#4 Mistake to Avoid in Using the Enneagram

Mistake #4: Believing Your Type’s Interpretation

We all believe our enneatype’s interpretations out of habit and out of the deep patterns our type structure has grooved into our minds.  So why is it a mistake to believe them?

Having a type is not a mistake, but believing what our type tells us as truth is.  Our type’s beliefs are just predictable narratives that originated to keep us safe in some way, and offer a particular angle on things.  The real power in the Enneagram is learning to recognize the interpretations our types offer us, to notice them and reel them in.  When we let them lead us, we will continue to beget more of the same in our lives.


This is the fourth of four video posts on Mistakes to Avoid Using the Enneagram.  This mistake is made by everyone, and will continue to be made.  Forgive yourself for making it, and see what else might be possible.

I hope it is useful to you, and I welcome your comments and experiences on my site.

4 Responses

  1. Dear Sara. I really appreciate these teachings. I have been involved in Enneagram work for many years, primarily with Riso Hudson. Your presentation of these traps is very fresh, concise and clear.
    Your reminders are essential to keeping us from going back into trance.
    Thank you.

    1. Melissa- I’m glad you find these useful. I agree it is useful to have others on the path to keep the awareness fresh- as Riso and Hudson call them “essence friends.” Thanks for your feedback and for walking the path with us.

  2. This has been a useful and thought provoking series. I like that you give exercizes to explore my possibilities. This morning I was able to identify my habit of getting overwhelmed by not having enough time…a 5 habit of feeling scarcity around resources. My usual response might be to try and change that habit or figure out how to have more time, but thinking of your approach, I tried it out in my body instead. Then my heart. And then the mind ran away with the whole show! But I see the pause as an important shift. Thank you.

    1. Thanks for sharing this, Jeanne. Yes- the pause has the power! And it’s powerful to invite a new way of paying attention. And being able to witness the mind running away with the show is also a “leg up” out of the typical stance of believing and identifying with the contents. I appreciate your sharing your example with us all.

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Sarah Dimmock - Ninesight Enneagram for Transformation

Hi, I'm Sarah

I am thrilled to share the power of Enneagram with people, and am especially drawn to working in depth with those who want to use it as a tool of personal transformation.

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