Ok…I’m feeling a little sad here, its our final group of Mama’s sharing today about how the Enneagram has impacted their Motherhood journey. Its been such a privilege to get to hear from such incredible Mama’s and writers. My biggest prayer for the readers of this series, is that you walk away feeling encouraged and inspired to embrace who God has made you to be as a Mama and that you are overwhelmed with hope that in Jesus we can have victory over any sin and hindrance.READ MORE
I hope your April is off to an amazing start. Its hard to believe that we are almost at the end of this incredible Enneagram and Motherhood series. My favorite part has honestly been just learning about other Mama’s who have different numbers than I do. Its fun to see the things that Mama’s share in common regardless of number and interesting to learn how the experience of Motherhood can differ depending on their Enneagram number.
If you are just joining us, Welcome! I am so glad you are here. If you’re not sure what your Enneagram Type is, you can take a FREE ENNEAGRAM TEST HERE.
You will also want to make sure you check out the other posts in the series:
The Enneagram & Motherhood Series
Join Charity’s Email Community to be notified of new posts in the Enneagram & Motherhood Series & receive freebies and encouraging resources!
Type 4, The Romantic Individualist, Heart Triad
If you are not a four or don’t think you’re a four, but you ever struggle with strong emotions, or comparison, or mom guilt, or a longing for something more, then I pray you are encouraged here.
If you have a friend or a daughter who is a four, then I pray you find insight here to help you understand and encourage her well. Fours thrive on reassurance.
And, if you know you are a four, welcome! I hope you will be especially blessed and encouraged by these reflections on my motherhood journey, because I wish another four had shared all this with me decades ago.
Fours feel deeply—extremely deeply—and there is no filter or off switch for these feelings. This can be both a strength and a weakness, as a mother and in all areas of life. I am empathetic, creative, and compassionate—these are strengths with extensive benefits to mothering. On the other hand, strong emotions can spill over into the present, preventing an appreciation for what is right in front of me. They can pull me into the past before I even realize what has happened. A song, a smell, a photograph, anything can invoke nostalgia that causes the present surroundings to begin to fade away.
Sometimes the struggle with being present isn’t caused by a pull toward the past. Sometimes it is caused by an intense longing for an idealistic future. Fours are intensely idealistic and, again, this can be both a strength and a weakness. Not only can it distract me from fully experiencing the present, but it also contributes to a sometimes-overwhelming tension between what is and what could be. How I approach this tension, though, can turn it from a weakness to a strength. I have a choice to see it as hopelessness or hopefulness.
Comparison is an inevitable partner of this acute awareness of potential. I think all moms struggle with comparison and envy on some level, but this can be deeply challenging as a four. It isn’t malicious or competitive; it is all about striving for significance. Comparison becomes dangerous when it makes me feel as though I am not enough, or even worse, as though I have failed my children. Fortunately, I have learned to be intentional about viewing other mothers’ meaningful accomplishments as motivation and inspiration rather than judgement, at least most of the time.
As a four my greatest fear is that I don’t matter and, therefore, my greatest need and strongest drive is toward significance. Over a decade ago, Steven Curtis Chapman wrote a song—that he would eventually release on his “re:creation” album in 2011—assuring listeners that everything we do matters if we are doing it for the glory of our Creator, even the most mundane of mothering tasks. The everyday monotony of mothering young children can be challenging to a several Enneagram types for different reasons. For fours, though, the hardest part of it is wondering whether it has eternal value.
Mom guilt, common to all moms in some form, comes to fours as a feeling of inadequacy. It says that I am not enough, that I am wasting my time, and that I should be doing something that matters more than whatever is in front of me demanding my attention. This type of mom guilt is exhausting, and it can be paralyzing, creating a constant ache of discontentment.
Fortunately, I no longer live in that run-down, beat-up place. Understanding my fears, drives, and desires helps me amplify my strengths and minimize my weaknesses. Here are some practical ways I do that.
Engage with the psalms of King David. Many experts believe that King David was an Enneagram type four. We know that he felt extremely deeply, struggled to stay fully present at times being pulled toward either the past or the future, compared himself to others and experienced intense envy, questioned his significance, and battled discontentment. The full spectrum of intense emotional living is reflected in the poetry of the psalms penned by King David. Engaging with the psalms is comforting and inspiring, because it validates my experiences and pushes me toward the source of my help and hope. The Lord was David’s source of strength and he is mine as well.
Meditate on the truth of my identity as a joint heir with Christ. I have learned to replace the lies in my mind with the truth of Scripture. I am enough simply because he is enough, and I take that truth into my mind, heart, and soul until I can receive it as undeniable. My goal is seeking contentment in my present reality.
Use music to my advantage. I already mentioned that songs can trigger powerful emotions in me and sometimes I am unprepared for that experience. While I cannot control the playlist at the grocery store, I can control it in my own space and be proactive about it. Worship playlists are great for soaking in truth. It is also helpful to create playlists to have on hand for a range of common emotional experiences, whether to change the atmosphere or amplify it.
I still experience everything I described above, but it doesn’t consume me now.
Ella McCright is a lifelong lover of words and believes that good books have the power to feed souls and transform lives. She has been partnering with quality literature to parent children for more than two decades and cannot imagine ever stopping. She is trusting the Lord to bring in and send out little souls that need her nurturing in his perfect timing. At RaisingBookFedSouls.com, Ella shares thoughts and resources to encourage other parents in their mission to raise book-fed souls. Find her on Instagram, Pinterest, and Facebook.
Type 6, Loyal Guardian, Head Triad
My name is Leslie and I am an Enneagram Type 6. I am mom to four children, Alyssa 19, Maya 14, Caleb 10, and Kate 8. My son Caleb has mild Autism, which comes with many challenges, but he is very high functioning. One thing that I have learned about parenting is that it is not a one size fits all thing. Each child is very different, and that means that what works for one doesn’t necessarily work for another.
I only recently discovered the Enneagram, but I have learned so much about myself in doing so. I am good at anticipating problems and coming up with solutions. I am a very loyal person. I am a good friend and care very much about others. I am a rule follower. I can be very skeptical of other people, and I am very cautious. I worry A LOT! I can be very fearful of making decisions. The truth is that I can see all of these traits expressed when it comes to motherhood. Sometimes they can be really good, and sometimes it can get me into trouble.
My core longing is for safety and security, and I believe that longing inside of me drives me to try to make sure that my kids feel this way. I really want my children to feel safe, loved, cared for and supported. I tell my kids that I love them often. I compliment the qualities that I see in them that makes them special. I strive to provide an environment in which my children always feel safe. I am usually really good at helping to find solutions to problems that arise, and my teens often come to me for advice.
My problem-solving skills are also especially helpful when it comes to navigating my sons Autism. I spent many of his younger years trying to figure out better ways to reach him. He struggled with things as simple as getting dressed, and always needed extra help with most activities. I came up with creative ways to help him, and we made it through with our sanity because I was able to come up with those creative solutions. He is doing so well now and has overcome so much!
One of the challenges I face as a mother is trying to fix things. I can see problems that may arise in the future, but that can also lead to my imagining worst-case scenarios that are likely never going to come to fruition. I often worry about my son’s future, and whether I am doing enough or too much for him. I can be very indecisive about what it is that my children need from me. I have projected negative outcomes onto my teens especially, because of my anxieties and fears. My family has a history of addiction, and I often worry about that same happening to my own children! That fear has been paralyzing at times.
One of the best ways I have found to overcome these challenges is by being reflective. When negative thoughts or worries come my way, I try to ask myself where it is coming from. Satan often uses our weaknesses to drive unhealthy thoughts into our minds. All it takes sometimes for a six is a little seed planted to dream up some horrible scenario that is not even based in reality. So, I ask myself: Is this real? Why am I feeling this way? What is causing this negativity? Is this a me problem? What does God have to say about this fear?
One morning, I was still half asleep, but already anxious about things that had not even happened yet. Two verses came to mind that gave me comfort. The first was so simple: “Be still and know that I am God.” Psalm 46:10 NIV Sometimes you have to quiet your mind and know that HE is God. Not you. What a relief that you can be still and let God take care of you!
The second verse was: “Trust in the Lord with all your heart and lean not on your own understanding; in all your ways submit to him, and he will make your paths straight” Proverbs 3:5-6 NIV. This can be a really hard one for a six, because we have trouble trusting. We are very suspicious, and sometimes even suspicious of God. I have to remind myself again that I do not always understand the way God works, and I am not meant to. By trusting in God and through praying first, my anxieties are calmed, and I can be a healthier mom. I can move forward with confidence and know that God has got this!
Hello, I am Leslie. Wife to Josh. Mom to Alyssa 18, Maya 13, Caleb 9, and Kate 7. I love to cook, read, write, listen to music, and I love being a mom. I am also a mom of a child with Autism, which has enriched my life and changed my heart in so many ways. As a mom I have so many things to do every week, and anything that I can make easier, I do! You can find me on Instagram , Facebook, Twitter, and Pinterest and at http://leslieslittlecorner.com
Type 8, The Challenger, Head Triad
My daughter calls me the EstherGizer Bunny. I move at break-neck speed much of the time: my brain, my feet, my hands, my heart and my mouth. When I was a young mom, our elderly neighbor said to me, “I watch you out of the window heading to your car and I don’t think your feet ever really touch the sidewalk.”
I was wiggly, energetic, smart and super-speedy as a kid. I did my first three grades in two years and then skipped right over fourth grade, landing me in fifth grade when I was just eight years old. Break-neck speed. “Can’t sit still.” Even now, I can hear the adults whispering those words to each other.
I’m a fast thinker, typer, talker, mover, decision-maker. Probably most of the reason I have tended to be on the thin side during my life is that every cell of my body is wiggling. Other people get tired thinking about what I do during a day. You get the picture.
I’m also (surprise, surprise) a bit of a Type A, 24/7, driven, workaholic. I like to be in charge and in control. Running the show is my dream come true. I love when things are done well and finished on time. I like when others are where they are supposed to be and doing what they supposed to be doing. I love a good challenge and I usually feel up for whatever is put in front of me!
As you may have already guessed, I am the Challenger (a number EIGHT on the Enneagram)! Whenever I found myself pregnant, I was thrilled. In fact, it was an adventure that I knew would be exciting and I was pretty sure I would ace this mom test in front of me! I couldn’t wait to mold and shape this new life into the best possible person!
Being an EIGHT serves me well much of the time as I navigate this parenting path. I am good at motivating my children to work hard, follow their dreams, and stay the course for growth. I love helping them to “live life to the fullest,” never settling for less than they deserve. I fiercely fight for their hearts and will take on anyone who threatens to harm them! I am called on for any and all emergencies, jumping quickly to their aid and figuring out a plan to fix whatever problem is presenting itself. I plan fun outings, engage in meaningful conversation and help to keep each child’s life in some semblance of control.
However, if you ask each of my now budding adults, they would say I am a little bit of a control freak. Intense and forceful words fly out of my mouth before my brain has a chance to catch up. Under the guise of being strong, I can be over-bearing and downright forceful. FIRE, AIM, READY describes me more often than I would like. I struggle to see things from their point of view and mostly believe I know what’s best in any given situation. This especially played out during those early mom years, when I was completely unaware of the deep wounds I had and how they manifested in and brought out the shadowy sides of my EIGHT self.
God has not left me to my own devices. THANKFULLY. He is slowly transforming and healing me! I have to constantly remind myself of four simple, yet life-giving truths when I see my unhealed EIGHT peak her head out, trying desperately to regain control (or at least the illusion of it).
- It’s best for me to SLOW DOWN! Breathe. It all doesn’t have to be solved today. The road to adulthood is a long windy process with fits and starts and it’s mostly all going to be okay. Enjoy who is right in front of me, with all their beautiful and messy parts. READY, AIM, FIRE is a much better parenting choice!
- Challenge BLACK and WHITE thinking in myself. Remind myself that I don’t have a special corner on the truth. My children may have a point and they actually might be right. LISTEN to them. I am also a learner, not just a teacher.
- APOLOGIZE (without qualification) often to my kids when I have tried to manipulate or control them, often using the monsters of fear and guilt (both of those steeped deeply in my own soul).
- BE TENDER with myself. My oldest daughter taught me this. It’s okay for me to be vulnerable and to share the weaker parts of me with my children. I don’t always have to be the strong one. The gifts of imperfection ( Brene Brown) will actually produce long-lasting relationship with these humans, what I really long for more than anything!
I want to be the best mom. I know I can’t do it by sheer will power. Believe me, being the EIGHT that I am, I’ve tried it. It doesn’t work. Paying attention to BOTH my strengths and struggles as an EIGHT helps me to care for myself better, get help when I need it, and to grow to a place of healing and wholeness. It’s from this place that my children will actually have the best mom and the best version of this EstherGizer Bunny!
Esther Goetz writes over at the “Dolly Mama,” a nickname from her daughter. She is a wife to one, a mom to four almost completely grown children, and a “Meema” to one. A published author, podcast host and speaker, her passion is to bring hope and healing (with a little humor) to all women, but especially to those in the “mom club.” She understands that she is a beautiful mess and along with the heart of her kind, gracious and loving God and the help of her fellow sojourners, all will be well. You can find her on Facebook, Instagram, Pinterest, Twitter and
*(Note: Clarity with Charity is a participant in the Amazon Services LLC Associates Program, an affiliate advertising program designed to provide a means for sites to earn advertising fees by advertising and linking to amazon.com. These are my amazon affiliate links, if you should decide to buy them, I receive a tiny percentage.)
I am praying for you!
So glad you are joining us for Part 4 of this incredible series! I pray that you are encouraged today that God has given you everything you need to shepherd the sweet lives He has entrusted you with.READ MORE
If you’re just joining us for this series, you are definitely going to want to Check out the first 2 posts in this series:
Are we connected on Instagram? I would love for you to join our @claritywithcharity community there for more inspiration and encouragement for your Mama life! Aaaaannnddd! Exciting news, every number gets to hear from not just 1 Mama but 2 Mama’s with their same Enneagram number. You are not going to want to miss a post in this series, because we have a new round of Mama’s ready to share their wisdom and encouragement with you!
Type 3, Successful Achiever, Heart Triad
Hello. I’m Emily, an Enneagram three and mother of five. As a three, my basic desire is being valued for who I am. This stems from the fear of having no inherent worth outside of what I can accomplish – that I will be a nobody. Growing up with an alcoholic mother, I learned early on that affection came only when I performed well. Those moments were unpredictable and fleeting, leaving me with a broken sense of self worth built on what I could do, not who I was. For years, I hid the painful truth of my home life behind achievement. My dear friend, Jesus, and a few years of therapy shifted that inner-narrative allowing me to replace that fear with His truth that I’m loved and worthy just as I am.
As a mom, my three-ness shows up as being encouraging, consistent, optimistic, dependable, organized, and responsible. Speaking life into my family and guiding them into their God-given gifts and dreams lights my heart on fire. I want them to know they were made capable and there is something inherently good in hard work.
On the flip side, this root fear can show up as a headlong rush into anything that will be seen as success. The PTA bake sale needs twelve dozen cupcakes and no one has signed up – no problem! The coach needs a volunteer to plan and host the team party – I’m your gal! The drama club needs help building the set – count us in! The troop needs to sell 1000 boxes of cookies – consider it done! A project at work needs a lead – pick me!
You see where this is going. That headlong rush turns into overfunctioning which turns into stressed out mom which turns into me throwing my hands up and yelling, “I just can’t with all the things” at my four year old who just wants his string cheese opened. While this drive comes from a place of wanting to serve others well, being “on” all the time is exhausting. For years, this led to a schedule with no margin, little time for rest, stuffed down feelings of resentment, and discontent with my life. “Can’t they all see that I need help?” And when they did, “Here, just let me do it”. Tiger Mother much? I have cried privately in my closet time and again so no one could see me struggle. The truth is, I simply can’t do it all and that feels like failure and shame, the very things I’ve spent my entire life trying to avoid. Being human is messy and especially irritating when I’m trying to produce and my emotions or exhaustion get in the way.
The good news is that’s no longer my life. Well, mostly not. I’m what I like to call a recovering overfunctioner. When I came to the end of myself, God put it on my heart to be still and take off the mask of having it all together. I’ve learned to say “No”, give our schedule some margin, stop pushing my children to constantly win, and create some space for our souls to breathe. Now we focus on finding the balance between hustle and rest, practicing gratitude daily, and remembering not to take ourselves too seriously and laugh and love along the way.
What I like about being a three:
Being self-assured, optimistic, and energetic. Being a doer – competent and able to get things to work efficiently Being able to recover quickly from setbacks Being a top notch motivator
What’s hard about being a three:
The fear of not being seen as successful Struggling to hang on to achievement Having to deal with inefficiency Putting on facades to keep from being truly known
The freedom to be vulnerable is a gift I am still learning to accept as a Three. If I’m not careful, I can easily fall back into overfunctioning and believing the lie that my worth is validated by my productivity. I am learning that I don’t need to be perfect to receive love from those dearest to my heart.
When I’m willing to open up and be fearlessly authentic, I notice it opens a deeper well of trust for the those around me too. When I wonder if I’m messing up my kids, I focus on my Heavenly Father and turn my worry into prayer. When I realize I’m loving what I can accomplish more than people, I remember we’re created to do good work, but we’re also created for connection and joy.
So this is for you fellow threes – exhausted mamas, sisters, friends, who’ve set your dreams to the side, carrying a few extra pounds, questioning your worth, who just can’t with all the things some days, I see you. I see you because I am you. Lay down your mask. Lean into vulnerability. Owning your own story is the bravest thing you’ll ever do. This is the place of wholeness for a Three—the ability to rest from performing in God’s unearned-yet-unflinching love.
Come on. You believed in Santa Clause for seven years, you can believe in yourself for five minutes. You were made for more!
Emily is a writer, leader, empathy warrior, and mother of five encouraging women to embrace their own story and become fearlessly authentic. Her passion in writing is to inspire other women to not just “hang in there” but thrive in God’s calling on their lives. You can find her on find on Instagram and Facebook
Type 6, Loyal Guardian, Head Triad
“Every little thing is gonna be alright.”
-Bob Marley (and a banner I have hanging in my basement)
I’ve been a parent for almost as long as I’ve known about the Enneagram—a little over two years. Our former church (we’ve since moved out of state) used it as a tool for spiritual development, and I’ve found it very, very helpful. I’m excited to share some of the ways the Enneagram has helped me understand myself and how I move in the world, especially with regard to parenting.
Strengths sixes bring to parenting…
First, I think a big strength sixes bring in parenting is preparedness. We have a skill for seeing possible issues in a plan and anticipating needs others might miss. Parenting is a lot of details and seeing and meeting needs, and I think sixes meet all of that with ease.
Another strength of sixes in parenting is that we’re very community-oriented. We think a lot about the common good. Though they’re young, I know my kids already see how I value community: I started a Buy Nothing group in our town, and I’ve made intentional efforts to get to know our neighbors. I also see my family itself as a little community and am always thinking of ways to intentionally foster a strong family dynamic.
…and challenges, too
The main sin, or vice, of a six is fear. I’ve never considered myself a fearful person, but learning my type has helped me see just how much low-key fear and anxiety drives my life. One way this manifests is in worst-case scenario thinking. I easily spend time thinking about terrible things that could happen and making plans in my head in case they do. (A long time ago, one of my teaching colleagues gave me “The Worst-Case Scenario Handbook” as a joke. Sometimes other people see you more clearly than you see yourself!)
Specifically, I have a lot of fear around my kids’ safety. I’ve realized how much potential illnesses and injuries are on my mind, and I’ve become conscious of my almost constant anxiety that it will be 100% on me to know exactly what to do if and when those things happen, since I’m the at-home parent. It’s a heavy burden.
Sixes are prone to self-doubt and often (whether they’re aware of it or not) try to find security in outside authorities. Another challenge for me in parenting is my tendency to continually seek information and guidance. In each new phase, I tend to go a bit crazy gathering information. Ready for solids? Let me consult four different friends about their experiences. Time to potty train? Let me carefully examine three different approaches. I love to read, but I’m almost embarrassed at how many parenting books I’ve read in the last few years. It’s especially bad because I have a 5 wing, which is a type that is an “information collector” and feels they can never know enough. This leads to overthinking and indecisiveness, which can be very stressful. We all know how many decisions you have to make as a parent!
How I’ve grown as a six parent…
The Enneagram has helped me grow in so many ways. I think the biggest way I’ve grown in my parenting is that I’ve learned to trust myself. This might sound a bit strange to say as a Christian, but I don’t think it has to.
I grew up in a Christian home, and along with the good things I also absorbed a message that I can’t trust (or shouldn’t) trust myself. I even chose Proverbs 3:5 for my confirmation verse: “Trust in the Lord with all your heart, and lean not on your own understanding.” It seemed like trusting yourself was counter to trusting God.
The Enneagram has helped me adopt a healthy both/and perspective here. Of course my trust in God is everything: I know I’m not in charge of the universe, and I choose to release my desire for control over to the God who is. But it’s also been very freeing for me to stop doubting myself so much. To believe I have everything I need to be a good mother within me. I don’t need to read all the books; I can just listen to my mother’s intuition and my own instincts and trust that God speaks through that.
…and what I’m still working on
I’m only a few years into this parenting thing (my oldest will be three this summer), and I still definitely have work to do in the fear and anxiety department.
The virtue of the Enneagram 6 is courage. My favorite Enneagram book says that courage is “a way of being that is awake to the dangers inherent in the world and at the same time able to access a natural sense of confidence in meeting them.” I want this. I spend so much energy scanning for threats in the environment or ruminating on the bad things that could happen. I want to exude a sense of strength and peace to my kids instead.
I’ve heard it said that the most frequent command in the Bible by far is to not be afraid. I love that so much. But it’s hard to not be afraid, especially as a parent. The world is crazy. I’m working on remembering that all of life is grace. Every second I get with these little people is a gift, and I’m learning to surrender the what-ifs to our good God.
Any other sixes out there? I’d love to hear from you!
Amber Adrian is an at-home mama of two little girls and a freelance writer and editor. When she’s not doing dishes or laundry, the perennial tasks, you can find her with her nose in a non-fiction book or messing with words (hers or someone else’s). You can find her thoughts at http://alternativegrace.com and her pictures on Instagram
Type 9, Peaceful Mediator, Gut Triad
Chaos. Pure and utter chaos.That is how I often view my mothering journey. As a mom of three rambunctious boys, I often feel overwhelmed. I feel like a referee, continually attempting to break up fights and the chaos that comes from raising kids.
Finding out that I am an enneagram nine shifted my perspective. As a 9, I crave peace and a conflict free zone. An enneagram nine is considered calm, easy going, and agreeable. We go along to get along. A phrase I often repeat to my kids is, “Can we all just get along?”
A key motivation for nines is creating harmony. I feel that this can be a good asset in many areas. Many find nines easy to talk to and good listeners. Nines can be objective in many situations, as they find it easy to see different perspectives. Nines are known to make excellent counselors. However, it tends to be too much to handle because all a nine really wants is harmony. And this is not always possible. What we need to understand is it takes work to create true harmony.
How can this knowledge of a nine’s behavior help a struggling mom? For some, it helps just knowing that as nines, we have the tendency to neglect ourselves. So speak up. Let your desires and wishes be known. Speak up with your kids. I often find myself neglecting discipline with my kids to keep the peace. Having the knowledge that I default to this allows me to see what I am doing and stop. Discipline is not a bad thing for kids. In fact, God made us a guide for our kids to help them along in life. Talking to them about the hard things is necessary and good. Speak up for yourself before things get out of control.
Ephesians 4:15 says:
Instead, speaking the truth in love, we will grow to become in every respect the mature body of him who is the head, that is, Christ.
How can I be a better mom when all I want is peace? Lean into the peace God has already provided, and do what it takes to raise kids for him. Because of Jesus, we already have peace with God. Therefore, we can speak up. We can do the hard things we are called to do as mothers. Our kids won’t always get everything right. But we can do our best to show them the right way, and encourage them to walk in it.
Romans 5:1 in the New International Version says:
Therefore, since we have been justified through faith, we have peace with God through our Lord Jesus Christ.
We can rest and live out life knowing that Christ has already become our peace. Through Christ, we have peace and we can offer it to others. Circumstances do not define us, or have to dictate our peace.
With Christ as our peace, we are free to live into the calling He has prepared for us. As mothers, we can step up and raise our kids with purpose and intent. It will be hard, it will be overwhelming, and sometimes it will be the complete opposite of peaceful. But in the end, it will all be worth it. Let’s agree to speak up for truth, no matter what feelings or emotions it may stir. Let’s agree to offer our families the best, because it’s worth fighting for.
Nines can often feel complacent, and tend to just let life happen. Perhaps it’s time to live life a little differently. Instead of just letting life happen, we can be intentional with our parenting. Be bold and make a stand for Christ.
Hebrews 12:1 encourages:
Let us run with perseverance the race marked out for us.
Let’s chase life, and the best that God has called us to be.
Brooke is a mom to three lovable and messy boys, and wife to her pastor husband. They live in central Pennsylvania, surrounded by beautiful mountains and lots of snow. You can often find her dreaming of warmer weather. Brooke likes coffee, reading, and all things crafty. You can find Brooke’s blog at notsoperfectpastorswife.wordpress.com, where she writes about being a boy mom, a pastors wife, and all things in between.
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Have a wonderful week. I am praying for you!
Happy Monday! Today we continue with the second round of Mamas sharing about how knowing their Enneagram number has transformed their role as a Mama. So many of you have connected with this series, and I am praying daily that every person who reads this series will be filled with wisdom, hope and joy in their motherhood journey.
If you missed last weeks post you are definitely going to want to check it out. You can READ IT HERE
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Type 4, The Romantic Individualist, Heart Triad
My eyes open and the day has begun. I am either overly chipper and ready to tackle the day or straight-up grumpy and unable to process the next minute. By the time I’ve finished the final sips of my lukewarm coffee, my mood has probably changed 12 times. This is what life as an enneagram 4 is like. Our mood swings are rivaled only by toddlers and teenagers, which makes motherhood quite interesting.
The beauty of my conglomerate of emotions is, I can withstand the cresting of one emotion and the crashing of the next with my children. I have a 1 and 3 year old girls. As you can imagine, we are all quite full of drama around my house. Being able to ride those continuously rolling waves of emotions from one tantrum to the next, is a gift that I don’t take lightly. Where one mom might feel overwhelmed by this unpredictability of moods, I am able to move fluidly along with them and empathize well.
As the day moves forward, the tedious tasks of a mother start to pile up. Washing sippy cups, folding the mountains of tiny laundry, wiping bottoms, cleaning the unending messes all start to weight on me. As a 4, I want meaning and purpose in my life and selfishly I find it hard to have the energy to do things that don’t fulfill those feelings. Mundane moments in motherhood don’t always reap instant rewards. I have learned to embrace them for what they are, tasks to complete. It helps me find deeper satisfaction when we are able to do the things that fulfill my 4 side, like craft time or snuggling and reading books.
Hours tick by and I start to feel lonely staying home with my girls. Being a 4, we have a withdrawing stance, so our natural impulse is to isolate. This is around the time I start to mindlessly scroll on social media to feel a connection, what God is starting to teach me is just how much social media is costing me. My heart starts getting overwhelmed by a 4’s deadly sin, envy.
I see the mom who creates the cutest animal figures out of her children’s food and I think I need to be more creative like that mom. I see the mom who is boldly conquering her dreams one day at at time and I think I need my children to see me hustle like that. I see the mom who is always crafting the perfect learning activities for her kids and I think I need to teach my children like her. God has been pursuing me in a passionate way to let me know that I am made, not with something missing, but exactly as He has designed. My gifts are my treasure and my weaknesses are just as much of a treasure because they are constantly pointing me back to my overwhelming need of Him, my Redeemer, my Savior, my Creator.
Letting my emotions travel down the rabbit hole of social media makes me realize that I need to find my purpose. 4’s long for meaning. I can dig so deep into those passions that I neglect my most important job, being a mom. I have recently begun writing, a perfect job for my number. I have found a wealth of purpose in it. If I can get really honest with you, there are days that I get such tunnel vision when I am writing, that I look up and the girls have destroyed the house and are at the “ARE YOU STILL WATCHING” Netflix stage. Their frequent, and sometimes irrational, demands can be a source of frustration for me. This is where God is helping me create much needed intentional time for myself as a mom to cultivate those passions, so I can better serve my children.
After getting some mom-time, I start to feel a twinge of guilt for finding value in anything other than my girls. When I first started discovering my enneagram number, I often found myself identifying with a 2. That is where 4’s go in times of stress, which as a momma to little ones, the chaos makes me go there frequently. I start to exploit my relationship with my children to seek out the validation that I so desperately want. My girls aren’t yet able to verbally give me words to affirm my worth as a mom. If only I could hear, “well done mommy, you really killed it at mothering us today.” So, I find ways to sneakily get them to say they love me more than daddy. At times it can be innocent and lighthearted, at others its my inner self being manipulative seeking validation.
So there it is, a day in the life of a 4 mom. I am beginning to truly learn the wonderful ways God has made me. He has made me deeply empathetic, wonderfully creative, and able to see beauty all around. As a mother this has allowed me to embrace the toddler emotions with tender care. Being a 4 has allowed me to cultivate my daughter’s creativity. Because every emotion is amplified, It has also allowed me to love deeper. My love for my girls is deeper than anything I could have ever begin to imagine. Just when I think I am at the end of it, I discover more and more.
I am so thankful for a God that will go deep with me. That He isn’t afraid of my big emotions, He knows me more intimately than I know myself, and He loves the whole me. “Lord You have searched me and known me.” Psalms 139:1 CSB
Nicole is a momma to drama to two little precious daughters. Most days she is affectionately known as a hot mess, surviving on re-heated coffee, living on a prayer momma. You can find her girl gang in the kitchen having dance parties in their best princess ball gowns. Between the glitter and glam she shares grace in the messiness that is motherhood at NicoleDeannLawrence.com or on Instagram @nicoledeannlawrence, Facebook and Pinterest. You can find her online faith based clothing and home goods store at Our Holy Threads
Type 7, The Enthusiast, Head Triad
Recently, I played the new Annie soundtrack for my boys in a spontaneous dance party moment, as we do. I remembered that as a little girl, I would stand on our family coffee table and belt out “Tomorrow” with all the joy and eagerness that song requires. As I listened to the lyrics, I smiled at the very evident Type 7 in that song and in that little girl on the coffee table.
“The sun’ll come out
Bet your bottom dollar
There’ll be sun!
Just thinking’ about
Clears away the cobwebs,
And the sorrow
‘Til there’s none!”
If you identify as an Enneagram Type 7, you will grin knowingly at this. We are affectionately known as “The Enthusiasts”, chasers of the sunny side.
Before I jump in however, I do pray that through reading this you’ll feel seen, known, and encouraged in your unique personality and what it brings into your mothering. God designed you before the foundations of the earth specifically to mother your children; nobody else can do it the way you do.
If I had to choose, I’d say my greatest parenting strength has always been my sense of adventure. In mothering my two little boys, I’ve leaned heavily on imagination and ready resources. Sometimes it’s looked like makeshift puppet shows, or pretend camping with paper flame campfires and cotton ball marshmallows. In my pursuit to keep things fresh and interesting in “practical” areas, I try to introduce my kids to new textures/flavors of food. Our latest craze has been spiralized veggies, which are more fun to play with than eat, I’ve observed. At least I thought it was practical. Nevertheless, my favorite way to engage with my kids has consistently been through the endless variety of the great outdoors. Whether its visiting a new park with friends, going for a (very slow) hike, or digging in the sand at the beach, my Type 7 parenting shows up strong in my kinesthetic approach to life. I have found that I enjoy my kids most when I’m operating out of this sense of God-given wonder.
Something I’ve begun to realize over the years however, especially in parenting, is my sensitivity to boring. If (and when) things start to feel lackluster, I assume the responsibility to spice things up. When in the throes of changing diapers, potty-training, cooking, cleaning, and all the things, it can feel rather lackluster, am I right? If you’re a Type 7, you really get me here. Can I tell you something you might not want to hear? It’s OK to have some boring! When you’re building a family, and establishing a stable and healthy foundation for your children, boring can be just what the doctor ordered. I think some people call it stability.
As I’ve walked with the Holy Spirit through the more challenging aspects of motherhood, He’s graciously helped me recognize the immaturity in my resistance to being, which can feel like boring. Type 7’s characteristically struggle with feeling trapped, facing personal pain, and being disconnected from their heart center.
While my husband was in grad school over the last few years, we were in a season of dreaming about our life after school. Most of my energy went towards planning and preparing for our next steps. Consequently, my “just thinking about tomorrow” (thanks, Annie) distracted me from some deep inner pain that had been trying in vain to surface and heal. The pain had been nudging for a while, but it felt much easier and way more fun to brush it along and keep dreaming and doing. It’s taken years of training (still in training) to recognize when to slow my frenzy and sit with The Holy Spirit to tend my heart. Maybe you’re like me and your cup runneth over with friends, playdates, ideas, and dreams? Hey, those are all good, until they become a diversion to engaging your heart and facing your pain. I don’t teach my children to ignore pain or negative emotions, so why do I think I can? A scripture that has consistently comforted me in my journey towards this elusive being is from a man I believe presents as a very clear Type 7, King David:
The Lord is my shepherd; I shall not want.
He makes me lie down in green pastures.
He leads me beside still waters.
He restores my soul.
He leads me in paths of righteousness
for his name’s sake.
This might be the antithesis to Annie’s wishful grasp at the future for hope. This scripture invites us into our very present Help. Notice the present tense. Dreaming with God is beautiful, but when we look to the future alone to bring us hope, we will be sorely disappointed.
Everyone tries to avoid pain at some point, whether they are a Type 7 or not. Take a moment. Engage your heart. Ask the Holy Spirit if there’s anything you’ve been avoiding that needs His healing touch. Go there with Him. He’s safe. When you’ve walked it through, ask Him what promise He wants to give you in place of that pain. Whatever biblical, hope-filled words or images you receive are His precious gifts to you. Mama, you are worth it all. Be blessed in your journey of motherhood and may you remember (especially you 7’s), that you are a human being, not a human doing.
Anna lives in sunny San Diego with her amazing hubby and two adventurous boys. When she’s not changing her hair color or style, she’s easily found sweating outside with her boys, and engaging in something crafty or creative. She is passionate about using the creative to minister to the heart of God and partners with fellow worshipers in bringing this blessing to others. Anna finds great delight in writing/singing/song-writing and longs to use her words to ignite hope and inspire joy in others as they adventure with Jesus into their destinies.
You can catch up with her and her lively crew on Instagram. Send her an email too if you want to further this friendship
Type 8, The Challenger, Gut Triad
The day that I discovered I am Enneagram Eight and began to delve into all that means for me, it was truly like a light switched on and illuminated the dark corners of my personality and relationships. I began to understand that as an eight I long for control. I’m passionate and loyal. I’m driven by a strong sense of justice. I’m not afraid of confrontation. I’m bold and confident. When listed independently, these sounds like healthy and good qualities. But they can add up to create a somewhat intimidating or overbearing persona – not exactly qualities the world considers maternal.
I’m still somewhat new to this parenting gig, currently deep in the trenches of toddlerhood. I find that my “eightness” gives me the strength to stand up to my son even in the midst of his most violent tantrum. I’m not one to give in or bend my will to that of others, including the pint-sized dictator with whom I live. I know that this strength and certainty in the midst of overwhelming circumstances will serve me well in the future when my toddler’s tantrums evolve into teenage tantrums.
As an eight, I tend to trust and follow my instincts. Eight is in the gut triad of the enneagram meaning we don’t spend too much time thinking or worrying; we see and we act. This ability to trust my own instincts bleeds over into my parenting and allows me to also trust my son’s instincts. If he’s not hurting himself or others or blatantly disobeying, I’m comfortable giving him the space to navigate the world and learn for himself what works and what doesn’t. I’m not afraid to let him make decisions and then experience the consequences of those decisions.
But many days I worry that I am going to crush my son’s spirit. I see a real little person and personality burgeoning, and I worry that I will overpower him. I grew up in a household with an eight parent, and while I thrived in that environment as another eight, my younger brother, a nine, did not. He felt that his feelings were invalidated by our father’s logic. He struggled to speak up and have his voice be heard knowing that our dad’s voice would be louder and stronger. I see those same tendencies in myself, and I pray that the Lord will help me to keep them in check and give my son space to find out who he is and exercise his autonomy in the world.
I’m also aware of my tendency to protect and take care of my people even if they haven’t asked for it. I will fight battles for my loved ones with or without their permission. As a mother, I have to keep that in check and allow my son to fight his own battles, knowing that if and when he needs me, I’m in his corner ready to advocate for him whenever he asks.
The core fear for eights is being hurt or controlled by others. We try to take the reins and control our world lest someone else control us instead. We tend to convince ourselves that we have significantly more control over our world than we actually do. As a Christian, it’s important for me to remind myself that I do not in fact have the final say, God does. I’ve been deeply challenged and encouraged by 2 Samuel 10:12 (NIV). Before walking into battle, Joab, commander of the Israelite army (who by the way, I am convinced was also an eight), says to his brother, “Be strong, and let us fight bravely for our people and the cities of our God. The Lord will do what is good in his sight.” As an eight, I tend to be really good at the first part of this verse. I am strong and will fight bravely for my people and the causes the Lord has laid on my heart. But I want to think that’s the end of it. I can fight and win the battle on my own strength and terms. But the verse doesn’t stop there. It reminds us that no matter what we do, no matter how bravely and valiantly we fight, the Lord controls the outcome. “The Lord will do what is good in his sight.”
As a parent, this is my prayer of both resolve and release. May I continue to fight for my people with all my strength, but may I never forget that the Lord is one who determines the outcome. I am not in control; He is. What a blessing to my son and me as well.
Sam is a graphic designer and writer living in Frisco, Texas. She and her husband, Spencer, have been married for 7 years and have three children – Max who spends his days in the presence of Jesus, Lachlan who keeps his mama busy, and Meryn who will make her arrival in August. She is passionate about writing and speaking to women navigating early motherhood, especially those who are learning how to live without one of their children. You can connect with her at gloryinhermidst.com and
Y’all this series has been so encouraging for my heart and I have been praying each one of you experiences a new level of freedom and joy in your motherhood because of these posts! I am continuing to pray for you!
Happy Monday Friends! Today we start an exciting series all about how YOUR Enneagram Number Impacts your Mothering. Over the next few weeks I will be hosting an incredible group of writers and Momma’s whose personal knowledge of the enneagram has helped them overcome obstacles in motherhood and provided them hope and encouragement for the journey of Mommyhood.
Make sure you don’t miss a post of this series! Each number will have the chance to hear from 2 different writers, so even if your number is covered today, you are going to want to keep reading this series! Sign up below.READ MORE