They met through work. Was it he, that was not a dating type or did she leave no crack in the door for someone to share her life with? Whatever the reason, even though they had been in the same circles for a couple of years they had never considered the possibly of “ going out”. Until that night. He asked her out to dinner at a colleague outing and she accepted. Three months later he moved in. Before six months he gave her a ring.
At the beginning everything seemed to be going on well. She worked full time. Took care of the house and the bills. Managed the shopping and cooking and, of course, the kids. After all, for this idealistic Type One, everything had to be done perfectly, just the way she wanted. It just made sense to move in together. It just made sense for one person to be in charge of grocery shopping. It just made real sense to be perfect. And manage everything perfectly. She had to make sure kids attend all the extra curriculum activities and had fresh cooked meal every night. How could she not take the opportunity to go back to school for her PHD. It was another step to be perfect, wasn’t it? She couldn’t even imagine turning down the invitation to sit at the board for her professional organization even though she was already on two other boards. This was life. She was in this world to give herself to “ causes”. She had to show everyone how things “ ought” to be.
It all made sense!
The wake up call
Everything made sense until it didn’t work any more. Until she burned out. Until stress took over this Type One and pushed her into her lower levels. She was drowning herself in “ self obligation”.
“ If I don’t take care of things around here no one will.”
That realistic and extraordinarily wise person he had met at work, was gradually turned into a rigid and emotionally constricted workaholic being that he could no longer relate to. Nothing would make her happy. Nothing would live up to her expectations. Nothing could break that sense of pride. Frustration, criticism and complain was the anchor of every conversation. It was exhausting. To everyone, And more than others to herself.
Five years into the relationship, the suppressed anger was too deep to handle. She had lived all her life with the fear of being chaotic, being condemnable. Having her feelings and impulses under control, without discussing them was a heavy burden to carry any longer. After all, there’s so much dissatisfaction one can handle. The voice of the inner critic murmuring in her ear nonstop was getting louder and louder. It was paralyzing.
“ What happened? How did we get here?”
Acceptance, of self and others, is the journey of transformation for a Type One. Asking oneself:
How can I leave room for other possibilities?
How can I take another’s perspective and consider it?
What if I have done all I can?
What if others are right as well?
What do Tina Fey and Osama Bin Ladan have in common? Or perhaps George Bernard Shaw and Mahatma Ghandi? Or Nelson Mandela and Martha Stewart? Well, they are/were all idealistic, purposeful individuals. Principled, self controlled perfectionists. They were all Reformers, Type One Enneagrams. However their upbringing, society, culture and their levels of development, took them to very different paths. From the very healthy levels of bringing freedom and reform to a whole nation or industry, to the unhealthy levels of those who live their lives as an obsessive hypocrite or a punitive avenger. One thing they have in common, they believe“ It is MY JOB to get it done”. They believe they are the only ones who does everything “ the right way”. And they believe“ if not me then who”.
Ones are born with an incredible power to discern the truth. They are, at their best, inspiring and hopeful individuals. Their reasonable and mature way of being can be a great asset when they are present. They live with dignity and give everything to make the truth be heard.
It’s crucial to remember, we all have all Nine Types in us. We are all capable of reaching the essence, the high quality of each Type. Bringing awareness, to all the emotions, the challenge, the sufferings and the qualities of each Type helps us n this path.
How can I access the dualities of a Type One in me? How can I tap into the integrity that they bring to life? How can I let truth lead my life?
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A joyful Curious Type 7, who is constantly working on finding " contentment" in the moment