On today’s regular version of the show …

A conversation with Ann Gadd, author of Sex and the Enneagram. You can learn more about Ann by visiting her website. You can also email her at ann@anngadd.co.za

On the Xtended version …

The continued conversation with Ann Gadd.

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Transcript of Episode

Corey Allan: Welcome back to another episode of Sexy Marriage Radio. I’m Dr. Corey Allen and this time not alongside my wife Pam as this episode, the whole thing, I’ve got a guest that’s joining me for this show and so she’s got the week off. But you don’t as a Sexy Marriage Radio Nation and we are glad that every time you spend some time with us and let us know what’s on your mind that helps make the Sexy Marriage Radio Nation all that it can be. And the way you can speak up about your questions or your thoughts or your topics you’d like to hear on Sexy Marriage Radio in the future you can give us a call at 214-702-9565 or as always and has always been there the entirety of this show feedback at sexymarriageradio.com.

Corey Allan: And we also ask you as the Sexy Marriage Radio Nation, jump on iTunes, jump on Spotify, jump on Stitcher, jump on iHeartRadio, however you choose to listen rate and review the show, leave a comment, help spread the word because we want married sex to be all that it can be. And more than that, we want your marriage to be all that it can be.

Corey Allan: So coming up on today’s regular free version of Sexy Marriage Radio, I’m joined by Ann Gadd, author of Sex and the Enneagram where we have an extensive conversation about her work and the instrument of the Enneagram and how it plays out in your life and in marriage and in your sex life, in relationship. And on the extended version of Sexy Marriage Radio, which is deeper, twice as long and there are no ads, you can subscribe at smrnation.com, a continued conversation with Ann Gadd, author of Sex and the Enneagram where we get into a little bit of a deeper conversation about what she discovered from her book, how it impacted her life plus a whole lot more. All that’s coming up on today’s show. So I’m pleased to be joined by Ann Gadd who has a new book coming out or is it out Ann? Fill me in real quick.

Ann Gadd: It’s out already. It came out about a week ago.

Corey Allan: Perfect. And so it is called Sex and the Enneagram and they reached out because they thought, “You know what? Sexy Marriage Radio needs to know a little bit more about the Enneagram.” And I completely agree because Ann’s got quite the background in this, in this arena. And so, Ann I’m going to be straight forward and honest and upfront about this segment. You’re going to be the teacher. I’m going to be a student because this is not something I’m as versed in. So first, welcome to the show with Sexy Marriage Radio.

Ann Gadd: Hi, welcome. Thank you.

Corey Allan: And then second, give everybody a quick overview of what is the Enneagram?

Ann Gadd: At it’s most basic and what it’s used most in a professional sense in offices and businesses is that it defines nine basic personality types. There’s a lot more to the Enneagram than just nine types but that’s where most of us start. And then those types are further subdivided into more types. Otherwise every ninth person would look exactly the same and obviously we don’t. So there’s a lot more subdivisions. There’s a lot of how healthy you are as a personality, which also affect how you, your type shows itself. But you know, most of the time I think in this program you’re probably got to deal with the main basic nine types. But just so your listeners understand there’s a lot more to it than that.

Corey Allan: No, I get it. It kind of helps give you a good framework to begin to understand, but then you can start to dive deeper to see more of your nuances and your circumstances. Because the one thing that jumps out to me and my knowledge of the Enneagram is that it shows you where you’re at your best, but it also shows you what happens when you’re at your worst.

Ann Gadd: It does indeed. Yeah.

Corey Allan: And that’s a sophisticated instrument right there.

Ann Gadd: Yeah. No, it’s sometimes difficult because you really do confront yourself at best and at worst. And when you know the information, you can no longer kid yourself that you aren’t in a [inaudible 00:04:49] state. You know, you know, and unfortunately, so is your partner, which means it’s no good. Well it’s a good, but you don’t feel it’s good at the time.

Corey Allan: Yeah. Yeah. It’s an unavoidable aspect of married life, right, where we can’t necessarily hide ourselves to the people we live life closely with.

Ann Gadd: Yeah. But I think on the really positive side of it, imagine that you were able to get a menu to your partner so that you really understood where they were coming from, how they thought, why they thought, so you really got them, if you like. That’s an incredible gift.

Corey Allan: Yes, it is.

Ann Gadd: Because most of us fumble through life making our partners wrong because they don’t think, feel, act like we do.

Corey Allan: Okay.

Ann Gadd: So obviously they must be wrong because they don’t. And I think that’s what the Enneagram does. It helps you really have compassion for where your partner really is and where you are.

Corey Allan: Okay. So let’s start there then. So how does a person that picks up your book or does the Google search of the Enneagram and wants to just get a better understanding of it, what’s the best way to use this tool as it applies to life and marriage?

Ann Gadd: The way most of us give the process, if you like credibility, is to find other people. So if I’m doing a workshop, people will often say, “Oh, that is so like Fred.” or, “There is Jane to a T,” whatever. And very often we find other people sooner than we find ourselves. Because most of us think we know ourselves. But there’s this part of ourselves that we don’t really want to face. And so we’ll go … We like all the good parts. We’ll immediately look for the number that has the base credentials.

Corey Allan: Absolutely. Yeah, what paints me in the best picture because that’s what I want to present. Because that’s what I really am, right? I mean, come on Ann.

Ann Gadd: Yeah. So we often get attracted to that personality even if it’s not ours. So we fumble around a bit. Some people find themselves straight away, other people take longer. But I recommend that a combination between reading books on the Emmeagram. Ask your partner. I mean, they know you better than anyone else and they can say, “No, no, that’s so not you,” or, “Hey, have you thought about looking.” And friends and colleagues, your kids. I mean boy, they know you.

Corey Allan: Yes.

Ann Gadd: It’s not as simple … It’s not like if you were doing astrology, I’m a Capricorn or I’m a Virgo. It’s not like that. It’s the journey as opposed to simple, quick destination. Once you find yourself however, it’s like falling back into this really comfortable couch that you feel so familiar with and you just think, “Oh, I get it. I know. That’s why.” And that’s the beauty of it.

Corey Allan: Okay. And so if you’re talking about the nine different types, is it possible that a person, when they start going down this journey, and obviously you can dovetail people into it, like, “Oh well they’re more of a one or they’re more of a nine,” or whichever one it is, but is it also possible with the Enneagram that they will be multiples? Like they’re aspects of two or three of them?

Ann Gadd: Absolutely, because I don’t want to go too far down here because now’s when it gets more complicated.

Corey Allan: Gotcha.

Ann Gadd: But you can have aspects of the numbers on either side of you, which we call wings.

Corey Allan: Okay.

Ann Gadd: You can have numbers that you move towards to. And those are specific numbers. So really there we’re talking a potential of five numbers that you interact with. But your basic type, your call type remains throughout your life. That doesn’t change. The influence of the other numbers does. So for instance, I’m a nine but I think a lot like a seven, but I am intrinsically a nine. And I feel like a two.

Corey Allan: Okay.

Ann Gadd: If you divide it into thinking, feeling, action and you have a stronger aspect in each type, we could put it like that.

Corey Allan: Okay. I like that because that helps you to at least get … I mean tell me if I’m wrong with this Ann because the way this strikes me when we’re talking about self-discovery because I like how you tasted or you framed this with, “When I can look at other people I can help kind of … Oh I understand them and I really don’t want to do it for myself initially unless I can put it in a real positive light.”

Ann Gadd: Yeah.

Corey Allan: Because I want to look at, “Oh, those are the strengths. Yeah, those, I like that type of person.” But when I start to see the other side of me, I start to realize, “Oh that doesn’t feel as good. That doesn’t taste as good on the way it strikes me.” So is it important then that as I’m going through this work, to realize how do I come more comfortable with all of me, with the different aspects and facets of me so I can then work to improve those areas?

Ann Gadd: I think absolutely. I think this is where we need to remove judgment from ourselves. Judgment actually doesn’t help us in the slightest.

Corey Allan: True.

Ann Gadd: Acceptance is the word I like to use. I accept that as a nine, I go to sleep to myself and my needs and what have you. And I understand that now. So I make a concerted effort not to do that. But I now bring awareness to what before was well, that’s just how I am. And so I can take positive action to exercise, to ask what does Ann want as opposed to just going along with everyone else.

Corey Allan: Right.

Ann Gadd: That’s what I mean. It’s an awareness as opposed to judgment.

Corey Allan: Perfect. And then, so what is the best way a couple can use this tool as it applies to their married life and their sex life? Because that’s where your work goes with this current book. What’s the best steps on how they can use this to improve that aspect of their life and their marriage?

Ann Gadd: I believe that when you understand your partners, what we call the fixations and passion, and when I talk about passion, I’m not talking about passion in the contemporary sense, I’m talking about passion in the biblical sense, the passion of Christ.

Corey Allan: Okay.

Ann Gadd: So it’s where our fixations go, where our energy goes that takes us away from being who we potentially could be. When you recognize that in your parnter and they recognize it in you, you can gently help. And I use the word gently. It’s not like [inaudible 00:11:28]. You can gently use that to bring them back to full presence, to bring them back into the bedroom. So we can go later through each type and what each type can do to be more present sexually. But it’s really just a bringing an awareness to where we lose ourselves.

Corey Allan: Okay. So that’s kind of the key then isn’t it? Because that’s the thing I like about this, just from the introductory knowledge I’ve got and then from our conversation we’ve got right now Ann is this is a tool and a path that truly does help me learn me. That from the outset it could be something I just want to understand my partner better because who doesn’t want that in some regards? Because there’s this belief, you know, if I can understand my spouse better, I can change them and that’ll make it easier for me. And low and behold, it doesn’t work that way. I’ve got to deal with me. I can’t, it’s inescapable. And so how do I start to learn? What are the different nuances and traits that do help me? Just, I like the framework of it, of be more present in my life and being more present in the act of sex in my marriage.

Ann Gadd: Yeah, absolutely. I don’t know if there’s time for me to quickly go through each type and how they can bring themselves to present.

Corey Allan: Yeah, let’s do that, please.

Ann Gadd: Okay, so let’s take type one because that type is … A little extra, few lines on one. Life is black or white. It’s right or it’s wrong.

Corey Allan: Okay.

Ann Gadd: They’re idealists. They want to improve the world and they want to improve themselves. And by the way, they want to improve you. You might not want to be improved, but hey.

Corey Allan: But that’s their task, right? That’s what they’re after.

Ann Gadd: That’s their task. To make the world a better place.

Corey Allan: Okay.

Ann Gadd: So they’re perfectionists because to make the world a better place, everything has to be done, right. Right? So what happens in the bedroom with a one is it’s all romantic and it’s set up and things are going really well. And then somebody left their undies on the floor or someone didn’t clean the curtains or the bed wasn’t made or something, and they find something that is not perfect and that takes away their energy and their presence.

Corey Allan: Okay.

Ann Gadd: And so they go down that rabbit hole and the moment is lost. So that would be one way that one’s [inaudible 00:14:01]. And with twos, twos are the helpers of the world. They’re, each Enneagram type has a biblical, the sins if you like attached to it. And so the two would be the sin of pride and it’s the belief that the world wouldn’t quite function if I wasn’t there. Everyone needs me to help them. And so they’re very helpful. They’re very caring people. They’re very nurturing people.

Ann Gadd: What happens with them in the bedroom is that they forget that they have needs themselves. They’re so busy trying to please a partner that they very often don’t even know that they have needs themselves.

Corey Allan: Right.

Ann Gadd: So that would be one way. They need to fill their cups as opposed to trying to fill everyone else’s. Because if our cup is empty, then we haven’t got anything to give really.

Ann Gadd: Okay. And threes are the stars. Threes are the performers. They’re ambitious, they’re charismatic, goal setting, that kind of a person. And what happens with threes is they start seeing sex as a performance. “Hey, how was I? Did I shine? What was I? Was it good?” And so for them that takes away from them being with their partner. It’s about … And sometimes they can get so afraid of not performing well that they withdraw completely from relationships because rather that than feel a sense of failure if it’s [inaudible 00:15:31] whatever.

Ann Gadd: So that would be then fours are the more artistic, creative, dramatic, melancholic, stylish kind of people. And they can get so desirous of kind of juicing up their sex life that they disappear into a fantasy world in order to kind of try to bring more excitement. But in fact they lose it because they’re not with their partner. They’re in their head somewhere.

Corey Allan: Right. Because they’re off in other areas.

Ann Gadd: Yeah. They’re not present with their partner. They’re thinking about a past lover or experience or whatever. So yeah.

Corey Allan: Gotcha.

Ann Gadd: And fives are your intensely cerebral types. You know, knowledge is power. The more I know. If I let people into my life, they’re going to demand too much of me and I don’t want to do that so I hold myself back.

Corey Allan: Okay.

Ann Gadd: With them, they can get very focused on the mechanics if you like, sexually, and being in their heads. Not the parts of their bodies. So for five, being more present would be to learn to actually connect with their hearts and to connect with their bodies and not become a human thinking.

Corey Allan: Okay. Don’t just be one big brain.

Ann Gadd: Not just be, yeah, not just be one big brain. And also letting go of this fear that my partner will just devour me and my time and my energy and stuff. You know, my resources.

Ann Gadd: So then we go to the six. Six is a sort of self-doubting, devil’s advocate. They’re compassionate. They kind of tend to scan the horizon to see what could possibly go wrong. They tend to be quite anxious people. They’re the people who read the airplane, you know, they give you the safety … They’re the only people that read the [inaudible 00:17:31]. When they’re on the airplane, they know the act of God.

Corey Allan: Okay.

Ann Gadd: So with them the problem could be that they fear what could go wrong. Maybe I’ll lose my erection. Maybe he won’t like what I’m doing. Is it potential that we could get pregnant and I’m not ready for pregnancy. They look at all the worst case scenarios.

Corey Allan: Right. They’re playing all the traps.

Ann Gadd: That’s right.

Corey Allan: Gotcha.

Ann Gadd: Yeah. That’s right. Sevens are your fun loving types. They’re adventurous, they want to do it all. They want to see it all. They value their freedom. So what happens with them when they’re in the bedroom because they are very forward thinking, they’re already planning the next sexual encounter as opposed to being present with what is happening. Because they’re thinking, “Well this is nice. Maybe it will be nice to see if the next time we X, Y or Z,” and that takes them away from being here with their partner.

Corey Allan: Gotcha.

Ann Gadd: Eight are the very, I want to be the boss. I’m the challenger. They often have big chests. I mean, I rule here. So they’re very … They have a high energy level and they want, they enjoy confrontation. They want you to step into the fire with them. What happens is because of their very big presence, people can get like nervous and step back from them, “Oh my god, what is this,” kind of thing. And because of that it’s frustrating for them. They want to meet you head on and now you’re disappearing backwards. That’s frustrating.

Ann Gadd: And for nines, nines get very caught up in, “Yeah, sure honey, I want to have sex.” Nines are very easy going, peace, loving, accepting, merging types. So nines would be, “Yeah, no sure, sex is great, but just need to feed the dog. Haven’t done the … Let me just do the washing up first and I’ve got a few emails to answer.” By the time they do all this stuff, partner’s fast asleep. So it’s not a rejection as such. It’s just as a partner of a nine you have to gently lead them into becoming aware of their sexuality and their arousal and so on because they’ll kind of switch themselves off from it. And that can be misconstrued by a partner and seen as rejection when it’s really not.

Corey Allan: Okay, sure. No, I can understand that because this helps give, I mean I think that covers everybody in this world as far as the nuances of how we interact with our world and the people within it. Because I think we all have, like all the different instruments out there, we all have certain characteristics that just help us make sense of it. To move out into the world or protect ourselves from the world. I mean it seems like we’re always doing one of the two if you think about it.

Corey Allan: When you look at the overview and as someone is listening from the Sexy Marriage Radio Nation and they hear, “Okay, I sound more like a seven,” what’s the best next step for them? Once they kind of, they’re getting introduction to this because some of the people aren’t going to be familiar with it like myself. So what’s my best next step?

Ann Gadd: I would like to say that your next bext step is to buy my book and read it.

Corey Allan: Absolutely.

Ann Gadd: No problem yeah. But to buy my book. But to read up. And there’s loads of information on the internet and I have a website enneagrams9paths.com that actually lists all the different types and what they … In other words, it goes into more depth than what you’re able to go here. And start reading up and finding out and thinking about it. And when do I do that? Just bringing awareness to what we do every day in our lives.

Corey Allan: Okay. And so that’s, if I’m hearing you correctly Ann, that’s really the goal is how do I get more aware and engaged and present in my own life in every aspect of my life?

Ann Gadd: Absolutely.

Corey Allan: Okay.

Ann Gadd: If I give myself as an example, as a nine I tend to merge with my partner, so I go along to get along.

Corey Allan: Okay.

Ann Gadd: So it’s, “Let’s go and eat out. Where do you want to go?” “Oh, I don’t mind.” “Well, surely you must have a choice.” “No, no, I’m happy. I’ll go along with where,” … And then you get to the restaurant, it’s, “No, no, whatever he’s ordering, I’ll order.” And that can be very frustrating for a partner and also frustrating for yourself because deep down you actually did want to go to the Chinese, not the Indian, but you didn’t want to upset the partner by saying that so you just go along. My needs aren’t important.

Ann Gadd: Through the Enneagram you realize that and you start actually as a nine drawing on my eight wing and I start learning to actually think, “Now hold it, I do have an opinion here. Oh wow. That’s new.” And the world won’t stop turning if I voice that opinion. And so now I’m starting to become more integrated. I’m starting to actually lose some of the anger and resentment that I hold over never voicing my opinion. So that would be one example.

Corey Allan: That’s great. And so that’s what you mean by by using the wings of this diagram or of this framework where I can call up on something from one of my neighboring partners, if you will, in the neighboring numbers and use their strength to help solidify mine in my presence.

Ann Gadd: Absolutely. If I went the other side, I would go to my one, let’s say in a business thing. Nines can be very great procrastinators. So can ones to a degree, but I can draw on the orderness, the discipline of a one to overcome the procrastination. I can say right the way around the Ennegram, all the different numbers and their wings.

Corey Allan: Okay, that’s perfect. And so is there, are there some main things to be aware of when it comes to how this directly impacts my love life and my sex life?

Ann Gadd: I think, well, I feel rather that it brings an understanding for what your partner’s needs are.

Corey Allan: Okay.

Ann Gadd: So let’s say I’m married to a five and I understand that his safest space is his head space. So I can gently bring him into his body.

Corey Allan: Okay. I get you.

Ann Gadd: And I could bring him into his feelings. And therefore create far more balance. And with the other way around, he could look at … Let’s take a different number. Been using nine a lot. Let’s take the seven. My seven, if I was married to a seven, I could allow them to see that actually future plans are fun and exciting. But hey, the most exciting thing is what’s happening right now. And let’s focus on that. And we’ll worry about the other exciting things at a later stage. And so gently, I’m bringing that seven into the now, here.

Corey Allan: And that’s just the idea of bringing that to a different level of awareness, right. Of just, of realizing what I’m up against and then going back to the comments you made earlier, suspending judgment on that aspect and dynamic going on and actually embracing it and confronting it a little differently.

Ann Gadd: Absolutely. If I’m married to one, I understand that it’s going to upset them if the bed isn’t made and there’s socks all over the floor. So you know what, I just go and pick up the socks. It’s not a big deal. Or I make the bed. Problem gone.

Corey Allan: Well, okay, I like that. But I think that also presents the opportunity of, I recognize a one wants order and in a different feel to it. And so if they get disrupted and get emotional or upset by the fact that the bed’s not made, I don’t need to be upset that they’re upset because I could almost see it as, that’s just kind of them. How do we absorb this and keep going forward to both recover well from it?

Ann Gadd: Absolutely. Because instead of making that person wrong, it’s just, hey, they’re just being a four. Fours get melancholic, I don’t take it personally. That’s just how they are, you know? And I can stick with them because that that’s who I married, you know.

Corey Allan: That’s good. Ann, you mentioned this earlier, but I know that people that have been listening to this show are probably sitting there thinking, “Okay, how do I discover more of who I am and who my partner is?” So tell your website again, how they can find your book, what’s the next best step for them? The the platform is yours to sell what will help them the most.

Ann Gadd: All right. My website is enneagrams and that’s ennea, which means nine, grams, which means a figure or logo, enneagrams9 and it’s written 9, numerical 9, paths.com. And I think on the front page there, there’s very simple, basic characteristics of each type. They can also do a free download, which they can keep as a handy pocket reference. So the various types and it lists the integrated and less integrated aspects or healthy and less healthy aspects. So that’s a free download. They can do that.

Ann Gadd: The book is Sex and the Ennegram, which they can go to and they can find a lot of information there. Anything from dating ads, you know how to recognize a type from the dating ad. The question everyone asks me is what makes the best lover? We’ll get to that later. What type.

Corey Allan: Okay.

Ann Gadd: And yeah, so they can get information from those. And also, as I said, there are vast resources on the internet. They can, if they want to contact me, do an Ennegram test. That’s Ann, A double N with no E @Ann G-A double D.co. [inaudible 00:00:28:15]. Ann@anngadd-

Corey Allan: And I’ll, yeah, I’ll put all of that in the show notes too. So if you go to the show notes of this show, all of that information will be there. So Ann, thank you so much for being a part of this segment with Sexy Marriage Radio. I love your work and I can’t wait to learn more.

Ann Gadd: Thank you so much.

Corey Allan: And we’re going to leave it at that. I have to say thank you again to Ann Gadd for joining me for this week’s episode of Sexy Marriage Radio. And if you want more, check the show notes at smrnation.com. All the links that were mentioned and ways that you can find more about the Enneagram if that sparks your interest. You can find that there. So wherever you are, whatever you’ve been doing, thanks for taking a little bit of time out of your day each and every week that you do to spend it with us. We’d love to hear what you think. 214-702-9565. See you next time.

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