I'm not a big believer in horoscopes, but they are fun, and I like to read them from time to time, especially when they say nice things about me. My birthday is January 2nd, which makes me a Capricorn, the legendary half-fish, half-goat, half-starchy-vegetable.
"The Capricorn-born people are the most determined of the entire Zodiac. The most prominent qualities of the Goats, as they are called, are that they are ambitious, conservative, determined, practical and helpful. They make good team leaders and organisers, because of their single-minded focus on their work, sense of responsibility and sincerity. They are perceived by people around them to be workaholics, unemotional and detached. Sometimes their negative qualities – suspicious, resentful, inhibited, pessimistic and stubborn – are seen clearly, but deep inside the Goat is a humble heart. They are soft, and their hard outer shells are meant to guard themselves against the hurt caused by rejection."
So there you have it. A personality, which runs almost completely counter to my Myers-Briggs type of INFP and is somewhat contrary to the typical image of a writer. And yet, I took a fiendish delight in googling "why Capricorns are awesome" and cherry-picking the best quotes to suit me.
So here is "My Top 5 Capricornisms Countdown (Plus a Bonus One)"
I think I can be a good listener and I do get asked for advice from time to time. As for putting people in their place. Well... (smiles) I don't like to do it, but if I had to, I'd like to think I'd be damn good at it.
I have high expectations for those around me. If someone says they can do something and shows a modicum of commitment, I am there. But whatever I expect of them, it's nothing compared to what I expect of myself. If I can't do it and do it well (if I can't set an example), then I have no right to expect it of anyone else.
If someone I care about or someone I'm looking after (students, etc.) needs help, I will help. I cannot help it. If I perceive a problem and you invite me to fix it, damned if I won't try my hardest to fix it. That's why I can be the best or worse editor: I will put hours into noting and trying to fix every perceived mistake, and so you will get back manuscripts bleeding blue (my choice of pen color). This is great if you want to shore up your weaknesses, but bad if you wanted me to stamp it with my approval and move on. And for all this editing, I expect nothing. Heck, half the time, I don't expect people to even be grateful for it. I expect them to be horrified, angry, and defensive, because no one likes being criticized, even if it's done out of love.
If you need proof of my need to matter, check out my poem "Ode to All My Murdered Trees" on my website, which is my angst about my writing not making a difference. I work hard, because, in the end, I want to make a difference in the world.
I interpret this to mean be the best version of yourself. It's not about being the best writer or the top student or the number one teacher--although I expect myself to write well, get good grades, and be pretty darned competent at teaching. That's subjective. But I try my best in everything I do, I give it my all, and I do not settle until I'm satisfied. That's part of my perfectionism, and it can have its dark side. But it also pushes me to achieve beyond what I may think I'm capable of. For better or worse, if I care about something, I can't not do my best. That's just how I am.
Hee, hee, hee. That one made me laugh.
Now Capricorns are apparently analytical, and I, for one, was not content to just enjoy the barrage of compliments I fished out for myself, no, I had to sit and ponder why I spent several hours of my Halloween gazing at these quotes, when heaven knows I should have been calling my parents, cleaning the kitchen, or preparing my notes for Nanowrimo.
I like learning about my personality and understanding how my brain works, and most of the time I identify with Myers-Briggs type: INFP, the idealist/ healer/ sensitive/ creative/ artist. But then you do a google image search, and you get pictures like this:
|Capricorns: Making the Impossible Look Easy|
And believe this:
In short, I need to shore myself up emotionally, because I've got a long road in front of me and it's going to be bumpy!