The Enneagram. It’s become a Point Loma buzzword, to say the least, but there’s also real value to it. Some people think of it as the “Christian Zodiac sign,” or just another way to label yourself, but the Enneagram is an excellent tool for both self-discovery and I’ve learned it’s also an incredible way to understand your relationships with people (of all kinds, but especially familial).
My family members and closest friends are all different types. They run the whole spectrum and there definitely isn’t a best type, because we’re all needed for the gifts and personalities that we have.
But, there’s a big frustration with the Enneagram: a test can’t really tell you what type you are— and it can cause a lot of misidentification. For example, I test consistently as a Type 1 (the Perfectionist) and for a while I really identified with such, but when I read Ian Morgan Cron’s The Road Back to You (and finally listened to those closest to me) I realized I’m actually a Type eight (the Challenger)…which isn’t exactly the type ‘everyone wants to be’ like two or seven.
So, if you’ve never read Cron’s book, borrow it from someone here at Loma, as you probably have at least one friend that owns it, and rethink your Enneagram type. Learn about all of the types, not only so you can more fully understand your own type (or even discover you’ve misidentified), but also as a way to empathize with others around you. If the more in-depth type description makes you feel called-out, uneasy, and/or defensive (especially the negative aspects of the type), that’s probably your type.
I think everyone should put in the time to get to know themselves better through the Enneagram, but remember, your Enneagram type isn’t about the traits you want to have, it’s about the traits you inherently possess: the good, the bad and the ugly.
There are so many people who misidentify, and I think that’s a huge bummer because they are missing out on the chance to really learn how and why they interact with others, what their motivations are, and how they can improve themselves.
While we’re talking about this, let me remind everyone of the way ‘wings’ work…your wing(s) can ONLY be the number directly above and/or below you. Ideally, you will grow and develop both of your wings (example, I am an 8w7). Your wing isn’t exactly like that number, rather it’s how your number works with your ‘wing’ number. So, an 8w7 is NOT the same as a 7w8.
Full disclosure, I’m not here as an Enneagram expert in the slightest, I’m just someone who wants to challenge others to be the best versions of themselves, and I believe you can find it through really understanding your Enneagram type. Maybe you’re right about your Enneagram type, but you haven’t read all about each type, or maybe you just want to be the type you currently identify with; either way, I promise it’s worth it to rethink your Enneagram type, even if you do identify with the correct type, there’s probably a lot more to learn about it.
Lauren Cazares is a junior, political science major.