May 12, 2011 | 12:05 PMTaurus (April 20-May 20)
Unspoken "contracts" happen all the time—but the person you're dealing with isn't likely to respond well to any implicit obligations they may be signing up for without knowing it. Therefore, be upfront about your expectations right from the get-go. It's okay to have "strings attached" when you offer something of yourself—most interactions are, essentially, an exchange. Just be honest and forthright about what those are—and flexible about what they might be. There should be room for negotiation here, otherwise what you're offering is more of an ultimatum than a deal. How do you think that will go over?
Gemini (May 21-June 20)
I know you're not always in the mood to deal with a high-maintenance friend, but part of being a friend is being there for someone when they need you. That doesn't mean you can't have and enforce boundaries—you should! However, if those boundaries mean that you'll never really come through for your admittedly needy buddy, then you're not really being much of a friend, are you? If that's the case, do both of you a favor and just cut your "friend" loose. However, I hope you can see the benefit in being there once in a while; generally, this kind of effort will come back to you in abundance.
Cancer (June 21-July 22)
Getting worked up over details is something you'll probably regret. You'll be embarrassed you made such a fuss over something so nitpicky. And yet, it happens. This week is about not sweating the small stuff. Easier said than done, I know. In the past this has definitely been a stumbling block for you, and even getting embarrassed about some of it hasn't been enough to keep you from going there again. You'll get it, though. You just need a lot of practice learning how to let this shit just roll off your back. This week, fortunately or unfortunately, you'll get it.
Leo (July 23-Aug. 22)
Here's a funny thing about Leos: You sometimes do stuff specifically to get attention, but then become annoyed or resentful when you get it, because it came at the "wrong" time, or from the "wrong" people. Unfortunately, if you do something attention-getting, you're not likely to be able to control who notices, or when. Get over your silly expectations and try to be grateful for your "fans," even when they don't conform to what you hoped for. They're still far preferable to the alternative: no one caring enough about what you do to even notice.
Virgo (Aug. 23-Sept. 22)
People cross lines all the time—but in their defense, they often don't know it. You may need to be clearer and more vocal about what's taboo territory for you, or you're going to find people wandering around there with more frequency than you'd like. This week, you'll get plenty of chances to enforce those boundaries, because people will unwittingly be stepping across them quite often. Practice letting those intruders know what's up with as much humor, lightheartedness, and compassion as you can—you'll find that those qualities are much more effective than anger, scolding, or earnest entreaties. Remember, their "intrusions" are mostly innocent mistakes. Treat them as such.
Libra (Sept. 23-Oct. 22)
Honesty is always best when it comes to your most meaningful relationships, but that doesn't mean you need to disclose every little detail of everything that's ever happened to you. You're allowed to keep a few things private—but don't lie about them. Lies and deception will come back to haunt you very quickly right now. This is, admittedly, a thorny gray area with shifting boundaries. Sometimes, failure to reveal important information is tantamount to a lie. But other times, disclosing it would just be unproductive over-sharing. Determining which is which is this week's tricky task.
Scorpio (Oct. 23-Nov. 21)
You rightly sense that someone is horning in on your territory, but going right into full-on attack mode will just alienate all the wrong people, and actually allow your adversary to get into a much better position to seize some lost ground. Instead, you need to exercise a powerful Scorpionic quality: lie in wait. It may be galling to just sit tight while they try to finesse the situation, but that's quite simply your best strategy right now, if you want to keep your potential allies on your side. Don't worry, you'll get the chance to use that infamous Scorpio stinger of yours—what's ironic is that by that time, it may no longer be necessary.
SAGITTARIUS (Nov. 22-DEC.21)
The people who can hurt you the most are almost always those closest to you. That means sometimes you need to be a little more selective when deciding who you'll let get that close. One of your best qualities is your open friendliness and willingness to connect to people from all walks of life. I hope you never lose that. But at some point someone needs to prove they're worthy of your trust before you let them have an all-access pass. This doesn't mean people need to pass some lameass test; just that you need to hone your instincts and get better at determining who's trustworthy, who isn't, and who's quite simply worth the risk either way.
Capricorn (Dec. 22-Jan. 19)
You've heard the expression, "give them an inch, they'll take a mile." When you do it, I'm sure you just think of it as pressing your advantage. It might be a sound strategy in business, but in personal relationships when you push people too far, they walk away. This week, practice taking what's offered, with gratitude, and simply being happy with that instead of pushing for more (and more). Sure, if you pushed, you might get what you want, but in this case, what you get will be exponentially more sweet if you're patient enough to wait until it's freely offered.
Aquarius (Jan. 20-Feb. 18)
When given any kind of power, the temptation to look after your own interests, regardless of the expense to others, can be a great one. However, I hope you resist it. While whatever you're contemplating isn't really a big deal, in the grand scheme of things, it's perched on the top of a very steep, very slippery slope of less-than-ethical choices. Say no to this one. Look at the big picture and be as objective as possible here. Enlist an outside perspective if necessary. Then stick to simply doing the right thing—it's hard to go wrong there.
Pisces (Feb. 19-March 20)
It can be annoying when people totally misinterpret things about who you are, your relationships, or your situation. But it can be quite funny, too—if you're not too busy getting steamed up about it. Their assumptions make them look like asses, of course, but you don't have to join their club. Try to resist getting aggravated or upset. That's not likely to help the situation or reflect well on you. A snarky response to their mistake would certainly get your point across, but so would gently having fun with it. Laughing off their error would also generate more happiness all around—most importantly, for you.
Aries (March 21-April 19)
Sometimes you feel something so strongly that you go a bit overboard in communicating it. I love your enthusiasm, but it can come off as too eager, or even clingy, when you're so persistent. Trust that you've driven the point home already—you probably have, several times—and aim for subtlety for the rest of the week. It'd be better that someone miss something because you were simply too low-key in expressing it than annoying them because you're repeatedly harping on it. I wouldn't worry too much about people missing the point, though—your "subtle" is most other people's "normal."
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