Enneagram Profile Stigma

I  love personality profiles. I find them so helpful in relationships, ministry, and parenting. Recently the latest trend is to discover your Enneagram Number. I am a 3. Because I write a blog and give unasked-for advice, you may already know that. The words that describe an Enneagram 3 previously made me happy, proud of who I was: ambitious, competitive, achieving, motivated, energetic. However, that was when I was a college athlete or young adult forging new grounds in my career or role as a ministry leader. Now, as I get older and spend more time as a caregiver in my SAHM role, and in more women’s circles, I feel out of place with my profile. I hear consistently, “You are just like my husband” or “You remind me of my brother.” Although unintended, this kind of statement creates a stigma that can make my disposition feel unfeminine, out of place. 

One of the highlights of my year was coaching my son’s recreational soccer team to an undefeated season and helping each boy improve. I feel validation from the time spent there that fuels my inner person. I love it. At the soccer team party, I told the parents how much I enjoyed coaching the boys, and that I am very competitive thus making this season a dream. There was some giggling and someone muttered, “We could tell.” I was thinking, how did they know? I thought I hid it so well each practice and game for what was really, truly going on inside. I stifled it because it’s recreational soccer and also because it has been insinuated over the years that it’s not feminine. Even when I try to hide it, it comes through to strangers. I am a 3. There’s no hiding it.

I read statements like, “Women don’t compete with women,” and I’m agreeing,  yes, let’s support each other, but then I read these words in my Enneagram profile, and I feel doomed. I didn’t ask to be competitive. It’s in my DNA. It wasn’t learned behavior; it’s how my creator made me. I know He is pleased with me. So why do I feel so out of place in women’s circles? I’m not trying to compete in beauty or money or kids’ accolades, other people’s victories make me excited and hopeful for mine. It drives me to evaluate my life and my choices, mostly to look inward. In my 40s I feel I’m in competition with myself, not others anymore. 

So here’s my tension, to be at peace with who God made me to be, flourishing in my personality and disposition not allowing these words to define me but instead let His view of me define me. I was created to get things done. To be energetic and to lead a group that needs a leader with a clear vision. I was created to work and to strive for excellence. These traits of mine may have a downside, a stigma, or ones that a 2 might never do in a million years or a 7 would do with such charm no one would notice because they are having such a good time. As I continue to grow and change and wrestle with how my number makes me feel or your view of me as a 3, I do know this, I may be like your husband, but it’s probably why you like me as your friend. 

Check out the link below and see where you end up. What’s the stigma you feel with your Enneagram? What the best part of your Enneagram number?


The Nine Enneagram Type Descriptions


The Rational, Idealistic Type: Principled, Purposeful, Self-Controlled, and Perfectionist


The Caring, Interpersonal Type: Demonstrative, Generous, People-Pleasing, and Possessive


The Success-Oriented, Pragmatic Type: Adaptive, Excelling, Driven, and Competitive


The Sensitive, Withdrawn Type: Expressive, Dramatic, Self-Absorbed, and Temperamental


The Intense, Cerebral Type: Perceptive, Innovative, Secretive, and Isolated


The Committed, Security-Oriented Type: Engaging, Responsible, Anxious, and Suspicious


The Busy, Fun-Loving Type: Spontaneous, Versatile, Distracted, and Scattered


The Powerful, Dominating Type: Self-Confident, Decisive, Willful, and Confrontational


The Easygoing, Self-Effacing Type: Receptive, Reassuring, Agreeable, and Complacent