Enneagram thoughts

I’ve been hearing a lot about the Enneagram lately, and because I love all things personality/authenticity, I decided it was finally time for me to take a test and see where I came out. The friend who recommended it most highly said I’d be able to tell what I was without the test, but after reading the descriptions I was totally lost. I thought maybe I could be a 1? Maybe a 6? Apparently even after writing a whole book on authenticity I still don’t know myself all that well. Oops. Ha.
Turns out, I am a 5, an Investigator, with types 1 (Reformer) and 2 (Helper) tied for 2nd.

I wish I could say I wasn’t terribly pleased with the “intellectual” bent of my results, but I was. I still am, a bit. I still struggle with the tendency to celebrate or even worship intellectualism. That deep appreciation for knowledge is often to the benefit of my learning, sure, but can certainly be to the detriment of my character and to my self-esteem if not kept in check.

But anyway, back to the Enneagram. If I understand it correctly, the Enneagram supposedly reveals what motivates or drives us in life, or what we feel we need to attain to feel secure. For 5s, security is felt in knowledge. Apparently I feel like if I know enough, I’ll be able to handle anything — even the unexpected. That certainly fits with my love for and place in the higher ed academic setting. Knowledge is dang near everything, and emblems of knowledge gained directly translate to power. (Degrees, grants, etc.)

The Enneagram testing of what drives us is an interesting contrast to the Myers-Briggs evaluation that purports to uncover how we react and respond to the world. As an INFJ, I am Introverted, iNtuitive, Feeling, and Judging. I get energy from being alone, I process the world through patterns and intuitions and see the “big picture”, when making a decision I prefer to think about what is best for the people involved and maintain harmony, and I think sequentially and prefer to keep life and things in order.

Seeing my Enneagram result was nice for me because as an INFJ I always felt like my love for learning and rationality was not quite represented in my MBTI result. My Enneagram type kind of zeroed in on that one aspect and it felt like a nice additional puzzle piece to the whole person that no one taxonomy can ever fully represent. There is a lot more for me to learn about Enneagram types (apparently there are assessments for how types reacts when angry/threatened/happy/etc.?), but this was a nice reminder that, overall limitations and “junk science” of personality tests accepted, no one test can capture all we are. We don’t need to feel particularly defined by or stuffed into any category just because we took a free online test and a description popped out. I love categorizing and understanding things, finding clear, clean defining lines around what I know, understand, and need to work with (hence: type 5, probably), so it’s important for me to let things and people push those boundaries and to overflow into different realms even when I wish they would stay put.

I found a free test here: https://similarminds.com/compatibility-enneagram.html. If you take it, let me know! I’d love to hear what your type is.

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