Have you heard of the Enneagram? If you haven’t, I’ll warn you it might ruin your life. If you have, then you know how freeing it is.

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I’m a One with a Nine wing. I’m pretty sure I was raised by a Nine wing One and a Six wing Five. My exhusband was a Four. I think I’ve pegged my kids as a Six, Four, Three (there is no denying that one), and a little me One. If you don’t know the Enneagram, none of this makes sense, but if you do… it does. Context.

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It’s hard to be a One. You can say that about whatever number you fall under. We all have our challenges and we all have amazing qualities. The thing I struggle with the most being a One is this little devil that lives inside my brain called My Inner Critic. We can all have an inner voice that speaks negatively to us, but for Ones, it is a constant battle, a voice so strong, we don’t realize most people don’t live with this. I’ve gotten better at knowing when it comes up and I’m trying to learn how to tamp it down. It isn’t easy.

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This past weekend wasn’t a great time for me being a One. It’s carried over into the week. I thought yesterday it had gone away but it flared up hot and heavy last night.

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Something in me triggered and that Inner Critic went to town. She’s convinced me I’m small, I have no real skills to help me in this world, I’ll never compare to others who are far smarter, more skilled, and more beautiful than I’ll ever be. At one point I cried as I thought about how ridiculous I am in the things I love. How I’ll most likely lose everything because I have no worth or skill to make my life better.

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Most days I feel stuck.

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I feel small.

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I feel as if the only way for one to know me is in my attachment to other more important people.

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I always feel like the dumb one in the room.

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Some days, all I hear in my head is that I’ll never be happy. I’ll always find a way to be sad and make others sad.

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I have a strong urge to run away when I know conflict is coming. I’m too sensitive. I know I make things harder. I know whatever I’m upset about is dumb.

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It’s hard being a One.

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The last 48 hours have been especially hard inside my brain. I try to smile through it and push it away. Trying to tell people about it makes me feel trite. Like I should be able to get over it and move on with my life.

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But I get stuck.

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I live most of my life inside my head weighing where and how I went wrong. Wondering how I should fix it and then feeling paralyzed to fix it. I will always take the blame, especially when it is assigned to me.