The outgoing Chinese Horse Year proved to be a rough ride, more like a bucking bronco than a steady steed. After a long period of chaos and disruption on financial, environmental and political fronts, be glad the horse has left the barn and galloped into the sunset. Welcome the Year of the Goat, an interlude of relative calm and emerging stability that offers a period in which to reorganize and reposition ourselves to launch into a new orbit. The way things used to be done haven’t been working so now is the time to build a new paradigm.
The Year of the Goat (also Ram or Sheep) starts February 19th and is considered a pivotal year for initiating positive change, according to the Chinese zodiac. The overriding message: It’s time to get our collective and individual acts together.
By nature, goats are peaceful and easy going and by following the example of these quiet, thoughtful creatures, we are presented with an opportunity to rebalance our lives. De-cluttering our homes and personal spaces is critical to freeing ourselves from old habits. Adjusting how we think can help develop new solutions to what previously seemed to be intractable problems.
Being mindful of our actions and how we conduct ourselves can improve the quality of our lives as well as strengthen relationships with those around us. Cast aside pessimism and negativity if you sincerely want to elevate yourself to another level of success in career, financial management or love.
Based on a twelve-year lunar cycle, the Chinese zodiac features a unique animal sign related to each year. These animal signs are the Rat, Ox, Tiger, Rabbit, Dragon, Snake, Horse, Goat, Monkey, Rooster, Dog and Pig.
The year of your birth corresponds to the animal sign based on the Chinese zodiac.
The Chinese believe your animal birth year exerts a powerful influence on personality, decision-making and, ultimately, destiny.
Match the year of your birth with the Chinese zodiac animal and follow the advice offered to help you successfully navigate the year ahead.
Rat: 1912 1924 1936 1948 1960 1972 1984 1996 2008
Ox: 1913 1925 1937 1949 1961 1973 1985 1997 2009
Tiger: 1914 1926 1938 1950 1962 1974 1986 1998 2010
Rabbit: 1915 1927 1939 1951 1963 1975 1987 1999 2011
Dragon: 1916 1928 1940 1952 1964 1976 1988 2000 2012
Snake: 1917 1929 1941 1953 1965 1977 1989 2001 2013
Horse: 1918 1930 1942 1954 1966 1978 1990 2002 2014
Goat: 1919 1931 1943 1955 1967 1979 1991 2003 2015
Monkey: 1920 1932 1944 1956 1968 1980 1992 2004
Rooster: 1921 1933 1945 1957 1969 1981 1993 2005
Dog: 1922 1934 1946 1958 1970 1982 1994 2006
Pig: 1923 1935 1947 1959 1971 1983 1995 2007
If you don’t build your dreams, someone will hire you to build theirs.
Clever, focused and relentless in pursuit of a goal, the Rat is highly adaptable in adverse circumstances that might force others with lesser resolve to cut and run. This ability to press on and persevere is the reason why you are well-positioned to experience a modest uptick in your affairs. Be grateful for small gains; the Rat and the Goat aren’t great partners. Your compulsive need to control everything that happens could ultimately prove ruinous. Having a plan is always good but know that things aren’t going to fit neatly into your spreadsheet of life perspective. Ease off the throttle, loosen your grip on reality and maybe get some therapy for that nagging problem.
Love Match: Dragon, Ox, Dog
Remarkable Rats: William Gibson, Phil Hartman, Avril Lavigne, Lourde, Lebron James, Mark Zuckerberg, Donna Summer, Monet, Alan Turing, Mehmet Oz, Eminem, Jim Henson
Over-prepare, then go with the flow.
Serious, hardworking, strong and dependable, you have an impressive reputation for pulling your own weight in all endeavours. Able to weather the storm by sheer will and strength of personality, you have many admirers. Linear thinking, while not exciting, is the way you roll. By keeping things simple you get results. The Goat advises you to lighten up just a bit and allow yourself to colour outside the lines. No one will ever think you a slacker so there’s no need to work as hard as you do. You’ve earned the right to enjoy the fruits of your labour. It should be a good year so let off some steam. Join the party and let it all hang out, at least till an hour past your bedtime.
Love Match: Rooster, Rat, Monkey
Remarkable Oxen: K. D. Lang, Wayne Gretzky, Michael J. Fox, Carly Rae Jepsen, Pharrell Williams, Larry Page, Keira Knightly, Stephanie Meyer, George Clooney, Michael Phelps, Ichiro Suzuki, Napoleon Bonaparte
The best way to predict the future is to create it.
Tigers are an all or nothing kind of presence, hard to ignore as they swashbuckle their way through life. This is a year where the Goat wants you to temporarily back away from the grander schemes and focus on achieving more security and stability. It’s a good time to practice moderation in all things including dietary habits. Peace and quiet is a beneficial mantra to adopt, at least temporarily. All that pouncing can be hard on the body and the brain. Being less impulsive means making better decisions. To unwind, take up meditation or yoga. You’re in a position to help others so lend a hand. There will be bumps in the road ahead but nothing you can’t handle.
Love Match: Horse, Dog, Pig
Remarkable Tigers: Gordon Lightfoot, Peter Jennings, Nia Vardalos, Alanis Morissette, John Candy, Jim Carrey, Usain Bolt, Banksy, Robert Pattison, Lady Gaga, Hugh Hefner, Agatha Christie
Hard work beats talent when talent doesn’t work hard.
Calm, careful and discrete in all matters, Rabbit people are often seen as conservative and introverted. This surface appearance hides a steely ambition, keen intuition and sharp analytical prowess. Rabbits know how to get ahead in the world and have good relationships with Goat so anticipate a year of measurable progress in all worthwhile endeavours. Overextending yourself in certain areas might lead to health issues so guard against pushing your limits—or your luck—too hard. You’ll experience smooth sailing if you stick with what you know best. You might want to find a partner who can share that guilty pleasure.
Love Match: Goat, Dog, Pig
Remarkable Rabbits: Ellen Page, Sydney Crosby, Mike Myers, Kate Nelligan, Jet Li, Henry Miller, Bruno Bettelheim, Donnie Yen, Germaine Greer, Ingrid Bergman, Lewis Carroll, Confucius
Doubt kills more dreams than failure ever will.
Dauntless, charismatic and opinionated, the Dragon likes to put on a show and enjoys flying at higher altitudes. You like to be right and to have things done your way. To move forward in a Goat year, however, the best strategy is to pull back the claws, lower the flame and stake out a manageable position on the ground. Small, achievable goals are best and you can meet them with a methodical work ethic. Keep in mind that even the richest gold mines produce just grams of precious metal per tonne of ore. It will be a good year to evaluate what you really want to do with your life. Once that’s determined, get preparations underway because your turn will come soon.
Love Match: Rat, Monkey, Horse, Rooster
Remarkable Dragons: Alex Trebek, Jim Pattison, Diana Krall, Keanu Reeves, Dan Akroyd Amy Tan, Jimmy Connors, Adele, Deng Xiaoping, John Lennon, Vladimir Putin, Bruce Lee
You are not here to be average.
What other people see as ego, pride and vanity, Snakes call self-assurance, self-respect and sex appeal. Able to parse the calculus of human behavior, Snakes can quickly size up a room and identify the motivations of others. Sticking to their own agenda, they hold themselves and others to high standards and will do whatever it takes to arrive at their destination. This year could bring agitation in diverse aspects of your life so the Goat counsels you to withdraw from the spotlight to uncoil and release all that tension, mental and physical. Emotional outbursts are draining so learn to control yourself. Redirecting this energy along more productive channels will lead you to warmer climates that nurture health, wealth and love.
Love Match: Ox, Rooster, Monkey
Remarkable Snakes: Christopher Plummer, Edgar Bronfman, Frank Gehry, Terry Sawchuk, Taylor Swift, J. K. Rowling, Fyodor Dostoevsky, Daniel Radcliffe, Pablo Picasso, Charlie Watts, Alfred Nobel, Carol King
You think big, you get big.
Strength, energy, and extreme intelligence combined with an outgoing nature are characteristics of the Horse. They can also be self-centered, headstrong and standoffish. The Goat gives you its blessing and wants you to succeed so move forward with confidence. Optimize the use of all resources and assets. Invest your time and energy wisely and the payoff is great. Associating with people who share a similar worldview will spark the beginning of a powerful momentum that will catapult you into another quantum orbital. A fresh attitude is key to making things happen. Everything is possible but with time limited, you’ll need to be selective about what you target. Act as if you cannot fail.
Love Match: Tiger, Dog, Dragon, Goat
Remarkable Horses: Tim Horton, James Cameron, Nelly Furtado, Angela Merkel, Emma Watson, Louis Pasteur, Brian Wilson, Clint Eastwood, Neil Armstrong, Lou Reed, Rembrandt, Martin Scorsese
The best time for new beginnings is now.
Lovers, not fighters, Goat people possess a high intellect, are kind to a fault, and manage to live happily with others. Easy going and artistic, they are masters of going with the flow because, like a point guard coming up court, they can see the flow. Anything you want can be yours as long as you pursue it with passion and a well-conceived plan. Treat yourself to the finer things in life but don’t overindulge or neglect your well-being. Break up what feels like a routine. It’s time to expand your horizons. Reinvigorate your soul by traveling some place you’ve always wanted to go but eat street food instead of going to restaurants.
Love Match: Rabbit, Horse, Pig
Remarkable Goat: Alice Munro, William Shatner, Joni Mitchell, Pierre Trudeau, Evangeline Lilly, Bill Nye, Barbara Kingsolver, Yo-Yo Ma, Jeff Koons, Evangeline Lily, Michelangelo, George Harrison, George Jones
Push harder than yesterday if you want a different tomorrow.
Mentally quick, witty, and playful, the Monkey enjoys practical jokes and delights in rousing the rabble. At the same time, you are a thinker, perching just outside the three-ring circus of life to take things in and wonder exactly where it is you fit. This is the year the Goat wants you to act on fulfilling your dreams. Take a giant step outside your comfort zone even if you’re not sure what you’re doing. It’s a transition period so you need to break free of familiar patterns. Open your mind to new experiences and commit that nervous energy to taking a chance. Embrace change. If you do, this will be a time of fantastic growth.
Love Match: Rat, Ox, Dragon, Snake
Remarkable Monkeys: Celine Dion, Kim Cattrall, Ryan Gosling, Adam Gopnik, Lorne Michaels, John Kenneth Galbraith, Miley Cyrus, Ian Fleming, Lucy Liu, Harry Houdini, Tony Hawk, Leonardo da Vinci
Don’t look back—you’re not going that way.
The Rooster is resilient, meticulous, ebullient, tenacious and sensible. But you can also be cranky, overzealous and pretentious, not to mention noisy. The Goat isn’t inclined to do you any favors so be warned. There will be obstacles in your path and you will be tested. Rather than face problems head on and risk cranking up the stress levels, accept that there are some things that can’t be changed. Find a safe place to hole up and take stock. Career, money and relationships need to be reviewed and reconfigured. It’s worth the effort. Your reward is rejuvenation and a fresh perspective.
Love Match: Ox, Dragon, Snake, Rooster
Remarkable Roosters: Roberta Bondar, Neil Young, James A. Naismith, Maurice Richard, Robert Goulet, Roger Federer, Aung San Suu Kyi, Helen Mirren, Cameron Crowe, Pete Townsend, Itzhak Perlman, Joan of Arc
If the plan isn’t working, change the plan but never the goal.
The Dog is a bundle of contradictions. Attentive, warmhearted and loyal, you can also turn nasty, become disagreeable and be impossible to live with. Dogs and Goat don’t rank high on the compatibility charts so expect life to be a little fractious. Because you’re a social person, you’ll be able to navigate the twists and turns with a little help from your friends. Finances could be tight so curb extravagant spending now. You’ll always have enough of everything but only because you continue to be frugal. Pay attention to staying physically strong and keep a clear mental outlook.
Love Match: Tiger, Rat, Horse, Rabbit
Remarkable Dogs: Leonard Cohen, Ivan Reitman, Justin Bieber, Jane Goodall, Tiny Fey, Bill Watterson, Maggie Smith, Keith Moon, Golda Meir, Brigitte Bardot, Jacques Cousteau, Phil Mickelson
The difference between winning and losing is most often not quitting.
The authentic and sincere Pig knows how to enjoy the finer things in life on both high-brow and low-brow ends of the spectrum. You’re good company, people seek your advice and you are generous with both your time and money. You and the Goat get along famously and this year good things are scheduled to come your way, hand over cloven-hoof—if you keep your eyes open for opportunity. Previous hard work and astute management of your personal, household and business affairs place you in an advantageous position. Be your usual smart, shrewd self and you can’t lose. Numerous achievements are attainable if you maintain perspective on what needs to be done.
Love Match: Rabbit, Tiger, Goat, Rat
Remarkable Pigs: Donald Sutherland, Marshall McLuhan, Doug Henning, Charles Best, Bryan Adams, Lee Kuan Yew, Nigella Lawson, Paul Cezanne, Jules Dassin, Herb Alpert, Tracey Ullman, Al Capone
Reprinted with permission from the Asian Pacific Post.