Helpful Parenting Tips for Enneagram Type 1: Reformer Moms
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Helpful Parenting Tips for Enneagram Type 1: Reformer Moms

Enneagram Type 1 moms are perfectionists who seek goodness. Learn how Reformer Moms can use their traits to be the best moms they can be.

Updated April 22, 2024

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Last month we explored the Enneagram types and how they related to being a mom. Knowing your Enneagram type can be beneficial as a mom. Knowing who you are and how you act and react to life in stressful or joyful situations can add valuable insight into how you parent—growing yourself as a person and as a mom is always a good idea! In this article, I will dive deeper into the world of Enneagram Type 1 moms. These Reformer Moms are the perfectionists of the group and work hard at seeking justice and correctness in their lives. Here are some ways Reformer Moms can use their unique personalities to become the best versions of themselves.

Enneagram Type 1—Reformer Moms

Type 1s are usually idealistic, perfectionistic, and self-controlled. They are often primarily concerned with being responsible and morally upright. They fear being evil or corrupt. Here are some helpful parenting tips for enneagram type 1s:

1. Accept that you can be good without being perfect.

“And now that you don’t have to be perfect, you can be good.” – 0ne of my favorite quotes of all time is from author John Steinbeck’s novel, East of Eden

Enneagram 1s are the ultimate perfectionists. As a parent who is an Enneagram type 1, let go of the relentless pursuit of perfection. Give your kids (and yourself) a whole lot of grace and plenty of space to make mistakes. Humanity is not perfect. Period. End of story. But we, as imperfect humans, can be good in word and deed. We can be kind, generous, and loving to ourselves and others, especially our children. Stop trying to be perfect. Embrace being good instead.

2. Get comfortable with failure.

“Only those who fail greatly can ever achieve greatly.” – Former U.S. Attorney General and Senator Robert F. Kennedy

Enneagram 1s tend to be incredibly organized but not exceptionally flexible. As a parent who is an Enneagram type 1, remember that we all learn best through our failures, not our successes. If everything humans did always went well, we would never have any opportunities to mature into better humans. As scary as it can be, failure is a great gift. It’s an essential and healthy part of daily life on this imperfect earth. Struggles build character and help us grow in patience, endurance, faith, and hope. Decide that failure is your new best friend from now on.

3. Take responsibility for your own mistakes.

“Nobody can make you feel inferior without your consent.” – Former First Lady and activist Eleanor Roosevelt

As perfectionists, Enneagram 1s typically struggle with making mistakes. Be humble and transparent. Always ask your kids for forgiveness if and when you mess up. If you practice what you preach, it will help your children immensely to do the same. Clean up your messes. Learn from them. Move forward. Remember, your kids are watching you to see how you react when you fail. They will follow your lead.

4. Encourage your kids to make mistakes.

“A person who never made a mistake never tried anything new.” – Albert Einstein

Enneagram 1s, when you stop being afraid to make mistakes, your kids will quickly take notice. After all, our actions speak louder than our words, especially when it comes to parenting. Teach your kids that it’s okay to make messes as long as we take ownership of them, clean them up afterward, and then learn from them, so we don’t repeat them. Show them that it’s not about how we fall but how we get back up and keep going with strength and courage.

5. Take breaks for self-care.

“To be a good parent, you need to take care of yourself so that you can have the physical and emotional energy to take care of your family.” – Former First Lady and author Michelle Obama

Enneagram 1s often spend a lot of their time and mental energy planning. Set aside time to do things you enjoy just for fun. Watch a funny movie. Read a novel. Rekindle a creative hobby you loved as a child, such as drawing, painting, sewing, knitting, or gardening. Spend time with friends, even if it’s just a regular video chat. Allow yourself to rest from constantly preparing and improving, even if you need to schedule these necessary brain breaks.

6. Practice positive self-talk.

“Talk to yourself like you would to someone you love.” – Author, speaker, podcast host, social worker, shame researcher, and University of Houston professor Brené Brown, Ph.D.

Enneagram 1s tend to be highly self-critical. Make it a habit to give yourself a pep talk each morning with positive affirmations. You can even do this together with your kids. Look in the mirror at a set time every day, and tell yourself things like, “No one is perfect, including me,” “I will forgive myself and others for making mistakes,” “Failure is how I learn,” “I can be good without being perfect,” and “I choose to be kind and generous and loving to myself and others.” Say each statement out loud, and mean it.

Next, read about Enneagram Type 2—The Helper Moms.

If you don’t know your Enneagram type yet and want to find out, it’s as easy as taking a test online here. You can read through The Enneagram Institute’s descriptions of the nine types here. There is also a free enneagram-type test available through Your Enneagram Coach here.

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  • Author

Lauren Flake is a wife, mom to two girls, watercolor artist, seventh-generation Texan, and early-onset Alzheimer's daughter. She is the author and co-illustrator of two award-winning children's books for grieving… Read more

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