The power in the Enneagram is the ability to apply it to everyday situations. First you need to know your type so you can show up as the best version of you. But then you need to know others or at least an educated guess, so you can understand how your communication style impacts them and choose to pivot to meet them for the more fruitful interactions. Remember: Your reality is what the other person thinks you said.
I am always encouraging clients to practice noticing others, so it becomes a guide or roadmap to the less natural or more challenging interactions. One fun way to practice is typing fictional characters through behaviors which reveal motivations. Fictional characters are usually stereotypes and less nuanced but can be engaging practice and there is no harm in discussing them with others because they are not real.
The Apple TV series Ted Lasso was a joy to watch as we cheered and cringed and even cried for Richmond and the wonderful cast of characters. Some characters stand out in their possible type - Danny Rios' upbeat seemingly limitless optimism (hello 7), Sam Obisanya's endless compassion and calm in the face of great hardship (9), Roy Kent's hard outer exterior evolution showing his soft inner self and wonderful friendship with initial nemesis Jamie Tartt, as well as Ted’s infinite kindness and ability to connect with his own demons and hardship (2 anyone?)
Give it a try…
And then here is some food for thought? Let me know what you agree or disagree with.
Highly principled, detailed, formal, structured, idealistic sense of right and wrong (Ex: When Nathan ratted out Ted's panic attack, Trent printed it but gave Ted a heads up and identified the source yet still published but telling Ted was the right thing to do.)
Ted Lasso | Leslie Higgins
Ted: Connected and connecting, People oriented, looking out for others, goes above and beyond, pitching a hand, supportive, caring, kind. (Ex: ed is the glue of the show - his optimism and energy may lead one to jump to 7 but he is all about connecting people and small acts of kindness to honor the relationships that mean the most to him. He bakes shortbread for Rebecca, his boss, every workday so he can connect, check in and build the relationship. He has a BIG heart and tries to help all he interacts with and has deep and big emotions. Also possibly: Higgins gives up office for Dr Fieldstone in Season 2 and the Christmas Dinner inviting all the team to his home. )
Rebecca Weldon | Jamie Tartt
Rebecca: High achieving, energy, image conscious, performers that evolved over the seasons to use their superpowers to help not just themselves but their team. Unskilled seek validation from others from their actions and contributions and can lose sight of self for success. (Ex: Rebecca in Christmas episode, loses obsession to beat Rupert and puts energy toward the team interests. Jamie - needed to superstar and not share glory, left and returned as more of a team player, befriends Roy and works hard and helps rest of team to thrive.)
Individuality, big emotions, unique style, romance, dreamer, always tells Rebecca to "Let Ted be Ted” and encourages others to be true to themselves. Shares deep friendships and unique views on the world. Unique sense of dress and expression. Big feelings.
Quiet, reserved in sharing about self, great observer, misses very little, data driven, knows rules, obscure references, clearly intelligent and competent, knows all rules of British football and right names of teams and tourneys
Nate Shelley | Leslie Higgins
Loyal, skeptical, pessimistic, superstitious, worries about being on outside, paranoid without information, takes care, can be uber competitive and want limelight when triggered (shadow behavior of 3). Nathan: starts warm, loyal, team oriented and careful. As the series progresses, Nate feels Ted let him down, paranoid by Roy joining coaching staff so he abandons the team (worst case scenario thinking and action) and goes to Ruppert's United team but misses the comradery and sense of belonging with Richmond team. Higgins: superstitious during games, but so warm and loyal to the entire team)
Danny Rojas | Ted Lasso
Positive, Cheerful, Extroverted Life Lovers who want to enjoy and experience freedom. (Ex: Dani Rojas is always smiling, seeing the best in the world and famous for saying "Football is Life." He has an infectious optimism and doesn't stay down for long. (Many amateur Enneagram sleuths may say Ted is a 7 because of his infectious optimism - but he all about connecting and supporting others in his leadership not pursuing his freedoms for joys)
Roy Kent | Rupert Mannion
Strong, Brave, Confident Decision Makers which present Power and Control. Can be received as dominating, domineering and uncaring. Protective. Think Chocolate Gummy Bear analogy when skilled - hard outer shell, tender inside. Roy Kent is all strength and seems undeterred by others. However, his relationship with his niece Phoebe is all heart. Also, his growing friendship in Season 3 with Jamie shows a very caring side. He is a kind soul under his black outer armor. Rupert Mannion is an example of an unskilled 8 - power, domination, little respect for anyone not strong and powerful.
Kind, peaceful, collaborative, unflappable, avoids conflict - Akufo situation and does not get triggered. Sam does not want to disappoint his father, Nigeria, or his teammates. His strength is quiet and consistent.