Mistake #3: Better Than – Less Than
As humans, we are all prey to the comparison game. Sometimes we feel we are better than others. Other times we feel “less than” either in a particular aspect (physique, status, morals, etc.), or evaluating our worth in general (“I’m not as good a person as she is”). Neither of these states is satisfying. Enneagram stereotyping can be another avenue to play out this superiority and inferiority game.
To conclude that your way is either superior or deficient is merely a coping strategy.
This can be difficult to shift because inner judgments can spring up so rapidly and robustly. Getting even a little more space internally around this can feel like fresh air in a stuffy room.
This is the third of four video posts on Mistakes to Avoid Using the Enneagram. These are offered as enrichment for our awareness, not as ways to tell ourselves that we are better than or less than others.
I hope it is useful to you, and I welcome your comments and experiences on my site.
Great information, and some humorous commentary in here. Thank you Sarah!
Thanks Adam. Seeing humor in the whole proposition certainly helps me to loosen the grip of believing what my type tells me…
It’s hard to admit that we do this jockeying all the time, but we do. I do. I like your advice about “getting curious.” It reminds me of how Marshall Rosenberg, the originator of Nonviolent Communication, speaks about understanding our beautiful human needs and wants, and the beautiful human needs and wants of those around us. If we’re truly curious, we can invite someone to disclose more fully to us, igniting our empathy.
Thanks for your comments, Marti. I love the “beautiful” in Rosenberg’s reminder. And, yes, I agree that it can be hard to admit this stuff. But I find that “telling the truth on myself” usually brings forth more space, or freedom, or possibility if I don’t make myself bad or wrong about it.