Tuesday, December 25, 2007

New Year's Resolutions for 1s and 2s

Christmas is (almost) behind us, and our next major holiday stop is New Year's Eve. While drinking champagne and desperately searching for someone to kiss at midnight are certainly fine traditions, my favorite is the annual taking stock that is the New Year's resolution. In that spirit, I am going to offer some type-specific suggestions for how you might make things go better in the coming year. 2008 is a blank slate! These are adapted from the "Recommendations" chapter of Riso and Hudson's Understanding the Enneagram.

Type 1:

1. Practice a relaxation technique, any relaxation technique. Try meditation or get a massage.
2. Be more patient with others.
3. Lead by example, not by lecture.
4. Speak more kindly to yourself and others.
5. Keep a journal in which you are totally honest about your feelings and impulses.
6. Join a group that will allow you to talk about your feelings without passing judgement.
7. Pay attention to how you are coming across to others; if you seem angry, they will probably get defensive and resist your advice.
8. Take measures to prevent or treat high blood pressure, ulcers, and other health problems.
9. Reflect on this quote: "The real art of conversation is not only to say the right thing at the right time, but also to leave unsaid the wrong thing at the tempting moment." (Lady Dorothy Nevill)
10. Listen more.
11. Be more aware of the ways in which perfect is often the enemy of good.
12. Every day, pick a rule that doesn't really matter -- and break it.
13. When you feel annoyed by something petty, ask yourself about the underlying issue -- and address that instead.

Type 2:

1. Put yourself first sometimes.
2. Make sure you get enough sleep every night.
3. Eat three good meals a day.
4. Examine your own motives for helping.
5. If you are in a codependent relationship, get support and change that dynamic.
6. Communicate more directly.
7. Be willing to take "no" for an answer.
8. Let your own good deeds go unrewarded sometimes.
9. Give others positive reinforcement, but only if they're actually doing something good.
10. Teach a man to fish.
11. Honor your close relationships by not spreading your time and energy too thin.
12. Appreciate the affection you are given, even if it does not come in the form you would most like.
13. Let go of being possessive.
14. No more fixer-upper boyfriends or girlfriends!

Stay tuned. Resolutions for the other types are coming soon.


Mary Beth said...

Thanks Cindi (and Riso and Hudson.) These are good. I am glad more are coming because I was going to suggest that that you do all the types. It made me want to read the ones for my type which as we all know by now is 6. I think I'll write some for myself then when 6 comes up on here, I'll compare. As for 1s and 2s: the 1 advice seemed great. As for the 2s: I especially liked the one that said Get enough sleep. My wish for the 2s in my life for '08 is to get enough sleep. (Especially the one who is pregnant; it is probably good for the baby.) Do Riso and Hudson give a reason for why 2s don't get enough sleep? I've noticed they don't suffer like I do when I don't sleep enough (but most people don't, really.)

Anyway, I'm glad to hear about 1s and 2s because my mom Beje just mentioned that she's noticed we write a lot about 5s and 6s. She said Is it the Enneagram of 5s and 6s? I said we also write about 3s, plus, Write what you know.

Back to the idea of resolutions: One thing I notice from going to these Enneagram conferences is that the students are super-fascinated by the typing aspect of the Enneagram and the teachers are borderline-exasperated with that fact and much more interested in solutions or in other words, what's next after I've determined my type?

Cindi said...

Mary Beth,
I had the same idea. I figured that, when I got to the 5s, I would compare the Riso/Hudson-inspired reolutions with the ones I actually made.
R&H seem to connect the 2's lack of sleep with always running around, doing for others, and maintaining their many relationships. Also just generally ignoring and being disconnected from their own needs.
Your mom is on to something. Perhaps our New Year's resolution should be to write more about the 8s and 9s!
I am also starting to reach the exasperated w/ typing fascination point. It;'s a parlor trick if it doesn't fuel personal growth.

Mary Beth said...

I have made a list of New Year's Resolutions and when you get to the 6's we can see how they compare. As a sneak preview, let me just throw out one word to describe the resolutions (mine): boring.

I disagree about the Enneagram only being a parlour trick if it doesn't fuel personal growth. No, I agree, only I think learning about it to the point of having a good parlour trick has represented a huge amount of personal growth for me, because I have had a life-long need to know how I compare to other people. I do, however, agree to the point that I think that having reached a certain level, learning more about typing other people isn't very helpful, and these Enneagram teachers (i.e. the ones whose conferences we attended) reached that level a long time ago.

Anonymous said...

Hi Mary Beth & Cindi. I suspect that students are so fascinated with typing because it's a natural first step in dealing with the Enneagram (or perhaps a second, with self-typing specifically being the first?). I can understand it being boring for a teacher, like trying to teach a Spanish class and having a different set of students every class and therefore always having to start over. Perhaps there would be less, "ooh, am I typing this person correctly, teacher?!" if some of the classes are basically designed to exclude beginners. (That may already occur. I have no idea.) Anyhow, that's my two cents on the why. I find myself somewhat interested in learning to type while also questioning the worth in me learning such a complicated system. My thought is, if I learn to type, if I learn to see people as they are, if I learn to understand their motives, then I can better understand, deal with, and generally interact with them. So my typing desire is linked to the goal of future usefulness and growth. In the past few weeks, noticing someone as a 3 has given me more patience and understanding with them. If I can only take that view with the rest of the world....


Cindi said...

Totally, Amy. Typing other people can serve the purpose of building compassion for them, and that (after the personal growth element), is the most useful thing about the e-gram.
One basic principal is that people do to themselves what they do to others. It really helped me w/ my relationship w/ my mom (who is a 1) to really realize that she hears a critical voice inside her head all the time. That makes the frustration she expressed with others seem more minor, and forgiveable.
What I am frustrated with is two things: people who have been studying the e-gram for a long time, and are just like, such and such a test says I'm a one, but this one says I'm a two, and this teacher says I'm a three, but now I wonder if I'm a four, and they basically just want me to navel-gaze w/ them while they speculate about how the e-gram doesn't really describe them, but they are totally unwilling to just let it go if it doesn't work for them. The other thing is people who want to endlessly debate about celebrity types. This is fun, and I do it too, but too much of this, and it's like, are we ever gonna get off of step 1? Step 2 -- the part where you get in touch with Essence, is a doozy.

Anonymous said...

Ah. So the Enneagram can be a party game and a tool for growth. The frustration, for you, lies in people who never even attempt to move past step 1.

I wonder how much of that is reflective of not having a grasp on their type. I think you(?) made a really good point when you said that a person who can't figure out their type can choose to start somewhere and work on the issues they have that are associated with that given type. Listening to you, it sounds more like you encounter the babbling idiot types... I mean, people that are only interested in the parlor trick.