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Your Chinese zodiac fortune for the Year of the Rat

By Catharina Cheung 25 January 2020

Kung hei fat choy! The Year of the Rat is officially upon us, and we are all caught up in a frenzy of family gatherings, big meals, and red packet collecting. During the down times when you’re trying not to slip into a food coma from too much turnip cake, why not read up on your zodiac fortune for the year ahead?

Scroll on to find your birth year and the respective animal it corresponds to, and find out what lies in store for your finances, career, relationships, and health, according to metaphysics astrologer and feng shui practitioner James Lee Shing Chak.

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Rat

Birth years: 1936, 1948, 1960, 1972, 1984, 1996, 2008

2020 is your zodiac year, so there is a clash in the stars. Defining parts of your character or personality will be inflated, but this means the bad parts of yourself along with the good. Take special care this year to be humble and respectful, and don’t be envious. Otherwise, you might find your mental health taking a strain. This year could also see Rats being more susceptible to injuries, so be careful in your day-to-day and take care of your health.

Change will also spell good fortune for Rats, so if you’ve been thinking about taking up that job post overseas, doing tertiary studies, or travelling, this is a good year to do so. There will be opportunities to really showcase your talents at work, with possibilities of career progression. This particularly rings true for those whose work comes in bursts of energy, such as law enforcement, athletes, or labourers. Those who work with cars, whether it be manufacturing, repairing, or selling them, will also see smooth sailing.

Look out for health problems, particularly to do with the skin, or deeper conditions that are slow-acting; knives and similar sharp objects; beware of hidden dangers in your home and work environment; sudden and unexpected dangers or surgeries, such as concussions, shattering glass, or dangerous people; health issues arising from insect bites; getting hurt by people’s words, whether intentional or otherwise; becoming the subject of envy and opposition due to rise in status; malicious people; and more volatile emotions, as you might find yourself getting upset over little things, especially in relationships.

Ox

Birth years: 1937, 1949, 1961, 1973, 1985, 1997, 2009

You will find that your environment is conducive towards helping you accomplish what needs to be done this year. There will be obstacles in your way, but you will also meet helping hands. Overall, 2020 is shaping up to be a good year for the Ox.

There is the possibility of career progression or your talents being recognised; take this opportunity to participate in public events or competitions in things you’re good at, as this could be your claim to fame! The appearance of the ‘sky’ star signifies travel, so head overseas and see what opportunities await.

Those working in aviation or airlines will see their career going smoothly this year. Progression is all well and good, but remember to stay grounded and take into account the feelings of those around you. Those in higher positions of power would do well to be wary and remember that the higher you climb, the longer the fall.

Be particularly careful with vehicles, motorcycles, or even bicycles. Professional drivers should take further precautions. You might also be more at risk of losing your footing, so be careful on stairs, opt to sit on the lower levels on transport, and avoid activities that occur at height. In terms of health, look out for respiratory issues.

Those born in the year of the Ox might also find themselves less able to control their emotions; beware of your words causing offence and remember to tell yourself to let things slide. Those looking for romance will also have a good year meeting men they like, so seize the day!

Tiger

Birth years: 1938, 1950, 1962, 1974, 1986, 1998, 2010

Like the kings of the jungle, Tigers generally have strong, independent, and decisive characters. In 2020, however, these characteristics might cause them to become more lonely. Male Tigers specifically will find this affects their relationships and ability to meet new people. Remind yourself to be less aloof, maintain a close bond with your family, and look out for those around you.

Tigers also have a chance of being distressed due to elderly relatives having health problems, so try to maintain a good relationship with your nearest and dearest. If possible, try to avoid going to wakes or funerals as the negative energy could affect your fortune, which could result in health issues or unfortunate incidents. Doing charitable work, or even watching a comedic film every now and then for a good laugh, will help increase positive energy instead.

Health-wise, Tigers should be wary of going to high places, where they are at a greater risk of injury from falls; this particularly applies to travel. This is not a stable year, as Tigers face travelling, job changes, industry changes, house moves, or even emigration. There may be instances of sudden changes, shifts in direction, abrupt halts, or sudden losses in their path. This all means that Tigers are at a higher risk of feeling run down and insecure. On the flip side, this also means that Tigers who are in industries dealing with changes or “flows”, such as traffic, production, travel, education, will have good luck in their careers.

The appearance of the “Heavenly Kitchen” star signals that Tiger chefs or those in charge of cooking for their families will experience an increase in culinary inspiration. Needless to say, this bodes well for those working in the F&B business; this year is also ideal for Tigers looking to enter the industry.

In general, those born in the Year of the Tiger should understand that in this year of changes, it’s better to learn to go with the flow; issues will resolve themselves better this way.

Rabbit

Birth years: 1939, 1951, 1963, 1975, 1987, 1999, 2011

There is a clash in the stars for Rabbits this year, and the appearance of the “Three Punishments” star doesn’t bode very well for overall fortunes. However, the Chinese believe that “one happy event can mitigate three disasters”, so attending an auspicious event such a wedding will increase your luck.

On the bright side, Rabbits will have good luck in relationships this year. This is a good time for partnered Rabbits to get married; single Rabbits will find partners more easily; those who are trying for children will find their luck in conceiving increases; and there are more helping hands to aid endeavours. Rabbits can better their chances further by wearing brighter colours and incorporating red tones in their makeup.

In terms of career, Rabbits are more clear-headed and will find their work performance improves. Those working in design, the creative industry, healthcare, or industries that target females will see their careers on the rise. There will be the appearance of helping hands, but this can also be seen negatively; something will go wrong before people step in to help. Beware of financial problems, or your past being dug up again to hinder your growth.

Health-wise, Rabbits are at risk of some bloodshed, or of health conditions suddenly deteriorating. Negate this by instigating this foretold “bloodshed” yourself, through donating blood, booking into a dentist appointment, or anything else that involves losing trace amounts of blood safely.

In general, keeping your head down, not being involved in others’ business, being careful with investments and lending money, and handling financial transactions safely is the way forward for Rabbits in 2020.

Read more stories about the Lunar New Year:

Dragon

(Birth years: 1940, 1952, 1964, 1976, 1988, 2000, 2012)

2020 will be a year of both good and bad for Dragons, but the Year of the Rat is a compatible one so overall it should be a smooth year. Dragons will see the emergence of unique thoughts and ideas with creativity abound; this will be a particularly fruitful time for those involved in arts, music, design, literature, and the like. Dragons will also have an easy time performing outstandingly in various endeavours, and could also see their ‘power’ increasing—this could be in terms of social status or getting ahead in the workplace.

Dragons will also have a fruitful year in terms of finances, as long as it’s money made from proper means, though be mindful that there is very little external help available so everything you achieve will have to stem from your own efforts. There will also be the possibility of problems with legal documents, contracts, and the like this year.

Health-wise, it’s not looking like a stable year. Quality of sleep will be compromised, and Dragons will likely deal with headaches or dizziness, mental stress, and negative emotions. It may be tempting to self-medicate with alcohol and other intoxicants, but do remind yourself that this won’t solve any issues. Instead, engage in de-stressing activities such as exercise, listening to music, basking in the sun, going outdoors more, and getting enough rest.

Overall, Dragon fortunes can be improved by being wary of naysayers and being more adaptable to surroundings and circumstances.

Snake

Birth years: 1941, 1953, 1965, 1977, 1989, 2001, 2013

The overarching feeling of 2020 for Snakes is one of slight chaos. There will be some issues on the horizon: mostly physical, and partly also regarding personal possessions. Those involved in entrepreneurial ventures or investments should especially exercise caution and restraint.

There is also a good chance that Snakes will encounter people departing from their lives in 2020. This could be as innocuous as children going abroad to study or flying the nest after marriage, or could mean something more serious, like the death of pets or elderly family members. Face these situations calmly and with acceptance.

Your body might also send you signals of exhaustion, such as feeling a sense of detachment and not being sure-footed. This might manifest more in older Snakes, so take the opportunity to do a thorough body check-up. Snakes, in general, will also be more susceptible to minor injuries regarding joints, ligaments, extremities, or ailments resulting from insects.

Take extra precautions to not lose personal belongings, and look out for thieves. It would be a choppy year if not for the appearance of a particularly strong star named ‘Yue De’, which negates much of the negativity. Luckily, this star represents warmth and love, signifying female helping hands—this could mean one woman, or a whole group. The seventh to ninth months of the lunar calendar should see Snakes’ luck increasing.

Those in the wedding industry (such as wedding planners, consultants, gown designers) will find their careers sailing smoothly. Other industries with a female target audience (such as beauty and fashion) will also benefit from the appearance of this star. It also affects interpersonal relationships, and male Snakes, in particular, will find this an ideal year to settle down and get married.

Horse

Birth years: 1942, 1954, 1966, 1978, 1990, 2002, 2014

Horses are animals that keep their goal in sight and race towards it bravely, and those born under this zodiac animal generally also benefit from these characteristics—energetic, seeking to challenge and be challenged, and continually looking to perform better. Luckily, several alignments in the stars signal 2020 to be a year for career progression.

Those working in home-related industries such as real estate or home renovation will have increased opportunities; other Horses can also share in some of this luck by either purchasing property or renovating your existing home.

Unfortunately, overall speaking, there is a clash in the stars this year for Horses, the most negative of which signals large expenditures. This could be a good thing, such as purchasing property, but either way, beware of monetary losses this year. For this reason, 2020 is a bad year for making investments; refrain also from lending money or gambling. However, some of this bad energy can be negated by initiating the expenditure yourself and spending the money you would otherwise lose on health-related checks.

There will also be hurdles in your way preventing you from reaching your goals; it would be better for Horses to make short-term rather than long-term goals this year, and to not be impatient. Some Horses will also find their emotions leaning toward the darker side, and so will have to pay extra attention to their mental health. There are two completely opposite ways to combat this depressive tendency. Horses can either be more sociable and attend more gatherings (especially weddings), and lift the mood by watching comedies for example. The second option is to induce a hearty crying session by watching, reading, or listening to something sad, which will also be a cathartic release.

Horses should also be made aware that they often have cold and aloof appearances—perhaps what is colloquially referred to as a Resting Bitch Face—and that this uncaring demeanour can negatively affect their relationships as partners often misread their visual cues.

Sheep

Birth years: 1943, 1955, 1967, 1979, 1991, 2003, 2015

There is a minor clash in the stars for Sheep this year which might manifest itself in the appearance of backstabbers, but there are also stronger stars that will offset this bad luck, so for the most part, 2020 is fairly smooth sailing.

You might experience sudden disruptions with regards to finances such as loss of money—refrain from investments or gambling, and be extra vigilant in looking after personal and company possessions. Have insurance or backup plans in place in case you do encounter such losses.

Sheep who are in higher positions at work might be challenged for their role this year; those in the aviation industry especially need to look out to avoid being dethroned. With regards to health, look out for skin issues, injuries from falls especially when climbing, and beware of falling objects both indoors and outdoors.

Relationship-wise, 2020 will be a year of changes. Sheep may feel insecure or unstable, which will negatively affect their interpersonal relationships. Pay attention to words that may cause offence, and work on nurturing important relationships.

On a more positive note, Sheep will also be able to resolve issues easily this year, due in part to the appearance of helping hands. In addition to having this help to rely on, this year will also be conducive for creativity. Finances are also looking good; this can be further boosted by dabbling in property-related things such as renovating or redecorating.

What’s on during Lunar New Year:

Monkey

Birth years: 1932, 1944, 1956, 1968, 1980, 1992, 2004, 2016

2020 will be a relatively stable year for Monkeys and will be especially good in terms of career. Those with white-collar jobs and stable incomes, in particular, will see heightened chances of progression and pay rises. Note that this monetary windfall will only come from proper means, so sketchy side gigs won’t produce the same result! Those whose jobs involve speed and explosive energy (such as law enforcement and athletes) will benefit particularly.

Being motivated is all well and good, but Monkeys should beware of appearing too cold and unfeeling in the process, which will only attract backstabbing and lose your support from friends and family. Because of this same tendency to appear aloof, Monkeys won’t experience much of a breakthrough with regards to relationships, romantic or otherwise. This is a good time to reevaluate your way of dealing with people.

Health-wise, Monkeys should avoid needless bloodshed by not being rash, and look out for possible injuries caused by animals. Be particularly wary of traffic and vehicular safety. Minor clashes in the stars mean you will also likely have to deal with sudden minor annoyances such as conflicts of interest, rumours being spread, or making wrong decisions due to receiving false information. Deal with such situations calmly and in a level-headed manner. Some of this negative energy can be dispelled by going to certified professionals and doing acupuncture, acupressure massages, gua sha, cupping, or even going to parks and walking along acupressure pebble paths barefoot.

Rooster

Birth years: 1933, 1945, 1957, 1969, 1981, 1993, 2005, 2017

Clashes in the stars spell difficulties achieving goals, but luckily there are also lucky stars that offset this negative energy. 2020 will also be a great year for relationships, so Roosters who are considering marriage should seize the time to seal the deal. Those who are trying for children should see their chances increase greatly; similarly, those seeking romantic partners should have good encounters coming their way. In fact, Roosters will have so much relationship luck that they may find themselves being gossiped about because of it; married Roosters should take extra care to not let their interpersonal luck affect their marriage.

Financial circumstances this year look relatively balanced. Roosters will have luck in small wins such as lotteries or raffles, but shouldn’t let this get to their heads as monetary loss and expenditures are also on the cards.

Roosters should also reign in their feisty temperament and be more accepting of people instead of lashing out. They are also more likely to be the target of bad-mouthing. Health-wise, they are more susceptible to injuries from sharp objects and problems in the mouth area; book in for that dentist appointment you’ve been putting off!

Dog

Birth years: 1934, 1946, 1958, 1970, 1982, 1994, 2006, 2018

The appearance of inauspicious stars for Dogs hints at instability and confusion about the future. Thankfully, this is combated by luckier constellations, so even though Dogs may encounter more problems in 2020, they will also be able to resolve such issues.

There is also a higher chance of injuries and bloodshed this year; minor encounters would simply result in surface scratches, but there is a possibility of issues being serious enough to warrant surgical procedures. This would be a good year for body checks so you can root out health problems before they become a major issue. There is also a heightened chance of water-related accidents, so do take extra precautions if you absolutely have to engage in water activities. Beware also of traffic accidents and injuries related to climbing.

Dogs might also find their older relatives’ health declining more this year. To lessen this negative energy, try to refrain from visiting the sick at hospitals and attending funerals, but do more charitable work instead to attract positive karma and increase personal luck.

In terms of relationships, 2020 does not seem to be a great year for romance, but there might appear several casual flings on the horizon that don’t lead anywhere. Dogs in dedicated relationships should take care not to be embroiled in affairs. Those who are single might not be able to easily change their relationship status this year, and even those in relationships will find themselves feeling lonely more often. This is a good year to strengthen friendships so the loneliness doesn’t get overwhelming.

Some Dogs will find that this is the year for fresh starts in their career. However, those who have been finding their jobs lifeless and without direction will find a new sense of purpose. There might also be unexpected outgoings; beware of financial traps and know that this isn’t the time for daring investments.

Pig

Birth years: 1935, 1947, 1959, 1971, 1983, 1995, 2007

2020 will mostly be a stable year for Pigs without many rises and falls, particularly beneficial for pursuing education and career progression. The ‘Wen Chang’ star means you will find yourself more clear-headed and quick-witted and will yield particularly good results with artistic or creative pursuits. This will also be a year of good luck in exams, interviews, and applications.

Pigs are more likely to suffer from health problems this year, so be aware of your body and do go for health check-ups. Avoid potentially dangerous, overly taxing or speed-based activities, such as car racing or horse riding. You may also face an emotionally-charged departure; this could be family moving abroad, the death of a pet, or the health of elderly relatives causing concern. These emotionally taxing circumstances will take its toll on your already fragile health. Try to avoid visiting the sick in hospital or attending funerals, and do more charitable work to offset the negative energy.

Older Pigs should attend or organise more happy or light-hearted events such as parties and gatherings, as positive energy will boost both your mood and overall luck. All in all, Pigs will have a stable year of slow but steady growth, so it’s a good time to work on self-improvement.

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Catharina Cheung

Senior editor

Catharina has recently returned to her hometown of Hong Kong after spending her formative years in Singapore and the UK. She enjoys scouring the city for under-the-radar things to do, see, and eat, and is committed to finding the perfect foundation that will withstand Hong Kong’s heat. She is also an aspiring polyglot, a firm advocate for feminist and LGBTQIA+ issues, and a huge lover of animals. You can find her belting out show-tunes in karaoke, or in bookstores adding new tomes to her ever-growing collection.

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