Sunday, January 28, 2018


So, as we are getting the help, I am also diving deep into personality profiling.  I started some of this last fall, but with the new year, I'm all in.  Truthfully, I've done quite a bit of this in the past - especially in college.  My major was in Family and Human Services with a minor in psychology, so I took quite a few tests back then.  However, I seem to have lost touch with parts of myself in the last years, and also, I wanted to see how much I had changed since college.

It also seemed like a good idea to have a better idea of what I am working with as I seek help in addressing some of the issues in our lives.  Knowledge is power - am I right?!?  Turns out, self-knowledge really is helpful, though I'm not sure it makes me feel particularly powerful.  Instead, I have a better understanding of how and why I've landed in some of the messes because of the ways that I am wired.  But, I would rather know than have my head in the sand.  (most of the time)  And, I am reminded that ultimately, I can change certain habits and work on perceptions, but I am fairly hardwired to be me, and only by God's grace can I address any of the problems that creates.

Let me start by saying, I quite like me.  I always have.  I'm over-confident to a fault at times, which certainly does not mean that I don't battle insecurities, but I am less likely to be beset by them.  I don't mean to brag, but I am a good time. 😜 Making and finding fun are like breathing to me.  It has taken me a long time to realize that not everyone approaches life this way. 🤣

The personality profile that I have the longest history with is the Myers Briggs, because I took it starting in late high school, again in college and again in grad school.  I recently retook it and churned out the exact same four letters as always. * ENFP *  In a nut shell, this indicates that I am an extraverted, intuitive person who gathers information through my gut.  I lead with feeling slightly over thinking, and I am more spontaneous than planned.  I used to test out very extremely in all of these things, and as the years have gone on, I've come more to the middle on each spectrum.

In the last month, I have been spending a lot of time learning about the Enneagram typing system.  My Book Club read The Road Back to You, which I now understand to be an excellent primer to all that Enneagram is.  It is an ancient system that goes deeper than most personality profiling.  The Road Back to You does a fantastic job of tying in spiritual issues as well, making it far more personal than our run-of-the-mill Book Club usually goes.

As I read through it, I also subjected John to all of it and made sure that we could figure out what he is, and it has been enlightening to be able to read through each of our "types" and see the strengths and shadows that we bring to the table.  Both of us are strongly identifiable as our numbers - John is a 2, "the Helper", and I am a 7, "The Enthusiast."  Reading his chapter helped me better understand some of his underlying motivations that I had never considered, and I found the same to be true as I cringed through reading my own chapter.  It is no fun to realize challenging things about yourself that seem clear upon inspection.


Our Book Club discussion was engaged and interesting, and the next night, we dug into it all with our D-Group, because all of the D-Group ladies are also in the Book Club.  So, we were able to discuss each other as couples and understand more about each person that we regularly do life with - such a gift to get these insights!

(One of the Ones "Perfectionists" from our group brought this white board for us)

As an "Enthusiast," I have a need to avoid pain, which has shown up all of my life in various ways.  Though I never would have chosen some of the specific paths of pain that I have had to walk, I am so thankful that the Lord has worked those inside of me and continues to do so.  Even as we are walking through a painful time presently, I can sense myself wanting to distract and avoid it all.  However, that does not do any good for myself or those around me.  Understanding some of my own coping mechanisms and looking for healthier ways has been really helpful.

I am looking forward to continuing to learn more about the Enneagram (I just downloaded The Sacred Enneagram), and once you get in there are all kinds of words and things that take a minute to understand - like wings, stress and security arrows and so on.  But it's so good!  I highly recommend taking the time to learn and also dragging all of the people that you surround yourself with through it with you.  Being able to talk through it all with dear friends who are also learning has been super helpful and fun as well.  (There I go again with the fun 🤣)

If this is all peaking your interest - I'd recommend the book we read as well as taking an online test to determine your type.  There are a LOT of tests online - I did this paid one and actually tied between two types, however, as I read through each one, it became clear to me pretty quickly which one I am. There are LOTS of websites and podcasts about the Enneagram, and it's a rabbit hole you can chase forever or just get what you need and take that with you.

Happy learning!