Podcast – Episode 0406 – Personality Is Who You Are NOT

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In this episode, Joel and Antonia talk about the ways we over-identify with our personalities and strategies for the next phase of personal growth.


In this podcast you’ll find:

  • “Personality is who you are not” – Joel and Antonia unpack the meaning behind this statement, used by Dr. Beatrice Chestnut and Uranio Paes in their Enneagram work.
  • How Joel and Antonia embodied this message during a recent enneagram retreat.
    • Joel shares his experience with “personality is who you are not” through the lens of his Enneagram type (6).
    • Antonia explains how this shows up differently for her as a type 3.
  • Antonia explains the importance and role of the “identity” phase as an entry point to type – and the trap of staying in this place for too long.
    • How staying in “identity” affects our long term relationship with typology systems.
  • How Myers-Briggs® appears different from the Enneagram in relation to this topic.
    • Viewing your Myers-Briggs® growth path through your cognitive functions as a way to avoid one-sidedness.
    • Check out our article on The Car Model to understand your growth path through your type’s functions.
  • What’s the role of personality if it isn’t who we truly are? Joel shares his experience as a type 6 and how this has served him throughout life.
    • Joel’s excitement at discovering his true essence as a type 6.
  • Antonia talks about her inner work as a type 3 – and why the world in general rewards type 3s when they don’t do this work.
  • What awaits you on the other side of overidentification and doing the work? Joel talks about how your motivations can change when you get to this place.
  • Joel and Antonia share more thoughts and experiences on undertaking personal growth work.
  • Examining the layers of personal growth work through the HAT model.
    • Check out this episode where we unpack the HAT model to learn more.
  • Viewing personal growth as a timeline – and why it doesn’t matter if you’re in the identity phase right now.
    • A message for content creators on this topic.

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Showing 12 comments
  • Lauren Losson

    As a spiritual director, I am working with people in the transcendent phase of their exploration of their life journey. As Richard Rohr says, you don’t leave anything behind that was from a previous phase of development, but you learn to integrate it and learn from it. It’s all grist for the mill. In spiritual direction I use both MBTI and the Enneagram as tools to reveal personal truth — both persona and essence.

  • Clarkie

    Thank you!

    I’m so happy to hear the deeper conversations.

    Heh! I’m just finishing the podcast and Antonia is asking for encouragement and that’s what I want to do.

    I’m grateful for these delay conversations and that is because I started listening to the podcast a couple years ago and stopped because it seemed to be repeating the same things over and over again. At first that was great and exactly what I needed. Then I started desiring more meaty content, it wasn’t there.
    Now coming back to this deeper stuff it’s exactly what I didn’t even know I was looking for.

    I want to encourage you specifically in what you said about going deeper resulting in smaller audiences. While this is true that you’re immediate audience, those who listen to this podcast, is smaller, the indirect audience, those who are reached by the people who listen to the deep conversations is a multiplication of your regular audience.
    You are reaching and impacting more people because you will be training and engaging those of us who want to reach others. I think that this is a key component in the intuitive revolution that you’ve begun.

    You’re doing great work.
    Keep going!

  • Maddie

    Hey 👋, what was surfacing for me here, ironically, was a sense of pride about how far along I think I am in my journey. What’s healthy pride look like in personal growth? It feels distinct from indifference… Thich Nhat Hanh (sp?) comes to mind here. Maybe pride in achievement turns into a more ambient sense of joy at being alive. Russ Hudson talks about point 7 as being about the joy of the spiral of growth and discover continuing upward. But it’s maybe more about peeling back layers to find new flavors and depths of yourself because “we are the way the universe experiences itself” (was that Alan Watts’ quote?). Admittedly I’m hoping someone thinks I’m impressive for writing this 🙂 that’s my 6 moving to 3, perhaps. Thanks for all you do!

    • Maddie

      If I had to boil down the whole thing I said into one thing, I’d say that Thich Nhat Hanh is a great teacher for finding a sense of comfort and joy in the wake of letting go of achievement (or having never possessed it in the first place).

      Another thought, and a question: I have the good fortune of being naturally good at meditation, so I think it’s easy for me to feel the value of non attachment experientially but I wonder how other ‘types’ might access the peace that meditation can bring without actually doing it. For example my mom is an ENTP, and I think she’d hate meditation.

  • Alex.e


    I just wanted to mention, about the ‘timeline’ aspect of growth, sometimes I like to think of it more like a spiral. To use a metaphor, instead of a nail or a simple line, thinking in terms of screws can be useful to imagine growth. As if it was moving around a circle, but always at another level. Iterative movements, maybe?

    I have been into Myers-Briggs’ functions for 1 year and I felt the progress was extremely rapid to get a hold of myself and a sense of identity. I feel like I am ready for deeper work such as shadow work, but I still will be going back to personality models with a new eye, because for one thing I cannot afford to break my personae totally once at a time (financially and socially) – and for another reason, as I will need to use personality and type to introduce others to my process and discuss about deeper stuff.

    Finally, after having listened to this podcast, I will go check out info on the HAT Model + I will rely on Jung’s model of EGO/PERSONAE/SHADOW/SELF. I have a sense those will be good tools for me to do back-and-forth movements between personality work and true self work.

    Thanks for the amazing work!

  • Rowan

    Personally I love the title of this podcast because it’s an idea I care about a lot and wish more people would realise, so as soon as I saw this title, I clicked on it.

  • Viki Lewis

    These deeper episodes about transcendence and shadow work are exactly what I have needed to hear recently, so thank you guys. Thank you for letting us in on your journeys and please keep episodes like this coming ❤️

  • Rosa

    Thank you for putting out such nuanced content about personality type and it’s use for personal growth.
    I got so envious of you being at this retreat… and of course I’m an enneagram 4. Definitely not on the same timeline but I can see the value of continuing down this road. Having you guys blazing a trail and being so transparant about it is really inspiring and motivating to me.

  • Jess

    Loved this episode! As an Enneagram 5, coming to terms with the fact that I have so much more energy than I think I do is hard and also freeing.

  • Your #1 Fan

    A reason (that is within your control) that these deeper episodes don’t do well is because your titles for them are actually really bad 😅

    I’m sorry to be so direct but there’s no other way to put it. I know Joel was really passionate about that statement “personality is who you’re not” but it is neither an accurate title for what was actually discussed; nor a particularly enticing title to click.

    It IS provocative but it provokes a person to NOT click to listen.

    I, personally, am on track with you. I have used MBTI to transcend the stereotypes of my type. It has resulted in incredible wealth for me and indescribable progress in my personal relationships (i have other tools in my toolkit btw but MBTI is a significant one).

    The Enneagram, on the other hand, has been more challenging because i always felt it told me everything wrong with me but very little about what i can do to be a better me.

    This episode was therefore EXTREMELY valuable content to me. It gave me a lot of deeper insight about how to approach the enneagram.

    But I almost didn’t open it.

    In fact, i deleted it at first but iTunes automatically downloaded it again so i *very reluctantly* pressed play. I was so pleasantly surprised by how good the episode was.

    Yet i almost missed it because of the shitty title.

    You need to do like those people making popcorn listicles as Joel called them (hilarious 😂).

    Teach us deep stuff but try to make the titles more clickable. It’ll help you reach more of us that are ready for the deeper stuff.

    At the end of the day, we’re still human beings. No matter how deep, spiritual, or evolved we are.

    Entice us human beings with your titles. And we will listen and eat the vegetables you’re serving.

    • SU

      Another option is to just assume they are all good regardless of title, listen, download them and rename the file whatever you want. Be thankful they make any.

    • SU

      You can get one of PH’s Enneagram starter kits with Beatrice Chestnut and they tell you how to actually use Enneagram for your E type. Being told the way you are by reading about Enneagram online is just step 0. The title isnt “shitty” once you know what that quote means and where it came from.

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