Enneatype Vs. Natural Energy

Enneagram Symbol

The Enneagram's Source

The Enneagram came to the west via George Gurdjieff and subsequently through the teachings of Oscar Ichazo and Claudio Naranjo. The Enneagram has developed into a way of helping people to understand themselves by looking at the behaviors that get in their way. Helen Palmer, one of the psychologists who helped to introduce the Enneagram, says in her Enneagram book that they decided the best way to tell people's type was through looking at their phobias and negative personality traits.

The Enneagram Typing Method

There are several of ways of determining your Enneatype, either through a panel of experts, observation, or self-selection using questions or type descriptions. The Enneagram typing method thus depends on observational or self-answered questions on personal beliefs and behavior.

Challenges of this Process in Determining Natural Energy

We are rarely seen clearly by the world around us and we rarely see ourselves clearly. We are raised by people of a different Natural Energy, who often expect us to be like they are.  Natural Energy does not repeat in families with less than 9 people. This means that none of our family members understand how our bodies are different and how that affects who we are and what we care about - which means we are rarely effectively supported in our strengths.

Also, it is less likely, that when left to our beautiful minds, we will openly admit to our true phobias or even be able to see them. We are more likely to pick what we would like to be or think we should be than what we are, or we choose from the ways we have learned to cope - the nurture, not the nature.

Is My Enneatype the Same as My Natural Energy?

Our data, based on working with hundreds of people who know both their Enneatype and their Natural Energy, is that it is not common for a person's Enneatype to directly match their Natural Energy.  Because identification of one's Enneatype often reflects the way a person has learned to cope through the experiences and traumas of their life, we see the Enneagram as a reflection of the Nurture, rather than the Nature of an Individual.  Enneatype is determined from behaviors where Natural Energy is determined by your physiology and how your body develops.

So while the Enneagram has great value, it is not a perfect predictor of Natural Energy.

Working together to understand the relationship between your Enneatype and your Natural Energy, when they differ, can be a very healing process. People have found great value in being Enneatyped as something different than their Natural Energy.  It shows where you are, your nurture, in relationship to your nature.  Understanding both, when they differ can be a good indicator of a pathway back to who you are at the level of your nature.

Related Articles:

How does 9 Energies relate to Personality Typing Systems?

Wisdom of our body with Susan Fisher

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