Melanie Bell is an author, editor, writing coach, and Enneagram teacher who is passionate about understanding the stories we tell ourselves and articulating the stories we want to tell. She is the coauthor of The Modern Enneagram. Her poetry, fiction, nonfiction, and columns have appeared in publications including Cicada, xoJane, Grain, The Fiddlehead, Every Day Fiction, and Autostraddle.
Rolling dunes of red sand studded with marram grass. Wild strawberries and lupin fields teeming with pink, white, and purple spires. My parents, enchanted by the summer landscape and a greenhouse business my father wanted to buy, moved home and baby from suburban Connecticut to rural Prince Edward Island. There were disconnections between themselves and the locals.
The creative writing scene in Montreal seemed wondrous to me, full of new ways of shaping and playing with words, and I imagined it would be my path to success. I got invited to read my work, and people I knew talked about publishing one of my books someday. Yet there were elements in the community that seemed off.
At the 2014 IEA Global and European Conferences, we introduced the practice of Ayurveda which we use as a complement to our Enneagram work. Maintaining a regular, structured practice that fosters mindfulness is helpful for using the Enneagram’s insights effectively. A good practice builds up the capacity to observe oneself, in order to see one’s automatic type habits at play and choose to engage differently. Ayurveda is one such practice that draws on the body center’s intelligence.
What’s the hardest part of the writing process? Writers are divided on whether it’s starting or finishing. It’s a challenge to face a blank page or screen and get those first words down. Once you’ve found momentum on a writing project, you might run into writer’s block while wading through a tricky, unstructured middle. Finally, it may prove difficult to sustain the energy and structure to get to the end, or even to know when you’ve finished.
I chose my university major hoping, among other things, to find out more about myself. The innovative Renaissance College leadership program at the University of New Brunswick took place over the course of three years housed inside a teal Victorian mansion. Instead of a fourth year, students would study over two summers, first interning somewhere within Canada and the second, internationally.
Through the door of the cave dwelling, we were watching. Demet had nudged the leather aside just enough to see and just little enough so we wouldn't be noticed. Aunt Alay's back was to us as she bent over the stone table, curved down towards the bread she was slicing, and in that same moment I caught sight of a white flash at the back of the room. A face. Chalk white, the colour of fresh bone.
I realized I needed to make a commitment when I could no longer keep track of everything I was supposed to be doing. I got home from teaching writing classes and tutoring international students, to freelance editing projects to list of to-dos for my Enneagram personality workshop business. If I was lucky, I might get to write that day. There were things I liked about all my jobs, but I could no longer handle the exhaustion of bouncing between them.
Think of your favorite fictional characters. Chances are they have a personality you can recognize and motivations you can relate to. Drawing on personality systems can help you craft characters who are dynamic and believable enough to live beyond the page. In this post, I’ll introduce the nine personality types of the Enneagram, an insightful personality model for understanding ourselves and others that can easily be adapted for character creation.
IDENTIFYING AND USING YOUR STRENGTHS
Living with accountability involves being true to our best selves. Sure, the Enneagram teaches us to pinpoint and work on what’s difficult for us, but it’s also important to stay positive. Chugging through our daily lives and simply trying to survive, we often get settled into routines that don’t always serve us.
Our new book, The Modern Enneagram, just got published. It’s an introduction to the system and its practical applications, with a storytelling style and modern updates. We’re pleased to share an excerpt about ways to use the Enneagram for workplace problem solving with you.
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The Enneagram is a popular way for businesses to help their teams understand each other and improve their performance and communication. It’s a useful tool for mediating disputes and resolving interpersonal...
Faced with the complexities of daily life, many people find themselves interested in cultivating a deeper sense of self-awareness and nurturing more understanding relationships with others. The Enneagram is a powerful tool for discovering your authentic self and using that knowledge to improve in a variety of ways. The Modern Enneagram will show you exactly how to apply the principles of the Enneagram personality typing system to find insight and strength for navigating life’s changes and challenges.