An Experiment in Quitting --or-- A Three's Nightmare
I have been pretty obsessed with the Enneagram as of late. I can’t stop listening to podcasts about it, reading articles, and trying to analyze folks around me to figure out their number. I have always been a huge fan of personality tests, quizzes, and assessments. I love learning about myself and others and putting this kind of knowledge to use in my relationships. I have to say, that I’ve never found a personality assessment that hit the nail on the head so accurately as the Enneagram has.
I’m pretty positive that I am a 3, wing 2. This type is often called “The Achiever” and is characterized by performance, ambition, energy, and self-consciousness. Struggles of a Three can include:
“Highly concerned with their performance, doing their job well, constantly driving self to achieve goals as if self-worth depends on it. Terrified of failure. Compare self with others in search for status and success. Become careerists, social climbers, invested in exclusivity and being the ‘best.’”
- The Enneagram Institute
I am slowly re-discovering that I have spent my whole life defining who I am by what I do. Performance, achievement, accolades, awards, recognition, praise--these are all words that I love and crave. Fail, quit, lose, stop, unfollow--these are words that I hate and am afraid of. Because if I don’t perform, and perform well, then I don’t feel valuable. And this, this is why I hate the thought of publishing this blog post.
THE TRAMCAST will not be continuing on for season two.
For those of you who don’t know, John and I started a podcast at the beginning of this year. THE TRAMCAST has been a super fun labor of love for John and I. It’s also been hard at times. It’s a lot of work to produce music, figure out how to edit audio so that it sounds good coming out of any speaker, come up with content to talk about, and record our voices into two microphones, without fighting, on a regular basis! I don’t think we ever realized how much work having a podcast would be. That being said, producing THE TRAMCAST has been some of the most satisfying, creative work I’ve ever done. And to be able to do all of this with my best friend, what a fun adventure!
So, why stop? Why quit, oh Three?
Because I am tired.
I am tired of having little to no margin in my day to day life. I’m tired of not having time to read all of the books that I want to read. I’m tired of the pressure to perform. I’m tired of the Facebook algorithm that reminds me that “THE TRAMCAST didn’t get any new likes this week..."
I’m tired of my own excuses that I don’t have time to exercise or meal prep. I’m tired of looking for material for the show. I’m tired of checking for how many likes the picture got. I’m tired of the endless scrolling and comparison.
I love everything that we set out for THE TRAMCAST to be. A place for a husband and wife to talk about life, faith, and marriage. I love the engagement we received from our listeners. Hearing that we encouraged folks or inspired conversations or made someone laugh, was everything that this Three craves and loves.
One major thing that I have taken away from my Enneagram learnings lately is that the best part of you is often the worst part of you, my strength can also be a huge weakness or temptation. And so, for this season of my life, I want to resist the temptation to perform, not because having a podcast is bad, but because I want to embrace the truth of not being defined by what I do and how well I do it.
I can’t say for sure that THE TRAMCAST will never be again. Perhaps there will be a time in the future when we dust off the microphones and open up GarageBand again. And I want you all to know that John has been the most supportive of all of this. I’m pretty sure that he’s a 7 wing 6, so although I know he is disappointed to not be revving up for a TRAMCAST season 2, he’s happy to just be alive and pursue the next adventure. We have come to this decision together, bittersweetly; sad to say goodbye for now but at peace knowing that our time and minds are freed up for new adventures.
I will close this post by saying that I choose to have no regrets. As a Three I’m tempted to feel guilty and ashamed for quitting on THE TRAMCAST. But I have to constantly remind myself that IT’S A PODCAST. I’m not quitting on my marriage or my full-time work or a friendship, I’m quitting making a podcast that maybe a hundred people listened to. I have to remind myself that it’s not the end of the world, that you all will keep on living and doing well without my voice in your earbuds. I choose to believe that we will all be OK and that I am not defined by whether or not THE TRAMCAST has current episodes.
Ferial loves the Enneagram
RIP THE TRAMCAST