One philosophical way of looking at January is to take the chance to perform something of a personal reboot; although any date on the calendar is arbitrary to a degree, the start of a year is the ideal moment to sit back, take stock and launch yourself in a new direction.
Another New Year!
If you’re reading that and thinking ‘Well it’s a bit late now’ then think again. Although one New Year has been and gone, as luck would have it there’s another one rolling into view. The New Year in question is the Chinese New Year which, in 2017, starts on January 28th, the beginning of the Year of the Rooster.
Chinese New Year Celebrations
Approximately one sixth of the world’s population will celebrate Chinese New Year, with festivities taking place in several cities across the UK. London, in fact, claims to be home to the largest celebrations outside Asia itself (although this is a title which San Francisco also lays claim to). In order to get the most out of it, however, it probably makes sense to learn a little bit about what the Year of the Rooster actually means.
The Rooster is one of the 12 signs of the Chinese zodiac, with every year being designated an animal such as an ox, rat, pig and horse, with people born within that year are said to demonstrate a particular set of characteristics. Individual years are also given one of the five Chinese Elements, such as wood, earth and metal, and this is also said to have an impact upon the personality of people born within that year. Previous years of the Rooster included 1945, 1993 and 2005, and 2017 is the year of the Fire Rooster.
Characteristics and Values
If you’re born in the year of the Rooster, for example, you are said to be trustworthy, extremely punctual (a trait linked to the fact that the rooster crows at the rising sun) and can be trusted with high levels of responsibility at work. You’re also loyal, a good communicator and popular with other people.
We’d like to think those characteristics lend themselves to the qualities of military personnel. Punctuality is a prerequisite for anyone in the armed forces. Imagine turning up late to relieve someone from their patrol, at best it is inconsiderate, at worst dangerous.
Trust and responsibility make for a strong foundation on which to build an approach to the wider workings of an organisation. Teamwork and being ultimately responsible for members’ lives of a squadron, unit or division is exactly what the forces are about.
Whether or not Chinese New Year and the Year of the Rooster resonate with you, aiming to be more more punctual, responsible and ambitious can’t possibly be anything other than a positive means of setting out to make the most of 2017.