How Each Enneagram Type Deals With Sadness – Type 3

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How Each Enneagram Type Deals With Sadness – Type 3

We sneaked a peek last week at how the Type 2s deal with sadness.

Continuing our series where we explore how each Enneagram deals with sadness in general and what we can say to them to help process it with them, this week we turn our focus on the Type 3s.

Type 3s when dealing with sadness

The Type 3s cope with their sadness through identification; this is when 3s often adopt an external image that others may ‘value’ as they may have believed from a young age that they would be loved for what they do and not who they are.

Through identifying with the curated image they have externally, the 3s use this to mask the internal sadness in their hearts from the rest of the world. 3s may then deal with their sadness by using their external image to show the world that they are okay and are doing well by presenting a positive and cheery disposition, despite feeling otherwise emotionally. They may then go on to overwork to distract themselves from dealing with the pain inside. If a Type 3 is staying late at work more than usual, this may indicate that they may be struggling with the unsavory emotion of sadness, rejection and the like.

The 3s inability to express their own sadness to others may come from their belief that ‘I am most loved and approved as a person when I perform and am successful’.

What to say to a Type 3 dealing with sadness

“We love and recognise you as a person and not for what you do for us. Let us be here for you”

“Thank you for always having our backs but we would also like you to know that you do not have to do anything for us to have your back.”

“Thank you for all that you do. Please let us also be here for you and journey with you in your sadness”

An Encouragement to our Type 3s

Image and appearance is not everything. Trust people enough to let your guard down and allow us to be here for the person you are and not the achievements you have. There is nothing to be ashamed of, we see you and we love you for who you are.

For anyone with a Type 3 in your life, here is a pro tip: Share your sadness and vul-nerabilities with your Type 3 first. This will create a safe space for them to open up about their sadness and vulnerabilities and know that they will not be judged.

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Cindy Leong
Cindy Leong
Cindy Leong is a sought after bilingual (English and Mandarin) Enneagram Personality Coach and Corporate Trainer in Asia, who can help you make sense of your professional and personal relationships. She is a member of International Coach Federation (ICF) and Singapore Psychological Society (SPS). Besides a Bachelor Degree in Psychology (majoring in Communications), she also has a Diploma in Business and has done in-depth research and studies in the areas of Organisational Behaviour and Gender Communications, both in Singapore and Taiwan. Through her expertise in corporate executive coaching, personal development, and relationship coaching, she has helped many professionals in their walk through challenging times, particularly in the areas of identity searching, relationship building and career breakthrough. Aside from being a published author of 2 books, she has also been invited by several radio stations and magazines as an expert guest speaker to provide insights into Enneagram, workplace conflicts and relationships.
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