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It's About You!

For many who are beginning their exploration of the Enneagram symbol, it feels overwhelmingly detailed. There is a feeling of “I just can’t make sense of it all” or “I just can’t figure out what type I am.”

Here is the beauty of this work—we start where we are with what we know. In beginning of one’s journey, there may be (and often is) one energy, or “type”, that feels familiar, a sense of “yes, I know what this feels like”. Alternatively, there may be elements of several spaces that carry a sense of recognition.

Whether it’s one or many, that’s where we start. The goal isn’t “figuring myself out”, but rather, “What can this space teach me about myself?” and “Where can I grow from here?”

This is why exploring the symbol in community is so important to me. In regular connection with others who are also committed to exploring their familiar space, I learn the “flavours” of each energy, the subtle nuances that distinguish it from others, and the ways in which similarities appear.

I also experience the reality that, because the symbol describes flows of energy, I experience bits of all nine spaces at one time or another.

Learning about the Enneagram is not about figuring out what “box” I fit in, nor about learning enough to identify others’ “boxes”. It’s about exploring how each type of energy shows up in me, usually through the ways in which I habitually react to life, also known as my “compulsions”.

Enneagram teaching often seems to emphasize these automatic (and let’s face it, not-so-shiny) reactions. This is because the value of this work is in becoming acquainted with the parts of myself that show up in my most unpolished, most unedited moments. When I am willing to look at the areas of my personality that I would most like to ignore, I can cultivate a relationship with them, first viewing them with tolerance, then with kindness and then with genuine affection. As I learn to embrace all of me, I am then able to lean into the strengths of my own space, and then into the strengths offered by other, less familiar, spaces in the symbol.

This work is not about changing who I am, nor about defining myself by someone else’s description. Rather, it’s about growing in my knowledge of who I am … which is the work of a lifetime.

On September 29 (7pm - 9pm Central) and October 1 (10am - 3:30pm Central) I will be providing an online Introduction to the Enneagram workshop. If you would like to learn more about yourself within the context of this rich symbol, please join us. Registration is $80 for the eight-hour workshop. For more information, please email me at

“It’s never about the Enneagram. It’s always about You!”

- Abi Robins, an Enneagram coach and author of The Conscious Enneagram.

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