We can get a rough measure of your ‘projected’ sanity to the outside world by the words you use when speaking freely to friends and family. Of course, you might keep some of your self-image hidden, so the words themselves are not necessarily the important thing - so a computer program cannot analyze your words to determine your sanity. It is your intention behind the words. For example, “I’m feeling sick” today could be an emotion - maybe you are trying to convey that you are depressed because you feel so bad. Or it could be a manipulation - you might want the person to feel sorry for your. Or it could be logic - giving a reason why you didn’t go to work. Or it could be empowerment - you might want someone to go away and leave you alone. So it is the intention behind the words that is important. And because it is your ‘projected’ sanity to the outside world this is only a rough measure. After all, you might have a family that discourages you from talking about emotions so you are in the habit of acting slighty ‘insane’ around them and not talking about or feeling emotions like you want to (and if it is really severe then you just wouldn’t include those in your test below, as you know they would be way off before you start).

Measure your sanity for this week

Take a look at all your emails and texts to friends and family in the last week. Look at every sentence you wrote and decide if it was mostly manipulative, empowering, logical, or emotional and click the appropriate “+” button in the widget below. If the words don’t really convey one of those on their own, try to think about how you were thinking/feeling/motivated internally when you wrote them. Let’s define our terms:

Manipulation - any time you try to get someone to do something. This could be a command, or a request, or getting someone to feel sorry for you, or lying, or ignoring them hoping they will respond, or … well you probably know lots of other methods of manipulation. There are lots of subtle ones:

If you know your Enneagram Type this is much easier because you probably have a go-to subtle manipulation technique that you use:

1) By correcting others - by insisting that others share their standards

2) By finding out others’ needs and desires - thus creating dependencies

3) By charming others - and by adopting whatever image will ‘work’

4) By being temperamental - and making others ‘walk on eggshells’

5) By staying preoccupied - and detaching emotionally from others

6) By complaining - and by testing others’ commitments to them

7) By distracting others - and by insisting others meet their demands

8) By dominating others - and by demanding that others do as they say

9) By ‘checking out’ - and by passively-aggressively resisting others

Empowerment - any time you give someone their own space (without manipulation in mind) or do something for them. Doing something for them includes trying to give them something, giving them information, trying to make them feel good, etc. as long as you are not doing it manipulatively, consciously trying to get something in return.

Emotions - well, we all know what emotions are. But you don’t necessarily have to use an emotional word like “sad” or “happy.” If you were trying to convey your emotion to someone else with that sentence then include it, even if it doesn’t have a clear emotion word in it.

Logic - just stick everything leftover under logic. (logical of me, right?)

Your mouse will be off by a certain amount while you are drawing, in both an amount and a direction, indicating your sanity level and direction (according to the diagrams above). For example, if you are higher in manipulation than empowerment and higher in emotion than logic, your mouse pointer will be to the upper-right of the actual pen mark. This may be a very small difference, hard to see, if you were well-balanced this week.

Here’s my own graph from my personal story, just to remind you what the quadrants mean:

Choose Colour