Saturday, September 3, 2022

Enneagram Point Nine Patterns

"Even though one type will dominate as we begin studying ourselves using the tool of the Enneagram, all the fixations are present in every ego. . . if we are genuinely interested in spiritual learning and liberation though the Enneagram, we need to study all the fixations--their cores and their shells--as they manifest in our lives." A.H. Almaas, Keys to the Enneagram: How to Unlock the Highest Potential of Every Personality Type
The driving force at point Nine is indolence--not laziness in the usual sense (we can be very hard workers) but out of touch with our own wishes, self-forgetting. Though typically hesitant to speak, once started we may tell epic tales (holding so many alternative views it's hard to focus). 

When boxed in at point Nine, we tend to merge with others' preferences and forget our own. Operating from a non-aggressive stance and seeing all sides of an issue makes it difficult to come to a conclusion or take a strong position.

When still at point Nine but more self-observing, we are serene and centered, bringing cooperation to any relationship or group, highly capable of dealing with others' problems and building consensus, with a natural tendency to honor diversity and get along with almost anyone. 

Typical Comments:

"I'm pretty easy-going. My career just kind of fell together, and in a very nice way." "I have CRS disease -- Can't Remember Shit!" "I try to pick the right moment to speak up in a meeting." "I didn't cause much trouble for my parents." 

Engaging the Observing Self and Releasing the Nine Fixation:

It's important that we learn to see our patterns as they emerge, without judgment, to notice and accept as they come and go without shame or denial or trying to shut them down, to see how the fixed personality reactions show up and choose different behaviors. From this Observing Self we'll begin to see the patterns loosening and dropping away.

Within that context, some actions that my clients and I have found helpful at point Nine include:
  • recognizing passive-aggressive behavior and becoming more assertive, 
  • setting priorities/sticking to them, 
  • initiating change, 
  • learning to speak up/confront others
  • we become actively engaged--more focused, initiating, inclusive, yet staying focused on our own purpose -- without distraction, embracing the conflict that is a necessary part of human interaction.