"There was a little girl
Who had a little curl
Right in the middle of her forehead.
And when she was good,
She was very, very good,
But when she was bad, she was horrid."
Mother Goose rhyme
Does this sound like someone you know? This poem is a very good description of somebody with high 3 energy. The 3 tends to show many positives of the number, or many negatives of the number. As a result, this blog will be organized a little differently from the rest of the series. Instead of addressing three or four sets of opposites, I will address all of them at once.
It is also interesting to note that people with high 3 energy are often diagnosed with ADHD.
Negative traits: chatterbox, gossipy, prone to exaggeration, self-centered and selfish, critical or negative attitude, lazy, frivolous, and impractical. This is the child who will spend hours doing a chore because he doesn't want to do it, knows the material but refuses to do any homework, and will seize on any distraction or excuse to avoid doing something he doesn't want to do.
Positive traits: expressive, joyful, imaginative, good communicator, creative, fun, and sociable. When she is good, she is very, very good - and a ton of fun to be around.
Time outs are a very good tool to use with high 3 energy - but not as a form of discipline. Since the 3 tends to be very emotional, use the time out as a method of calming down. Do not bother with a timer, as she will be ready to leave the time out when she is calm.
Communication is paramount with the 3. Young children are likely to have trouble expressing themselves with words because their vocabularies aren't up to it. Use art to help a 3 child express himself, and work on expanding that vocabulary. They can do things spontaneously, with little or no warning, and often cannot articulate why they chose to do it. Ask about feelings as well as reasons. If they have high 7 energy as well, dance and music are other ways in which they can express themselves.
This is one energy that responds well to bribery. Negative punishments tend not to work. Positive reinforcement works like a charm. For homework, chores, and everyday tasks, keep the rewards small but personal. If there is a big thing that needs to be done, and your child does not want to do it, then make the reward bigger. Your child will learn the benefits of hard work for its own sake, but it is likely to take a few years.
Finally, when he is showing the positive aspects of the number 3, show him how much you enjoy being around him!