#8 in our series on starting an Enneagram Group
This is probably a good point to raise a most important aspect around Safety.
Any kind of work on ourselves, especially when looking at our self image and identity, is very sensitive stuff. It take a great deal of courage and compassion with ourselves, to really show up. So the quality and integrity of the holding environment is vital for people to become more open and present.
This is such an important subject, that I will dedicate a blog to it in the near future.
In the meantime, what is important to establish with your group is that they only disclose what they feel okay with disclosing.
No one must feel pressured into disclosing stuff they are not comfortable doing so.
Invite people to use code names or just “x” and “y” in place of personal names and relationships of they may want to discuss.
Most important: at the beginning of every enquiry, remind participants that what is shared on the session, stays in the session. Everyone must agree NOT to disclose the enquiry of others to family, friends of partners.
The Enquiry and any debrief/shared discussion, is the most important part of your Enneagram Practise. The Riso-Hudson Insight Approach, uses the material of personality, as the food for Essence. The latter being the part of our being that we have forgotten to tend to and nurture.
All our history, or fears for the future and our resistance to what is present at any time, is a result of wounds. Wounds that arise out of love for ourselves, protection of our being and hurts incurred through the experience of growing up. In uncovering the story behind these wounds, we begin to reveal our true self—it is a recovery process—excavating the truth and developing a capacity to be more present to ourselves, without rejecting anything.
Remember, It takes time, and a great deal of courage, and even more compassion for us to engage in this venture. Be kind to yourself and others in this venture.
The Enneagram supports this endeavour, as, in a way, it reveals that we are not alone in our fears, rejections and projections. We will say more about this in our videos and you can read more in the various suggested reading material.
Enquiry can be in two main forms (and three if you include journal work)
A normal dialogue / conversation is different as the subject and flow is being influenced by the other parties. As such, it can be influenced and directed more by the other e people in the conversation; leading to less personal insight. However, I would encourage this in the first instance of any group work, especially where participants and you as the group coordinator, may be new to the forms I will be sharing.
For the purpose of a practice group, that is new and lacks the experience of a trained Enneagram facilitator, we recommend focusing first on the Monologue form, which is the subject of the next blog.