Book Review — Forty Days On Being a Five by Morgan Harper Nichols

Forty Days On Being a Five by Morgan Harper Nichols is part of the IVP Book series, Enneagram Daily Reflections. I received a review copy from IVP Books.

I am not an Enneagram enthusiast. The learning I have done in this area has come from my wife and I find it helpful in communicating to others who are truly students of the Enneagram. It has been helpful in communicating to those who really know the Enneagram because I can say, “I’m a 5” and they generally nod in a knowing fashion and say something like, “Oh! That makes sense!” Or, “I didn’t have you pegged there.”

Seeing this series I requested the devotional on being a five to further my insight. That’s me… being a Five.

There are, of course, descriptions on being a five that make sense to me and fit well, just as there are descriptions that don’t fit me at all.

“For as long as I can remember, I have felt most comfortable as a wallflower” (p. 5) fits me perfectly. Other descriptions such as “I felt different from others, especially when it came to social situations. As a result, I would compare myself to others and conclude that my way of being in the world was ‘wrong’ and there was in fact something wrong with me” is NOT me at all.

The devotional is helpful because it gives very brief daily thoughts where I can ruminate and reflect. I have the opportunity to evaluate and learn more. I love the pursuit of knowledge. That really is being a Five and I fully embrace it.

The daily thoughts are useful and help me navigate a life where it is far more tempting to “live in my head” and just think all day. There are strengths in being a five and this book highlights those strengths. There are also pitfalls and this book gives gentle warnings in that direction as well.

The little book is well worth my time as a Five. I am not sure I would read the entire series.

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