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How the Ego Perverts the Enneagram

I notice lots of folks on Instagram, usually people who have accounts that aren’t necessarily Enneagram-related, sharing their type in their bio or in posts.


It’s as if they think that says something definitive about them.


I’m not judging them; they don’t know any better. That’s their Ego talking. Your Ego, sometimes called the false self or the personality, finds comfort in “knowing who I am.”


When clients or friends proudly share that they “know themself,” there seems to be an implied


  • sense of authority, autonomy, confidence;
  • safety and security…like it’s one less thing to manage or think about;
  • sense that knowing who they are equates to others knowing them that way, too; that they’ll be seen as they want to be seen.


I can’t argue with that. Those are all things I’d say most of us want. 


I hate to break it to you, but the world changes all the time. It has depth and breadth and it’s dynamic. One, static way of being doesn’t work in an ever-changing reality.


Knowing who you are is just a fancy way of declaring to the world that, consciously or not, you’ve dug your heels in and stopped paying attention to what is actually happening all around you.


When you live from this place, you react to the world based on your unconscious habits and not from intelligent information received through your body, heart, and mind. These intelligence centers are here for a reason and most people haven’t been taught to use them. 


When those three “centers” aren’t called on to do their job, your Ego shows up instead.


Your Ego is that part of you that wants you to stay safe. It wants predictability. It wants to be right.  Your Ego is the childlike part of you who remembers needing this kind of safety in order to survive in the world. That little person believed that if they weren’t fun or strong or right or unique or loving or smart or peaceful or whatever it was…that they would’t be loved.


And when you were little and feeling unloved, that equated to death. Your survival depended on being loved and cared for. 


Your Ego learned to step in and take care of things.


You aren’t that little one anymore. You are an adult. You have what it takes to be in this world. To respond to reality as it is.


You don’t need to dig your heels in any longer. Not only will you get a better response from people, but the world will be better for it.


The Ego perverts the Enneagram because it affirms that false self. It hears “type” and feels safe knowing that it is doing its job.


But your Ego has it all wrong.


The Enneagram is here to tell you who you aren’t. It’s here to rat out the Ego. To let you know that your Essence ~ that real, true, grown-up self ~ is always here and available to you. 


Your body, heart, and mind will help you find it. 


The Enneagram teaches you how to remember who you really are and how to approach life from that beautiful, real, place.


And guess what?


The joke is on the Ego. Despite not having your heels dug in, “knowing who you are,” you have


  • autonomy
  • safety
  • security, and
  • you are seen


These aren’t concepts to be understood; they are experiences to be had. When you are present, you will experience autonomy, safety, security and being seen. 


Want to know how to access this beautiful Essence that lives within you? Join me for my next course offering,  An Introduction to the Enneagram starting on October 27th.

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Christina Granahan

Enneagram-informed coach + therapist

I teach you how to use your Enneagram type to realize the relationships and success that you’ve been chasing at work, home, or school. Let's connect and see how I can help you.

You have one life. Let’s get you living it.

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