Tuesday, September 6, 2022

Enneagram Point Seven 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 Seven is gluttony, a seeking of pleasure to avoid pain; consequently, we can be over-focused on enthusiasm and engaged in uneasy activity, refusing to consider anything but "good news."

When boxed in at point Seven, we can seem egotistical, telling anecdotes and forgetting to invite others to talk. With only a positive focus we can be perceived as lacking analytical ability, oversimplifying or skating over the surface. 

When still at point Seven but more self-observing, we can be charming and easy to talk to, optimistic, a cheerleader of others, optimistic, focused on long-term perspective and possibilities, seeking equality and able to work around situational constraints. 

Typical Comments:

"I always see the bright side of things." "I've found that if you understand a few basic principles, you can run just about anything." "I'm always the one to figure out what we'll do for fun." 

Engaging the Observing Self and Releasing the Seven 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 Seven include:
  • honoring our vision while also countering excessive optimism with possible downsides,
  • exploring and planning for potential problems and well as possibilities, 
  • eliciting and accepting balanced feedback about ourselves (the whole picture, not just the positives), 
  • disciplining ourselves to follow through with what we perceive as hard work (including our own development), 
  • celebrating signs of realistic enthusiasm.