Wildfires, the Enneagram & the Myth of More

By Nicola Albini, J.D., M.A.

Can we still say Happy New Year? :) It’s been a while since we’ve connected, and I want to check in and see how your New Year is going!

Last year was a wild ride for so many. I spent its last moments leading an Enneagram workshop with Johanna Jenkins, while wildfires ripped through Malibu and Santa Monica where I live.

One moment the sky was black, then red, then black. Homes were vanishing in what seemed like a flash. Animals native to the area were displaced; in fact, there’s still a cougar wandering around my neighborhood at night!

The impact of being so close to these fires brought a much deeper reflection on the meaning of life, accomplishment and purpose.

While my clients and I sat together in that workshop, letting go of our false self, wondering if we’d be evacuated at any moment, the work took on a new level of urgency.

“How much more of our true self can we just allow?”

While most mentors and coaches are taking advantage of January as a time to tell you (and sell you) MORE...

The Enneagram continues to teach me that the only way to be more of who I truly am is to be LESS of who I’m not.

For example, I work with a lot of 3s on the Enneagram because many Pro Athletes, Top Executives, and Leaders in Finance are 3s.

3s find their way to the top of anything they aspire to.

Point 3 is trying to avoid feeling but at the same time pursue achievement, success, and their self image.

They not only want to BE successful (and often are), but more importantly they want to APPEAR successful.

One of the participants came in without much awareness of this “push, push, push” pattern… but when he saw the myth running his life that “I have to achieve to be valuable”...

He touched freedom he never knew was possible.

It’s exhilarating.

3s are wired to lead.

But leading from truth and authenticity creates a whole new level.

Until 3s crack this open, they’ll push themselves into exhaustion - achieving what seems impossible to onlookers, while compromising their quality of life, health and relationships. And feeling like a fraud.

I’m sharing this because if you’re reading this, you’re most likely looking to maximize your potential in some way.

You’re also probably being bombarded by messages of “do more, be more, achieve more” in your newsfeed, your newspaper and even some of your own self talk.

It doesn’t have to be that way.

I regularly work with high performers on becoming “less” to accomplish more.

Spoiler: It works.

It’s no secret that I think the Enneagram is the most powerful tool to setting deeper, truer goals and achieving them from an energy and mind frame where they begin to feel effortless.

As we’re all so busy looking at what we want to create this year, I invite you to pause and reflect on the patterns keeping you from satisfaction and fulfillment in life.

Instead of piling more on, let go of more!
There’s so much more of YOU available to come through. Like my friend Robert Holden often says: “What’s the real more?”
That version of you can achieve bigger and loftier goals. Often people try to do it in the wrong order.

My commitment for the year is bringing in more joy and meaning into my life.
What’s yours? Let me know in the comments below.

I look forward to connecting with you more in 2019.