Back on This Side of the Looking Glass

Do any of you remember the alternate reality episode of Friends (“The One Where It Could Have Been“)? What if Monica never lost weight, what if Joey never got fired from Days of Our Lives, what if Rachel hadn’t left her cheating fiance at the altar?

The season premiere of LOST is coming up, with rumors of alternate realities floating in the blogosphere.

And I’ve been thinking lately about how the last six months to a year, I’ve felt like I’m living as an alternate reality version of myself.

If you asked any of my friends which Friend I most remind them of, I’m pretty sure they’d go with Phoebe.

Since I was a kid, I’ve had this idea of myself in my head that looks a lot like the flaky, creative, coffeehouse singer/massage therapist version of Phoebe. I spent most of last year being more like the high-strung, Type-A, Merrill Lynch version of Phoebe.

Neither one really fits.

So I have to find a new alternate reality.

In enneagram terms, I went from Four (which is my type), to a weird mix of One (my security point) and Three (one of my “wings”).

If you’re not familiar with the enneagram, all this talk of “security points” and “wings” and numbers may not make much sense.  But learning about my personality type through the enneagram, and my temperament through Myers-Briggs, has been really helpful for me in the past.  With all the wrestling I’ve been doing lately concerning my identity, I’m going to be pulling out all the tools I have available.

I’m probably going to document some of it here, in the event others might find it helpful.

The layman’s version?  Under stress, especially under extreme stress, our personalities can change.  Our energy moves in a different direction–probably as an instinct that what comes naturally isn’t working.  My energy moved from a place of creativity and unique perspective (Four) to one focused on doing things right and keeping all the balls in the air (One), and I leaned a little into an energy that influences me to pursue performance and recognition (Three).

Those who know all the various things going on in my life at that time probably can understand this shift.

But it’s time to shift back to my natural energy, and to work on moving that energy in a healthier direction.  Everyone knows creative, original people who are flaky divas and other creative people who are funny and balanced and a joy to be around.  It’s two different ends of the same spectrum.

I need to head to a better end of my particular spectrum.

But it was interesting going Through the Looking Glass for a bit and seeing what another version of me might look like.

thumbnail img courtesy asifthebes on sxc

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