Superstitious or not, I think we can all agree that a bit of good luck would be welcome about now.
Here are 8 lucky things you can do to bring you luck in the upcoming Year of the Ox, and the great news is, you most certainly do not need to be Chinese to join in the fun and share in the good fortune.
On February 11th at midnight, we will say farewell to the year of the metal rat (don’t let the door hit your arse on the way out, buddy) and welcome in the Year of the metal Ox at 12.01am on the 12th.
Metal is one of the four elements attached to the 12 animals of the Chinese Zodiac.
The last metal ox was in 1962. In the Chinese horoscope, Oxen are seen as hardworking and methodical. Oxen have ‘yin’ energy, and this will add a sense of responsibility to the year. It will be a good year for working hard and making an effort. It is a lucky year for starting a family and for improving relationships. It is also a lucky year for those seeking love. Woohoo !!
You need to finish cleaning your house before midnight on the 11th and then don’t clean up too much for a couple of days. Chinese people believe that if you sweep or clean on the first couple of days of the New Year, you will sweep away all the new good luck that has entered your home. Officially not cleaning up for a couple of days…how is this not lucky news?
Get your haircut BEFORE the 12th. It’s the same idea as cleaning the house. Cut off all the bad luck before the new year, then enjoy all the good luck the new growth brings.
Wear new underwear on the 12th, preferably red knickers. This is for ladies and men, we should all own red unmentionables. Red is most certainly the colour of the New Year, it is auspicious and super powerful, so head off to your favourite smalls shop and grab yourself something nice to wear under your clothes. If you can’t find red, never mind. Any colour new knickers will do. Just think how lucky you will feel in new pants and your mum will be very proud of you!
Eat orange and red things. Oranges are a given, they look like gold and orange is also a lucky colour, but if raspberry ice cream is more your thing, do it. Red cabbage fried with bacon, mmmmm. Food is a major part of Chinese New Year, but it doesn’t have to be red or orange. A nice bit of duck, pork or some dumplings or dim sum is always going to be lucky. A big plate of fruit. Nuts and sweets. Noodle soup and a nice pot of Chinese tea- or a sneaky glass of red wine.
Fresh flowers in the house. Chrysanthemums, if you can find them, or daffodils or roses and carnations. Cherry blossoms or anything pink, yellow or orange. Something bright to lift up your spirits and put some colour in the house. Orchids are good, but any flowers will do. If they smell good, even better, but they don’t have to.
A bunch of flowers for Chinese New Year is going to bring plenty of ‘joss’ or ‘good luck’ into your living space.
Share something with someone. Chinese New Year is all about giving, as well as getting, like Christmas. Lai See or Ang Pow, the red envelopes with money inside, are given to children, single people and employees to bring luck to the giver, not only the receiver, but you don’t need to give money. If you have a packet of biscuits, share them with a friend. Anything given at Chinese New Year will bring luck to both yourself and the person you share them with.
Stay in contact with people you love. This year, the 1.3 billion people who would normally head home to hug their family may have to stay in place and call them instead. Sound familiar? But don’t let physical distance keep you from telling people you care. There is a reason why Chinese New Year on a ‘normal’ year represents the largest human migration on the planet. Family and loved ones matter. You don’t have to celebrate Chinese New Year to know that, but let it be the excuse you needed to reach out and tell someone you love them, you need them and you are thinking of them. Not only will it remind you of how lucky you are, but it will bring such joy to someone else and they will instantly feel luckier.
From all of us at My Grey Nomads, ‘Kung Hei Fat Choi’ which means ‘best wishes for a prosperous New Year’ in the coming Year of the Ox.