May 04, 2011 | 02:45 PMTaurus (April 20-May 20)
Criticism is one thing. Full-on abuse is quite another. While I hope you're mature and open-minded enough to receive the former and allow it to influence your behavior (if not right in the moment, then at least after a bit of reflection), I also hope you're willing to stick up for yourself if this crosses the line into outright judgment and cruelty. This may not always be clear-cut, so those you consider your friends and allies should help you determine just where that line is, and help you fight the good fight if and when it's violated.
Gemini (May 21-June 20)
Don't overthink things. Sometimes you remind me of an old-school Western medical doctor, addressing each symptom of a problem as it arises (and the symptoms resulting from the "solutions" you've implemented), instead of trying to simply discover the root of the problem and nip that cleanly in the bud. The problem(s) before you, while currently occupying an inordinate amount of mental real estate, have one simple, quick solution, which will become obvious to you if you can take about ten steps back to have a gander at the much bigger picture. The real question is: Can you do that? If not, what's stopping you?
Cancer (June 21-July 22)
It's kind of you to be respectful of someone else's emotional state (not inviting his/her recent ex to a party, for example). However, eventually your relationships must be on your own terms. There's a statute of limitations regarding how long you're required to bend to others' emotional needs. At some point, they need to get over themselves instead of keeping their friends hostage to their drama. You're incredibly sensitive and patient—and even you know this is true. Unfortunately, this week you may have to drive the point home.
Leo (July 23-Aug. 22)
People are allowed to change their minds—they have to be, since they'll do it whether they're allowed to or not. It would be nice if they could have figured things out before they'd gone so far (leaving someone at the altar is the extreme case of such a scenario), but sometimes they're simply unable to wrap their heads around a situation until it's truly upon them. This can be confounding to Leos, who rarely have such difficulty and are generally forthright about their state of mind. You can't impart this decisiveness on others, so unfortunately you have to deal with their freaky, changeable minds. In the end, don't waste energy wishing you could change them—it's too late for that, even if you could. What happens, or has happened, is completely out of your hands—the only thing you can control is how you react to it.
Virgo (Aug. 23-Sept. 22)
Every relationship is different, and you shouldn't compare. My boyfriend and I once ran into an old ex of his, who thoughtlessly commented, "Does he wake you up all night to fool around, too?" (He didn't.) Naturally, that was a bit of a downer, but at the end of the day comparing and contrasting relationships is a losing proposition—so don't do it. And if you can't help it, at least cut yourself some slack and conclude that what you have is better; "No, he doesn't wake me up—I guess I just wore him right out!"
Libra (Sept. 23-Oct. 22)
Stuff is just stuff. While I'm sure you realize that rationally, coming to terms with it emotionally is sometimes more challenging, particularly when the material objects in question were gifts or inheritances or otherwise infused with sentimental nostalgia. While their worth to you defies monetary assessment, try to recognize that 99 percent of that value lies inside your head, and can't be taken away, even if the object is lost, stolen, or destroyed. Sure the item is gone or ruined, but its real value is still intact, inside your head. Try to keep that in mind before you fly off the handle.
Scorpio (Oct. 23-Nov. 21)
Everyone makes mistakes. Some of them are even ridiculously stupid, embarrassing ones. Yes, you should have known better, but the sooner you 'fess up to the mess, the sooner you can rectify the situation and move past it. Trying to cover it up or shift blame are the actions of a child; getting caught doing that—which would surely happen—would be even more humiliating, and cause more problems than just owning the slip-up right from the beginning. Step up, admit you screwed up, and maturely begin the process of figuring out how to best move on from here.
SAGITTARIUS (Nov. 22-DEC.21)
You can't control how people react to situations. Even though you tend to approach life with a direct, honest, mostly positive approach, you've probably noticed that some people are determined to see the worst in others, convinced the world is "out to get them," positive that anything that can go wrong, will—or all of the above. While it's admirable that you try to help such cynical souls, sometimes it's best to recognize that their habits are so ingrained that any conflicting perspectives you try to point out to them will be counted as unusual exceptions to the rule, and not the way things are.
Capricorn (Dec. 22-Jan. 19)
When a problem is entirely in your head, it can still sometimes be very difficult to distinguish from real difficulties imposed on you from the outside world; it seems just as tangible, daunting, and misery-inducing. And sometimes your lack of leverage can make it even harder to deal with successfully. This is when you ask for help—something most Capricorns despise doing. Barking orders or making unreasonable demands won't work out too well, so resist the urge to save face by trying those tactics. Instead, humbly and honestly ask for the help you'll need—you'll almost certainly get it.
Aquarius (Jan. 20-Feb. 18)
In this case, the best place to live might lie outside of your comfort zone. In other words, you're house-hunting in completely the wrong neighborhood! Exceptions to rules are frequently fantastic because they're just that—exceptional. By not considering them, you're severely limiting your options, and perhaps depriving yourself (and others) of tremendous happiness. It's time to broaden your horizons, think outside the box, and contemplate scenarios you haven't dared to imagine before. Most of those might be ridiculous pipe dreams—but one is likely to work out beautifully, and you'll never know which until you give them a go.
Pisces (Feb. 19-March 20)
Staying neutral isn't always an option. Sometimes you quite simply have to pick sides. Failing to do so will have you lumped in on one side or the other, by default, whether you like it or not. As annoying as the whole conflict is for you, at some point—preferably early on—you need to realize it's not going to go away and you will not be allowed to remain aloof from it. Therefore you need to dive right in, draw a line about acceptable behavior, and then stick to it—even if it means removing you and yours from the situation altogether if and when that line gets crossed.
Aries (March 21-April 19)
Here's your mantra for this week: "whatever works." You can get completely caught up with how things should function, and what might be expected of you in various scenarios. But sometimes those ideas are simply unrealistic, woefully incomplete, or not taking into account the details of your specific situation. Naturally, you can stubbornly cling to those concepts and watch things crash and burn, but wouldn't it be better to, for the sake of the worthy goals you have in mind, be willing to at least try stuff that could help, whether or not it "should" be necessary? Failing to do so would be at best narrow-minded, and at worst cruelly, needlessly masochistic.
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