do if you decide to go to therapy, things like that. But I think there’s a whole list of things you could do, you could start getting in touch with emotions you tend to avoid being in touch with. So that might be looking at emotional patterns.

 

Uranio

Because there is a pattern per type and per subtype, which is something we’re going to talk about in the future here on our podcast. So, you need to know how specifically emotions play out for you. If you are more in touch with them, or less so.

 

Beatrice

Right, and you may be in touch with one emotion, but not in touch with a different emotion. And one of the things the enneagram helps us with is see and notice and understand those patterns.

 

Uranio

But why do you think it’s important to do emotional work? After knowing your type? Why emotions?

 

Beatrice

Well, I think in some ways, we get really stuck, when we aren’t really in touch with our own emotion, we may just be going through the emotions and not really be putting all our energy into growth. But putting some energy into avoiding our emotions.

 

Uranio

Yes, I agree with you again. And I think that the emotional center of intelligence needs to be engaged as soon as possible after we find out our type, because it has a very central position, if I can say that, in our psyche. And dealing with emotional development is important for all of us who are engaging with inner work in the beginning, and it has to do with psychological development. And it seems really important, right Bea?

 

Beatrice

Right, definitely. We need to make sure that we have access to our emotions. Because unconsciously, we might avoid anger, we might avoid being aware of our fear or sadness. And to the extent that we do that, we’re kind of avoiding being conscious of our full self. So, it’s important to do that. Also, emotion, when we’re conscious of it, helps integrate the different parts of our brain. It helps us stop expanding energy working against ourselves by not being aware of certain emotions, and almost stifling our emotional energy, to allowing ourselves to welcome and allow what we naturally feel. And so, I think emotions are central and being able to have access to all the basic emotions is very important.

 

Uranio

Yeah, I think that it’s useful to understand that each of the nine types of personalities represent the specific ways we limit the use of our hearts and minds. So, it’s our specific strategy to use more some ways of being and feeling in the world, and not the other ones. So, doing emotional work means actually going beyond what our pattern is. into, you know, bigger spectrum of emotional experiences. And then eventually, we will need to do the same with the head.

 

Beatrice

Yeah, exactly. I think being healthy means being in touch with all our emotions, it means, you know, like you say, the next thing being aware of our mental patterns, which can mean core beliefs that we hold, often beliefs that aren’t true, that are associated with our personality type. But I think another really key thing that might be good to talk about is blind spots. Because I think one of the things that enneagram is really, really good at, in almost a way that’s kind of miraculous, and this is to me, one of the things that makes the enneagram so powerful, is it really accurately defines what are the blind spots of the nine types. And the problem with blind spots is we don’t know what we don’t know. And the reason why it’s so important to understand blind spots is just because if we’re not conscious of something it doesn’t mean it doesn’t drive us and have an impact on others. Oftentimes, other people can see things about us that we can’t see. And those things get in the way of relationships, they make us stay unconscious. So, I think being with blind spots is a really important piece of work that the enneagram can help with, whether it’s early on in your work with the enneagram or even later as you use it to develop, you know, over a period of time.

 

Uranio

And we’ll also talk about some of the blind spots for each of the nine types. But one thing that helps us be in touch with what we don’t see is to ask for feedback from others. And I mean, after we know what our type is, we might, for instance, provide a short description of what we have just found out about ourselves and ask people to tell us about how, you know, they see that in us.

 

Beatrice

Yes, because I think we all can get defensive easily around feedback, it can be hard to know what people really think about us. But we need feedback, especially around our blind spots. Because as Naranjo, one of the main authors behind the enneagram types says, we’re blind to the degree that we think ourselves to be not blind. We’re blind to the degree that we think ourselves free and free of blind spots. So, I wonder if it would be good to go through the nine types and talk a little bit about some of the main patterns to self-observe, some of the main emotions to be aware of, maybe a couple of blind spots and something about the growth path? What do you think?

 

Uranio

Yeah, let’s just start with type eight as we usually do.

 

Beatrice

Okay, sounds good. Talking about the body types first.

 

Uranio

Yes, the body triad or the instinctual triad, starting with type eight.

 

Jingle

Type eight.

 

Beatrice

So, what would you say are some of the main patterns that eights should be aware of?

 

Uranio

Well, first one for me is to see how they expend energy and become excessive. Sometimes in words, sometimes in gestures, sometimes simply, you know, rushing through life and trying to be actually larger than life. This is one pattern, what would you add?

 

Beatrice

This may be a little bit advanced, but I think it’s so core, it makes sense to mention it first. And to start to be aware of how they may overdo their strength, sort of taking on a lot, working really hard, and not be very aware of their weaknesses or their vulnerability. I think at the core of the type eight personality is a pattern of denying vulnerability and weakness and thinking it’s a bad thing, and then overcompensating through being powerful and strong. And to the degree that an eight is not aware of their vulnerable emotions, their softer side, they can overdo their power in ways that get them in trouble or they can not realize their impact on others.

 

Uranio

So, the excess that we were talking about which sometimes the enneagram calls lust, is a consequence of not making oneself vulnerable. Now, by vulnerable, a few things that we mean are feeling fear, feeling sadness, feeling hurt, feeling tired, feeling insecure, lack of self confidence in general.

 

Beatrice

Right, all of internal emotional patterns, right?

 

Uranio

Even inferiority complex.

 

Beatrice

Exactly. Eights can be really out of touch with all these emotional experiences. And they can be much more aware of being strong, expressing assertiveness, being direct with people, wanting to take on big challenges, and sometimes expressing anger. Eights tend to have an easier time with anger, they often say they experience it as energy. It can energize them, and they can get angry at someone and then it goes away. They know they don’t dwell on their anger; they can express it and then it’s over.

 

Uranio

Right. And then also they don’t find it easy to see the impact they have on others. They’re always going to the next thing and being very concrete, objective. And they don’t see that some people feel not too easy with how they communicated or what they said and in what situation.

 

Beatrice

Right, right, right. Not being in touch with vulnerability sometimes means not being aware of how they come across. Because they may be just asserting themselves and not really recognizing that they’re overdoing something, for instance. And I think we’re already sort of naming the blind spot and the growth path, right? it can be pretty straightforward for eights, the more they get in touch with their vulnerable feelings, softer emotions, their sensitivity to some degree. We often say that eights are, you know, they can look very tough but they’re marshmallows inside. They have really big hearts. They tend to be very generous. They tend to care a lot about people, but sometimes because they’re not in touch with their more vulnerable feelings. They may not express their sensitivity. So, people may not understand that they have a softer side.

 

Uranio

Yeah. So, noticing that softer side, observing the reactivity against showing it to other people, and then finding out one or two people that you will be willing to show that vulnerable side a little more to them. And having moments when you’re going to do that. Counter instinctively.

 

Beatrice

Yes. I think going against these patterns needs to happen after self-observation. And step by step.

 

Uranio

Yes, like 10 minutes per day, or two minutes.

 

Beatrice

Or like you say, with one or two people that you really trust.

 

Uranio

Right, right. Anything else about eights?

 

Beatrice

I think that’s good.

 

Jingle

Type nine.

 

Uranio

Good. So, what about nine?

 

Beatrice

So, I think some of the key patterns for nines to self-observe are noticing how they avoid conflict, and noticing what that’s about. Oftentimes, nines will believe that if there’s a conflict with someone, the relationship will be destroyed. Or there will be a separation that occurs that will never be repaired. And that’s, of course, the fear that’s underlying the avoidance of conflict. But for nines, it can just feel like I’m just trying to stay comfortable. I’m just avoiding tension trying to maintain a sense of harmony with the people around me, in my environment, that’s what the conscious sense of it can be. So, it can be very important for nines to notice how they tend to focus on others a lot, and not so much on themselves. How they tend to go along with the agendas of others, they go along to get along, but tend to not be so aware of their own inner agenda, their own desires, their own preferences, their own opinions sometimes. And to become more aware of all those things that are connected to themselves.

 

Uranio

And when nines look at other people, they feel more energized and ready to help and do, be very active. There’s really more vital force and, you know, life energy inside when the person is looking outside. Now, when they look inside that energy goes lower. And observing this pattern to me is essential.

 

Beatrice

Yes, and observing how they might distract themselves when it comes to needing to do the most important thing for themselves, if they may have a big priority that’s about them. And suddenly, they need to go clean out the cupboard, or they need to do something that’s not so important. That gets them distracted from the main priority that they really need to do for themselves. Right.

 

Uranio

And the blind spot here is not knowing what my agenda is, or not asserting what I want my agenda to be. So, I just go along, as you said, and I forget to, you know, share my opinion. And eventually I start even not knowing what my opinion is.

 

Beatrice

Yes, eights, nines, and ones all share a tendency to self-forget. And nines are the core point of that self-forgetting triad. And so, they can really go to sleep to themselves. And they’re actually the prototype for all of us. All types tend to go to sleep to our real being, the inner sense of ourselves. And nines do that the most. And so, noticing how they tend to avoid being aware of their own priorities, their own feelings, their own preferences. In the beginning, when I’ve worked with nines, one of the things that’s hard for them, is when you ask them what they want, they don’t know. And then it can be really hard and painful, that sense of not knowing, like, “what do I do that I don’t know what I want?”

 

Uranio

But then, they feel a certain discomfort. Which might be difficult or bad, but at the same time, is the way out of the pattern already. So, feeling uncomfortable is also strategic.

 

Beatrice

Yes, tolerating discomfort is a big growth opportunity for nines and also becoming more comfortable with not knowing. Being able to have compassion for themselves when they don’t know and realize that there’s probably good reasons that they don’t know. And so, being able to give themselves some room to sit with something until they start registering more of a sense of what they really want. Nines need to get in touch with anger. And they tend to go to sleep to it because they want to avoid conflict. And they need to look at the blind spots of the fear of conflict, just the need to avoid discomfort, and anger, which is a big blind spot. And to some degree, their own desires and preferences. And the growth path, of course, is becoming more aware of their anger, learning that conflict can actually bring people closer together and not just create separation, and learn to tolerate some disharmony and focus more on themselves and not just on the people around them.

 

Jingle

Type one.

 

Beatrice

So, what about type one? What do you think are some key patterns that ones need to self-observe?

 

Uranio

I think that irritation, which has to do with anger in the broader sense. But you know, feeling all the time that sensitivity that something is not quite right, or someone. And sometimes it’s myself. So being very either anxious or irritated about that, observing that pattern is really essential. And the second thing is paying attention to how loud your inner critic voice is, and how often it shows up in the one’s life. That is much more than average. And why do you pay attention so much to that and not to your impulses for pleasure, for relaxation? So, observing that that is much above average for you.

 

Beatrice

Yes, exactly. Noticing the activity of the inner critic, noticing how you tend to control yourself or over control yourself. Notice saying how, if you’re one, you tend to put a lot of pressure on yourself to be really responsible and meet very high standards. And not cut yourself very much slack. Like you’re saying, not leaving room for pleasure or fun or relaxation, but just always keeping the pressure on to get it right, to do the right thing. Whether it’s trying to get it perfect or trying to make the world out there more perfect. Ones can tend to suppress or repress their anger. But also, when you repress your anger, you repress a lot of other feelings like joy, happiness, sadness.

 

Uranio

They become the blind spot, actually, you know, I see only what I think needs to be done. And I forget about having fun, relaxation.

 

Beatrice

Only express appropriate emotions or impulses or thoughts. I have to really put a lid on a lot of emotions and things that I might want to express but I judge as wrong or inappropriate.

 

Uranio

It’s part of human nature to be flawed, full of flaws, and also limited and simply, you know, being tired at times. And paying attention to that is good. Like, when you maybe want to have some rest time or leisure before duty. The thing to observe is how 80% of your head space gets occupied with 20% of problems around it. And how you might want to change that equation.

 

Beatrice

Yes, I think a big blind spot for ones is anger, like you said, they tend to relate to feeling irritation or resentment, maybe being self-righteous from time to time. But really, these are all derivatives of anger. And ones tend to put a lid on their anger to a greater or lesser extent. And they tend to not notice the impact of the way their anger might leak out, either in criticism of themselves or others or these anger derivatives. And the more they can get in touch with their anger, the more they can allow themselves to really get to the core of what they’re feeling and take the pressure off themselves to control themselves all the time.

 

Jingle

Type two.

 

Uranio

Should we move on to two?

 

Beatrice

Sure.

 

Uranio

Okay, so you are a two Bea.

 

Beatrice

I am a two.

 

Uranio

So, what are the main patterns to observe? If you, who’s listening, are also a two.

 

Beatrice

Yes, if you’re lucky enough or unlucky enough to be a two like me. So, I think it’s really important for twos to notice how much they focus on other people. And when they focus on other people so much, how they don’t focus so much on themselves. So, to notice how the focus is a lot on creating a positive impression on other people or creating a good connection with others, getting approval or being liked, and how much energy goes into that, to being important to others, especially the important people in your life. So that you can really see how much of your energy goes to reading other people, figuring out what they want, and delivering it. So that they will maybe meet your needs, if you have something that comes up that you want, or that you need them to take care of. But of course, a lot of this, you know, like for all the types, can be very unconscious. So, bringing to consciousness how you, as a two tend to not be in touch with what you need, but focus a lot on what other people need or how other people feel, as a way of making yourself important to others.

 

Uranio

Yes. So, I think that a good question to ask is, why do you put relationships first all the time? And what has been left out? Like, perhaps some tasks, some things that you like to do?

 

Beatrice

It’s funny when you said that, because I almost didn’t understand the question. I thought, well, what else is there besides relationships?

 

Uranio

You know, whatever is not relationship. Where is it?

 

Beatrice

Yes, yes. And I think there’s a way that we have an unconscious assumption that both we can control how other people feel, especially about us, but about things in general. And we can control the impression other people have of us. I remember one time I was in a group class, a group dynamics class. And one of the first exercises we did with each other, we got in small groups, and people shared their first impressions. And this one woman said to me what her first impressions were, and I couldn’t believe it, because everything she said was totally right. And I couldn’t believe she saw right through me. And I really saw how I have this fiction, this fantasy that I control how people will see me. And so, having a sense that we can create a certain impression, whatever impression we want to in the other person, whether it’s approval or being liked, or being seen in a certain positive way. And recognizing that we actually don’t have that much control, or we shouldn’t really need to. We can just be ourselves.

 

Uranio

Sometimes this implies doing a bad trade off inside oneself, which is, I will make sure that everybody will like me, but I detach from liking myself.

 

Beatrice

Yes, yes. And I kind of lose myself to the degree that I shape shift, or try to become what other people will like, and don’t really pay attention to who I really am. Because I fear that if I am who I really am, people won’t like me, or they’ll reject me.

 

Uranio

And sometimes I think that a good thing for twos to do in that growth path is to be a little less nice.

 

Beatrice

Yes. And it’s funny, because I think one of the emotional patterns is repressing emotions. And I remember having a thought when I was in my 20s, that I wanted people to like me, and I thought, what kind of people do people like, and I thought, well, people like nice people, but they don’t like angry people. So, I just won’t be angry. And when I was in my late 20s, I got some feedback from a friend that I never got angry. And that seemed really curious to me. But it was really true. So, I had repressed all the feelings I thought would be unacceptable to other people. And I kind of started losing myself. So, the blind spots, I think that us twos need to get more in touch with are our own feelings. And we have to learn to accept that they’re okay. Our own needs, certainly, because we tend to have a real big blind spot around our own needs. It’s almost as if we don’t have needs as a way of being of service or connecting with people through meeting their needs, but not being a burden. And I think just generally, like you said, this sense of the fear of being rejected, and thinking that we need to be able to be whoever people need us to be and avoid being real.

 

Uranio

I like when you’re a little bit angry Bea and also when you say what you need.

 

Beatrice

I feel very supported by that. Thank you.

 

Uranio

Yes.

 

Beatrice

That’s the growth path. I think it’s finding friends that you can say no to, and it’s okay that you can be a little bit angry with, that you can risk being more of who you really are, and know that it’s okay. They’ll still like you.

 

Uranio

Maybe just when you need something, you might want to be a little clear that you want my help.

 

Beatrice

Yes, I know. I’m bad at that.

 

Uranio

You’re much better than before, but…

 

Beatrice

With your encouragement.

 

Man

Let’s do a short break. The enneagram 2.0 podcast goes live every other Thursday on all main platforms. Stay tuned to learn more about yourself and others.

 

Woman

If you like this podcast, visit www.cp enneagram.com for much more great enneagram content.

 

Bea and Uranio teach in person inner work retreats and professional workshops all over the world. They happen twice a year in California, London, Shanghai, Sao Paulo and Cairo. And sometimes in other countries and US locations too. Hundreds of students from all places and levels of knowledge have joined these courses. You can see the full Chestnut Paes Enneagram, Academy calendar of events at www.cpenneagram.com,

 

Jingle

Type three.

 

Beatrice

So, I think a big three pattern is really getting lost in doing and working all the time, doing all the time, focusing on goals, and things like that. What do you think are some important three patterns or emotional patterns that are related to threes, they might need to get in touch with?

 

Uranio

I think that the shape shifting that you mentioned for twos applies here also, threes look outside to feel more than think, what other people expect from them, and they automatically become that. So, it’s a very unconscious process in which they adapt very quickly and without any effort. And it’s useful to observe that they change according to where they are, who they are speaking to, trying to sort of impress, and have a good image. It’s very unconscious at times, and threes don’t know that they are doing it. But if you ask, how is it not to adapt? They say, what is that?

 

Beatrice

Yes, yes. So, I think blind spots become for threes, feelings, their real feelings, and kind of their real self, which is the totality of their real feelings and needs and desires and preferences. So, they really lose a sense of who they really are. And sometimes when threes are really working on themselves on the growth path, one of the first important things they feel is this sense of confusion about who they really are, a sense of being lost or having a feeling of emptiness.

 

Uranio

Which is hard, but a good sign.

 

Beatrice

Yes. Because when they can get in touch with feelings and who they really are, they can stop the shape shifting and actually find out that they’re more effective, more productive, and they have better relationships.

 

Uranio

Right. And then observe really the attachment to goals and achievements and doing and something that is behind that, which is “I don’t really trust that people will like me for who I am, but only for what I do.”

 

Beatrice

Right, I have to earn liking and approval or appreciation through being a good performer.

 

Uranio

So, it seems that path of growth is risking, you know, just being and seeing what happens. People will like you.

 

Beatrice

Being instead of doing, feeling instead of always being in motion.

 

Uranio

Yeah. And seeing if there are people liking you still. And if you like yourself more for that, doing what do you want or, not doing at all.

 

Beatrice

Yes.

 

Uranio

Right. And asking the question, “What is it really that I want to do?” As opposed to: “What is it that if I do, I will be successful?”

 

Beatrice

Yes, exactly. And I think often the doorway into all of that is allowing more emotions. Sometimes people think that threes aren’t emotional, because, you know, their survival strategy is to do do do and turn the volume down on feelings. But when they really get in touch with their feelings, that leads right back to their real self.

 

Jingle

Type four.

 

Uranio

Key pattern for fours is noticing how, if you are four, how you pay attention much more to what is absent than to what is present. And then when something is absent, how you place your attention outside yourself, trying to find someone who has that, that you think you don’t have. And then how you sort of want to have that thing that the other person does.

 

Beatrice

Yes. So, in self-observation, one of the first tasks can be to notice how much you compare yourself to others, and how you tend to focus on what’s missing in yourself, or what others have, as you said, that you don’t have. And I think also to focus on how attached you might be to your internal emotional experience. Fours can be very internal, they can fantasize and be very involved in their internal emotional landscape, even to the point of getting over identified with their emotions, and not being able to take actions and, in some cases, taking too much action, and not being able to share or let go of emotions.

 

Uranio

So, one question to ask yourself might be, “what is there beyond the emotional experience that I’m missing?” And another thing is, “how would it really be, if I had more emotional calmness? Would it be really bad or it would help me?” And “am I spending way too much time inside myself in my inner world or, am I in touch with things as they are?” These are some questions to ask.

 

Beatrice

Yes, I agree. And I think it’s interesting because blind spots for fours can be positive things about themselves. It can be what’s good about them, because they can have a sense of inner deficiency.

 

Uranio

Yeah, yeah, that’s really true. Any other blind spots for fours or anything else for fours?

 

Beatrice

Yeah, I think that the growth path is really about having more compassion for themselves, noticing how they can sometimes amp up feelings or be a bit dramatic as a defense, they can sometimes feel melancholy and a bit depressed as a defense against other feelings that might be more threatening. So, really start to almost bring in more mental activity to really analyze how you’re feeling in order to not be so attached to different emotional experiences.

 

Uranio

And I think that a little bit opposed to what we said about threes, go to things like doing. A little less in touch with emotions.

 

Beatrice

Yeah. A little bit the opposite. We need to also say that fours, the three four subtypes are really different from one another. So even as I’m saying these things, I’m thinking it will also be good to listen to any podcast we do about subtypes, because the three fours are very different from one another. So, they have individual growth paths,

 

Uranio

Yes, and there will be individual paths of growth, then.

 

Jingle

Type five.

 

Uranio

Now, the best enneagram type. It’s because I’m a five, but it’s not the best at all. Let’s say, what are the patterns to observe? So, the first thing is disconnection, in my view, how we fives, maybe if you are five listening to me now, you will disconnect while I’m talking, and how we disconnect really all the time. Like you say something and I start thinking about things over what you’re saying. And I disconnect from my feelings. I disconnect from relationships, from being in life, I retract. And I want my privacy. Some people, when they hear descriptions, basic descriptions about five, they say I might be a five because I like privacy. And I say that’s not what happens with a five like me, it’s not about liking privacy, sometimes. it’s like, needing privacy every day. And if you don’t have it, you make it happen. Even if you are in public, there’s this interesting technology of building a bubble around you. And to be alone while with others.

 

Beatrice

Yes. So, it might also be important to observe how you can tend to be a bit controlling. So that you can make sure that you have your private space, and can have what you need, especially around regulating resources.

 

Uranio

Like time, space, energy. Like, when someone asks me if I can go with them somewhere. I may say yes. But in my head, I’m thinking “what time we will be back.” Right? So, it’s like, a certain amount of energy to do something with this crazy thought that I’ll run out of that. I just allow myself to be consumed by others.

 

Beatrice

Yes. So, we’re here in Egypt, and when we go out to dinner with our friends, I noticed you start getting very nervous if people want to order dessert, because it means we’re going to be there.

 

Uranio

People or you?

 

Beatrice

Me, and sometimes I order dessert just to bother you. Because I can see that you think, I can see the wheels turning in your mind, you’re thinking, “Oh, I’m gonna be here 35 more minutes. I’ll be alone 35 minutes later, or maybe 40 minutes later”.

 

Uranio

You know, as a five I’m very mental and rational. So, I think, well, dessert accounts for this much calories and the whole food that Bea had is much more. So, not calories, but you know, the energy you need. So why she just spent almost the same time having the whole meal and then the dessert. And that’s all my issue because I’m inside my head calculating. Actually, what I’m calculating is, when we are traveling and teaching together, when am I going to be in my hotel room alone, which is the best time of the day at times.

 

Beatrice

And I’m so glad, as a two, I’m learning to not feel rejected by that, thank you. You can’t wait to get away to be by yourself. But it’s funny, too, because any kind of delay that puts that time that you get to be alone off a little bit further, I can see how it makes you a little bit nervous.

 

Uranio

But good news for you is that, sometimes, it’s when I go be alone, it’s when I start appreciating how the time together was nice.

 

Beatrice

You can finally have your positive feelings about what we did.

 

Uranio

So, the pattern here to be observed is how we detach from the moment and how we detach from emotions, especially sharing what we are feeling. And we need to go be alone to access a little more of those. And how our attention goes a lot to information, knowledge. As opposed to things like relationships.

 

Beatrice

Yes. And a blind spot might be how relationships can actually nurture you and give you more energy and not just take energy away.

 

Uranio

And desserts also.

 

Beatrice

And desserts can also be a positive experience.

 

Uranio

And staying longer, talking to friends, not controlling time, it’s very hard. But it pays off when we as fives allow ourselves to be guided and taken. And I’d say that one blind spot for fives is just to not really be able to connect in the level that they think they are connecting. Sometimes there is an impression for fives that they are connected while others don’t think so. It’s like, if I’m exchanging information with you, I think that all is so wonderful, but you’re missing me being more there for you or present. And that happens with everybody. And also, another blind spot is how much we feel depleted of energy much more than other people. As if we need to control our resource of time. All the time.

 

Beatrice

It’s a little bit like if you believe in scarcity, but you have a blind spot around abundance, the whole world ends up feeling like it’s contributing to you not having enough of what you need, in terms of energy and time and space.

 

Uranio

Yeah. So enough of fives because it’s the time that I had spared talk about five.

 

Beatrice

Have we said enough about the growth path?

 

Uranio

What do you think?

 

Beatrice

Well, I think we did mention getting more in touch with feelings, noticing how relationships can support you and not just take away your private time.

 

Uranio

I would add been in the body. Yeah, because we are too heady. And the body is really not just a support for the head.

 

Jingle

Type six.

 

Uranio

Sixes. I think that sixes need to observe how 10% of risk occupies 90% of the headspace, like scanning for risks every time, everywhere, trying to see what is dangerous, what is suspicious and be really alert. Well, that part though, is a little bit of a blind spot. That tension and the fact that they are always alert is sometimes unconscious. But the pattern of searching for risks is a little easier to spot. And I think that sixes can be also in touch with how anxious they are, especially because they have probably been given feedback constantly about being anxious and not very calm. There is some nervousness inside with everything, like being concerned most of the time,

 

Beatrice

Right, so being observant of the role of fear and anxiety in your life, and how that drives the things you do, how you may not always be aware of it, but it still drives the things you do. What else?

 

Uranio

I think the worst-case scenarios tendency, which is totally connected to what we said. But to notice how it’s different than other people. And you know, instead of thinking that other people should do the same. Start thinking “why do I do it?” But all the sixes already question themselves and questioning itself is another pattern to pay attention to.

 

Beatrice

Yes, questioning and doubting. Self-doubt, doubting others, noticing how hard it is to trust people and what you need to trust and how much it takes for you to trust.

 

Uranio

So, a growth path has to do with relaxing.

 

Beatrice

Before the growth path. Did we mention any blind spots for sixes?

 

Uranio

I think that there is a blind spot of coming across as being pessimistic. Sixes don’t really understand at times why all others think they are pessimistic, and others perceive them as being pessimistic.

 

Beatrice

But they see themselves as being realistic. If you’re a six, you think, “well, I’m just doing what’s necessary”. Whereas other people can see sixes focusing excessively on what’s not working or the problems. As David Daniels used to say, our teacher used to say, sixes because they’re good problem solvers become problem seekers, or proof junkies looking for certainty. And things like that. I also think another blind spot is based on the subtypes. I think the self-preservation six is more fearful, has a blind spot around their own power and self-confidence. Sometimes their own anger and assertiveness. Whereas the one-to-one six, the sexual six, can have more a blind spot around fear, they can tend to really not be in touch with fear and move into dangerous situations as a way to conquer the situation without being in touch with fear. And for the social six, they tend to project their authority out on the outside and look for rules and reference points and not own their own authority in a full way.

 

Uranio

Right. Now, the authority issue is very central for a six to observe also. Because sixes have trouble with authority figures, but in different ways, also according to subtype. So, if you’re a six, try to observe how you either mystify authority, or you question all the time authority and go against that person in the authority role, and how you are reluctant to becoming the authority yourself.

 

Beatrice

Yes, exactly. And owning your strength and being courageous, feeling the fear and moving ahead anyway. And noticing the contrarian tendency and observing what’s that’s about.

 

Uranio

That’s a good one.

 

Beatrice

All of these things can be good growth.

 

Uranio

How you say the opposite of what you’re thinking first. You know, you first say something different. And you question yourself and your question what has been said to you, or whatever. So, the contrary thinking pattern. Now in terms of growth path, sixes need to relax. As I mentioned before, whatever makes you relax if you’re a six, but the relaxation also needs to be very body based. Because, you know, it’s important to count down for a six and go against anxiety and fear by calming down. Now, the heart needs to come down also. So, whatever makes your heart feel at ease. Now, another thing about the growth path for sixes is to remember whatever good things are happening with you in your life. There is some sort of amnesia for successes. And it’s important to remember. I usually suggest an exercise for sixes that after a day, take note of everything that went well for you. And you’ll be surprised many times because there is this whole focus on what hasn’t gone well. And you will see that maybe you have a blind spot for things that go well. Also going into action before thinking, before planning. Pushing yourself to action by having shorter timelines is a very good idea, although difficult, but this is the growth path for sixes.

 

Jingle

Type seven.

 

Uranio

And what about sevens Bea? What do you think are the patterns, the main ones to be observed?

 

Beatrice

Well, I think a big pattern for sevens, and one they tend to be unconscious of, is how focusing on the positive, focusing on pleasure on what feels good, is actually an avoidance of pain, an avoidance of discomfort, anxiety, boredom, different uncomfortable feelings, that sevens would rather not feel. They can tend to think something along the lines of why would you feel bad if you could feel good, like it’s a choice. You can just focus on what’s good. But oftentimes, they don’t really see how moving toward something positive is actually running away from something painful. And sevens tend to have an underlying belief that if they allow themselves to feel pain, or bad feelings, that they’ll be stuck in them forever, they’ll be trapped. And they tend to go for freedom and options and things like that, to really reinforce their sense that they can focus on whatever they want to, or have whatever experience they want to have, and not be limited by the outside world.

 

Uranio

Yeah, this were good points that you made. I think that it’s very good for sevens when they observe the need for multiple alternatives in everything, and how they jump from one to another as a way to make sure that they won’t be bored, or that they won’t be caught in a situation of, you know, any unpleasant situation of not liking what’s going on. And then how, as a consequence, they don’t actually fully commit to this one thing that is happening right now. And they detach from the present moment. So I think, connected to this, it’s useful to see how sevens try to build all that they will live in life in a big planning scheme, that they do in their heads, like, I will try to guarantee that I’ll do only the things that I like, and I want, and then they detach from what life is actually bringing them to live.

 

Beatrice

Yes, they can focus a lot on the future, as a way of not being present. So, observing the tendency to distract themselves to focus on whatever feels good, or, as you say, with planning. And when they do that, they avoid the present moment, which is the only moment in which you can really experience anything. And so, I think not being present enough to anything that spontaneously happens in the moment, and it might not be a comfortable experience, or it might be difficult feeling, but to allow that feeling. And I think the growth path is really all about that, is getting over the blind spot of not wanting to focus on anything that they don’t want to feel, or experience any limitation and allow themselves to really be open to feeling whatever they feel, and feeling that feeling through till the end. And learning that it doesn’t mean that they will be feeling that feeling forever.

 

Uranio

Right. And the role of not rationalizing and not justifying whatever is happening is also huge.

 

Beatrice

Oh, I think rationalization is really big for sevens. I think if they can observe their tendency to find good reasons for doing whatever they want to do. And being free in every moment, that is a big.

 

Uranio

Instead of doing that, just being. Be there at the moment and allowing things to happen as they are happening. And see that they will not be as bad as you thought.

 

Beatrice

Yes, it’s a big thing when sevens can see themselves doing all that.

 

Uranio

Yeah. And that has to do with the growth path. Anything else about the growth path for sevens?

 

Beatrice

I think noticing their mental patterns, maybe the way they can tend to skip from one thing, they sort of skim along the surface and not go deeply into things, a little bit like we talked about.

 

Uranio

It’s a big capacity to connect dots, just summarize to interconnect different things, which is brilliant for life, right?

 

Beatrice

But it’s monkey mind. And it can be looking at the next bright shiny object and not allowing yourself to direct your own thinking processes and go deeper into whatever you’re focusing on.

 

Uranio

So, Bea, we’ve talked about the nine types. How would you wrap this all up, talking about the next steps in general for all of us?

 

Beatrice

Well, one of the great things about the enneagram is, the more you study it, the more you use it, the more it points you in a growth path with many, many things you can do. So, we’ve just talked about the beginning stages of self-observation, noticing emotional patterns, noticing blind spots, and what you can do to integrate blind spots and start on a growth path. But there are things like committing to a specific set of practices. The great thing about the enneagram is it points you in the direction of specific growth practices, like exercise, or certain forms of meditation, or certain ways of getting in touch with your body or your emotions or your beliefs, that can be really important. I also think that there are more advanced things like we often talk about psychological work, like really noticing how your type patterns are based in your childhood experience, and looking at relationships with parents and looking at other specific shadows, feelings that you may not want to recognize, experiences that you may not have and parts of yourself that you disowned. We’ve touched a little bit on these, but I think there’s a lot more work to be done in all of these. And of course, we also often talk about how work on oneself is very usefully done in groups or with the support of others. So, doing work in communities, being in groups supporting other people. And sometimes this means regrouping, like being around other people who are also on a growth path. And noticing if you’re close to someone who, when you start growing, they unconsciously push you back to the way you were before. I think this can happen a lot. And all of these are things to think about. And I’m sure we’ll talk more about them in future podcasts.

 

Uranio

Right, what I would add on top of all those good things you told us about is, inviting suffering in. Because without suffering, we don’t grow. And there is a phrase that goes “invite suffering in so that it can go away”. Because suffering has been in there, it’s just unconscious. And I like also, when you say Bea that, the thing we fear the most has already happened.

 

Beatrice

Yes, definitely encountering our pain and working through it. So that we don’t spend our energy avoiding pain. Sometimes it’s just the pain associated with our type patterns. Sometimes it’s early trauma. And it’s important to notice when you might be focusing on things that are actually distractions from feeling your pain. So, encountering your pain is just part of the hero’s journey, and it’s part of the psychological process.

 

Uranio

Right. And now it’s time for our top five.

 

Jingle

Top five.

 

Uranio

So what is our top five today, Bea?

 

Beatrice

Today, our top five is what are the top five least angry types. So, the types that have the outlook that involves the least attention to anger.

 

Uranio

It’s not that they are the least angry, It’s like they show up in their personality patterns as looking like being the least angry.

 

Beatrice

So not showing much anger, that’s what we’re talking about.

 

Uranio

As the strategy of coping mechanism and the personality structure.

 

Beatrice

Okay, so what’s your number five least angry looking type?

 

Uranio

My number five is you Bea. self-preservation two.

 

Beatrice

You are always ranking me lower than I rank myself.

 

Uranio

I think that self pres. twos are usually not much in touch with anger, as you mentioned before, and it’s very hard for them not to be nice and not to be sort of, you know, more in touch with sadness, perhaps they are the twos, among all three twos, the ones who are more in touch with sadness, and that sometimes prevent them from being a little more angry. And because sometimes the strategies to be a little more childish or just juvenile, they don’t allow themselves to be as angry. Do you agree?

 

Beatrice

I do.

 

Uranio

Are you angry with what I just said?

 

Beatrice

If I was would I tell you?

 

Uranio

No, yeah. Good question. What is your number five?

 

Beatrice

My number five is self-preservation six. I think self-preservation sixes really don’t connect with their anger because they’re afraid of other people’s anger. And so, they tend to not be very conscious of anger, they tend to be warm and friendly, they experience a kind of separation anxiety as part of their underlying fear. And so, they want allies and protectors and if you’re going to attract those people, it’s best not to be angry. Okay, so number four for you.

 

Uranio

Social seven. I think that usually social sevens also tend to be seen as nice, as people who are good. And at least in most societies, you know, being an angry person is not well, in general. Also, you know, as sevens, they reframe stuff that are not as pleasant into being better, or more colorful. And sometimes this means being out of touch with what is making them feel bad. Although, you know, at times, after some time spent being away from anger, social sevens can explode. But it’s not at all the pattern, usually they come across as being very nice.

 

Beatrice

So, for me, my number four, I actually have a tie because I couldn’t decide. Self-preservation five and self-preservation one. I’m a little torn about self-preservation one, because underneath, I think they’re very angry. But if you ask a self-preservation one, especially someone who’s new to the enneagram, they often say they’re not very angry. And so, I think there’s a big prohibition on anger for self-preservation ones. They tend to be warm and friendly, and not so aware of anger. For self-preservation five, I think this is a type that is also fearful of aggression, and tends to not be very much in touch with their anger and doesn’t really want to get into conflicts with people. So, tends to avoid consciousness.

 

Uranio

Interesting, I’ll think about it. Now, for me, my number three is sexual nine. I think that sexual nines are really willing to merge with others and go along, and especially with whoever they are with right now, and they don’t question that person. You know, and they have this flavor of being gentle and soft. So, it’s hard to see a sexual nine looking angry, in my view, harder than seeing the other two subtypes of nines.

 

Beatrice

So, for me, my number three is social seven, for all the reasons you said, I find they tend to be very upbeat, very sunny, wanting to make a positive impression and not burden other people. They have very idealistic worldview. So, I think they tend not to have much anger in their outlook, although like you said, every once in a while, it can definitely come up. So, number two, for you?

 

Uranio

Self-pres. one, for the reasons you mentioned before. But I think it’s even less common to see them being angry. Because there is anxiety about being angry, and there is an immediate focus on being angry at oneself and not others. And they can be, you know, pleasant people to be with in many different ways. But not always, people know how they are been harsh on themselves. They’re very anxious, but at the same time, you know, they are seen as being understanding. Or if you don’t pay close attention to them.

 

Beatrice

Sometimes their anger leaks out, but they do tend to put a big lid on it.

 

Uranio

I would rank them a little lower now that I’m talking, but that was my number two.

 

Beatrice

My number two was self-preservation two, myself, my own type. For many years, I would say, I wasn’t angry or I never got angry. And I think I also, like some other types I’ve mentioned so far, had a lot of fear of other people being angry at me. And I think that can be a big motivator to unconsciously detach from your own anger. So, I’ve gotten in touch with my anger more recently, but for a long time, I would say I was happy but nor angry.

 

Uranio

What’s your number one Bea?

 

Beatrice

So, my number one is nine and I think I’m going to also go for sexual nine. I kind of went back and forth between social nine, sexual nine. Then I thought, well self-preservation nines can also be not very angry, although it leaks out a little bit more when they can seem more stubborn or irritated. But I do think a lot of sexual nines, before they work on themselves especially, can be really sweet and shy and not very assertive and certainly not very angry. So that was my number one. What about you?

 

Uranio

I said self-preservation sixes because I see that they tend to play really nice with people and, you know, sometimes we joke that they might look like teddy bears. And, you know, not going against at all. But listening to you. I think that I liked your order more. I’ll review mine.

 

Beatrice

It’s funny, I was thinking the same thing. It convinced me that maybe I should have reordered mine in retrospect.

 

Uranio

It’s all about staying open right, and learning. And we definitely hope that you, who’s listening to us right now, are learning and that you are enjoying our podcasts.

 

Beatrice

This has been the Enneagram 2.0 podcast. I’m Beatrice Chestnut.

 

Uranio

And I’m Uranio Paes.

 

Beatrice

Join us again next time as we talk about all things enneagram.

 

Uranio

Bye.

 

Woman

Please click on like to help spread the word about our podcast.

 

Man

Thanks for listening.

 

Jingle

Enneagram 2.0, find your personality, Chestnut Paes Enneagram Academy. What’s your type, what’s your subtype, so much you can learn.  You can be amazing go ahead and transform. It’s for yourself and others grow and follow the flow. And also, for the planet, let your mind blow. It’s from Bea and Uranio, time for you to know and be your best self with enneagram 2.0. Psychology, self-mastery, work and relationships, spirituality. Come and join the podcast, oh yeah, will be fun. Explore the challenges that from now you’ll overcome. Enneagram 2.0. Tune in, it’s your personality. Enneagram 2.0 Chestnut Paes Enneagram Academy, Hey! Enneagram 2.0 tune in now.