Discover . . . Yourself

By January 8, 2021

James Patterson, the son of Internationally renowned Enneagram Master and best-selling Author Suzanne Stabile and a frequent guest on Suzanne’s “The Enneagram Journey” podcast will return to First Church via Zoom to conduct his popular “Getting to Know You” Enneagram workshop on Saturday, January 23 from 8:30 am – 3:00 pm. Whether the Enneagram is new to you or you participated in this workshop on our campus this time last year, you can learn more and go deeper with each session devoted to understanding and using this ancient way of understanding yourself and others.

The Enneagram features nine different personality types that, once understood, can help you understand why you do what you do, think what you think, and fell what you feel — as well as how your “God essence” is uniquely present in you. Understanding and using the Enneagram allows you to offer grace and compassion to yourself as well as others.

Why is the enneagram important, especially now?

Rev. Linda McDermott, Associate Pastor of Adult Education developed this workshop for our church because of her deep belief that the Enneagram addresses a couple of things that are specifically helpful in any relationship (work, home, friendships, community, society at large).

First, Linda says, the Enneagram is not a personality test like, for example, Myers-Briggs. “Instead of identifying behavior, the Enneagram identifies a person’s core motivation. It’s not about behavior as much as it is about what’s driving that behavior.

Second, the Enneagram helps you understand the core motivations of others. When you ask the question, “Why are they doing that?” knowing the Enneagram helps you answer that question by considering the nine ways in which people view/understand the world. “We truly do see things differently,” Linda adds.

Third, the Enneagram doesn’t label you and, therefore, box you into a “type,” but rather encourages your personal and spiritual growth through a gracious understanding of yourself and others, along with the spiritual work that is yours to do to become more balanced in your life and relationships.

Learning the Enneagram is Personal

Even though there are a number of “tests” out there to help you identify your Enneagram number (there are nine), it’s really not quite that simple. “Identifying your own number accurately is probably the most difficult part of the Enneagram,” Linda adds, and the only sure way of correctly identifying your number is to work with someone who has this expertise.

She goes on to explain that If, for example, you are someone who finds themselves behaving as a “helper” in most situations, you might assume that you are a 2 on the Enneagram (the Helper). However, it’s your motivation that reveals your true number, and your motivation for your helpful behavior may arise from a completely different number. “Once you correctly identify your Enneagram number, putting this information to work comes fairly quickly,” Linda assures. “The key is correct identification, which is why attending a workshop with someone who is highly trained in the Enneagram is so important.”

This one-day event, delivered via Zoom, promises to bring both insight and inspiration (and an entertaining) look at the 9 numbers of the Enneagram. The workshop will include an intense walkthrough of all 9 numbers (and their “wings,” which are the secondary numbers on either side of the main number) and then a look at how these numbers tend to behave in times of stress, security, and grief.

We are so fortunate to have James, a newer FUMCFW member who joined our church this past summer, back to First Church to lead this insightful and informative workshop. For more than 30 years James has been a student of the Enneagram, having learned from renowned Enneagram Masters: Suzanne Stabile (his mother), Father Richard Rohr, Richard Riso, and Russ Hudson. In the last decade, James has become a popular Enneagram teacher in his own right with his unique way of helping others learn the Enneagram through stories, humor, and spirituality.

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