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What is the Enneagram?
The Enneagram is a powerful and dynamic personality system that describes nine distinct and fundamentally different patterns of thinking, feeling, and acting. âEnneaâ is Greek for nine, and âgramâ means a figure or something written. Hence, the Enneagram personality system is represented by a diagram of a nine-pointed star within a circle. Each of the nine patterns is based on an explicit perceptual filter and associated driving emotional energy. This is congruent with the way our neurons operate according to the interwoven flow of information and energy. These patterns determine what individuals of each personality type pay attention to and how they direct their energy and behavior. Underlying each of the nine patterns is a basic proposition, or belief, about what we need in life for survival and satisfaction.
Each one of us developed one of the nine patterns to protect a specific aspect of the self that felt threatened as our own personality was developing. As you discover your Enneagram personality type, you will discover more about your original whole self. ?You will also understand more about the unconscious motivation from which you operate.
Discovering your Enneagram personality type can help you learn how to bring positive change into your life. It can help change the way you relate to yourself and others as well as give you a greater understanding of the circumstances and issues facing you. ?Moreover, it can give you powerful assistance in integrating the personal and spiritual aspects of your life, integration being the linkage of differentiated elements.
What Is The Essential Enneagram?
We developed The Essential Enneagram as a simple and accurate way for individuals to identify their Enneagram personality type and as a guide for further personal, professional, and spiritual development.
The Essential Enneagram Test consists of nine short paragraphs that describe the fundamentals of each of the nine personality types. You administer this test to yourself by reviewing the nine paragraphs and choosing the three paragraphs that seem most like you. Next, you put the three selected paragraphs in order, beginning with the one that is the most like you. This process takes only a short time to complete.
You then proceed with an adventure in self-discovery by following the process described in this book, which guides you through the basic terminology of the Enneagram, the determination of your personality type, a comprehensive description of your type, the key discriminators differentiating each type from every other type, and a series of practices for self-developmentâincluding practices tailored specifically to your type.
A distinctive feature of the Essential Enneagram Test is its validation by extensive research. ?We conducted a validity study of just under one thousand individuals. The results of our research show that the Essential Enneagram Test has a high level of validity and reliability. We have included a summary of this research in appendix B (pages 115 to 116).
By using The Essential Enneagram in the way described here, you can discover, confirm, and verify your Enneagram personality type with a high level of confidence. Please bear in mind that the purpose of the Enneagram and this book is not to label you but to aid you in your journey of self-understanding and self-development. Remember that you are a human being that just happens to have a personality structure or type. By knowing your Enneagram personality type, you can become aware of the habits of your personality that limit you, and you can free yourself from those habits.
The Process of Self-Discovery and Self-Development Using The Essential EnneagramThe Essential Enneagram will guide you step-by-step through the process of taking the Enneagram personality test, discovering and confirming your correct type and pursuing a path of self-development once you know your personality type. Here we provide an overview of that process. When you have read this overview, keep reading and you will see how to begin.
Taking the Essential Enneagram Test
Discovering and Confirming Your Correct Type
How to Begin
Follow the instructions below and complete the Essential Enneagram Test on pages 5 to 7.
Essential Enneagram Test Instructions
Following are nine paragraphs that describe nine different personality types. None of these personality types is better or worse than any other. Each paragraph is meant to be a simple snapshot of one of the nine Enneagram types. No paragraph is intended to be a comprehensive description of an individualâs personality.
1. Read the descriptions and pick the three paragraphs that fit youbest. Each of the nine paragraphs may describe you to some degree, but choose the three that seem most like you.2. Number these paragraphs from 1 to 3, with 1 being the paragraph that seems most like you, 2 the paragraph next most like you, and 3 the third most like you.
In making your selections, consider each paragraph as a whole rather than considering each sentence out of the context of its paragraph. ?Ask yourself, ?âDoes this paragraph as a whole fit me better than any of the other paragraphs?â
If you find it difficult to choose the three paragraphs most like you, think about which descriptions someone close to you would select to describe you. Because personality patterns are usually most prominent before we begin work on personal development, you may also ask yourself which of these patterns would have best described you before you began any such work.Essential Enneagram
Excerpted from Enneagram: The Definitive Personality Test and Self-Discovery Guide by David Daniels, Virginia Price
All rights reserved by the original copyright owners. Excerpts are provided for display purposes only and may not be reproduced, reprinted or distributed without the written permission of the publisher.