How to Unlock Your Potential Using the Enneagram with Chad and Shelley Prevost | POP 698

A photo of ad and Shelley Prevost is captured. Chad and Shelley are accredited Enneagram practitioners. Chad and Shelley Prevost are featured on Practice of the Practice, a therapist podcast.

Why is your Enneagram subtype an integral part of understanding who you are? What is your dominant instinct? How can you use all the components of the Enneagram to unlock your potential as a person and a professional?

In this podcast episode, Joe Sanok speaks with Chad and Shelley Prevost about how to unlock your potential using the Enneagram.

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Meet Chad and Shelley Prevost

A photo of Chad and Shelley Prevost is captured. Chad and Shelley Prevost are accredited Enneagram Practitioners and the co-founders of the Big Self School. They are featured on the Practice of the Practice, a therapy podcast.Chad and Shelley are accredited Enneagram practitioners. Chad has degrees in creative writing, literature, and theology (PhD, MA, MDiv). He’s also a workshop leader and entrepreneur, participating in writing and literary arts communities in New York, Austin, Atlanta, and Chattanooga.

Shelley is a licensed therapist, educational psychologist, angel investor, TEDx speaker, and leadership coach.

Together, in 2020, Chad and Shelley founded The Big Self School, whose mission is to help adults lead more fulfilled personal and professional lives.

Visit The Big Self School and listen to their podcast. Connect with them on Facebook, Twitter, Instagram, and LinkedIn.

FREEBIE: Read the free mini e-book “7 Soul Needs You Must Meet to Avoid Burnout

In This Podcast

  • Subtypes and instincts of the enneagram
  • Getting to know your enneagram type
  • Shelley and Chad’s advice to private practitioners

Subtypes and instincts of the enneagram

I think the subtypes are incredibly important. Shelley and I might even think that they’re arguably as important as knowing your overall type. (Chad Prevost)

There are three subtype instincts:

1: Sexual

2: Self-preservation

3: Social

Human beings have evolved from community-based patterns. These instincts are trying to help people thrive.

In essence, your subtype is your dominant type – the number between one and nine – mixed with your dominant instinct. Everyone has a dominant instinct, and it is as relevant as your dominant type.

If you don’t understand the instinct and how it shows up for you … [and how] it clouds and flavors your dominant type, then you don’t have the whole picture. (Shelley Prevost)

Getting to know your enneagram type

Getting to know your dominant Enneagram type and instinct is the first step because this is where “the magic happens”.

Once we know [someone’s] subtype there is a specific, laid-out growth path for 27 subtypes and that’s where the coaching and training [becomes important] … how do I grow in my personality? And that’s what the Enneagram is designed for. (Shelley Prevost)

Typing yourself is the starting point and not the endpoint because you can use the Enneagram to help yourself grow psychologically and emotionally.

Consider using the Enneagram in your organization to help your employees understand one another better, and enable the business to run more smoothly.

Shelley and Chad’s advice to private practitioners

Shelley: You are important to healing and improving the evolving consciousness of this world. The work that you do has a ripple effect and improves the lives of everyone around.

Chad: Do your work as an individual. It is okay not to have all the answers and to still be doing your own work while you are leading others.

Books mentioned in this episode:

Useful Links mentioned in this episode:

Check out these additional resources:

Meet Joe Sanok

A photo of Joe Sanok is displayed. Joe, private practice consultant, offers helpful advice for group practice owners to grow their private practice. His therapist podcast, Practice of the Practice, offers this advice.

Joe Sanok helps counselors to create thriving practices that are the envy of other counselors. He has helped counselors to grow their businesses by 50-500% and is proud of all the private practice owners that are growing their income, influence, and impact on the world. Click here to explore consulting with Joe.

Thanks For Listening!

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Podcast Transcription

[JOE SANOK] This is the Practice of the Practice podcast with Joe Sanok, session number 698.

I’m Joe Sanok, your host, and welcome to the Practice of the Practice podcast. I am so excited you’re hanging out with me today. If you’ve been listening to the show for a while, thank you. Thanks so much for hanging out. We are now doing four episodes a week. Can you believe it? We’ve had some amazing sponsors come on that want to just get to know you a little bit, and we’ve had some amazing guests and I mean, we’re recording so far out that we want to just keep giving you more and more just different episodes and interesting people.

Today I’m so excited about our guests. I’ll talk about them in just a second. But if you’re just getting started and maybe you thought I want to start a private practice, I want to get things going, if you don’t know, we have a free email course over at Over there you’re going to get your first steps on starting a practice and getting your Google Business up, getting your LLC or your S-Corp or whatever your state says getting going, getting your website, all those basics and a 28 step checklist as well to just stay organized.

There’s so many people that are in our different programs that have said that they printed out that checklist and just put it next to their computer and just like clockwork they just nibbled away at it. Before long, they had an amazing practice going and next thing they’re starting a group practice and then growing a group practice. So if you’re just getting going, you can grab that over at If you have an established practice and you want our free e-course all about growing a practice, head on over to We have our eight-minute experts there where I interview a whole bunch of people for eight minutes, I set a timer, get all this fast information. It is a way for you to get some amazing quick consulting and organization around growing at your practice. So if it’s established already head on over to

I am so excited today to have Chad and Shelley Prevost. Chad and Shelley are accredited engram practitioners. Chad has degrees in creative writing literature and theology, Ph.D., MA, M.Div. I mean this guy come on. Shelley’s a licensed therapist, educational psychologist, angel investor, TEDx speaker, and leadership coach. I mean, they’re just showing off at this point. This power couple together in 2012, they founded The Big Self School whose mission is to help adults lead more fulfilled, personal and professional lives. Chad and Shelley, welcome to Practice of the Practice podcast.
[CHAD PREVOST] Joe, it is such a delight to be here with you. Thank you.
[SHELLEY PREVOST] Hi Joe. Hello there.
[JOE] Holy power couple. I feel like the universe is going to have a disruption or a fold in it because the two of you are doing work together.
[SHELLEY] Well, you’re kind and on most days it does feel pretty good.
[JOE] This has been a dream a long time coming. We’ve been married a while, but yes, so for a couple of years we’ve been working together now and during the pandemic, we’ve taken a lot of power walks together.
[JOE] We had our daily non-negotiable walk, rain, shine, snow, like did it.
[SHELLEY] Yes, with the poochie who, so we we’ve got our rhythms down. Working with your spouse, you need those rhythms. We’ve said we need spaces in our togetherness too.
[JOE] That’s great. Well, tell me a little bit about how you guys got into the Enneagram and that work, and then would love to hear how you’re applying that through what you’ve launched together.
[SHELLEY] So I first heard and learned of the Enneagram in 1998. I was getting my master’s in clinical psychology at a school in Chicago, Wheaton college and didn’t hook me at that point. I was interested in it, but not like I am now. I tell people all the time that the Enneagram finds you when you’re ready for it. So fast forward to 2017 I went through significant burnout, mental health issues, myself, like really struggled, what I called my dark night of the soul for about a year and was reintroduced to the Enneagram at that point. It caught me. It just hooked me in this huge, huge, significant way.
[JOE] Can I pause you there, when you say dark night of the soul, do you care to dig into that a little bit and tell us what’s going on?
[SHELLEY] Sure. Yes, so I was, so my background’s in psychology and I was brought into this venture capital high growth tech firm. I did that, I was their, director of happiness was my title actually for five years and then I started my own tech company. So anybody that’s ever launched a startup, especially high growth where we raised millions of dollars, we put in a bunch of money, did everything that we could possibly do for three years, it still failed. Lost, I mean, practically a lot was disrupted in our lives. We had to move, we had to pull our kids out of school and move across town and like financially reset, but for me, it was a lot around failure and identity.

When you push all your chips into your work, as your identity, your main form of identity and that crashes down, it’s really destabilizing. So from that process yes, there was a lot of mental and physical burnout happening for me, but it was also just a really, what I now know is a shock point. The Enneagram theory calls these moments in our lives these shock points where something from outside of us has to come in and disrupt us. So it took, I mean, it took what at least a year, if not longer, for me to really recover and reemerge into some stable way for me to move on with my life.
[CHAD] Yes, you had suffered from what everyone, the term burnout, that they were using all the time. It was a disruptive time, I remember, and Shelley was truly burned out and had been in a crisis and I was having to pick up a lot of pieces and I was like we’re moving and I’m going to, what was destabilizing for me was I had been a stay at home dad for several years and I was pursuing this literary dream. I had been running an independent publishing house and I was trying to be a novelist and live some of that life. That had its own set of struggles and setbacks but at this time I was, we were like, Chad, you’ve got to get the job now. You need to hop in now and get whatever it takes right now. So that was jumping into a startup in supply chain and logistics as mostly a writer at the time. So that was destabilizing for me. I didn’t know who I was or what I was doing as well for a couple of years.
[JOE] Wow. So then for both of you, what happened with the Enneagram with those shock points and those transitions?
[SHELLEY] For me, coming out of this deep dark place and then being reintroduced to the Enneagram, I was like, my intuition was that there was something for me here. I didn’t really know what it was. I think my first book at that point was The Road Back to You by Ian Morgan Kron and Suzanne Steel, which is very popular. So I just was like, I really want to dig into this. For me it was a not like I couldn’t not do it. I had to understand what are the patterns of my behavior, my thinking, my feeling that got me here because I don’t want to do this ever again. This sucks. So I’ve really had to unravel all these unconscious patterns of, and I’m an engram two, so one of the things that I discovered —
[JOE] What’s your wing.
[SHELLEY] Do what?
[JOE] Wat’s your wing?
[CHAD] That’s a good question.
[SHELLEY] Well, I, for a long time thought I had a really dominant three wing and I’m learning that it’s actually pretty balanced between three and one. Chad will tell you, bless his heart that I have a very strong one wing.
[CHAD] A one wing, oh yes.
[SHELLEY] Which can be quite critical.
[JOE] I’m sure you can share after story of perfectionism.
[CHAD] You know, and as for as, and just briefly here, but for as important as how we lean to one wing or the other might be, we think it’s more telling what your subtype is.
[SHELLEY] Which we can talk about in a second. So for me, it was really like, I had to understand at a deeper level, what the heck is going on? How did I get here and how do I not get back to this place, so really understanding the unconscious emotional pattern of pride. Pride is the passion of type two and so really doing, and I still hear gosh, four years later I’m doing a ton of work with this emotional pattern, is the way we think about our passion and it’s the root of our suffering. I see pride everywhere in my life. So it’s really awakened me to not only understand these patterns that get me into trouble and lead me to burnout but also the things that just keep me from really functioning well and thriving at all. So that’s really the power of the engram. I think how it re-hooked me the way that it did.
[JOE] It took me forever to even want to like the Enneagram, because I had this one couple that I knew that were so into it. It’s sort of like when someone is so into like Dave Matthews band, that you’re just like, I’m never going to like them no matter even if they put out good music. Like it’s just, they are too into it. I just don’t want to give them the satisfaction. It’s like too much being into it. So it became this thing where I’m just like, no, I’m not even going to read about the Enneagram because it’s so, like I can’t do it. Then, of course, when I was going through some stuff, it was really helpful and 2021 was a big uncoupling year for me and realizing that, yes, I’m a three with a four wing that used to be married to a nine with a one wing and as someone that’s a people pleaser that she also had a perfectionist tendencies.

That didn’t really work real well, especially when one of us was living in health and the other wasn’t. So just like to have that language for myself was really helpful to say what, in future relationships, I need people that recognize that I’m going to be a go getter and that doesn’t define who I am. My worth isn’t from what I achieve and to recognize that, but that also that doesn’t need to intimidate somebody else because that’s not where my worth is coming from. So even just having that language for myself and being able to step back from that 17 year marriage, it was so hard and the language of the engram was really helpful for me.

Chad, what about you? What’s your type and how does that play into maybe your personal relationships, professional? Then I do want to get to the subtypes thing you said, and I know a lot of the work the two of you do is not just having people talk about their types, but to go well beyond that. So I really, because most a lot of podcasts dive into your engram type. What is that? People can go like Alison and Whitney have talked a lot about that on some of our other podcasts. Whitney’s Faith in Practice podcast did I think a five or six-part series. So if people want to really dive into types go check out the Faith in Practice podcast and just type in Enneagram and you can go through types. But we’re going to go beyond types today. So Chad, tell us a little bit about your type and then I want to get into the subtypes comment that you guys made earlier.
[CHAD] Well, I think and also to respond to what you just said, Joe, is that it does, the Enneagram, however lightly you go into it or however deeply you want to plunge, it does give you that very thing of a language to begin. It’s like, there aren’t a lot of shortcuts in life, but the Enneagram as this, it is grounded in ancient wisdom. It’s also very, very current and it does just give you a working functional way professionally or personally, to communicate with others. I am a four and a one to one four, specifically for my subtype and it was not hard, a lot of people, it takes a long time to figure out what their type is. Sometimes their type and subtype. But it was pretty clear to me I think because I was so in personality when I was doing my creative writing thing, needing to be the romantic, the artist needing to be special and those kinds of things, and that really resonated.

At first, like with most people it resonated in a, that’s me. Yes, that’s the very first way that everybody, and then you begin to go, oh, wow. That is me. You feel revealed and you don’t necessarily love it or embrace it. Like for me, the thing that, so speaking of passion, Shelley talked about is like the passion of the four, whatever your subtype is envy. When I was first, I guess, confronted with is envy, first I was like, no, I mean, sometimes I’m maybe competitive with someone, but no, I don’t feel envious. But if you think of envy as being like thinking of what you are lacking, thinking that you’re not completely whole as you are, it’s not the same as jealousy where you really want something that someone else. It’s more invidious. It’s more I lack something that someone else has. And also fours we’re not always conscious of what feelers we are. I did not know I did not have the language or the awareness of how, not just a feeler, but how I interject, not project, but interject how other people feel. It begins to make me feel the way that I’m picking up on them. So those were some very helpful insights just functioning as a four.
[JOE] Yes, so since I’m a three I’m just interested. So what’s my jealousy or envy or pride?
[SHELLEY] The passion of type three is —
[CHAD] Sorry to tell you, Joe.
[SHELLEY] It’s self deceit.
[JOE] Oh man.
[SHELLEY] Actually, it used to be deceit. As people really dug into the type structure, the personality structure of type three it became clear that type threes are not trying to deceive others. They themselves have been deceived by themselves so they become really good image managers and shape shifters. So I not only can figure out what you need from me, but I can become that. So there’s a real sense of loss around who am I? And when I work with threes, that’s this resonating question, is that they ask a lot, who am I? Because they get so lost in the swirl of what everybody else needs or wants or prescribes them to be. So yes, that’s a lot of the work for the three.
[JOE] I’m just going to hang up on you right now.
[CHAD] So as a three, Joe, you are in the center, the middle of the center of, your center of intelligence is the heart. So the twos, threes and fours are the centers of intelligence, the heart. But the threes are often not recognized as being feelers, much less being in the center of that triad, I guess you could call it. That’s because of the very reason that they are constantly managing their image, according to what they think other people are wanting to see.
[SHELLEY] Yes, and suppressing emotions. So a lot of Enneagram practitioners will say that threes are actually the most emotional of all nine types. If you ask a three that they’re like, “No, I’m not. I never have.”
[JOE] No, I could totally see that. No, I could totally see that. I cry at movies before my two daughters.
[SHELLEY] The threes that I’ve known in my life, they are. It’s like this undercurrent of emotion that it’s almost like you see it start to come out or well up and they just push it down and it’s like you can tell it slows them down. They don’t want to feel it. It’s inefficient. I can’t get all my stuff done if I’m actually feeling something and so across the board, they’re really, really good at suppressing all those emotions, which is part of their growth to see threes doing this work and growing in health. They become like beautifully emotive. It’s so powerful to see threes that really embrace their own emotions, but other people’s too.
[CHAD] That was really pretty the way you gave them hope right there. I like the way you painted that picture. That was very elegant.
[SHELLEY] Always hope.
[JOE] Well, I do think that that’s why probably I’ve been so drawn to meditation and Michael Singers work with the Untethered Soul and Anthony Damayos awareness, just that idea of your whole, how you are. Like, there’s no achievement you have to do. You get to do this stuff. So yes, look at the things that I’ve naturally pulled into my life. Now, without it just being a Joe therapy session, let’s talk about the second tier you were talking about or the subtypes, and then let’s go into where you take people past that.
[CHAD] I love this opportunity to be able to talk about this. I think it’s a little bit of a challenge here. Shelley, we’re going to give our elevator pitches, so to speak for, how can you talk pretty briefly about a really complex subject? So let’s see. I think the subtypes are incredibly important. In fact, Shelley, and I might even think that they’re arguably as actually important as knowing your overall type. They’re one of three, you’re either a one to one, [inaudible 00:19:10] termed it, the sexual, the one to one. There’s the self-preservation and there’s the social. Overall, our instincts are biologically, we’re organisms too, where we have evolved from animal life and we have instinctual patterns. But these aren’t instincts that are based like survival. These are instincts that are within us that are trying to, they’re embedded in us, they’re a part of us and they are trying to help us thrive. They’re a part of the way that we are trying to be in wellbeing.
[SHELLEY] Yes. So let me say that real quick. So the subtype, the way that we teach and talk about it is your dominant type. So one through nine, mixed with your dominant instinct, which Chad’s saying is either one to one or sexual, self preservation or social. So we all have a dominant instinct that in my opinion, in our opinion, is as relevant as your dominant type, if not more sometimes because when we’re typing people, we’re like, oh, you’re such an eight. A lot of times, what we’re doing is we’re seeing the instinct, this dominant instinct coming out. So if you don’t understand the instinct and how that shows up for you and how it motivates your behaviors, and it definitely clouds and flavors your dominant type then you really don’t have the whole picture.

I’ll give one brief example. So for a long time, I thought I was a three and I was like, well, I’m super achieving. I’m like a performer. I do all the three things, but it didn’t, a lot of the core motivation and the core fears of the three and the emotional suppression did not resonate at all. It was like there’s something not right about this. But for years said I was a three. Then I learned about subtypes and I learned I’m a social two. So all the core motivations and core fears of a two completely line up for me. Then when I started learning about the social dominant instinct that all made a ton of, it checked so many boxes and the social two is mistyped as the three a lot. So it’s, we really, really harp on the subtype distinction because of the growth work that it sets you out on.
[CHAD] Well, let’s, and just very briefly to trace where did this even come from, we would trace it to Claudia Niurano in the early 1970s, but he didn’t do a lot with it. It was picked up on by Helen Palmer and David Daniels, that would be the first generation. But really right now, if you wanted to go find the best book on it would be by Beatrice Chestnut and Joran Pius. They are really writing on it now with the CP Enneagram community. So they really help. Also in terms of a business application setting someone who really emphasizes them is Mario Sekora. Anyway, there are, so when we really think about the Enneagram, it’s like there’s 27 types. We don’t want to over-complicate it too soon, but they’re very helpful to really specifically know the subtype as well.

I think I said I’m a one to one four. So for a while, as well, we knew that I was a four, but I also had these intense energies and this almost like I was a challenger, like I was maybe an eight and we looked at eight and we’re like, no, you’re definitely not the body type. You’re definitely this, but then, oh, apparently with the one to one type, there’s a lot of competition, there’s a lot of broadcasting, there’s a lot of intensity. So then we began to see, oh, you’re this kind of four.
[JOE] Yes, so when you just say those three subtypes to me, I think social leads for me. I mean, I’ll be hanging with friends and then instead of like go to bed, I’ll be like who can I talk to on the phone? I mean, is that the thing that it’s like, you’re just more social or are there other questions that I would want to analyze before figuring out my subtype?
[CHAD] There are others.
[SHELLEY] Well, let me just mention really quickly, Chad’s talking about the one-to-one or sexual instinct, that there’s this intensity, this dominant instinct they broadcast a lot. They’re like intimacy and intensity with one person. So that’s that undercurrent of energy. The social which I am we do a lot of herd instinct. So we’re oriented to the group, who’s in, who’s out. Am I in, am I out? Inclusivity, exclusivity. So we’re just really hardwired to, and again, it’s unconscious, like, I’m not aware that I’m doing this, but my antenna are always up in trying to understand the herd, the group, the tribe. Then the self preservation instinct is what it sounds like. Like we’re very, self preservations are oriented to how do I take care of myself, my needs? A lot of times that’s through food management, sleep management, time management —
[CHAD] Keeping your pantry full during the pandemic.
[SHELLEY] Resource management.
[JOE] You were the toilet paper people.
[SHELLEY] That’s right. The toilet paper people. We might run out of here. So it’s just an unconscious orientation to are my needs getting met and if my needs are getting met, then I can actually go out and not only survive, but thrive in relationships and in the world.
[CHAD] Let’s just do one, let’s take this just one tiny bit further step and just complicate the pool a tiny bit more and just see where it goes. For each of the types and the subtypes there is actually, and I think this is an interesting theory and I really do buy into it. It is that there is a counter type for each type. That means that within our type structures, there is this instinctual pattern that may slightly run against the grain of what you would think would be characteristic of a given type.
[SHELLEY] This is often why two people can be the exact same type and look very different.
[CHAD] I like that you mentioned that.
[SHELLEY] It’s usually because one, like somebody is a counter type does not stereotypically look like that type. So self preservation three is the counter type. They don’t look like what you would normally think of a three. We think of achievers and performers and they’re out there getting accolades and doing all these things in the world and they’re successful and they’re oriented toward impression. Self-preservation threes are heads down —
[CHAD] Get it done.
[SHELLEY] Workaholics. They don’t want any praise or pressure. They just want to do a good job because they’re oriented toward preserving themselves, their resources. So they just stay locked and loaded into their work.
[JOE] Sort of reminds me of in the book, the First Born Advantage, looking at the research around firstborns, how some are those classic firstborns that are leaders and motivators and telling everybody what to do. Then other ones are the people pleasers, the mascots, the ones that just like are the glue. So I’m just thinking about all those different ways that we help people figure out themselves more.
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[JOE SANOK] I want to know, so we’ve only got probably 10 minutes or so left and I really want to make sure we dive into, when people know their types, they know their subtypes, they know all these different ways to classify, you take people past that. What do you do when after someone knows their type understands it, what’s that work look like? What’s that work look like?
[SHELLEY] We spend a lot of time helping people, one educating them on what any of this even means, because it is a very sophisticated system. Even to talk about these terms, like, it’s really what does it mean to have a passion of self deceit? What’s that mean? So we do a lot of that, but really helping people hone in and spend considerable time, really reflecting and understanding their subtype. So we do all the typical things. We have a pretty comprehensive test. We do a typing interview with people and we know what we’re listening for to help people understand what their subtype is. So I want to know what their dominant type is and that dominant instinct.

From that place. hat’s really where the magic happens. Once we know their subtype, there is a very specific laid out growth path for 27 subtypes. That’s where the coaching really the coaching, the training, all the work we do is really on, okay, if I’m a social two, or if I’m a self-press nine, or if I’m a sexual six, what does that mean? How do I grow in my personality? That’s what the Enneagram’s designed for. We see so many people right now that type themselves, and that’s the end point. To us, that’s the beginning point because the whole point of the tool is to grow you out of your personality box.
[CHAD] I think that a lot of the early pioneers over the past three or four decades here with the Enneagram are, they’re pleased that there is so much growing popularity with the Enneagram, but they are, you’ll hear them refrain the warnings of this isn’t just a typing system. There is so much goodness that can come from your growth with the Enneagram, but it can also be dangerous, especially what we have gotten little glimmers of here and there is if someone does, I guess the term is spiritual bypass or psychological bypass, or you’re not growing in tandem.

I think I’ll just say one of the brilliant things I think in the early seventies that we really hadn’t really recognized very much was when Joran Hill was saying that it’s your psychological growth that does go hand in hand with your spiritual growth. It was like, that was pretty innovative at the time. Now we, I guess, take it for granted, but I think that it’s important, not just to, you don’t want to just see someone show off knowledgeably with, maybe they’ve done a lot of maybe some psychological or knowledge intellectual work, but they’re not connecting that to the spiritual part.
[SHELLEY] Joe, do you want me to give an example of maybe how we would work with someone?
[CHAD] Yes, that’d be awesome.
[SHELLEY] Okay. Because I think examples are helpful, because this can be abstract. So let’s just take a social nine. So that is the dominant instinct of the type nine, is the counter type and so social nines, they actually look, they mistype a lot as threes because they’re workaholics.
[CHAD] We think that Obama was probably a social nine.
[SHELLEY] Yes. There’s people that think he was a social nine. They get busy, real busy working in service to the group but the motivation underneath that is to maintain connections. That’s harmony, connections, to stay. I’m going to people-please, I’m going to avoid conflict. It’s all for inner harmony but what happens with the social nine is they do that with everybody in the group. So they get really, really worn down and tired and exhausted because they’re trying to maintain these connections. So the passion for type nine is sloth. So it’s not like a sloth like we think of a sloth, slow, they’re actually doing a lot of work except for themselves. They don’t put to themselves, they fall asleep to themselves. So nines are already doing a lot of work for other people. Social nines do it on like hyperdrive. The growth for social nine would be very different than say like a self preservation nine, which is a different growth path. So social nines, it is a lot about disconnecting. I call it umbilical cord cutting, like really —
[JOE] The way we do it in Slow Down School, like they should come to Slow Down School, you’re saying?
[SHELLEY] Yes, that’s right and really getting in touch with their core instinct. So not intuition, but instinct. Like type nine’s bodies communicate to them. They’ve fallen asleep to it and so the work of this subtype is really getting back in touch with their instincts. I do a lot of body work with nines around this, like where do you feel the no in your body? Then getting them to pull that up and say it, say it to the tribe, say it to whoever you need to set that boundary with or locate yourself, big S, self. So that’s a lot of in coaching and then out in the world these are the things that we give people things to practice and like really going against is what nines need to be doing, especially social nines. They need a lot of support for that because that’s really very, very difficult for them to do.
[JOE] Well, well, I want to hear, before we wrap up, I do want to hear a little bit about you guys have launched your Big Self School. Share a little bit about what that looks like. Then I’ll do my final question and we’ll bid you do.
[CHAD] Well, thanks. We’ve iterated on a lot of things, but lately we’re hammering down on coaching and a few retreats, some group coaching —
[SHELLEY] And quite a bit of team consulting. There’s a lot of interest, especially around the Enneagram with teams right now. I think there’s a lot of transitions happening in organizations and they need help. So I think for all the therapists listening there’s such an opportunity to bring mental health, growth, even like CBT, things that we do inside of the consultation room organizations are just clamoring for this right now because of the last two years and how the world has shaped up. So that’s a lot of what we are focused on right now is working with leaders, executives, startups, teams, doing some culture consulting. But yes, the vision for Big Self School is to really be even beyond that though. I hope in five years we have a facility and a school and curriculum that touches everyone, not just executives and leaders in those positions, but that anybody can come and learn about the mental health needs, these wellness needs that we all have that many of us learn. I didn’t learn some of this stuff until I was getting my degree in clinical psychology. I was like, everybody should know this
[CHAD] Right.
[SHELLEY] Why are we teaching everybody all of this?
[CHAD] I guess I’ll also add here with all of, part of the reward of doing this is that we are actually, we’re really invested in continuing to work on ourselves. Maybe that’s almost the danger of like, if you’re not actually working on yourself, but you’re facilitating the Enneagram, it’s going to show. We are constantly in training and working on ourselves, working on our reactivity and just trying to be more, as the terminology would say is in essence and less in personality as we’re trying to serve others. By the way, this is, we are just now in downtown Chattanooga in our very first building. So we’re excited to get out of the house
[SHELLEY] Finally.
[JOE] That’s awesome. So the last question I always ask, and I’ll have Shelley go first is if every private practitioner in the world were listening right now, what would you want him to know
[SHELLEY] How important they are to the consciousness of the evolving consciousness of this world? I am them. My Ted talk that I didn’t Barcelona a long time ago was about my process of feeling like a caged bird, I think, feeling devalued or maybe I wanted to impact people on a bigger level and then that process for me, and how it’s coming full circle to me being so fulfilled as a coach who’s doing one on one work with so many people, that I get to be this support role for people that have a ripple effect in our community, in this state, in this country. So I think that that’s what I would want to say, to be brave and take that work in ways that maybe they’re not, haven’t thought about or that surprise them because like my comment earlier, I think there’s a lot of people craving the support and the words and the wisdom that these therapists have. So to be brave and to honor that in themselves, but then to take that in unexpected places.
[JOE] So awesome. Chad, what about you? How you going to follow that up?
[CHAD] Exactly. I don’t know how I would follow that up. I would say maybe similar to what I just finished saying about the idea of be doing your own work, but it’s, if you’re like doing team facilitating and you feel anxiety, it’s okay. We, as practitioners are not robots and the people that we’re serving are not robots. It’s not going to be the same every time and it’s okay to not have all the answers and it’s okay to still be doing your own work even as you’re leading others.
[JOE] So awesome. Well, tell us a little bit about, you have this values inventory you’re offering to our audience called Seven Soul Needs you must meet to avoid burnout. Tell us a little bit about that and how people can grab that.
[SHELLEY] So if you are, one of the exercises we do a lot with people is identifying core values and it’s three main core values that you want to operationalize in your life. So if you go to, then that will lead you to a place where you can download that and check out our website as you’re there and see what we’re all about.
[CHAD] By the way, and knowing just some of your characteristics of some of your values or what characterizes you is a very good stepping stone towards even knowing what your number is. We don’t recommend taking a test. There are definitely deeper and more informative ways to do it but basically by understanding your values, that alone is a good stepping point.
[JOE] Well, Chad and Shelley, thank you so much for being on the Practice of the Practice podcast.
[SHELLEY] Thank you, Joe, for having us.
[CHAD] No, it’s our honor, Joe. Thanks so much, man. You do a great job. We love your podcast.
[JOE] Ah, thanks so much. We’ll talk soon.
[JOE] I just love when people go beyond their training. We’re trained as therapists, psychologists, social workers but more and more, we’re seeing that the world needs these skills beyond the couch. It’s not just in our offices. And there’s nothing wrong with doing the one-on-one work if you love that. That’s just what you want to do. That’s totally fine. But for a lot of us, we think about multiple streams of income, multiple streams of impact, really figuring out how we can change the world for the better and find a different path than maybe we were taught in grad school. So hopefully this inspired you to think differently, also to see that there’s so many different paths out there and also to give you some new tools, some new ways of thinking about yourself and the Enneagram and other things.

I did mention in there Slow Down School. So Slow Down School tickets are now on sale. Slow Down School is happening the last week of July. What I love about it, especially during a pandemic is that you’re going to have your own room. We do most of what we do outside. The first couple days we go for hikes, we bring in a massage therapist and yoga teacher and do that all socially distanced. We’re going to have people test before they come. We have an executive chef who partners with local farmers. We actually had one lady who was on the keto diet that stayed in ketosis all week and another person that’s vegan, who said it was some of the best vegan food she’d ever had. So, I mean, if we can make both sides of the aisle happy what can’t we do?

Then we hang out on the beach, skip stones for a couple days. Then Wednesday, Thursday, and Friday, just run full tilt towards your business. I mean, the amount of ideas, businesses, private practices that have just exploded from Slow Down School, it is an event, you want to be around these people. They’re people that are movers and shakers in our industry. So you can sign up over Everything’s included for the price except for your airfare. So you’re fly into Traverse City, we pick you up in a big yellow school bus, take you out to stay right on the water there. It’s going to be an amazing time. So, you can read more about it. You can sign up there. If you want to do a call with me to see if it’s a fit, then we can schedule that through that website also.

As well, today’s podcast sponsor is Therapy Notes. Therapy Notes is the best electronic health records out there. They have such amazing customer service. They’re able to help you transition from your current EHR to upgrade to the best one that’s out there. As well, you have your teletherapy right there. You don’t have to have a Zoom Pro account or worry about HIPAA compliance or use Skype and not be following HIPAA. It’s all within Therapy Notes. So try that out and use promo code [JOE] at checkout so that they know that you came from us. That’s how they know it works. That’s how they track it. You get some extra months for free as a result of using that code.

Thank you so much for letting me into your ears and into your brain. Have a great day. Talk to you soon.

Special thanks to the band Silence is Sexy for your intro music. We really like it. This podcast is designed to provide accurate and authoritative information in regard to the subject matter covered. This is given with the understanding that neither the host, the publisher, or the guests are rendering legal, accounting, clinical, or other professional information. If you want a professional, you should find one.

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