Expanding Your Imagination

This section is called stories. In addition to some books and AV materials, I'm collecting stories that you can use in coaching. Stories are one of my most effective resources. All religious and spiritual traditions use them, and if you enter into the corporate world, you find just as many there in the form of anecdotes, slogans and memories collectively embellished into corporate cultural principles. I tell stories because our Enneagram focus creates an inner world. This is the world of imagination. Our Enneagram filter is the filter of imagination. We all imagine the world is a certain way.

As a coach, I primarily alter your imagination. When we can't do something, we frequently preface our helplessness by saying, "I can't imagine . doing that, saying that, thinking that." If I can free your imagination, I can help you do what you can't imagine doing now.

This isn't just my private opinion. When Lawrence Kohlberg did his famous cross culture study of moral/spiritual development at Harvard, he carefully described the development of six levels or stages. That was helpful. Then someone asked him, "Well, how do you move from one level to another?" He answered, "By the power of imagination. You have to imagine yourself other than you are and imagine yourself in the other persons' places."

It is said, foolishly, that experience is the best teacher. When we are in the grip of our Enneagram style, we keep experiencing the same thing over and over. That's why people lament, "That's the story of my life" or "It's the same old story," or "Isn't that the way it always is," or some equally despondent description of rigid repetition.

But Zen has its koans, Jesus has his parables, Lao Tzu has his aphorisms and every spiritual tradition has stories. I embrace those great traditions and try to emulate them to the best of my ability. The stories will entertain. After all, I am a 7. But they are told with benign manipulation in mind. They are calculated to mess with your imagination.

Some will be stories I've heard like the first one. Many will be anecdotes, taken from my coaching experience, other stories, aphorisms or anecdotes will be purloined from my friends and teachers. Some will have a comment, many will not.