What we are is God’s gift to us; what we become is our gift to God”
This holiday season I felt I’d bring you some insights on, Type Seven, the JOYFUL type, also called, the Joyful Epicure, or Joyful Adventurer on the Enneagram of personality types.
Even if we are not within the personality Type Seven, we can know what it feels like to be in the Sevenmode.
The Joyful type brings “to the table,” a lightness of being. Maybe you have one in your family or are one yourself.
Called an optimist, the “Tinkerbell” of the Enneagram, the Joyful type, likes to see, and follow the light. The light, spirit or essence has great appeal for the Joyful Type and so they are often referred to as “free spirited.” They like to en-lighten, (as in unburden,) us and perhaps their greatest gift is their immense capacity to feel gratitude. They can feel it for the smallest detail but then isn’t that what life is made of?
Each of the universal types on Enneagram spectrum has within it, their gifts and challenges.Within their unique personality that falls within a given type, is what I call, a wellness map. It is also called, our points of integration and disintegration, but I call it a wellness map, because, it is each of us in every moment, who makes the choice for our emotional wellness. We can be, decidedly better, more integrated, whole, or not.
I am not one to say it is easy. I like Scott Peck’s first line in the book, The Road Less Travelled, which is, “Life is difficult,” however, it is in naming it, and claiming the difficulty, or challenge, that we begin to tame it. The Enneagram can help you with a deepened awareness, and truth around a certain challenge. We cannot change many things in life but we are so very capable of changing our reactions to what presents itself.
Your specific Enneagram is a kind of emotional X-ray or MRI, and shows you very specifically, how it looks and feels for you, in stress, tension or discomfort, and how it looks and feels for you in states of security, safety or comfort.
We navigate through our stress –our reactions to it- more easily when we do our practice. When the Joyful Type Seven is secure and safe, or said differently, when centered and connected, they are operating out of the resourceful or higher side of themselves. W hen a challenge presents itself, and they choose to not run from the limits, helplessness or pain, they meet the challenge.
They know that when in a less resourceful mode, at their “low side,” their tendency might be to run from the limit or challenge and look elsewhere for the light. Although they might like to avoid the limiting challenge facing them, they choose to stay with it and work it through.
They might tell themselves, the easiest way out is through.
They know if they accept, or tolerate the difficulties, or feelings of helplessness, they can get to “This too shall pass.” or “This too will transform.” They ultimately get to the big picture, which ultimately is only a glimpse of the big picture, while they practice healthy detachment in the process.
It is not fun during the staying with it part of the process and certainly doesn’t feel light, but this is practicing emotional wellness for the Joyful type Seven. When they are in this pain or limited place, healthy choices include not impulsively covering their pain by filling themselves up with some kind of light-filled pleasure. Gluttony can be about food but there are numerous ways to stuff ourselves.
When Sevens work through the pain or limit, practicing patience, where they observe and feel the problem, instead of running or distracting from it, they find they are managing their driving energy or emotional passion of gluttony or “filling up,” or distracting with anything that feels easier, that has more light.
At their low end, with the stress of life unchecked, can come a downward spiral into the gunk, and for the Joyful adventurer, generally it can look like this; there can be a kind of scattering, which is rooted in running from pains, feelings of helplessness or limits.
A filling up on light (pleasure,) distractions, and, hearing internal criticisms and perfectionistic thinking only further contaminate the helplessness the Seven feels. And so the wheels spin.
Time to hit the internal GPS course correct button, and the healthy “tape,” from the old Jerry Seinfeld series ….and remember his line, “Don’t go there.”
In every situation, we get to choose our behavior, and with a deeper understanding of who we are, and what our patterns look like, we can better weaken the old behaviors that do not work for us.
Ultimately, with conscious work- and process- we can break the old unhealthy patterns one at a time. By accepting limits/pain, setting boundaries, and working through tough times
sl o w l y, Joyful types get better at managing their driving energy of filling up, with all kinds of pleasures and plans to distract themselves from the limit or emotional pain they may be feeling.
With patience and conscious practice, the Joyful type gets back to the intersection of their true joy and wise observing, with its healthy detachment and non judgment… back to their heaven on earth.
Daily stress is inevitable, and, moment to moment it is our choice how we respond. Whatever the challenges are that you find within your unique personality, your Enneagram insights and practice help you with your healthy response, which ultimately may have a cumulative effect on your overall health.
With love ,