Being Relational Blog

Know Thyself

 

What’s your type?

 

Over the years in mediation practice, what has emerged as essential is to know thyself. I have found this to be even more critical than the need to think I have to know how others think. I have to be open to whatever and all ways my clients think and behave. After all, they are coming for assistance with matters of great importance to them and they want to negotiate with each other in ways that matter to both. For all of this, I rely on the Enneagram.

 

The Enneagram is a personality test that is growing in popularity and for a good reason. It offers deep insights into your personality that are inaccessible through other tests, like the highly popular Meyers test. It is a tool for self-discovery and reflection that will help you to better understand your own motivations and the way that you are affected by conflict, including your own and others.

 

The Enneagram is a great tool for those wishing to become better negotiators, salespeople, or just better problem solvers. It is offered to those who wish to master themselves, rather than others, during negotiations and conflict. The test is a scientifically validated instrument premised on self-observation that can be used by anyone to assess themselves during or after a time in which they are caught in “the clench” of conflict. This could be an experience unfolding difficult interactions, dealing with difficult people or interactions, or interfacing with others who so not see the everyday world in the same way. The Enneagram’s nine distinct worldviews paint a clear picture of how people are motivated and thus how they think, feel, and behave. It also holds keys for deeper understanding of oneself as well as others.

 

The Enneagram’s unique focus on motivation is what sets it apart from other personality tests. It is grounded in the transformative theory of conflict, which is part of a larger, relational worldview that is both ancient and reemerging in modern society. According to the transformative framework, humans are inherently socially connected beings and are motivated primarily by a moral impulse to act with both strength and compassion. The experience of conflict, therefore, stems from a crisis in human interaction. That means that the secret to easing conflict is to ease the human interaction. This is much more than playing nice or being deceitful. Rather it calls upon human beings to interact in ways that are both authentic and that create well-being. Thus an effective negotiation, interaction, or intervention is one focused on restoring the quality of the human interaction. It is then that one can have success advocating, convincing, or influencing.

 

A deeper understanding of relational conflict theory and associated conflict transformation potential, coupled with a deeper understanding of one’s own Enneagram Type personality gifts and particularized form of personal reactivity will enrich each participant’s choices for more effective and authentic negotiation and constructive responses to others.

 

A training in the Enneagram will help you to identify your type and learn about how it influences the way that you experience the world. Through the Enneagram, you can find a way to better relate to others uninhibited by your own personal reactivity. In doing so, you will radically improve your day to day life.

 

Join us on June 21st for a half day introduction to the Enneagram. For more information on that class, click here.