Everyone responds to grief differently. You may remember a well known court case in which a young mother was accused of killing her 3 year old daughter. The public harshly judged the behavior of the accused in the days after the child’s death. Many said no grieving mother would act this way. An expert was called to the stand and testified that grief can be displayed in many ways and her behavior in relation to her grief or lack thereof is not enough to determine her guilt.
Although we can not immediately assume what our own or someone else’s reaction to grief is, knowing and understanding yourself and personality can help in managing the grief. It also will allow you to implement the best plan of action to remain emotionally healthy. Today we are delving into the last personality type on the Enneagram scale: Type 9 also known as “The Peacemaker”.
Common Traits of an Enneagram Type Nine
If you are a type 9 you will likely identify with these traits.
- Loyal and connects easily
- Easy going
- Can procrastinate
- Avoids conflict
- Has a basic fear of separation
- Being in nature is soothing
- Enjoys routine
- Doesn’t like to take work home
- Often choose the path of least resistance
Grief Affects Everyone Differently
Traumatic events such as a death in the family can push life into disarray. You may not go to work as you normally would. You may have things that need to be prepared in relation to funerals or memorial services. This can take you off of your schedule and have you cramming work wherever you can fit it.
You may choose to go along with the decisions of others, not wanting to create conflict. Being separated from the one who died can create anxiety and fear of the future without them. These are just a few examples of how easy it can be to get into a place that stirs up anxiety and wears you down even more.
How Type Nine’s Deal with Grief
When an Enneagram type 9 comes up against trauma and begins to grieve we can look back at this list and know that certain strengths in one area can create dysfunction and imbalance during a period of mourning. In the same way you can use the Enneagram to help recognize the things that will help you stay balance during times of grief.
If you are aware that as a 9 you find comfort and get recharged in nature, be sure to take time out of your day to go outside, breathe in the fresh air and feel the sunshine. Maybe it’s a walk everyday after lunch or a hike through a nature park on the weekend. If you tend to avoid conflict you can start to recognize this and ask yourself if you need to be more assertive as conflict comes your way. Using the Enneagram to understand ourselves can be a most useful tool on the path to the greatest mental health, especially during times of grief.