I am successful

Enneagram Type Three

Type Three

Performer / Achiever

People of Enneatype THREE are ambitious achievers, motivated by a desire to accomplish and succeed at whatever they attempt. Accomplishment requires drive, and Threes have it in spades – extending themselves with efficiency, competency, and ubiquitous to-do lists.

Threes are natural leaders and encouragers: they want the very best for themselves and usually consider it important to be aspirational for others. They set an example of poised productivity and are often admired for their cheerful tenacity.

Threes spend much of their energy focusing on their image and are concerned with how they (and their achievements) appear to others. This pervasive drive to succeed in the eyes of others can result in a tendency to push aside time-consuming feelings resulting in a disconnect with self and others.

At Their Best:

Energetic, confident, motivating, efficient, action-oriented, competent, and successful.

When Struggling:

Overly competitive, opportunistic, image-driven, impatient, and disconnected from true feelings.

What Type Threes say about themselves:

  • My accomplishments make me who I am.
  • I like to be seen as well-organized and efficient.
  • I am confident that I can achieve what I set out to do.
  • Appearances are important, and I can assume whatever image will help me to succeed.
  • I am pretty good at covering up my insecurities; I try to present myself in the best possible light.
  • I want to excel at whatever I am doing; if I sense that I might not be good at something, I usually don’t bother with it.
  • I’m good at reading people and figuring out how to get them to like me.
  • I can have a bit of a workaholic streak.
  • It can be hard to just sit and relax; I feel antsy to be productive.
  • Sometimes feelings get in the way of what I’m trying to accomplish, so I shove them aside for another time.
  • It bothers me when people don’t recognize my efforts and achievements.

We each feel that we must show up in a certain way in the world in order to deserve love.

These are internal messages that resonate with Threes:

BASIC FEAR: Of being worthless.

BASIC DESIRE: To feel valuable and worthwhile

BASIC PROPOSITION: “You gain love, recognition and acceptance through performance, doing and success.”

AVOIDANCE: Failure, and uncomfortable feelings that slow down their pace.

FOCUS of ATTENTION: Tasks, goals and recognition for accomplishments.

  • Positive aspect: The ability to get things done in an efficient and accomplished way.
  • Negative aspect: The tendency to overwork in the search for success, which can result in neglecting rest & relationships.


Strategies For Growth:

  • Take a pause and observe your inner habits with as little judgment as possible. Ask yourself how you have been adjusting to others and reaching for recognition. Remind yourself that you are loved for who you are rather than what you do.
  • It is essential to be honest with yourself about genuine feelings and needs. Be intentional about taking breaks so that you don’t exhaust yourself.

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