An Enneagram is a nine-pointed figure which originated in the ancient Middle East, and was adapted in the 1970’s to be used as a tool for understanding our own personalities, and those of others. In ‘The Enneagram of Parenting’ by Elizabeth Wagele, she explains that there are nine types of personality described by the Enneagram. As an adult we will have one personality type which dominates, however children may exhibit a few personality types before they settle on their adult personality.
To use the Enneagram as a parenting tool, one must first identify the personality type of each child:
So while, for example, an Eight will fight their corner to the bitter end, a Nine will give in to keep the peace. A Three loves praise and attention, but a Five will do anything to avoid drawing attention to themselves.
By understanding your child’s personality type, explains Wagele, you can understand how to parent them in a way that will work for both you and your child. So she explains why your child behaves in a certain way, and how to deal with a selection of common situations such as timekeeping, homework, friendship and eating in a way that your child will respond to.
Elizabeth Wagele is both an author and a cartoonist, and ‘The Enneagram of Parenting’ is filled with her cartoons illustrations. Her book is written in a humorous, entertaining and accessible way, and includes a section on how identifying your own personality type can help you understand your own parenting style.