This blog is about one of my favorite books, The Wisdom of the Enneagram, which is both accurate and fascinating in its analysis of personalities. The book is based on the premise that there are nine (9) basic personality types, and understanding your “type” is the first step towards psychological and spiritual growth. It is written by Don Richard Riso and Russ Hudson – I recommend picking it up; it will help you grow and better understand your parents, children, siblings, co-workers, friends and maybe even fellow tweeps.
Last night as @crontynen and I were playing a game of Rummy and chatting about life, politics, friends and family, I had a eureka moment regarding my personality in real life versus my personality on Twitter. I think it would be a fascinating social experiment to study how people act face to face versus on twitter and I’m confident The Wisdom of the Enneragram would end up as the text book.
My personality type is number seven (7), which is called the “Enthusiast”. Words that describe an Enthusiast at the beginning of that chapter include: The Generalist; The Multi-tasker; The Wunderkind; The Dilettante; The Connoisseur; and the Energizer. Generally speaking, the seven is described as the busy, fun-loving type: spontaneous, versatile, acquisitive and scattered. I’m confident that anyone who knows me would use one of more of these words to describe me. There is no doubt in my mind that I exhibit the characteristics of a strong #7 personality type.
But on Twitter I’m somebody different and thanks to my eureka moment last night, I now know why – Twitter brings out the worst in me! The book talks about how people’s personality types manifest themselves in different situations. The language used refers to healthy and unhealthy psychological ranges. When a seven gets stressed or falls into an unhealthy range, certain personality patterns from type one (1) start to emerge. Here is what the book says about the seven going to a one, or My Twitter Personality.
Like average Ones, Sevens under stress attempt to educate others – whether about an exciting book or workshop, a good place to shop, or a particular political or spiritual viewpoint. Their enthusiasm for their own opinions can rapidly shift into a tendency to debate or critique the views of others. They can become “short”, impersonal, and highly impatient with any degree of incompetence in themselves or others. Under high stress, their underlying anger and resentment bubble to the surface, and they vent their frustration by scolding, nitpicking, and delivering withering sarcastic comments.
Yup, that’s me on Twitter!
The path towards personal and spiritual growth begins with self-reflection, awareness and understanding. I encourage you to pick up a copy of The Wisdom of the Enneagram over the holidays and learn a little bit more about yourself.
Let me know when you do – I would love to learn a little more about you too!