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Thread: Dislike of Enneagram type 3

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    Default Dislike of Enneagram type 3

    I know this isn't really an enneagram focused board (but I can't handle the layout of the enneagram institute discussion board), but from the comments I've read generally, 3s are seen as pretty unpalatable human beings.

    Reading the 'who is your enneagram dual' thread, 7s and 8s seemed to very popular types. 4s, 6s, 9s and 2s also get a look in. Then, of course, the board explodes into another Phaedrus-duel-to-the-death and everything goes a bit off course. 1s are also pretty unpopular, but since I'm not a 1 and am a 3, I thought I'd focus the thread on something I cared more about.

    What makes you dislike (if hate is too strong) the E3?

    Is it their emotional disconnect? Their ruthless self-obsession? Their narcissistic tendencies? I'm curious. And maybe I'll be a 'typical' 3, revel in negative feedback, hurt, and then use it to refine my self-image (or my image, or my self, or whatever). I actually have some problems reconciling being an IEE and a 3w4 sometimes, but I'm so certain I'm both. Do 3s somehow seem less than human? Less authentic, more robotic and thus sub-human/in-human? I sometimes get that impression...
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    I neither dislike nor do I hate 3s any more than I do other enneatypes; but what does put me off about them is the need for validation from others; as in, what you've achieved or not is dependent on the recognition by others, or lack thereof. I see that as being a bit of a lightweight.
    Last edited by Expat; 08-20-2008 at 02:44 PM.
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    Quote Originally Posted by implied
    gah you're like the shittiest ENTj ever!

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    All Threes are untrustworthy liars

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    Quote Originally Posted by Expat View Post
    I neither dislike nor do I hate 3s any more than I do other enneatypes; but what does put me off about them is the need for validation from others; as in, what you've achieved or not is dependent on the recognition by others, or lack thereof. I see that as being a bit of a lightweight.
    Ah, I can see that.

    I have no intention to suck up right now, but it's something I've admired in 8w9s specifically since my BF is one: the conviction in their chosen course of action. Given that she's my bedrock of support, she's never said anything disparaging to me, but I think its hard for her (and maybe 8s generally) to understand the degree of second-guessing that goes on in my head. External recognition is at least concrete and easily located and locked down.

    The lack of internal compass is something that the Enneagram doesn't actually solve for 3s, it seems to me. At the higher levels and integrating to 6, the 3 simply replaces their self-concern with a genuine concern for others; ties themselves to communal interests instead of their own. To me, becoming 'self-accepting' isn't the same thing as locating an internal sense of surety, so I guess that certainty in one's self is something outside of the 3s experience, whether healthy or not.

    Quote Originally Posted by machintruc View Post
    All Threes are untrustworthy liars
    Ah, of course!
    Last edited by unefille; 08-20-2008 at 03:39 PM.
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    are you a little girl?

    btw, I think I might be a three, I have to look into it further though.

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    Quote Originally Posted by Darkstar View Post
    are you a little girl?

    btw, I think I might be a three, I have to look into it further though.
    Yes. [?] I mean, I'm not little anymore... Are you referring to the name 'unefille'?
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    Quote Originally Posted by unefille View Post
    understand the degree of second-guessing that goes on in my head. External recognition is at least concrete and easily located and locked down.
    That was a very clear way of explaining it, I think. It makes sense.
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    Quote Originally Posted by implied
    gah you're like the shittiest ENTj ever!

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    ...been here longer than the fucking monarchy Ezra's Avatar
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    Allegedly, Eights are meant to despise Threes because they are not genuine, and because they go against everything the Eight stands for, which is truth and justice.

    Personally, I see the troubles Threes have had to put up with, which has definitely been enhanced by my reading about them in The Wisdom of the Enneagram. I have a lot of sympathy for them. Generally, I have one good Three friend. What I love about him is the fact that we both share a strong drive and an ambitious nature. His lies I find amusing; like when he charms girls in bars by lying about his age and pursuits. At the end of the day, I myself could never do that, but he clearly can, and I'm not going to stop him just because he wants to have a little fun with the opposite sex. When I'm around him, there's always something to do or talk about, and I really like this. He's introduced me to a lot of people, which is another admirable trait. I do think he's probably an EIE, and I've often thought about possible duality.

    The other Three in my life is my grandfather, who still manages to charm the shit out of everyone, but not with lies. He uses genuine charisma. He's a fantastic conversationalist, and he is always task-bound. This pisses my 4w5 father off, who finds his father's attitude dominating. I can generally dig it though. I don't hate my grandfather, but when he plays the shame game and sends my father or me on a guilt trip, he can become quite infuriating. I think he's an EIE as well.

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    Quote Originally Posted by Ezra View Post
    Allegedly, Eights are meant to despise Threes because they are not genuine, and because they go against everything the Eight stands for, which is truth and justice.
    That's interesting. I wonder why? I mean, I don't consciously uphold truth and justice, but the 8s I know don't seem to do so either. I suppose they do have a concrete idea of some 'rightness' they want to serve.

    I get that deceit is the sin of the 3, but as far as I've experienced it, it's always been more self-deceit, with deceit of others being incidental to that self-deception. It's almost something I can't control: the presentation of myself in the best possible light. Even when I'm trying to get people see the negative aspects of my life, I can't help it coming out in a way that makes it in fact sound grand and wonderful and not at all bad. I don't intentionally mean to mislead anyone - I do use lies strategically sometimes, but not often - but it's almost not something I can consciously control. It's almost as though on the subconscious level, I'm thinking oh god if they really knew how bad things are, they'll never look at you the same way again and this self-preservation mechanism kicks in.

    That said, I can and will lie convincingly, and without flinching, if I deem it necessary. I just try not to, as much as possible, both for pragmatic reasons (lies make life so complicated) and for principle (what I have of it).
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    Quote Originally Posted by unefille View Post
    I get that deceit is the sin of the 3, but as far as I've experienced it, it's always been more self-deceit, with deceit of others being incidental to that self-deception. It's almost something I can't control: the presentation of myself in the best possible light. Even when I'm trying to get people see the negative aspects of my life, I can't help it coming out in a way that makes it in fact sound grand and wonderful and not at all bad. I don't intentionally mean to mislead anyone - I do use lies strategically sometimes, but not often - but it's almost not something I can consciously control. It's almost as though on the subconscious level, I'm thinking oh god if they really knew how bad things are, they'll never look at you the same way again and this self-preservation mechanism kicks in.
    One question: is your natural inclination to assume that others are doing the same? Or do you think (or realize) that that's not the case?
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    Quote Originally Posted by implied
    gah you're like the shittiest ENTj ever!

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    Quote Originally Posted by Expat View Post
    One question: is your natural inclination to assume that others are doing the same? Or do you think (or realize) that that's not the case?
    No, I can recognise authenticity in other people. That's part of what actually drove me toward recognising that I was a 3. I always felt there was something off about the way I came off, compared to other people. For one thing, it was impossible for me to get into trouble. It didn't seem to matter whether I deliberately lied or not, the way I presented myself in any situation generally absolved me of fault or blame. I could also never understand people whose personalities would clash with others, since it made sense to get along with people, and thus I would and always could. I guess I was rather strategic with respect to how I presented myself, but it was never articulated in my head - all the calculations all seemed to happen at a submerged level. When 8s are openly expressing their competitiveness, I'm a little taken aback, because I find overt competitiveness unsettling and alien, yet at the same time, losing equals self-abnegation, so I have to win. I just can't always admit it to myself.

    There have always been people who I felt could detect that I wasn't being (and worse, wasn't capable of being) authentic. I honestly feel I try very hard to authentic, but being polished is something automatic and impossible to stop. I admire people who are authentic to themselves, even if it produces negative results, but I both can't be and on some level, don't want to be. Ultimately the shame within overrides the desire for authenticity. There is nevertheless a strong struggle though.

    Edited to add: Also, whilst I don't other people are all doing the same thing, adjusting themselves and being image-oriented, I also don't assume that no one out there is like me and that I'm unique. Similarly with judging other people on their outward behaviour - it's not that I assume everyone does, but rather that there is the possibility (always the possibility) that someone might be, and that's enough for me.
    Last edited by unefille; 08-23-2008 at 01:05 AM.
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    Personally I don't have anything strongly against 3s, but I don't think we could work in a relationship togheter - I don't think I could work with another aggressive-triad with the exception of another 7, perhaps.
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    Quote Originally Posted by unefille View Post
    No, I can recognise authenticity in other people. That's part of what actually drove me toward recognising that I was a 3... I could also never understand people whose personalities would clash with others, since it made sense to get along with people, and thus I would and always could.
    This is very interesting to me, since I've been involved in MANY personality clashes and feel it is certainly due to my reluctance/distaste of "going along to get along". Of course, I've had to temper my natural reactions in order to stay employed. But being a Four, it's all about the authenticity. I feel false if I'm being untrue to myself or projecting something I don't necessarily "own" as part of me.

    Quote Originally Posted by unefille View Post
    There have always been people who I felt could detect that I wasn't being (and worse, wasn't capable of being) authentic. I honestly feel I try very hard to authentic, but being polished is something automatic and impossible to stop. I admire people who are authentic to themselves, even if it produces negative results, but I both can't be and on some level, don't want to be. Ultimately the shame within overrides the desire for authenticity. There is nevertheless a strong struggle though.
    I can imagine how this internal struggle goes in a 3w4. In fact, I was desperately in love with a 3w4 once. It seemed we had so many interests in common (I think he was also probably a sx/sp) and became fast best friends very quickly. But he was also very definitely about a persona/image. While he had an admirable work ethic, the flip side was that he was often workaholic to his own detriment. He had a "life plan" that included being married at a certain age, and starting a family. When that went awry, he seemed more concerned that the plan was off-course than about his actual happiness.

    We never really "dated" officially. I doubt he thought he could handle me in that capacity. His official gf at the time was a bit of a clingy insecure mess. He was the protector.

    Ultimately, we began to argue more and more about what I saw as him not being true to himself. He got engaged and married the "wrong" person, secretly regretting his decision, but didn't want to go back on his plan and risk losing face. I confronted him, he severed our connection and never relented. I know he must have admired me, cared a great deal about me, but I think he must have found it too difficult. He had a great deal of trouble listening to his heart, I thought.

    At any rate, I certainly never hated him...

    In general, 3s bother me mostly because of what I consider a "false self". The false self is certainly charming and pleasing, but the identification with this persona leads a 3 to devalue their true feelings, true needs, and lose touch with their personal inner voice. They simply become a chameleon, aiming to please in order to attain validation. The trappings of success, the status symbols... what are they really worth??

    I suppose to some degree, 3s begin by steering away from the authentic expression of self, but after a while wind up being *unable* to determine who they really are.
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    how are you not EIE?

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    Quote Originally Posted by niffweed17 View Post
    how are you not EIE?

    i'm also rather curious. how aren't you EIE?
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    Quote Originally Posted by implied View Post
    i'm also rather curious. how aren't you EIE?
    ??? You guys think aka-kitsune is EIE?
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    Quote Originally Posted by redbaron View Post
    ??? You guys think aka-kitsune is EIE?

    i assume he was referring to unefille.
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    Quote Originally Posted by implied View Post
    i assume he was referring to unefille.
    Oh. lol sorry.
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    Quote Originally Posted by Expat View Post
    what does put me off about them is the need for validation from others; as in, what you've achieved or not is dependent on the recognition by others, or lack thereof. I see that as being a bit of a lightweight.
    In my opinion, everyone has that need, only in different ways and quantities. Maybe that's why that's not something that puts me off about them.
    “Whether we fall by ambition, blood, or lust, like diamonds we are cut with our own dust.”

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    Quote Originally Posted by niffweed17 View Post
    how are you not EIE?
    Quote Originally Posted by implied View Post
    i'm also rather curious. how aren't you EIE?
    Hm, why am I not my quasi-identical? My first reaction would be that I've never identified with Beta at all. I don't find their values abhorrent, just exhausting. Whenever I'm reading through the Beta forum, I have my eyes wide open, sort of like someone discovering a whole new world.

    I've suspected I can come off like an EIE sometimes (though machintruc thinks I'm SEE and that's very new to me), but my response (possibly a rather superficial response) is that I have to. Who is going to put someone who comes of like a typical IEE in charge of several well-funded student committees? A lot of people in positions of 'power' within the university/college structure are Beta, since they naturally tend toward hierarchies (I mean within the elected student structures). If I can't seem EIE-ish when dealing with them, why would an SLE ever nominate me for a chair position? Betas don't exactly seem to have the greatest opinion of Deltas - at best, we seem warm and fuzzy, at worst, we seem stupid and incompetent, especially IEEs. In my ideal world, I don't value Se or Ti and I would not attempt to master these functions. But I don't live in an ideal world and to succeed in this one, Se and Ti and Ni and Fe seem necessary and useful.

    Um, not sure if that was the greatest answer. Probably not. Would you mind telling me why you think I'm EIE and I'll come up with a more cogent response after I finish writing my paper?
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    Quote Originally Posted by FDG View Post
    Personally I don't have anything strongly against 3s, but I don't think we could work in a relationship togheter - I don't think I could work with another aggressive-triad with the exception of another 7, perhaps.
    Do you mean a personal (romantic) relationship or a working relationship? I actually find it very easy to work with other members of the aggressive triad in a professional/semi-professional environment. You get more things done, faster, efficiently and there's less tip-toeing around. As long as everyone remains polite and professional, its very productive.

    Edited to add: I've mostly worked with 8s closely actually. Haven't had any experiences with 7s, except a close friend of mine is a 7 and no, I can't see myself working with her ever. It would be too explosive by far.
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    Quote Originally Posted by unefille View Post
    Um, not sure if that was the greatest answer. Probably not. Would you mind telling me why you think I'm EIE and I'll come up with a more cogent response after I finish writing my paper?
    you are remarkably image focused. you naturally seem not to realize that other people do not pay as much attention to their outward perceptions or their emotional effects as you do. this alone is remarkable evidence for EIE and beta. your content such as in this thread have largely been socially focused and are similar in character to the sort of philosophical interests and Ni+Ti+Fe prophetic mode of speaking that we have all come to know and love from EIEs.

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    Quote Originally Posted by niffweed17 View Post
    you are remarkably image focused.
    Yes I am. My mother is EIE 1w2. I am an only child and I had a very 'unique' childhood. Until I was 7, I lived with my mother and her family. From the age of 7 onward, we moved to Australia and for the first few years, I had no friends. My parents didn't socialise much. My world was insular, my father distant with work and my mother ruled my world.

    Every time we met someone, she would mention what they thought of me, how they interpreted my behaviour. After every performance or recital, the first words out of her mouth would be 'you were fidgeting', 'you didn't make enough eye contact', 'you need to project your presence more.' If I went to a birthday party, her words to me when I got home was 'did anyone tell you that you were pretty?' and 'what did they think of your new dress?' Because my mother watched me so closely and scrutinised me so thoroughly, I've essentially appropriated her gaze myself. I think the entire world watches me closely and evaluates me constantly, because my mother did and does and because, until my teenage years, she essentially was my world.

    But whilst I've appropriated some of her values, they aren't mine naturally. They had to be beaten into me (not always literally beating, of course). I still disagree with them, but I have internalised them. Which is why in my ideal world, I am a different person to the one I am now, because for me, the world is a Beta world - in that Beta values are what I am most conscious of, what I most easily anticipate. Since I can't change the world I find myself in, I have to adapt. The essence of the 3 is shame (I am wrong for this world) and the strategy is deceit and adaptation.

    Thank god for the anonymity of the internet.

    Quote Originally Posted by niffweed17 View Post
    you naturally seem not to realize that other people do not pay as much attention to their outward perceptions or their emotional effects as you do. this alone is remarkable evidence for EIE and beta. your content such as in this thread have largely been socially focused and are similar in character to the sort of philosophical interests and Ni+Ti+Fe prophetic mode of speaking that we have all come to know and love from EIEs.
    I don't assume that other people are as image conscious or as aware of social dynamics as I am, but I think they should be more image conscious and aware of social dynamics, coming at it from a perspective that I've learned to be, not that I naturally am. I think how people act is generally not of anyone's concern, but when we're acting for a purpose, we should be strategic in the pursuit of that purpose. You might be a genius inventor, but you're not going to get anywhere in life if you can't convince other people of the brilliance of your ideas. Socially, there is a game being played. As distasteful as we might find it, you have to learn the rules of the game. I would never look down at people who don't play the game though, I just sometimes think they're hindering themselves.

    I didn't always have a lot of friends growing up. I was a loner (both because I the only non-white kid in school and also because of personality differences). It was from the outside looking in that I realised why I wasn't more popular, why I wasn't more of a 'success'. I was quiet, with a single good friend, who never fought with me and the teachers praised us for being so. But it was also the girls who fought and laughed loudly and formed little cliques conspiring against each other who seemed to be more socially successful. So, I learned to do what was necessary to get by, to get what I wanted. Putting on Fe is like putting on armor - it gets you through dangerous situations, it's a bit burdensome, but eventually you get used to it.

    As for Ti and Ti POLR: I've always been punished and punished myself for my own weaknesses. My thoughts always form a jumble initially and then I sit down and pry them apart and arrange them neatly and coherently. I see other people use Ti and value Ti, so I want to be able to produce Ti for them so that they will also value me. Same with the other functions, to varying degrees. I'm obsessed with my POLR. I studied maths and economics and am still studying law and part of the language is Ti. Sure, I can access it in other ways, but 3s are adaptative and efficient, aren't they? And it's more effective and efficient if I speak Ti to people who value and use Ti. And Te to those who value Te. And so on and so forth.

    Lastly, my social awareness usually manifests in one-to-one relations, where I determine how each individual feels about me and then adapt myself to responding to that individual bond. That's...difficult, if not impossible to do on an internet forum. Fe is much more effective, but I don't use it more than I need do.
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    Quote Originally Posted by unefille View Post
    Yes I am. My mother is EIE 1w2. I am an only child and I had a very 'unique' childhood. Until I was 7, I lived with my mother and her family. From the age of 7 onward, we moved to Australia and for the first few years, I had no friends. My parents didn't socialise much. My world was insular, my father distant with work and my mother ruled my world.

    Every time we met someone, she would mention what they thought of me, how they interpreted my behaviour. After every performance or recital, the first words out of her mouth would be 'you were fidgeting', 'you didn't make enough eye contact', 'you need to project your presence more.' If I went to a birthday party, her words to me when I got home was 'did anyone tell you that you were pretty?' and 'what did they think of your new dress?' Because my mother watched me so closely and scrutinised me so thoroughly, I've essentially appropriated her gaze myself. I think the entire world watches me closely and evaluates me constantly, because my mother did and does and because, until my teenage years, she essentially was my world.

    But whilst I've appropriated some of her values, they aren't mine naturally. They had to be beaten into me (not always literally beating, of course). I still disagree with them, but I have internalised them. Which is why in my ideal world, I am a different person to the one I am now, because for me, the world is a Beta world - in that Beta values are what I am most conscious of, what I most easily anticipate. Since I can't change the world I find myself in, I have to adapt. The essence of the 3 is shame (I am wrong for this world) and the strategy is deceit and adaptation.

    Thank god for the anonymity of the internet.
    there are numerous examples of individuals who have rejected the influence of parents of other quadras. while admittedly the situation can be very complex, i do not really feel like overanalyzing it, and i will leave at this rather simple conclusion: as a person you will never be your parent's child so much as yourself.

    I don't assume that other people are as image conscious or as aware of social dynamics as I am, but I think they should be more image conscious and aware of social dynamics, coming at it from a perspective that I've learned to be, not that I naturally am. I think how people act is generally not of anyone's concern, but when we're acting for a purpose, we should be strategic in the pursuit of that purpose. You might be a genius inventor, but you're not going to get anywhere in life if you can't convince other people of the brilliance of your ideas. Socially, there is a game being played. As distasteful as we might find it, you have to learn the rules of the game. I would never look down at people who don't play the game though, I just sometimes think they're hindering themselves.
    ooh, what an delta sentiment.

    As for Ti and Ti POLR: I've always been punished and punished myself for my own weaknesses. My thoughts always form a jumble initially and then I sit down and pry them apart and arrange them neatly and coherently. I see other people use Ti and value Ti, so I want to be able to produce Ti for them so that they will also value me. Same with the other functions, to varying degrees. I'm obsessed with my POLR. I studied maths and economics and am still studying law and part of the language is Ti. Sure, I can access it in other ways, but 3s are adaptative and efficient, aren't they? And it's more effective and efficient if I speak Ti to people who value and use Ti. And Te to those who value Te. And so on and so forth.
    all of this sounds Fe + Te role + Ti superid. it hardly sounds like Ti is devalued so much as you have no idea what you're doing with it. and it doesn't sound like you understand what Ti means either, but i might be wrong about that.



    i don't really want to get into yet another argument here, because i'm getting kind of tired of arguing with people and going nowhere (and i don't think i have a chance in hell of convincing you, although i'm certainly not going to try to hide secrets from you if you demonstrate that you're interested), but i strongly doubt that i'll accept that you're IEE.

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    Quote Originally Posted by niffweed17 View Post
    i don't really want to get into yet another argument here, because i'm getting kind of tired of arguing with people and going nowhere (and i don't think i have a chance in hell of convincing you, although i'm certainly not going to try to hide secrets from you if you demonstrate that you're interested), but i strongly doubt that i'll accept that you're IEE.
    Hmm, not sure how to respond. You're right that I'm quite certain about my type (for one thing, being EIE would change all my intertype relations, which I have posted about and people have generally also agreed with - not that that is necessarily conclusive evidence), but I'm also genuinely interested in your reasoning. I'll take it under advisement anyway and might PM you with some questions later, if that's Ok.
    ()
    3w4-1w2-5w4 sx/sp

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    very well.

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    Quote Originally Posted by unefille View Post
    Do you mean a personal (romantic) relationship or a working relationship? I actually find it very easy to work with other members of the aggressive triad in a professional/semi-professional environment. You get more things done, faster, efficiently and there's less tip-toeing around. As long as everyone remains polite and professional, its very productive.

    Edited to add: I've mostly worked with 8s closely actually. Haven't had any experiences with 7s, except a close friend of mine is a 7 and no, I can't see myself working with her ever. It would be too explosive by far.
    3s and 8s try to "manage" me. When they're with each other, they probably can see what the other is doing because they tend to do it themselves, and thus have no problem in managing each other. I personally don't like being "managed", but I don't manage in return: so either I passively-aggressively do nothing, or simply respond that my way of doing this is more efficient.

    But I think I could be friends with a 3 no problem. Just not working or romatic relationships.
    Obsequium amicos, veritas odium parit

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    Quote Originally Posted by unefille View Post
    I think how people act is generally not of anyone's concern, but when we're acting for a purpose, we should be strategic in the pursuit of that purpose. You might be a genius inventor, but you're not going to get anywhere in life if you can't convince other people of the brilliance of your ideas. Socially, there is a game being played. As distasteful as we might find it, you have to learn the rules of the game. I would never look down at people who don't play the game though, I just sometimes think they're hindering themselves.
    You see, from my perspective (whether one wants to call it Te, 8, or whatever), the real issue is when the "convincing" overrules the "brilliance of the ideas". And I speak as someone who has faced this "conflict" in real life; in fact, I do, all the time.

    If your ideas are truly brilliant, they will speak for themselves, as long as others are clever enough to understand them, and honest enough to credit you with them.

    If, however, you have to increasingly focus on the "convincing" rather than on the "ideas", it is either because (1) your ideas weren't that brilliant to begin with, or (2) the people you are talking to aren't smart enough to understand what is a brilliant idea or (3) those people don't care and just want the spectacle of someone in front of them trying to persuade them of something.

    So, "playing the game" is rather the resource of those who are caught in the situations 1, 2 and 3 above.
    , LIE, ENTj logical subtype, 8w9 sx/sp
    Quote Originally Posted by implied
    gah you're like the shittiest ENTj ever!

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    unefille, I must say you are the most self-aware example of ennea-3 that I have come across. I'm really quite struck by how clearly you have elucidated enneatype 3 image triad issues in your posts here on this thread.

    You've also demonstrated plainly one of the particulars of the triadic orientation of heart-mind-gut -- how the "middle" type in each triad is generally most out of touch with core essence.

    Of each triad:

    3s are most divorced from their true hearts
    6s are most divorced from clear mind
    9s are most unable to trust their gut response

    This also illustrates another enneagram concept of 3-6-9 being the insular triangle, in that each has arrows to the others as a kind of feedback circuit.
    socio: INFp - IEI
    ennea: 4w5 sp/sx

    **********

    Quote Originally Posted by Mark Twain
    Only kings, presidents, editors, and people with tapeworms have the right to use the editorial 'we'.

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    Quote Originally Posted by Expat View Post
    If, however, you have to increasingly focus on the "convincing" rather than on the "ideas", it is either because (1) your ideas weren't that brilliant to begin with, or (2) the people you are talking to aren't smart enough to understand what is a brilliant idea or (3) those people don't care and just want the spectacle of someone in front of them trying to persuade them of something.

    So, "playing the game" is rather the resource of those who are caught in the situations 1, 2 and 3 above.
    I generally agree with your categories. However, the essence of how I perceive things is that, even if (2) or (3) were the reason for rejecting my ideas, I would focus only on the rejection. In that sense, I'm results-oriented. And within my personal system of ethics, I will do everything to secure a good outcome - which means both trying to create a brilliant product, but also giving a hard sell, to extend the conceit. I can how this could get dangerous - if I were unhealthy, my personal ethics might be highly questionable and the means I would use to pursue my ends ruthless, disgusting and maybe criminal. I can only strive to remain healthy.

    Also, the problem with a negative outcome, is that there possibility of (1) is devastating and nullifying, so preventing a negative outcome is again, a form of self-preservation.

    Quote Originally Posted by aka-kitsune View Post
    unefille, I must say you are the most self-aware example of ennea-3 that I have come across. I'm really quite struck by how clearly you have elucidated enneatype 3 image triad issues in your posts here on this thread.

    You've also demonstrated plainly one of the particulars of the triadic orientation of heart-mind-gut -- how the "middle" type in each triad is generally most out of touch with core essence.

    Of each triad:

    3s are most divorced from their true hearts
    6s are most divorced from clear mind
    9s are most unable to trust their gut response

    This also illustrates another enneagram concept of 3-6-9 being the insular triangle, in that each has arrows to the others as a kind of feedback circuit.
    Bizarrely, my first reaction was to say 'thank you'. I came to the enneagram consistently testing as a 5 when I first encountered it, so strongly had I locked in that image of myself. I've read that 3w4s can be more prone to introspection and depression - it was in fact in recovery from a dimmer period of my life (wow, I'm making myself sound much older than I am) that I started to unravel myself. I suspect a lot of 3s are too busy and have been so for a long time and won't get a chance to clearly see themselves until they get quite a bit older. My introspection was practically forced upon during adolescence; I was denied the opportunity to be a 'human doing' during my high school years, so I had nothing I could 'do' in order to avoid self-awareness.

    Aka-kitsune, I'm not sure if you would mind explaining, but what is the arrow feedback circuit that you're talking about? Is that the lines of integration and disintegration, or is the 3-6-9 triangle sort of fused because of its insularity?
    ()
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    Quote Originally Posted by aka-kitsune View Post
    unefille, I must say you are the most self-aware example of ennea-3 that I have come across. I'm really quite struck by how clearly you have elucidated enneatype 3 image triad issues in your posts here on this thread.
    I fully agree.

    Quote Originally Posted by unefille View Post
    I generally agree with your categories. However, the essence of how I perceive things is that, even if (2) or (3) were the reason for rejecting my ideas, I would focus only on the rejection. In that sense, I'm results-oriented. And within my personal system of ethics, I will do everything to secure a good outcome - which means both trying to create a brilliant product, but also giving a hard sell, to extend the conceit. I can how this could get dangerous - if I were unhealthy, my personal ethics might be highly questionable and the means I would use to pursue my ends ruthless, disgusting and maybe criminal. I can only strive to remain healthy.

    Also, the problem with a negative outcome, is that there possibility of (1) is devastating and nullifying, so preventing a negative outcome is again, a form of self-preservation.
    Right, I see.

    That is really illuminating, because it's a totally different mindset. I'm much more concerned about the danger of promoting an idea that turns out to be fake or disappointing. So focusing on the "sell" clashes with the brilliance of the product itself - because, the more brilliant a product is, the less you need to focus on the promoting side of it.

    The problem is that it's often obvious to me when (1) is happening, but the person defending the idea will react like a cornered animal when this is pointed out.
    , LIE, ENTj logical subtype, 8w9 sx/sp
    Quote Originally Posted by implied
    gah you're like the shittiest ENTj ever!

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    Quote Originally Posted by unefille View Post
    I actually have some problems reconciling being an IEE and a 3w4 sometimes, but I'm so certain I'm both.
    Ya I know a female enfp 3w4 and you remind me a little bit of this girl actually. Also, coincidently the pic of the girl in your avatar, and I realize it probably isn't you, looks A LOT like this enfp 3w4.
    EII 4w5

    so/sx (?)

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    ...
    Last edited by Suomea; 09-28-2008 at 01:10 AM.
    Suomea

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    I feel like I should have titled this thread 'Understanding the Enneagram 3' instead.

    Quote Originally Posted by Christy B View Post
    Ya I know a female enfp 3w4 and you remind me a little bit of this girl actually. Also, coincidently the pic of the girl in your avatar, and I realize it probably isn't you, looks A LOT like this enfp 3w4.
    She [the avatar] captures one aspect of me - the more 3ish aspect. She's sort of me when I'm in my 'fuck off, you're not worth my time' mode. That part of me is another girl. I admire her a little and I'm scared of her a little. She's not how I see myself, but she's sometimes how other people, especially those I keep at arms length, see me. A little superior, a little disdainful, a little intimidating and unimpressed at the world. Cool and collected. She's just a persona though - she's what I become when I feel attacked or vulnerable and I've tried to be myself and its not working, I slip her on like armor and it's my way of saying 'screw you, you misjudged me, I bet you didn't expect this, did you?'

    I've read 3s have 'ice' when attacked. She's my ice; when I've disengaged from myself and am just focused on winning. If I have to stay in that mode too long, I become worn out and exhausted. If I had to stay in that mode for a prolonged period of time, I'm terrified I would just lose myself altogether.

    The only way I can reconnect to myself (or the closest I come) is when I'm around people I trust 100% to never ever judge me by my behaviour, by the impression I make. No matter how many people I know or am 'friends' with, there are so few people I trust enough to be vulnerable and open around. They have to see me at my best (when I'm in performance mode) and not be impressed by the performance. They have to see me at my worst (when I'm falling apart and can't hold the image together) and not become repulsed by that. I feel that then, around them, they keep my grounded - more than anything, THEY are my connection to who I am; they remind me when I forget. It's so important to have that in my life - but it is so hard to have someone like that as well. I don't doubt that my current degree of health owes a lot to my friendship with idolatrie.

    Quote Originally Posted by Suomea View Post
    On a little bit closer inspection of the enneagram I think 3w2 probably fits me the best. Kinda sad because I don't really respect anything about the 3.... seems like 3s are never content with what they have.
    If you don't mind, could you elaborate a little on how you see yourself as a 3w2 and what you don't respect about the 3 type?

    I started the thread because I felt that a lot of people didn't like or respect the 3 type and I wanted to understand that more and to also explain some of the 3 fixations. Which means that fundamentally, I don't believe that the 3 is worthless or horrid - that there is a lot of misunderstanding concerning the type. Being a 3 is something I'm ambivalent about - there are parts of it I like - the confidence, the competency, the energy, the drive. Being image-focused can make me shallow and superficial sometimes and very insecure, but it also means I am more adept at navigating situations where politics and social dynamics can often hinder people from achieving their goals/potential. There is a lot of flaws with the 3 type, but I've come to accept that as what makes me a more interesting person, I suppose: my personal challenge in life - to let my self define my image, rather than letting my image define my self.
    ()
    3w4-1w2-5w4 sx/sp

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    Quote Originally Posted by unefille View Post
    Aka-kitsune, I'm not sure if you would mind explaining, but what is the arrow feedback circuit that you're talking about? Is that the lines of integration and disintegration, or is the 3-6-9 triangle sort of fused because of its insularity?
    Both, actually.

    3-6-9 makes a neat inner triangle that certainly seems insular in many ways. Each disintegrates/integrates only within that triangle. I suspect that this also makes it more difficult to type individuals of all 3 types, as each appears to access the other two more easily because of this "circuit". They have a way of "hiding" in plain sight, often being equally hidden from themselves.
    socio: INFp - IEI
    ennea: 4w5 sp/sx

    **********

    Quote Originally Posted by Mark Twain
    Only kings, presidents, editors, and people with tapeworms have the right to use the editorial 'we'.

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    Quote Originally Posted by Expat View Post
    I neither dislike nor do I hate 3s any more than I do other enneatypes; but what does put me off about them is the need for validation from others; as in, what you've achieved or not is dependent on the recognition by others, or lack thereof. I see that as being a bit of a lightweight.
    Yeah...I can see how this would seem "pathetic" to others. However, personally, I can see it being a strength, because ultimately it means that the only thing they need to keep going, no matter how bad it gets, is other people.


    I get that deceit is the sin of the 3, but as far as I've experienced it, it's always been more self-deceit, with deceit of others being incidental to that self-deception. It's almost something I can't control: the presentation of myself in the best possible light. Even when I'm trying to get people see the negative aspects of my life, I can't help it coming out in a way that makes it in fact sound grand and wonderful and not at all bad. I don't intentionally mean to mislead anyone - I do use lies strategically sometimes, but not often - but it's almost not something I can consciously control. It's almost as though on the subconscious level, I'm thinking oh god if they really knew how bad things are, they'll never look at you the same way again and this self-preservation mechanism kicks in.
    Ahahaha...this is so true. Even when I tell people about all the fucked up times in my life (drug addiction, rehab, depression) I always end up painting it in the best possible light. Now, that's partly because I've come to see all of my experiences as positive, because I like where I am in life. But it's also because, subconsciously, I want people to be like "Oooo, ahhh...he has so much life experience! Maybe I can learn something from this wise 20 year old...he has had such an interesting and varied life!" so I invariably end up telling stories like how, at school, I didn't know who I could trust, how I was empty inside, how I wasn't getting anywhere...but by the way I was living an incredibly extravagant lifestyle and got pretty much everything i wanted and everyone thought I was a big shot And of course rehab was very sobering, and I learned a lot about myself and came to terms with how fucked up I had been acting...but by the way I was totally the ringleader and everyone liked me and a good time was had by all



    That said, I can and will lie convincingly, and without flinching, if I deem it necessary. I just try not to, as much as possible, both for pragmatic reasons (lies make life so complicated) and for principle (what I have of it).
    See, I won't even bat an eyelash to lie if I know it will benefit me and (when healthy) it's not going to hurt anyone else. When the time comes, I usually make a snap evaluation of what the effect with be on the situation: how likely I am to get caught lying, whether this person seems naive or not, how believable my first idea for a lie is, other possible explanations, how I can worm my way out of whatever tricky situation is liable to present itself if something relating to my lie comes into question...I am a fucking master liar, even if I don't do it much any more.
    But, for a certainty, back then,
    We loved so many, yet hated so much,
    We hurt others and were hurt ourselves...

    Yet even then, we ran like the wind,
    Whilst our laughter echoed,
    Under cerulean skies...

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    Quote Originally Posted by Gilly View Post
    Yeah...I can see how this would seem "pathetic" to others. However, personally, I can see it being a strength, because ultimately it means that the only thing they need to keep going, no matter how bad it gets, is other people.
    Does it mean, though, that which "other people" is dependent on how bad it gets?

    I mean something like this.

    1) You feel like king of the world among a certain crowd, because you feel that they recognize your achievements and it validates you.
    2) You suffer a major setback as far as those achievements are concerned. That crowd doesn't say anything, but you feel diminished in their eyes.
    3) In order to "bounce back", you move to another crowd, among which your "diminished" state is seen as "very good"? Which allows you to "climb up" again?
    , LIE, ENTj logical subtype, 8w9 sx/sp
    Quote Originally Posted by implied
    gah you're like the shittiest ENTj ever!

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    Quote Originally Posted by Gilly View Post
    See, I won't even bat an eyelash to lie if I know it will benefit me and (when healthy) it's not going to hurt anyone else. When the time comes, I usually make a snap evaluation of what the effect with be on the situation: how likely I am to get caught lying, whether this person seems naive or not, how believable my first idea for a lie is, other possible explanations, how I can worm my way out of whatever tricky situation is liable to present itself if something relating to my lie comes into question...I am a fucking master liar, even if I don't do it much any more.
    I lied a great deal more in my past, but I've learnt some sobering lessons since then. More importantly, I've learned the value of trust. Yet I make things up all the time - small lies that are more stories to keep people entertained than to deceive them, but I don't lie to people who I value and want to have in my life.

    A lot of the people who I find most comforting and are closest to right now are 8s - I value them and I KNOW that they will not tolerate being lied to. That alone keeps me from Lying with a capital L most of the time. But I can't pretend to be a saint - I do twist the truth to benefit me sometimes. Lying can never be black and white for me; I make so many distinctions between the truth and falsity. And there are so many forms of lying: lying by omission, outright falsehoods, plausible deniability... I've also been been friends with some 3w2s and 3w4s who were in very unhealthy levels and just seeing their behaviour shocked me and made me re-examine my own.

    Overall, what I can say is that I try to be as honest with myself and with those who I have decided to share myself with as possible.
    ()
    3w4-1w2-5w4 sx/sp

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    Quote Originally Posted by Expat View Post
    The problem is that it's often obvious to me when (1) is happening, but the person defending the idea will react like a cornered animal when this is pointed out.
    I've just been thinking about this and I think my reaction to being told (1) would depend firstly on my level of health and secondly on where in the process (1) came.

    If I were unhealthy, I'm sad to say that I can imagine the irrational defensiveness might be the response. I've never been at that stage (yet - knock on wood), but I've seen it in other threes.

    As I am now, I would welcome constructive criticism warmly, because I see it as essential to 'testing' your ideas, to developing something better. I think that healthy 3s don't necessarily dispense with image, but become committed to producing something (whatever they do) that lives up to the image of it that they project/sell. There's a bit of 3ishness in my reaction to strong criticism, in that it can hurt, but to borrow a cliche: no pain, no gain.

    The caveat to all this (since I don't want to make myself seem better than I am) is that I can't take (1) on board well if I see no opportunity for improvement. If (1) comes at the end of the road, the final test, etc etc, and there is nothing I can do for 'next time', so as to improve and thus eclipse the failure, then it could be very destructive experience.

    Fortunately, I (at the moment) always believe in 'next time', always believe something positive will come from negative experiences.
    ()
    3w4-1w2-5w4 sx/sp

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    Quote Originally Posted by dolphin View Post
    Hey unefille. I'm supposedly a 4w3, and I identify with much of what you posted. I'm curious, does anyone know the theoretical effects of a 3 wing on one's E type?
    Hazarding an answer: Every type, to some extent, possess elements of the concerns and behaviours of the two types adjacent to them. A wing expresses which 'side' you possess more strongly. A 4w3 therefore possess more 3ish qualities and concerns than a 4w5 and vice-versa. If you have a strong wing (as I do), you will find that the concerns and behaviours of that adjacent type is particularly significant to you, HOWEVER, your core type and thus primary fixation remains that of the 4 (or of the 3 in my case).

    So for me, a strong 4 wing (implying a weak 2 wing) means that I am much more concerned with introspection, the inner true self and authenticity than a 3w2, who is more other-oriented, rather than self-oriented. But no matter the strength of my concern with authenticity, my overriding fixation is still shame.

    An example that I think illustrates the difference between a 3w4 and a 4w3 uses the conceit of an artwork. First assume that the 'inner self' - your authentic pain, unique self-expression etc are raw materials for a painting, and the finished painting is the 'self' as we present ourselves to the world/as the world sees us.

    A 4w3 starts with the raw materials: that is where the emphasis, the importance lies. They are still concerned with presentation issues (how will the painting look?), but more focused on shaping the artwork according to what the raw material gives them. They will make it smaller or bigger, more conservative or dramatic, according to what the material dictates, though they will focus somewhat on polishing the ultimate product a little for presentation afterward.

    A 3w4 instead starts with the purpose of the presentation. What SHOULD the artwork look like? What does the competition/exhibition want or need? The editing process begins before the creation process. I decide what I want the final product to look like, what it NEEDS to look like, before I begin to consider the raw materials. Then I will take the raw materials (the self) and shape it according to frame I have already constructed.

    In that sense, the 4w3 is more authentic and attentive to the self, the 3w4 adapts the self more to what they perceive necessary.
    ()
    3w4-1w2-5w4 sx/sp

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