“Good” Things Happen Even When “Bad” Things Happen

If you haven’t seen the movie “The Best Exotic Marigold Hotel”, then you are missing out! Go! It’s really good. It might still be in theatres near you, especially the Indie or artsy ones. Or, rent it. It’s worth it.

I went a few weeks ago, as a homework assignment. I’m a new member of a local organization called The Enneagram Enthusiasts of Tucson. In addition to observing our own behaviors in certain situations and pondering a number of questions, we were encouraged to go to this movie and try to guess the EnneaTypes of the main characters. My husband came with me, reluctantly at first, only later to exclaim, “That’s one of the best movies I’ve seen in a while!”

The Enneagram is a centuries-old psychological system with roots in sacred tradition that can be an invaluable guide on our journeys to self-understanding and self-development. It is a wonderful tool for self-discovery that has helped me to better understand how I think, how I feel, how I tend to process the world, how I lean and tend to behave in personal relationships, and how I might maximize my inherent strengths. Of course, knowing the EnneaType of those closest to me is helpful as well. There are a number of ways to determine one’s EnneaType, including a variety of assessments offered online and in books. I ask all of my clients to take an assessment and we work with what they learn during our coaching engagements. There are nine personality types in this system – Perfectionist, Giver, Performer, Romantic, Observer, Loyal Skeptic, Epicure, Protector, and Mediator. I’m still a student and the front end of my studies but I’ve wanted to go deeper so I’ve taken a couple of classes, read a few books and, now, I’ve joined this group.

One of the characters in the movie, Sonny Kapoor, played brilliantly by Dev Patel of Slumdog Millionaire fame, is (we all guessed) the Enneagram 7 type, the Epicure. One of his lines, said over and over again throughout the movie, was, “Prepare to be amazed!” And another was, “Everything will be right in the end. If it isn’t right, then it’s not the end, the end has not yet come.” His is the high energy, dreamer type, the eternal optimist; the one who, despite the realities around him, refuses to give up on his dreams. He’s the one who, when “bad” things happen, finds something “good” in it, who believes that “good” things happen even when “bad” things happen. He’s very likeable.

As in any psychological typing, learning and development system, there are upsides and downsides. The biggest downside is the tendency to label ourselves, and one another and live small, within the labels. The upside is the opportunity to better understand who we are, how we lean, what works and what doesn’t work about that, and how we might evolve and expand into our fuller capacity. True students of the Enneagram learn a lot about compassion, of self and other. I am an EnneaType 8 (with a strong 7 wing) – which will make sense to you if you study it one day – and I want to develop a bit more of Sonny’s sunny outlook. Watching movies with a desire to learn about ourselves, and one another, like coaching, is a wonderful way to learn and grow and to make life and the people around us wildly interesting.

Whether or not learning about the Enneagram system intrigues you, go to see The Best Exotic Marigold Hotel. See for yourself how “good things happen even when bad things happen.” Let me know if you liked the movie!  I’d love to hear from you.

With love,

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Permission to use granted by Dori Klass, with Dori Klass & Associates, Inc., author, speaker, professional coach, leadership development consultant and heart-centered entrepreneur. For more information, please contact Dori at dori@doriklass.com or at 520-742-1951.

About Dori

Dori Klass & Associates, Inc. is a consultancy and coaching practice committed to providing a unique blend of professional coaching and leadership development consulting to companies, leaders, educators and parents who want to lead at a higher level, who want to build great family and work environments through coaching, and who want to enhance performance and encourage overall well being on many levels, personally and professionally. We are guided by our purpose, which is to transform lives, families and work teams through coaching, consciousness, personal leadership, love and meaningful action.

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