January 11, 2012 | 11:53 AMCapricorn (Dec. 22-Jan. 19)
You're standing on a diving board in front of a pool. It's the only way in, so you've got two choices: dive into the deep end, or don't get in at all. It's really too bad you can't just get your feet wet and check out what the water's like before you're in a sink-or-swim situation. Since you can't, you'll have to do your best to figure out what's best and whether or not to take the leap at all from up here. Never fear, if you can't decide, wait a week or two—someone else will decide for you, and your new dilemma will be how to live with whatever they chose.
Aquarius (Jan. 20-Feb. 18)
Getting other people to shoulder the responsibilities you think should be theirs is a thankless job—and thankfully not yours. You may believe it's your duty to convince someone else to step up and take on obligations, but it's really not. That'd just piss them off, anyway. Whether you're a parent, friend, lover, or coworker, at some point you need to trust others to do what they're supposed to do, and stand aside and let them pay the consequences if they fail. Sparing them that harsh lesson isn't a kindness—so spare yourself the hassle.
Pisces (Feb. 19-March 20)
You don't need to be defined by your past, but being influenced by it is important. Trying to reject or hide where you've come from is depriving yourself of a source of power and self-knowledge, and is also almost like telling a lie. That doesn't mean you need to inform everyone you meet about painful or embarrassing chapters you've suffered—but certainly those you're closest to should know. Suffering creates character and beauty, and is also an integral part of being human and alive. This week, focus on owning yours in a way you never have before.
Aries (March 21-April 19)
You're usually laidback and easygoing, but you do have buttons that, when pushed, can cause scary flip-outs. If one of those hard-to-reach buttons actually gets pushed this week (which is likely), try to surprise yourself (instead of everyone else) by reacting in a sane, rational, calm manner, instead of flipping out like you really want to—something surely even you realize isn't likely to help matters at all. Vanish, if necessary. Your absence may cause questions—but it's better if you calmly answer those later, rather than provide the answers now, while flipping out, don't you agree?
Taurus (April 20-May 20)
This week, steel yourself against guilt trips, because you're likely to experience more than one. They're probably not even intentional—which makes them more effective. However, your boundaries should remain firm, no matter how difficult it is. You're not truly obligated here, no matter what they say. This is a great time to employ that infamous bullheaded stubbornness of yours. Of course, there's no need to be mean about it—that's only likely to make you feel even guiltier and succumb to their efforts. Find a gentle, kind, yet firm way to say, "Thanks, but no thanks."
Gemini (May 21-June 20)
Trying too hard is a reliable way to make sure people don't like you much. Making a good impression is mostly about being yourself, so chill! Take a deep breath, exercise your excellent humor, and listen a lot. Be real, even if that means admitting to being nervous or feeling weird. You're charming and likeable—except when you're trying hard to be. Since you're wonderful quite naturally, you don't need to make any real effort besides being present and giving a shit. After that, just try to, you know, have fun. The rest will take care of itself.
Cancer (June 21-July 22)
Don't sweat the small stuff. What's missing here is perspective—something that's often difficult for you Cancers to get. You're bobbing in the ocean, and when those big waves of emotion come, it's very hard to see the horizon. Wait until the wave's passed, and you can see far into the distance before you make your move (or any decisions). Reacting right in the moment, just because of the urgency of this huge wall of emotion crashing over your head is completely understandable—but it'll almost certainly come off as (and be) overreacting. Don't do it.
Leo (July 23-Aug. 22)
If you were a dog, you might very well be the kind to turn your nose up at table scraps. However, if someone put those table scraps on a silver platter and gussied them up a bit with some garnishes and a gourmet sauce, you might feel differently. That's your pride getting in the way. It's not the nature of the things you receive that you have a problem with, it's how they're offered. If it doesn't fit in with your ego, you might very well pass up something you actually really want or even need. That seems sort of silly, missing out on something great just because it's not packaged exactly how you imagined it—doesn't it?
Virgo (Aug. 23-Sept. 22)
We shut people out for all sorts of reasons, and usually think that once that door's closed, we'll never open it again, no matter how much someone on the other side might knock or beg. But given enough time, there may be good reason to let someone back into your life. That doesn't mean you need to open the door wide and give them an all access pass to your life, but crack the window and chat a bit. If you conclude that nothing's changed and keeping your distance is still the right thing to do, then at least you'll know. But there was a reason this person was in your life before. If the reasons you cut them off are mostly gone, maybe there'll be good reason to let them back into your life again.
Libra (Sept. 23-Oct. 22)
Humor people. It's not as big a deal for you, either way, as it is for them, so just do what they want you to do. Sure, it's a drag, and there's a line you might not want to cross, but you're not even close to that line right now. In the name of being the peacemaker and diplomat you're supposed to be, just suck it up and cheerfully do the stuff they want. The good karma you reap may not come back to you this week or even this month—but it'll come back. On the other hand, refusing to accommodate them could spell huge negative repercussions—and those won't wait long to strike.
Scorpio (Oct. 23-Nov. 21)
So often in life, we're forced to spend time with people we don't particularly like or get along with. Whether work, family, or friends require it, part of being a reasonable adult is getting over it. That doesn't mean you need to lie or be tremendously insincere, but your obligation to those you do love is to not behave so badly that they feel uncomfortable—that means sucking it up, being polite, and getting over yourself long enough so that everyone else, at least, can have a good time—and once you stop focusing on how annoyed you are, you might surprise yourself by having a good time, too.
Sagittarius (Nov. 22-Dec. 21)
Don't go negative. Even though it's occasionally funny when people talk shit about each other, doing so doesn't reflect well on you. Resist the urge to participate in a smear campaign of any kind this week, even if it seems like it might benefit you or yours in some way. When everyone else plays dirty, the more you can keep your hands clean the better. Pointing fingers may very effectively bring someone else down—but to drag someone down you usually need to be below them. Let them fling all the shit they want—if you don't retaliate, you'll still come through it smelling (mostly) like roses.
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