Enneagram Type 3 - The Achiever
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The Achiever is the third personality type in the Enneagram. Type 3s are often very successful, but never feel they can rest on their laurels. Driven to higher levels of achievement, they will pour their time and energy into bettering themselves and their position in their community and the world. They feel they must succeed, no matter what, but there can be a sinister side to their determination.
Achievers are highly motivated and love to succeed. They delight in striving to reach their potential, exceeding all expectations and inspiring others to be the best they can be. Their motto should be, 'Believe it and you can achieve it!' Others look up to them and admire them, and they enjoy meeting their responsibilities as an example for others. After you spend time with a Type 3, you come away feeling that you've been in the presence of someone great and that you too can achieve your dreams.
Related Enneagram articles:
Enneagram Type 1 Personal Development Plan
Enneagram Type 2 Personal Development Plan
Enneagram Type 3 Personal Development Plan
Enneagram Type 4 Personal Development Plan
Enneagram Type 5 Personal Development Plan
Enneagram Type 6 Personal Development Plan
Enneagram Type 7 Personal Development Plan
Enneagram Type 8 Personal Development Plan
Enneagram Type 9 Personal Development Plan
Click here for a more complete personal development planning process.
But that is the hidden secret of Type 3s: They are not living their dreams.
Most Type 3s are not even aware of what their own dreams actually are. Their success is based on what other people think they should do and what kind of person other people think they should be. They seek to excel in a certain area, not because it is their passion or their purpose, but because of the approval they hope to get from others. You will rarely see them do anything against the grain, unless they think they will gain admiration for doing so. They often have no real convictions of their own, except the importance of working hard and succeeding.
The truth is, Achievers feel under an immense amount of pressure to do well in the eyes of others. It is as if their life is a performance and they are always being watched and judged. The thought of failure terrifies them. The thought of public failure positively petrifies them! They perceive that their successes prove they are an adequate human being. The more they achieve, the more they feel they are worth, though the pressure to succeed never wanes. If they are at the top of their game in one area, they will find something new to excel in, and probably do them both at the same time. Type 3s can often become workaholics, as their sense of well-being within themselves depends on their productivity. If they feel insecure, relaxation is impossible. When Type 3s feel like they don't match up to the extremely high standards they set for themselves, they may become arrogant and haughty. Their act of superiority is most pronounced when they are feeling inferior.
At their worst, Achievers can be extremely jealous of other people's success and happiness, and deliberately try to sabotage it. They can go to extreme lengths to hide any failures or shortcomings. Becoming dishonest and deceitful, they might betray others to gain success and glory at their expense. That being said, Type 3s will be very successful at self-development, if they choose to try their hand at it. At the outset they will feel they have to be more spiritual and self-aware than everyone else, but this is not necessarily a bad thing, as it will speed up their spiritual development. At some point, though, Achievers must come to a realization of their Essential Value. This is their innate worth as a human being, which is not dependent on achievement. Once they can really feel that they have an identity separate from their achievements, they will become much more respectful of people they used to look down upon. They will have a sense of freedom they have never known before.
Since Type 3s have spent so long following other people's model of success, they have had no space to formulate their own ideas of what success truly means to them. They can make great strides in their personal growth if they spend time getting in touch with their emotions and discovering their own values and passions. For their entire lives, Achievers put their feelings to the side so they can climb their way to the top. At best, they have channelled their emotions into their success. At worst, their feelings have been ignored and repressed, dismissed as barriers to achievement. When Achievers can put their thoughts of achievement and reputation to the side, and try to feel their emotions honesty, they can get back in touch with what truly matters to them.
Once they are more connected to their true selves, Type 3s can use their drive for success within a field that is truly beneficial to them as people and in-line with their life purpose. Through self-development, Achievers can start to live their lives in a more authentic way. They will develop a strength of inner conviction that can truly inspire those around them and make their achievements worthwhile. The biggest lesson a Type 3 can learn is: Achievement for achievement's sake is empty.
- Iman Mohiki