Are You a Kite or an Anchor

As I was laying in bed last night, trying desperately to fall asleep so I could be refreshed for a busy week, my mind wandered to and fro from all of the things that need to be done and paid for around here.

Okay, we’ve got hay to buy, I want to save another $1,000 in savings and another $1,000 for a lump sum payment on one of our loans. Oh, and I want to surpass our goal of paying X amount of debt off this year. If we can work in another $500 in extra payments for the year we can do that. Wait, I’m more motivated to save than to pay off debt, so maybe I’ll just clear out our savings and put it toward debt and then kick tail at building it back up. And then we need to save for…………..

Round and round my brain went for a good hour and a half, planning, scheming and deducing how we can pay for expenses and reach our goals and do what we want to do all while paying off debt at semi-warp speed.

Finally, I stopped myself.

Whoa!! Calm down? What are you talking about? You can’t clear out the savings account! 

I realized that I had gotten WAY off track and went from calm planning to off-the-rails, out of control babbling.

I am a Kite

You see, I tend to be quite kite-like in my planning. I wander to and fro in the sky, going from goal to goal and wish to wish. Big ideas. Big dreams. Over-the-top efforts and plans. While many of my ideas are smart and good, I can go a little overboard at times.

Like the time when Rick and I were first married and I saw an article on 20/20 about a Chicago suburb that was struggling with racism. The African American families that had earned their way into affluent homes there were being largely ignored and outcast by their neighbors. I was convinced that Rick and I could move there and teach them how to embrace each other and love each other by example.

We would become close friends with the African American families there and show the others that they were wonderful people and that there was no justifiable reason for hate or fear. “Let’s go,” I said.

Rick, rightly so, thought I was crazy and told me so. Spur of the moment decisions to pack up and move to another state to try and solve the world’s problems generally don’t work.

Rick is an Anchor

On the other hand, Rick tends to be so firmly planted to the ground that he refuses to hope and dream. Risk is bad, his mind tells him. If he had his way we’d stuff all of our money under the mattress and call it good.

The good news is that we are here together to balance each other out. Rick keeps us from flying off to various countries to save the world, and I keep him from living a hermit-like life of fear and over-preparedness.

The Kite personality has its great traits. Kite people know how to dream big. They are willing to take big actions to achieve their goals. They’ve got a boatload of energy and are eager to use it to accomplish big things.

However, the Kite’s plans are not always well thought out. They tend to be spontaneous to a fault at times and make quick decisions that are followed up by a “whoops!”

The Anchor personality also has its great traits. Anchor people are stable, steady and don’t jump into things quickly. They think things through thoroughly before making a decision.

However, the Anchor can often be too rooted. They often get entrenched and comfortable in routine – to a fault. They often don’t care for dreaming as they like to avoid the disappoint that comes with failure and to avoid making mistakes.

Each personality type has its good points and bad points. That’s why they work so well together in marriage and in life. Although the opposite personalities can cause strife, they can make for a fine balance if they will learn to work together.

As for me, I am working to implement a little anchor into my kite, and Rick is working to implement a little kite into his anchor. After a recent comment about how rich people get rich by squirreling their cash away in a mattress, he reminded himself that even the Bible touts the benefits of investing and the perils of burying your money into the dirt.

He’s learning. And I am too. 🙂

Are you a kite or an anchor?

18 comments on “Are You a Kite or an Anchor

  1. Jon is an anchor, for sure. I’m less so, but probably more anchor than kite. That wasn’t always the case, though. I think I used to be more kite, and then stuff happened to make me more risk-averse than I would have been otherwise.

    And to some degree, that happens. Life knocks us down. Some of us stay down more than others and a few high flyers probably need more grounding.

    1. That has happened to me too, Emily. It’s been quite a few years since I suggested we pack up and move somewhere. 🙂 I’m glad Rick was there to ground me, and I know he’s glad I’m here to lift him up a bit. 🙂

  2. I’d like to think my wife is the kite and I’m the anchor. She has lots of ideas and I give the dose of reality. But, in other areas of our marriage, we swap roles, (i.e. when I am hopelessly optimistic about a professional or financial goal).

    1. Sounds like you have a bit of “kite” in you as well. Rick’s best friend is a kite and his wife is an anchor, and it’s fun to see him go wild with ideas like I do while his wife says, “Whoa!” 🙂

  3. This is a hard one… I think I’m a bit of both. I will have an all in “let’s go!” attitude in some situations, and a “hmmm, let’s think about this” approach in others. Mr. Adventure Rich is similar. I think we tend to balance each other our pretty well! 🙂

    1. Interesting!! Fun that you both have a bit of both in you. I think Rick and I have both come more towards the middle as we’ve been married. It’s definitely helpful. 🙂

  4. In terms of dreaming — Mr. Groovy is the kite and I’m the anchor. He dreams bigger than I do. Occasionally I have to reel him in and he has to push me to dream. But in terms of doing, I’m the kite because I’m all over the place. And he’s the anchor because he can focus better and ignore the noise.

    1. That is so interesting!!! I can totally see Mr. G being the kite and you being the anchor, but I never would have imagined you being all over the place in terms of actual doing. I love learning about this kind of stuff and how people tick – it’s so fun!

  5. I’m mostly an anchor, and I think my wife is the same way. That’s not to say we don’t have our high-flying kite moments here and there, but for the most part we’re very practical. I think it’s good that you and Rick can balance each other out. Perhaps next time we’re bogged down in anchordom, we’ll have to think about what Laurie might do!

    1. Great that both of you are so stable – yes I definitely think some spontaneity and dreaming is in order for you guys! Just make sure you have your kites anchored to the ground so things don’t get too out of hand. 😉

  6. I think that I’m a kite who has become anchored. I would say that I allowed myself to be anchored right to the ground when we first got serious about debt-repayment, but that I’ve started to allow myself a few feet of flying space in the last year or two. I use the freedom to “fly” now with much more wisdom than I did before. There’s more thought and planning involved. My husband is an anchor who has occasional bursts of kite-transformer flight. I actually temper those bursts now. Something I never used to do. Cool analogy here, Laurie!

    1. I think I’m like that too, Ruth!! I’m definitely more anchored than I used to be, but there’s still a bit of kite left in me, and Rick has his occasional bouts of kite too!

  7. I’d say I’m an anchor, with a bit of impatience. I tend to want results quickly but have learned to adjust those expectation over the years. I think age, a wife, and three kids will do that for you. 🙂 I’d say my wife is more of a kite, but a low flying kite. She doesn’t fly too far off course. 🙂 Glad to know Rick held you off from Chicago. 🙂

    1. That can be bad too. Some risk is definitely necessary. Glad you have him to mellow you out and bring you back to reality. 🙂

  8. The dynamics within a typical relationship are really interesting. My wife is absolutely 100% a kite. Myself, I can sway back and forth. I am definitely not a total anchor and can be a bit of a dreamer. However, I do tend to fall back on the “responsible choice” more often than not.

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