I’m frequently asked by those I work with for some sort of therapy “homework” to do between sessions. I’m admittedly not a big fan of assigning homework as I’m a strong believer in using the therapeutic space as a container for the work. I’ve found assigning tasks can sometimes make the therapy somewhat scattered and actually less effective for various reasons. However, in those rare moments when I feel it could be helpful I tend to suggest taking the Enneagram.
The Enneagram is more or less what I would describe as the most holistic, in-depth, and therapeutic personality test I’ve come across. For some it is in many ways much more than merely a personality test, but I suggest it to clients who I feel are really looking for something to catalyze their introspection and self-growth. What I like about this test is that it goes into far greater depth of each personality type’s psyche than any other personality test I’ve come across so far. Rather than just telling you random facts about yourself you most likely already know, this test describes the complex and deeply rooted inner conflicts we all wrestle with, and explains how those conflicts may be affecting our daily lives. Many who take the test tend to have a very jolted and shocked reaction on account of how accurate the descriptions are, even to the point where they learn a great deal about themselves.
What I don’t’ actually like about this test is that there are only nine personality types. ‘Really?’ I thought to myself the first time I saw this. ‘Nine personality types? For a whopping 7.5 billion people on the planet?’ Nevertheless, it is still remarkably accurate. If you chose to take the test it is important to note that there will be aspects of all nine categories that we all relate to, but there is one number we all identify with most. We can also score fairly high for a second or even third number, which are referred to as “wings” or sub-categories that one can have numerous features of.
If you’re interested in taking the test, there are two free shorter tests that should give you broad results and three longer tests that yield more specific and detailed results.