Enneagram 3 Wings
3w2: The 3w2 Type is a Three that also resembles a Type Two in many ways. These Threes are outgoing, friendly and enjoy work that serves others. They enjoy entertaining and are gurus at making and maintaining strong social bonds. This type thrives in careers such as advertising, event planning, broadcasting, entertainment and entrepreneurship.
3w4: The 3w4 Type is a Three that shares many qualities of the Type Four. This type tends to be more introverted, serious and focused on work rather than social engagements and relationships. Three wing Fours are consistently working toward personal growth and professional success. This type can often be found in careers like law, marketing, business, politics and finance.
Core Values of Enneagram 3s
- Recognition, accolades and status are the pinnacle of the Achiever’s lifestyle.
- Threes are goal-driven, equipped with the Type A mentality and a relentless drive for self-improvement.
- Productivity and achievement take the cake as the Achievers’ core values.
- Getting things done is more important than too much planning and “wasted” time spent daydreaming.
How to Recognize an Enneagram 3
With refined tastes and an impressive drive to accomplish more, Achievers are socially adept conversationalists with a talent for beating deadlines and looking crazy-good while doing so.
They’re poised and intuitively know what to say during any situation. They can make friends with just about anyone. Achievers may have top-notch Instagram feeds, a seemingly ‘perfect’ life, and the charm to prove it.
Males and females often portray an image which aligns very strongly to their gender identity (i.e. masculine or feminine).
When asked about their five-year plan or career goals, they typically have a well-thought-out mental map of where they want to be.
Healthy vs. Unhealthy Enneagram 3s
When they are healthy, Threes are driven, kind and willing to lend a helping hand. They can push organizations to new, uncharted territories with talent and ease. With a natural charisma and knack for recognizing the potential for their brilliant ideas, Achievers succeed in the workplace and beyond. They’re highly adaptable and can push themselves to inspire others and successfully reap the fruits of their labor and creativity. With a witty sense of humor and goofy side, they learn to take life with ease and prioritize their work-life balance. They’re organized, on top of their game and willing to take constructive feedback.
When they are average, Threes are busybodies, searching for new goals to accomplish and flashy ways to flaunt their expertise. They’re almost always on the go with new projects to finish and people to collaborate with. The looming fear of failure propels them to keep up their momentum and continue working hard. Social media becomes a place for constant comparison and expression, which can lead to excessive self-promotional content or arrogance. Achievers are dead-set on being first place in whatever they put their minds and hearts to—whether that’s a career goal or project.
When they are unhealthy, Threes become extremely jealous and view every interaction in terms of a competition and may be prone to one-upping others. They seek approval and reassurance from others. When this is not fulfilled, they begin to despair and shut down. The once driven go-getter becomes lazy, unfulfilled and prone to developing low self-esteem. Eventually, an Achiever may choose to reject their sense of self and may develop intense mood swings. Many Achievers report feeling like a “hollow shell” after years of curating an image of who they’d like to be. This can lead to major shifts in their career, relationship or lifestyle. At their worst, they backstab ruthlessly and destroy others’ reputations solely for their own benefit.
Growth Tips for Enneatype 3s
- Slow down! It can be easy for a Three to get so busy that they can miss what is right in front of them or take the present moment for granted. Take time to relax and appreciate the moment every once in a while. (Yes, that includes turning off your smartphone!)
- Practice active listening to connect more deeply with other people. Threes can be so focused on how they are being perceived by other people, that they miss opportunities to connect with others more deeply. By developing active listening habits, Threes can form deeper bonds with others.
- Embrace vulnerability. Vulnerability can be scary for a Three, because it means allowing other people to see who you truly are, not just the side of you that you want them to see. However, Threes grow when they learn how to embrace vulnerability and act in ways that are more authentic to themselves.
- Examine your thoughts and feelings. Threes can get so caught up in their image and achievements that they ignore their own emotions. Take time to ask yourself how you really feel about something. Do your words and actions match up with how you feel?
- Practice mindfulness to be more present. Threes are always on-the-go. Mindfulness practices like yoga and meditation can help you slow down and focus on the present. Non-competitive, single-player games can also help Threes focus on the moment without feeling the need to “win.”
Famous Enneagram Type 3s
- Oprah Winfrey
- Tony Robbins
- Taylor Swift
- Lady Gaga
- Beyonce Knowles
- Meghan Markle
- Tom Cruise
- Arnold Schwarzenegger
- Muhammed Ali
- Kacey Musgraves
- Reese Witherspoon
- “Don Draper” (Mad Men)
- “Rachel Berry” (Glee)
- “Margaery Tyrell” (Game of Thrones)
- “Amy March” (Little Women)
- “Leslie Knope” (Parks and Rec)
3s in Relationships
Enneagram Type Threes focus on making sure they sparkle and shine for their partner. Threes focus most of their attention in relationships on creating an image of success in the eyes of others, especially their beloved partner at the beginning of a relationship.
When a Three isn’t healthy, however, or often in a later stage of a relationship, they can identify too strongly with their work and be overly focused on their “performances,” whether it be in the workroom, the bedroom or as a parent. They can erroneously believe they are what they do and believe others see them this way. This may cause them to lose touch with who they really are, causing them to be like a chameleon in the relationship, identifying only with what their partner likes. This of course makes things more likely to fizzle out quickly since the Three may not have brought their real self to the relationship.
Though Threes are very heart-oriented within the Enneagram triad in that they feel the feelings of others, they can avoid their feelings unconsciously because avoiding emotions helps them to get things done. As they let go of the frantic pace and attempt to “be” versus incessant “doing”, and as potential anxiety or depression rises because of this unfamiliar slower pacing, it’s important for a Three to find some relaxation techniques, their very own hobbies and fitness practices to balance themselves; and take care of their mental health.
If you love a Three, remember that though they show a rather tough facade, they do deeply desire a very close and loyal bond, specifically with you. This is because most of the time in the life of the Three, they either had an overabundance of nurture or their nurturing bonds were vastly lacking. In either case, they have a strong sense of lacking or need they are trying to fill to feel safe, and feel best when they know where their spouse is at all times and when their spouse is giving them strong attachment feedback.
When a Three doesn’t get their needs met from their partner, they may turn to a form of deceit to get needs met. However, when they begin to get self-care and realize they are loved no matter what they do, they do an amazing job of speaking the truth in love and leading a fine team both at home and at work.
Encourage your Three to find their “inner beloved,” remind them to speak the truth in love, encourage them to apologize after being harsh, and try to give them space and permission to access sad feelings for a few minutes. Remember they need to feel safe before releasing the truth and improving their intimacy and closeness with you.
Enneagram Relationship content was co-developed with marital therapist turned relationship coach Christa Hardin (MA).
Enneagram 3 Relationship Compatibility by Partner Type
- Type Threes with Type Ones: Tend to be both assertive and responsible. Get the Type 3 & Type 1 couple pairing guide.
- Type Threes with Type Twos: Tend to be both goal-focused and people oriented. Get the Type 3 & Type 2 couple pairing guide.
- Type Threes with Type Threes: Tend to be both assertive and goal-focused. Get the Type 3 & Type 3 couple pairing guide.
- Type Threes with Type Fours: Tend to be both productive and passionate. Get the Type 3 & Type 4 couple pairing guide.
- Type Threes with Type Fives: Tend to be both project-driven and focused. Get the Type 3 & Type 5 couple pairing guide.
- Type Threes with Type Sixes: Tend to be both planning-driven and loyal. Get the Type 3 & Type 6 couple pairing guide.
- Type Threes with Type Sevens: Tend to be both goal-driven and passionate. Get the Type 3 & Type 7 couple pairing guide.
- Type Threes with Type Eights: Tend to be both driven and strong. Get the Type 3 & Type 8 couple pairing guide.
- Type Threes with Type Nines: Tend to be both project-oriented and fun-loving. Get the Type 3 & Type 9 couple pairing guide.