Enneagram Type Three relationship with Enneagram Type Nine

Enneagram Type Three with Enneagram Type Nine


Why the Attraction?

  • This is a very common Both types are pleasant, positive and like able. They’re also idealistic and look on the bright side of life. Neither type likes conflict or arguing which makes for a more harmonious relationship. Threes and Nines are both sociable; they like people. They often have a large extended family of friends. Both have fairly traditional values and can enjoy home and family life.
  • Threes are initially attracted to Nines nonjudgmental attitude and calming Threes feel they can just be themselves around Nines and not feel the need to be “on” all the time. Nines help Threes relax and take it  easy once in a while. Nines give Threes permission to just “veg out” and not drive themselves so hard (and not feel guilty about it either). Nines are also really good listeners which Threes appreciate because Threes like to talk about themselves and get attention. Threes also like that Nines are totally willing to go along with the things they want to do most of the time.
  • Nines like being energized by Nines admire Three’s drive, self-confidence, indefatigable energy and productivity. Threes help Nines set and then pursue their goals, not just dream about them. They also inspire Nines to value themselves more and invest time in their own self-development. Nines like that Threes bring excitement and stimulating activity into their life.
  • Both Threes and Nines like comfort and security and enjoy making their home cozy for their family and/or an aesthetically appealing gathering place for


Some Shared Positive Traits

  • Are personable, likeable, sociable, pleasant and friendly
  • Are practical yet idealistic too
  • Are optimistic and focus on the positive, bright side of life
  • Are supportive and encouraging of each other
  • Both look for comfort and security in a relationship
  • Can be humble about their talents and achievements
  • Can persevere once committed to a goal or a partner
  • Can be adaptable to other people’s needs
  • Can be efficient, energetic and productive
  • Can get things done from a still, calm center
  • Can relax and have genuine peace of mind
  • Can see life from a broader point of view


Some Shared Negative Traits

  • Can depend too much on external approval
  • Both can pursue goals that hold no real interest or personal meaning just to be liked and accepted by others
  • Can have difficulty attending to their own deeper feelings
  • Can avoid conflicts and evade relationship problems (especially “feeling-type” Threes and Nines)
  • Can take on more than they can handle and get stressed
  • Can divert attention from important to unimportant tasks
  • Can fill free time with habitual, mind numbing routines


  • At worst, can be complacent, disengaged and dissociated
  • Can lower their profile to fit in with others
  • Can be people pleasing


Differing Traits (and Potential Sources of Frustration or Balance)

  • Have definite personal agendas (Threes) Have indefinite personal agendas (Nines)
  • Focused on achieving goals (Threes) Focused on achieving peace of mind/comfort (Nines)
  • Impatient, in a hurry (Threes) Patient, not in a hurry (Nines)
  • Career-oriented (Threes) Relationship-oriented (Nines)
  • Have difficulty relaxing and just hanging out (Threes) Love relaxing and just hanging out (Nines)
  • Fast-paced (Threes) Slow-paced (Nines)
  • Decisive (Threes) Indecisive (Nines)


Potential Problems

  • Threes can see Nines as too: laid-back, indecisive, slow-paced, easily distracted, lacking priorities and focus, stubborn and
  • Nines can see Threes as too: neglectful of the relationship, self-centered, impatient, unable to relax, image- conscious, preoccupied with success/recognition, unconcerned about the Nine’s feelings/needs and Nines get flustered by the frenetic pace of Threes. Threes have a difficult time being present in the moment. They’re constantly thinking about goals to be achieved. Nines can feel as though they never really get to just “be” with the Three. Nines can feel used and discounted by Three when they help but then are overlooked and unappreciated.
  • Both like to keep life positive and neither likes Neither type likes to talk about what’s bothering them and both can just go along as if nothing’s wrong – sometimes for years! Nine can fear that Three might leave if they bring up issues. Nines don’t like to rock the boat in a relationship and hope that issues will just work themselves out over time. Image-conscious Threes can fear others might find out their relationship isn’t really working so they just keep quiet and bury themselves in their work. Threes are fearful of failure in any area of life and want to avoid the social humiliation of a breakup. Nine can withdraw emotionally in the relationship to such an extent that Three feels totally unappreciated. If Three feels held back too much by Nine s/he might breakup.



For Threes

  • Nines felt overlooked and made themselves unimportant in The way to a Nine’s heart is to take the time to really listen to him/her. Be receptive, understanding and accepting. Make your Nine truly important in your life. Be extremely patient with Nine’s indecisiveness and slower pace.


For Nines

  • This relationship will flourish when you find your own sense of self, direction and priorities rather than relying on Three to set the You can feel dragged along by Three and doubt and question whether you belong in the relationship if you don’t claim your own voice and direction and make yourself important in your own life.