Exploring Community and the Enneagram, Part 3

This is the third installment of an interview with Southlands community member, Maddy. Before you read this post, be sure to check out the first two parts of our interview here and here.

A Two’s Perspective on Community and Growth

S: Has learning the Enneagram impacted the way you view community and the church?

M: Yeah, I think it has really helped me understand my perspective and understand that my perspective is unique to me because I have a different personality type from other people. And I think it’s helped me understand other people too, because you don’t see them as just disagreeing with you, you see that they are coming from a different perspective, they have a different way of interacting. We’re both interacting with the same thing, but we are experiencing it differently because we’re different. It’s not bad, it’s a beautiful thing, and it makes up the body of Christ. It’s really beautiful! And it has made me appreciate the differences in all the numbers more as I’ve learned more about it because we’re all made in different ways. I can’t do everything, which is the hardest thing for twos to admit!

We are experiencing it differently because we’re different. It’s not bad, it’s a beautiful thing, and it makes up the body of Christ.

S: Yeah!

M: But I think it has given me more freedom in my “2”, knowing that I’m not meant to do everything. I think knowing and understanding my number has given me more freedom to work to a healthy place as I invite the numbers and all the different personality types to work together to point the world to Jesus.

S: Yeah, and I also wonder if being a 2 you are more apt to realize how other people are interacting with you, with the world, and with each other. Maybe you are more attuned to that than another number might be.

M: Maybe! Because you are looking at other people’s needs. It’s like “oh they need to be doing what they are meant to do….”

S: Yeah, you also mentioned that you first looked at yourself and your perspective. I think that shows a lot of maturity because I think a lot of twos think, “oh this will be great for this friend.” But you thought, “oh this is for me.”

M: Gotta help myself before I can help others!

S: Right! So what does growth look like for you?

M: I think growth looks like learning to say no to things and learning to care for myself. I am fairly introspective, but at the same time, I stuff those things down, and I believe that I don’t need anyone to take care of me. I think I can take care of myself and others. But I think growth means receiving help and asking for help. It’s something I am trying to get better at – still not super great – because I don’t want to be a burden to others. It’s also learning to say no when other people ask me for help because I need to learn to protect my time and protect caring for myself.

I think growth means receiving help and asking for help.

S: Well those are all the questions I have, but do you have any more thoughts on what it’s like to be a two in the church?

M: They say that a lot of people, especially women in the church, are confused with being a two. They might test as a two but they are actually something else. But when I took the test and came up as a two, I read the description of the two with the wing three specifically, and I knew that I was for sure a two. I think for me, I enjoy my number. It describes me really well, and it’s nothing to be ashamed of for any of the numbers. That’s how God created you, and that is a beautiful and important piece that the church needs. We need to steward our gifts well. I don’t think we should define ourselves or allow the number to define us, but allow it to free you to step into gifts that God calls you to. I think it allows for the space to steward gifts more specifically and see the things that you’re generally wired to do and not shy away from those but to step into those knowing that there is growth to be had, like in all things, but it’s good. And it’s needed.

S: That’s so true, that is a great point. Okay, actually, one last question – is there anything you would say to someone who is on the fence or who is not sure if they want to look into the Enneagram at all?

M: Oh! I would say do it! What do you have to lose but learning a little bit more about yourself? I think some people feel like they don’t want to do any personality test because they don’t want to be put in a box, but the thing is, like with any personality test, if you allow it to put you in a box, you will be put in a box. But if you take it as something that helps describe you, you can see: I’m still unique, I’m still a two, even a 2w3, and that looks different in me than another 2w3. It’s not defining you, it’s just helping you understand the way that you’re wired, and it allows for more freedom to work things out in that space. Rather than defining me or making me just like everyone else, it doesn’t mean I have to be exactly like the Enneagram description, it just helps give me a little self knowledge. It is helpful, so I would recommend it.

S: Cool! Me too! Thanks for sharing with me, Maddy.

It doesn’t mean I have to be exactly like the Enneagram description, it just helps give me a little self knowledge.

A huge thank you again to Maddy. This conversation was so enlightening because I don’t share the same Enneagram type as Maddy. Her words again reminded me how much we can learn from one another. I loved how Maddy stressed the importance of community and understanding different perspectives. We all have something unique to offer, yet each of us can be used to point people back to Jesus. I am looking forward to hearing from other Enneagram types within the Southlands Fullerton community.

 

If you would like to be interviewed for this project, I would absolutely love to sit down for a chat! Shoot me an email at stephanie.elise.hall@gmail.com.

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