The Enneagram and Spiritual Practices

Type Two

Hey there, friends and lovers of the enneagram! Last week, we introduced the idea of using the enneagram and spiritual practices together. Both are great tools to add to our over all wellness, but using the enneagram to specifically choose a spiritual practice is completely fascinating to me. This gives us the most opportunity for growth in our awareness, in our own number, and in our lives. Today, we are going to be focusing on enneagram type two.

To check out last week’s introductory post as well as spiritual practices for type one, click the button below:

Let’s review…

What is a Spiritual Practice?

A spiritual practice is something you do regularly and intentionally to experience the Divine and grow in awareness and expansiveness. There are multiple ways to do this, maybe even endless ideas of practices. Spiritual practices help connect us to the path we want to be on, and help us become who we want to be.

Furthermore, a practice keeps us connected to our goals even when our heart is not in it. The structure of the practice allows for the ups and downs of life, while being that stable thing we can come back to. It works like a muscle, or a habit. The more you do it at the same time and in the same way, it’s going to get stronger and become second nature to you.

Goals and Beginnings

You might be wondering, how do I start a spiritual practice if I’ve never had one before?

It is important not to overwhelm yourself by trying to do too much too fast. The best way to begin, is with a small achievable goal. Set aside just 5-10 minutes to focus on your practice at the same time every day. By setting aside the time and sticking to it, you will really begin to see a change in your life. And you will look forward to this special time in your day, that you have made just for your practice.

For example, if you wanted to add a meditation practice into you day, don’t start out with a goal of twenty minutes. This might be your long-term goal, but on your first day of meditation, this is too steep a mountain to climb! Begin with two minutes for a week long period. When that feels satisfying and doable, add more minutes. In a few months you may reach you goal of a twenty minute meditation practice.

Enneagram Type 2 and Spiritual Practices

The hardest part for enneagram type 2, might just be setting aside that time for themselves everyday. Setting boundaries and taking care of themselves is a constant struggle for twos, but one they can win with some intentional effort. Twos need to know that they deserve the time to grow in the ways they desire, and that this is not self-ish.

Actually, spending time positively working on themselves in a spiritual practice is the opposite of selfish. The effects of this practice will not only improve their lives, but it will allow them to be the best they can be for the people around them. Which is what twos love best, taking care of others.

Twos- remember that you are worth this time! You deserve self care, and you deserve a space of spiritual practice that is just for you!

Upriver and Downriver Practices

I am for all spiritual practices because they add so much depth to your day, and essentially your life. However, as we are combining our enneagram numbers with the most ideal practices, we are thinking about what practices will allow for the most growth for each number.

Downriver practices- your downriver practices are going to come naturally to you. These are things you are so inclined to do that is feels like floating downriver on a sunny day.

Upriver practices- These are things you are not good at. It will take a great amount of effort for you to try these practices, but these will also produce the most growth and awareness for you on your journey. These will feel like paddling upriver through some rapids!

Practices for Type 2

The number one spiritual practice that I recommend for type twos, is centering prayer.

What is centering prayer?

Centering prayer, is a specific kind of prayer that is silent. The goal is, in the silence to experience God’s presence, and to prepare yourself to receive the gift of God knowing you completely, and loving you just as you are. It is an experience so deep and meaningful, beyond thinking, but being in the presence of God, the very breath of life.

The enneagram and spiritual practices

Why is this a needed spiritual practice for type two?

Type twos struggle with knowing that they are loved for who they are. Deep inside them, their wounded message is that they must earn love and acceptance from others by serving and doing things for them. This is the opposite of grace and the message of the Divine. There is nothing you need to do.

Twos need to know that they can show up exactly as they are, sit in silence and feel the Presence as unconditional full, and radiant love. This practice over time will greatly grow their capacity for self love, which in turn, moves into real relationship and love of others.

This practice develops the relationship with the Divine, the discipline of having intentional boundaries, and encourages the idea that being present is all that is needed.

This upriver practice challenges the type two’s desire to move and act. Twos are thinking repressed, meaning they function primarily through the doing and feeling centers of intelligence. Slowing down to sit in a space where nothing is expected of them, where they can empty out negativity, judgement, and poor thinking, is incredibly healing.

I hope you look into trying this upriver practice if you are a type two. And if you know a type two, encourage them to give it a try.

Continue with your downriver practices as well, those are your strengths and add so much to the lives of those around you as well.

Blessings.

Thanks for reading. Live inspired!

If you would like more information on enneagram type two, check out the complete overview on sale right now!

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What are You Chasing?

Do you ever feel like you’re going in circles? Overwhelmed by the cycles of life, and you never quite get to where you set out to go? It may be time to ask yourself, what are you chasing? Why is it that you feel this disconnect from wholeness? Today’s post will cover types 1, 2 and 3 on the enneagram and their specific chase.

We are all chasing something in an effort to feel seen, heard, loved and understood. The way we chase after these things however, looks very different for each enneagram number. We are motivated differently, and our subconscious sends us on the chase to fulfill a deep need within us.

When this need goes unnoticed, the chase remains as simply a distraction from life’s true meaning and purpose. In attempt to get our needs met, we can create some pretty destructive paths.

Identification

The first step to understanding your chase is to identify it. What is it you are after? Why are you on this path? Is this the best way to get what you want and be who you want to be?

These questions will help you pause and reflect upon what is really going on in your life. Many of us are stuck on “autopilot,” living each day like the one before… but what if there is more.

And by more, I mean less…

Let’s take a look at each enneagram type, their chase, and movement into growth toward their virtue. By understanding the chase, we can refocus, simplify, and move forward in transforming and beautiful ways.

Type one

Enneagram type one is chasing improvement and perfection. Doesn’t sound so bad, right? We need people concerned with making things better and striving for the best.

However, the chase of the one becomes dangerous when they elevate this desire of improvements over all else. They become obsessed and harsh, pointing out every detail out of place. Judging themselves, others, and their surroundings for short comings, consumes them. And the chase is on!

Here’s where the enneagram shines as my favorite tool…

We can give the struggling type one practical handles to grab hold of that will literally change their life from chase cycle to a path of contentment and ease.

Tools to derail your chase

Journaling

Ones need a place to channel their negative energy and critiques. Instead of tearing themselves and others down for the things that they see, one way to stop the chase in its tracks is to write these thoughts down. Get them out of your head and down on to paper where they can be put to rest for a while.

Beyond letting the critiques be known in a safe place, a type one really needs to acknowledge the good that is happening in their everyday lives. Journaling about what is going right is an extremely powerful move for ones. Name the ten things going well, and let go of the one thing that went wrong.

Movement

Literally moving their bodies is a great way for ones to get out some of their energy and fill their bodies with positivity. Exercising can also help quiet that inner critic as the brain is flooded with endorphins.

Letting Go

Making a mental note and personal goal to let go, for type one is a major growth move. There are many little things everyday that are hard to let go of. Letting go of the control in a few small areas will allow for more feelings of peace and harmony, and a new found freedom for ones.

Type Two

Enneagram type two is chasing affirmation and approval from others. We all want to be liked by others and love hearing that we have done well. For the type two however, they can turn this into a manipulative pull.

Subconsciously, twos chase this approval from others and prioritize it above all else. They give, give, give in hopes to gain likability in the eyes of others. Their chase feeds their ego which looks like pride. Two’s become martyr-like, sacrificing in ways beyond healthy boundaries that are both destructive and unwarranted.

Tools to Derail Your Chase

Pause for thinking

It is the two’s instinct to act on whatever feeling is going on at the present moment. They leave thinking behind, and do until they are exhausted. A helpful tool for twos in these moments, is to pause and ask powerful questions to bring up thinking.

Can someone else do this task?

Do I need to take ownership of this situation?

What am I saying no to, if I say yes to this?

These simple questions can help the type two really focus on what is important. Prioritizing and setting boundaries helps you live your best life, and move in the ways you were meant to without taking ownership of things that aren’t meant for you to carry.

Journal

When type twos journal, they tend to focus on other people. Instead, let this journaling time be about you, reflect on how you are feeling. Write down the questions from above for even deeper reflection on what you are taking on. Think about the why in your life. Why am I doing what I am doing?

You will be surprised at what comes up and the impact it will have on your life. This journaling exercise helps derail your chase by giving you back the power. It is easy to fall into dependence on others from their opinions to feeling obligated to serve them. You don’t need their approval. You are enough just as you are.

Words of affirmation

Furthermore, be your own encouragement. Find words that inspire you and choose a place to make them visible daily. Maybe you can write a powerful mantra on your mirror, or put a sticky note near your doorway.

Through the ebbs and flows of life, you need to know that you are enough, that you already have everything you need within you. People are going to let you down, and without their love and approval, you still have what it takes inside you to be whole and lovely.

Shower yourself with positive self-talk. This means tell yourself the words you need to hear. Steer clear of negativity and work at building yourself up. Say the things you would say to your dearest friend, and you’ll be right on target.

Type Three

Type three is chasing success and achievement. In one way or another we all want success, but for type three this is their end game. They will avoid failure at all cost, meaning if they have to cut corners a bit to come out on top, they will. In their chase, threes become chameleons in order to get what they want and to look how they feel they need to appear.

When type three is caught up in the chase, they have a hard time seeing reality and understanding even who they really are. Their road to wholeness can be a tricky one.

Tools to derail your chase

Confession

To begin the journey to wholeness, threes need to start by finding out where in their lives they are being inauthentic. This can be done through talking with a trusted friend. Being open about real struggles, and confessing where they haven’t been honest.

Though challenging at first, this practice of confession will become extremely freeing for the type three. They live their lives in a guarded way, afraid of rejection and failure. By taking this step in honesty and vulnerability, their chase will be thrown off course.

Journal

Yes, this is a recurring beneficial practice! Each type needs journaling with a slightly different focus. For type three, let your journaling time be the place where you are the most honest.

Community

When threes move into their healthier space, there is a shift from spotlight on them, to caring more about the group as a whole. This can be done intentionally. Shifting the focus from personal success, to what does the group need?

Not only can you lead the group with excellence as a three, but you can take advantage of what the community has to offer. Allow your community to support you, let them lead sometimes, and realize the gifts that come through dependence rather than being the lone wolf.

Life will continue to ebb and flow. We will constantly be at odds with the chase. But this doesn’t mean we surrender to it. Even simply being aware that we have a chase, makes us more likely not to fall into it’s patterns.

Be kind to yourself as you grow. Just try to make one positive step today that is better than yesterday. Move in the direction you wish to become.

I hope that some of these tools will prove helpful for you within your own type and that you will be on your way derailing your chase and living in wholeness.

Blessings! Thanks for reading!

Grab this printable pdf below, a quick glance at the 9 types passions and virtues. Our passions are the chase left unattended. The virtue is our path toward growth and personal development.

Want an overview of all 9 enneagram types?

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Enneagram Love Letters

Happy February Friends!

It’s the month we love to love! I also love February because my second son was born ten days before Valentines Day. Celebrating his birthday is always a highlight for our family. This year we are Celebrating with his favorite superhero, Spider-Man!

I don’t love the over-commercialized side of Valentines Day, but what I do love is the focal point of expressing our love for each other. This idea I can get on board with! Saying I love you to someone is important, and the way you say it, can mean the world.

I thought I would begin this month with a dedication to each type and why I love that type. I hope you enjoy reading this series, “Love Letters to the 9 Types.” My goal is that each type will “feel the love,” and realize that they deserve it! Please share these letters with someone you love. And last of all, read your type and embrace the words meant just for you!

Enjoy this week’s love letters to type one and type two:

Enneagram Love Letters

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And now sending love to type two…

Enneagram Love Letters

Want a copy of the love letter for type two? grab it below:

Share the love! I hope you enjoyed those love letters and that you will spend some time this month intentionally giving love to those around you in a way they can receive it best.

Blessings!

Live inspired.

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Enneagram Type Two, and Fictional Characters

Do you ever watch a movie or read a book, and find yourself in the character? Sometimes we relate with fictional characters because they are dramatizing our patterns of behaviors and using the same motivations we would use. This is so helpful for identifying and working out your enneagram type and those of others as well. Today, let’s discuss enneagram type two, and fictional characters.

Twos can often be found as the supporting role in many fictional tales. This is probably because they are naturally helpful characters and fit well as the sidekick, or best friend sort. However, there are times when a Two gets a great lead role.

Emma

Jane Austen’s Emma, could be considered a type two. She is constantly concerned with the well-being of others, their feelings, and happiness. This motivates her to even try her hand at match-making several times. She is proud in thinking that she knows what is best for everyone else, and in turn neglects her own happiness and well-being.

A type two’s passion, or “deadly sin,” is pride. The kind of pride that Emma shows time and time again. It leans on the self-righteous side and takes a great deal to overcome.

Twos are always befriending people and taking care of them. Emma goes out of her way frequently to care for the people in her community that need the most help.

Enneagram Type 2 and fictional characters

Molly Weasley

Molly Weasley embodies the warmth and welcome of the type two. She makes Harry feel right at home and eagerly strives to meet all of his needs. She helps Harry find the platform and king cross station, which is only the beginning of her efforts to show her care through helping. Molly makes sure that Harry gets a hand knitted sweater on Christmas, just because he is a friend of her son, Ron!

This type 2 is is endlessly serving her busy family, and never thinking of herself. She knows where everyone is at any given time, and exactly what each person needs.

Peeta Mellark

Peeta’s devotion to Katniss is legendary. It is this quality that keeps him hoping, and keeps them both alive. He is also self-sacrificing, a known two quality. He thinks of her above himself, even from the beginning.

Peeta throws her the exact life-line she needs, at he moment she needs it, and saves her and her families lives by his simple generosity.

We see Peeta quite literally become “martyr-like” willing to die in place of Katniss. Few of us face death threats so literally and for a two their martyr like quality only shows up when they are in a bad place. When a two is stressed and down, they will take their self-righteousness to an unhealthy level.

What is most important to the type to is reciprocity. They want what’s due to them. If they have been there for you, they want you to be there for them. If they have sacrificed, they expect that same sacrifice.

Have you seen a little of yourself or someone you love in the type two characters?

Maybe you have thought of a few type two fictional characters that we could add to the list… Feel free to comment.

You might also like: 5 words each enneagram type needs to hear most

Below is a video course for beginners just learning the enneagram

Behind the Scenes of Enneagram Type 2

If you would like to listen to the post on the podcast, CLICK HERE!

The Podcast! Episode 2!

You may know the enneagram type 2 as the helper, but there is much more to them than their strong desire to help others. Today we are going to talk about the many facets of the type 2, going behind the scenes of enneagram type 2 to discover who they really are.

I recently heard someone refer to the type 2, as “the befriender.” I like this name more than the traditional “helper,” name given. The befriender seems more fitting for this type. They are constantly making friends everywhere they go, and hold relationships above all else.

What don’t we know about type 2?

On the surface, type twos appear the most generous. They give without ceasing or wanting anything back. Let’s go behind the scenes of enneagram two. The underlying issue here is that twos actually DO want something back. It is on a subconscious level that they operate this “give and take” contract. They have given to you, loved you, later on, they are going to expect the same generosity and love back.

If you asked a two about this, they would likely not agree, unless they are very healthy and working on these areas. Because all of this is done without them thinking about it, they don’t even realize this is their reality. But the fact remains, they do for you, so you will do for them.

Why?

Twos have an underlying motivation to be loved and accepted for who they are. If they give to you, and love you, they think they can earn your love and acceptance. Being in the heart triad, twos take in information with feelings, but there is a distance between themselves and their own feelings. They tend to be concerned with everyone else’s feelings, and neglect their own. They are also slightly image conscious (especially if they have a 3 wing, which we won’t get into detail here).

Behind the scenes of Enneagram Type 2

Why we love befrienders (type twos)

I happen to be married to a type 2, which makes me uniquely qualified to share why they are so beloved. Maybe my view is a scant skewed, but I can tell you…

No one listens like a 2!

When I first met my husband, it was the first time I had felt seen and heard by a boy, ever. Then, of course, I didn’t realize this was part of his “two-ness.” Twos have this amazing quality to give you their full attention. The rest of the world fades away. Their “Spidey-senses” are scanning, listening for your needs, wants, desires, anything they can fulfill. This circles back to their need for approval, appreciation, and ultimately, love.

Though it may come off as people-pleasing at times, two’s are excellent care-takers. They will anticipate your needs before you ask them. Nurturing comes naturally to them, and they want nothing more than to fulfill the needs of those around them. They do this without complaint, and will continue cheerfully serving especially when given even an ounce of appreciation.

Thinking Repressed

Twos happen to be in the thinking repressed stance. This doesn’t mean they don’t use the thinking intelligence center, only that they aren’t using it productively. Most of their thoughts center around other people, and relationships. Things like, “oh, this would be great for so and so,” or “I wonder how so and so is doing… I should go check on them, and bring them a casserole.” These are great thoughts, kind thoughts. However, the two has a hard time focusing on themselves, and what work they need to be doing to improve their own lives.

Being thinking repressed also means that twos orientation to time, is the present. They are in the moment people. They aren’t thinking about the past or the future. This is probably what makes them such good listeners. It can also make them poor planners, and a bit on the spontaneous side.

What Type 2 Needs from us

Type twos almost never speak their needs aloud. This can make it hard to know how to help them, when they are always playing the role of the helper.

An easy thing that goes a long way is appreciation. Let the twos in your life know how much you appreciate all the little things they do for you. If you step back and take notice it is probably more than you realize. Send them a note, or text thanking them for whatever way they recently served you.

Do something thoughtful for them. This may seem obvious, but returning the favor of service and thoughtfulness is really something twos crave. If they are always watching your kids for you, take their kids for a change. Bring them a favorite coffee, or help them with a current project.

Another tip to remember, twos may be the most sensitive type on the enneagram. Because of this, they don’t take criticism well, so tread with caution in this area. It’s nice to use the sandwich strategy: positive compliment to begin (like the bottom piece of bread) criticism in the middle (like the meat of the sandwich) and then another positive compliment to end (like the top piece piece of bread). This strategy works really well in most cases.

Thanks for reading! It was fun taking a behind the scenes look at enneagram type 2 with you! I love all the type twos in my life! They really make the world a friendlier place!

To read an overview of all the types check out The Enneagram Introduction

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Behind the scenes of enneagram type 2