In college, one of my close friends introduced me to the Enneagram personality types. Since then, I've used it as a way to help understand more about myself. It's a useful tool for you to discuss with friends or significant others how you communicate and function at your best and your worst. Other friends of mine have also come to use it and see that it's extremely insightful. I really like them because I think they help me understand myself and my friends just a little bit more.
Obviously, everyone is unique and individual. People can never fully explain who they are through a personality test.
I'll be the first to admit that personality tests have some sort of generalizable elements to them, so it's pretty easy to identify with the traits of whatever result you end up with. At the same time, once you see your results, you begin to identify strongly with certain traits and see very clearly how you defy others. The tests can also be useful tools in understanding how you work and collaborate with others in team settings.
If you've never taken a personality test before, check out the Myers-Briggs type indicator test. Where are all my INFJs at? It's a solid start. I'm here primarily to talk Enneagram types.
The Enneagram works with nine Enneagram type descriptions. It seems kind of complicated, but it's actually fairly straightforward if you understand all the pieces.
Essentially, you have one dominant personality type that falls under one of three Centers. The Centers reflect what the uniqueness of that group of personality types is. No type is inherently masculine or feminine, so it works with both genders. The numbers of the types simply are there to help you make sense of where you stand. Each type also has a name that describes it.
For example, my dominant personality type is "The Helper", also known as type 2. Elizabeth Taylor, Martin Sheen, and Eleanor Roosevelt are some of my kindred spirits, apparently. Basically, this means I am someone who desires to be loved. I want to be helpful to people. At my best, I am generous, self-sacrificing, and show unconditional love. At my worst, I am possessive, needy, and prideful.
Each basic personality type also has a primary wing that represents other unique facets of a personality. Your wing is one of the other eight personality types, typically one that is adjacent to your basic type in the Enneagram model. The wing complements your basic personality type but also can bring up some defiant characteristics from your basic personality type. For example, I am a Helper, type 2 with a dominant Achiever, type 3 wing.
To some degree, every person has some level of all the Enneagram types within them. Take the Enneagram and find out what type you are to understand what personality traits come out in you and how you communicate with your best and worst self.
The Enneagram Institute® was founded in 1977 by Don Richard Riso and Russ Hudson to help people understand themselves better on a deeper level. The organization offers training and workshops in order to help guide groups through the test as of last year. I hope this helps you understand a little more about who you are.