I am an actor, and have studied the art of acting for the past 14 years. What comes most naturally and easy to me in acting is the ability to empathize with each character's plight. The Enneagram is all about what motivates us in regards to our type. Learning about the nine different personalities really opened my eyes. I could empathize with each type's plight. I had such compassion for each perspective and, most surprisingly, a bud of compassion for myself began to form.
I have been on a journey of self-discovery my whole life. Countless books taught me self-awareness practices. Diaries were where I explored how I was feeling and why I made my choices. At the heart of all of this was my commitment to change ME so I could be a BETTER person. I was incredibly hard on myself and became exhausted by always trying to be more loving, more self-aware and more spiritually connected.
When I began to fully realize what life looks like from the perspective of a Four (my type on the Enneagram), I was amazed. All of the thoughts cluttering my thinking for so many years, all the dreams and ideals I had failed to take action on, all the feelings of shame at being unworthy were summed up in the illustration of a Type Four.
Things started changing from that point forward. I realized my former preoccupations were merely patterns and habit. They weren't my essential self, the authentic me. Whereas I formally felt victim, or imprisoned to my perspective, I now had the ability to choose. I could choose to go down the road I'd been going down, or I could pave a new path.
The Enneagram is not about changing who you are. It's not about being better or more spiritual. It is about bringing awareness to your patterns, taking a pause before you respond, seeing and truly understanding that we all have different perspectives, and bringing greater compassion and curiosity into our daily lives, relationships and businesses.