Of course I watched the opening Colbert shows. The first two nights were fine examples of healthy Sevens. George Clooney and Colbert are both healthy Sevens. If you watched carefully, their ability to reframe was on display. Much of their comedy was a “put on.” They would be acting out something that was funnier (like the imaginary movie clip) because there was another frame (that filmic genre ) in the background. When Sevens are creative, an important tool is framing/reframing. “Look at it this way, or laugh at it the old way.” Colbert did it extensively with his persona in his Colbert Report. The character was funnier if/when you know the other frame (Fox) in the background.

The next night, Colbert had Joe Biden, another Seven. This time was perhaps even more remarkable: two Sevens talking about grief. If a style Seven can integrate suffering through acceptance, it modifies their tendency to escape suffering and deepens them. Both Colbert and Biden have had suffering they could not or at least did not escape. Frequently Sevens escape through frenetic energy or an exciting array of chemicals. Sobriety is the high side of Sevens and it is not accidental that sobriety refers usually to a non-drugged state but equally well to a clear-eyed assessment of a tough situation. The sober discussion was magnificent for all viewers, but it was even more powerful for those dealing with style Seven issues. This is what it looks like when you’re healthy.


One can’t escape the political news and for Enneagram students, the candidates are fair game for analysis. The democrats have a classic division with the talk about Hilary Clinton and Joe Biden. Hilary is a One and as such she is targeted for her “inability to connect,” which on television means she lacks the ability to entertain. Joe Biden is a Seven, so he is more entertaining but he has this spontaneity issue: he says whatever occurs to him in the moment which every so often leads to substantial entertainment but an hurt one politically.

Now in the movies, Sevens always beat Ones in conflict (Mrs. Doubtfire, One Fine Day, etc) because movies are fun and escapist by design. In politics, we’ll see.

Three’s world

I read a column called Quora. People ask questions and anyone who feels qualified can answer. Here is a question and answer that nicely reveals the dynamics of either a style Three or someone rather uncritical of our image-based culture. Notice the preoccupation with not only image, but status based exclusively on image.

A young lady asked:
Is it wrong that I feel insulted when ugly guys ask me out on a date?

A young man answered:

You can certainly feel however you want. It’s not my place to police your feelings.

Well … it wouldn’t be my place, if you hadn’t asked.

Reading the details of your question, I get the impression that you’re “insulted” not so much because these subjectively unattractive men have the nerve to ask you out, but because you’re feeling insecure about your own appearance. You state that during your previous relationship, you felt you didn’t look your best, and at times people said your now-ex looked “too good” to be with you.

I don’t know what you look like. But I can make an educated guess that your problem isn’t that you’re so hideous that your ex was too good for you, or that only grotesque trolls can find you attractive. It’s likely that you lack confidence in your own appearance.

And, yanno what? Predicating your next relationship on the attractiveness of your potential partner will potentially perpetuate this predicament. If you’re set on looking for someone on a level that you already subconsciously believe may be “out of your league”, it’s not going to do anything good for your sense of self-worth. It will only leave you scrambling to live up to a standard you already sorta believe you can’t meet.

It may be that the best thing you can do for yourself is base your next relationship around someone who appreciates you and can express their appreciation for you to you, not someone who your friends will look at and think “oh, she must be attractive if she’s dating him”. Irrespective of the person’s looks.

I’m not suggesting you seek out the first bridge-dwelling troll you can find, but maybe just bear in mind that your friends’ perception of your relationship isn’t going to help you a whole lot if you don’t feel good about yourself. Whereas the perception that someone you care about has of you can make all the difference in the world. Whether they’re model material or not.

I know that all this is easy to say and harder to do, but I promise – promise – from personal experience, that it’s the best path you can take. I’m a fairly attractive guy who’s always had difficulty internalizing the fact that he’s attractive. When I was younger, I IRL had someone from a modeling agency give me their card at an airport. That still didn’t seriously make me believe that I was all that attractive.

At 34, I’ve now taken an extended break from relationships & dating, but experience has taught me that seeking external validation through high appearance-value partners is the junk food of romantic life. Except it rots your soul instead of your teeth.