Wednesday, February 12, 2014

Things I Learned from Last Saturday's Workshops

My friend Nadine (my life coach) co-hosted an event last Saturday. I went there (with my sister) for three main reasons:

1. To support my friend Nadine and my other friend Kim who was hosting one of the 3 workshops
2. To hear from the Enneagram man who was an expert in that field and compare notes against the Zodiac
3. To check out the event itself to see what I could later apply to Jos' PHB events

I'll start with #3 first since it came up first. Things I liked about the event:

-Cohesive theme shown in their giant PowerPoint presentation, their handout, and theme

-The handout itself showed what the workshops were about and who was hosting them as well as a space to fill in notes from the 2 workshops you selected to go to

-Take away gifts (wine glass filled with streamers and Hershey's kisses) and a toast of Sparkling Cider to close the event

-A food bar with nice snacks to munch on and your own mini water bottle to take with you

-One big room to seat the 50 people and 3 smaller rooms to break up into Workshop sessions

#1 Nadine's Opening and Kim's workshop

Nadine opened the event with a keynote speech. Notes I took:

-3 Steps to becoming new + improved:
1. New Awareness: Know
2. New Action: Do
3. New Relationships: Connection

-Read Scott Peck's The Road Less Traveled someday

1. What was? Where was the lesson?
2. How have I changed? What have I become?
3. Where am I going? Who do I want to be?

Then it was time for the workshops and I decided to attend Kim's first. I've known Kim for a while and attended her "Value-Driven Goals" session last year so I kind of had a feel for what the workshop would be about.

Notes I took for Kim's session:

-Kim gave me a handout and the first thing I noticed was it said "Because your life is more than a to-do list..." and I actually wrote "YES" next to it because that's kind of what my life has devolved into these days.

Lesson #1:
-Not being fulfilled will get in the way of you trying to accomplish anything.
-Know what is wrong, when its wrong, and what needs to change.
You have to save yourself before you can save other people.
-There is a constant struggle -especially in women- to be selfless instead of what they consider to be "selfish" -which is putting their needs first or even acknowledging they have needs that aren't being met. They then suffer and continue to deplete themselves as they try taking care of everyone else. Caring for yourself isn't wrong.
-Explain what you're feeling to people and why

-What will I say "No" to so I can say "Yes" to something else?
-Saying "yes" to everything narrows your bandwidth and your ability to make an impact
-It leads to you being depleted
-It also leads to the quality you give to things and your ability to complete them being ruined
-People normally expect you to say "no" and you should to things you can't commit to

-Get in touch with what's truly important to you
*Action Item for ME: Create a List of What Matters and What Doesn't Matter
*Assess Self Care and Self Harm

Lesson#4: Pareto principle -aka the 80-20 Rule of Distribution
-In life things fall into a pattern of 80% and 20%
-80% of a company's profits come from 20% of their customers
-80% of our food comes from 20% of the land
-80% of your paycheck goes into 20% of your bills
-I wear 80% of my clothes 20% of the time
-Only 20% of my personal possessions are used 80% of the time
-20% of life's distractions compose 80% of my procrastination
-Only 20% of blog posts get 80% attention

#2 At last came Enneagram Man's Workshop:

He opened by saying he was going to skip over the history of how enneagrams came to be because his previous workshop had run out of time and didn't get to fill out their personality test. He mentioned that enneagrams were different from Myers-Briggs (which I still need to look up), the Zodiac, and Chinese Astrology.

He said basically personalities fall into categories based around how they handle getting whatever NEED they subconsciously want met.

Personally I think the one basic human need that everyone needs is the inherent need of the soul (since everybody has one) of being Loved and Accepted -aka receiving Unconditional Love.

The Enneagram Personalities are based around more individual needs (that do often come up in the Zodiac as well) such as: Power, Security, Romance, Freedom, Control...

I listed the basic necessity of a person to identify themselves as an individual as figuring out:

1. Who are you (as a personality with predisposed tendencies)?
2. What do you seek (what do you strive for in life)?
3. Why do you want it (what underlying purpose are you trying to fulfill)?

Antoine is the name of the Enneagram man. I have officially labeled him a Libra/Pisces/Aquarian type. Kind of insecure and self conscious, but well spoken and poised. A very mentally-oriented person who also thinks about things like faith, spirituality, and the soul.

He treats the 12 "personalities" more like 12 perspectives/ways to live. He says that he is a number "7" type. (I labeled this person in relation to the Zodiac as being: a Younger-souled Leo, Gemini/Libra, Cancer, Taurus).

It's interesting looking at it now given these new diagrams he showed kind of laying out how the soul-system works for the personality types.

In Zodiac terms things usually break down this way as far as old-to-young souls go:

With the Enneagrams he broke it down like this:
At no point did he really acknowledge "spirituality" and where personalities fell regarding the "soul", but he did acknowledge spirituality itself a couple times and suggested some books that delved further into exploring the spiritual aspects of these personalities. He alluded to "old soul" and "young soul" mentalities, but to be honest the 8, 9, and 1s kind of confused me because he didn't talk about them as much. It was clear that "8" is a Bold, Dominant, Brazen personality. But that's about it.
He also showed the typical Enneagram "wings" diagram:

And this is where I diverge in opinion the most with Enneagrams. They act like personalities are clothes you can change in and out of based on comfort level and stress. But in my world a person who is deeply introverted like a "5" could never magically transform into an "8" just because they were stressed and pissed off one day. Those are 2 extremely different personalities. People can Slowly Shift personalities Over Time, but even then there are limits.

A Sagittarius could never be a Pisces. They never could. There is something inherent in the nature of a Fire Sign that prevents it from being a Water sign. Each element has its own "vibe" or specific attributes. What it really comes down to is the understanding that God made people in this design so they would forever be distinguishable and different. At no point could one Element "become" another. That separation is a necessity. It allows there to be limitations on the things people can be or achieve based on their inherent "blind spots" and personality defects. If a person then wanted to "expand" or become greater -they would have to stretch themselves by working with a person from a different element -one they could never themselves become or understand on their own.
 It simultaneously creates independence and inter-dependence on others. A balance is embedded in human nature itself.

Personally at the end of the day I don't care that much which personality system a person uses. Again it comes back to it being more important to know:

1. Who are you (as a personality with predisposed tendencies)?
2. What do you seek (what do you strive for in life)?
3. Why do you want it (what underlying purpose are you trying to fulfill)?

But if I could give advice to anyone rooting for Enneagram system, based on what was presented at the workshop, it should really be made more clear in a simplified way:
1. What the 9 personality types are
2. What strongly differentiates them
3. Which do people "swing" to in times of stress/comfort

The problem with the presentation is the descriptions of the personalities were still too vague and felt muddled. I still don't know if I'm a 6, 7, or a 9 based on the sheet of paper he handed out. I can strongly identify with each. And then I can't tell what the hell my "wing" personalities are.

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