OK, it really IS a New Year! So it’s time to get moving on all the things we said we wanted to get done this year! Here’s how to maximize your effectiveness.

The first thing to remember is that it’s not the Monkey year anymore.The Rooster year began on January 27 at 4:07 p.m. PST. Phew!

I don’t know about you, but I wasn’t a big fan of the monkey. The monkey is a bit of a prankster, and pranks abounded this past year. In fact, I’ll be really honest and say that IMO, the biggest prank of the year was the election of Donald Trump as president. If you’re a supporter of Trump, don’t worry, I won’t trash him. In fact, I will compliment him on using the Force, the Law of Attraction, whatever you want to call it, so well.

He was able to command the lion’s share of the ATTENTION in the election cycle. Love is the most powerful, creative force in the Universe, but hate and the attention that comes from that is almost as powerful. Nobody was lukewarm about this candidate. He rode that wave all the way to the white house in much the same way that George W. Bush did in 2000 and 2004, even though the majority voted against him.

I mention this because it’s a valuable lesson that we can all use in our own lives. Remember the old adage “the squeaky wheel gets the grease?” Well, there it was in action. Focus on what you love, and you will get that. But focus more on what you hate, and that shall be yours. And if you join with others and focus on one of these things (take your pick), then you add more creative power. Particularly during a tricky year like the monkey.

OK, enough about the cheeky monkey. Let’s talk about the Rooster.

The Rooster is a yang, or masculine, sign, so it’s definitely another man’s year. But this one is more conservative–in a good way. The rooster has a healthy respect for the rule of law. He also favors routine. While the rooster year will contain surprises (what year doesn’t?), mostly those surprises will happen after a period of well-researched actions. Basically, the rooster likes risk, but only carefully-calculated risk. So research, take small steps before you take the big leap, and know your audience.

This year is the year of the Fire Cock, so it is a more charming, dramatic version of the regal rooster. Charm and charisma can get you a long way, but, unlike in the fiery monkey year, you’re going to need a practical plan to get you the rest of the way.

I used to think, as most Chinese astrologers do, that certain signs are “luckier” in certain years. Experience, and the experience of clients, has taught me otherwise. Those who fare best are those who best play the game of the ruling animal. In the rooster year, those who have solid routines, who learn all they can, taking into account all the factors at play, who play by established rules, and  measure and leverage their risks will do best.

And if you were born in the year of the rooster, that goes double. This should be the year you work hardest in service of your grand vision. What you do this year will determine what you do for the next 12 years! So choose carefully, and let go of any impediments to living your dream as soon as possible. Oftentimes your own year can be challenging. But if you meet those challenges as the person you want to be, you will attain your goals!

Another rooster tip: get up early. Anyone who’s ever been on a farm with a chicken coop knows this. This is a year where the early bird actually does get the worm!

A few lucky things that you can do to celebrate the year of the cock is to put up a statuette of your Chinese Zodiac animal next to a rooster of the same size, face them east, and do something to actually acknowledge the change of the year if you haven’t yet. Even if it’s just going out for Chinese food.

Happy New Year. Gung Hay Fat Choy!