September 8

09/08/11: Savior versus Supporter | Reversed Ten of Wands

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Do not remove a fly from your friend’s forehead with a hatchet.” –Chinese Proverb

I am very prone to biting off more than I can comfortably chew. I won’t say it’s “more than I can chew,” because once I’ve committed, I almost always WILL finish the job or die trying. Whether it’s mine or not, I believe I can do it quicker, easier, and better than most anybody else. This would be insufferably egotistical to say if it weren’t usually true. But egotistical or not, it’s still stupid.

At the time I volunteer, it all sounds like such a good idea! Virgo loves to help, man. But later, when I’m knee-deep in the soup and feeling it, I curse myself for of foresight. Note to self: don’t say “Yes” so damn fast!

Today’s Tarot forecast is the inverted Ten of Wands or Lord of Oppression, associated with Saturn in Sagittarius—you’ve got oversized (Sagittarius) responsibilities (Saturn)! As one of the Tarot Tens, we’re wrapping up one cycle in anticipation of starting a new. Tarot Wands are associated with fire, and are all about doing—working, creating, or building. So in short, the Ten of Wands is about carrying a huge load. Inverted, though, you’ve got means of escape.

The point here is to look carefully at what you’re carrying. If you’re load is too heavy, chances are some of it’s not yours. Your friends can figure out their own marriages. Your kids can decide for themselves what job is right for them.  Your coworkers can pick their own doctors. There are three little questions to look at here.

  1. Does the person want my help? If not and we’re talking a competent adult, pursuing is disrespectful.
  2. Do I want to help? Ability does not equal obligation. Am I in the position to take it on?
  3. Is it my place? Am I really “helping” by helping? Because some types of assistance allow people to avoid needed consequences to learn and grow.

One of the hardest parenting lessons I’ve run across is that there are NO magic words for helping a child wise up. You can plant seeds, but you’d best be happy averting your gaze once you have. Otherwise, you’ll drive yourself (and your kids) nuts checking the progress. A little faith is in order here, grasshopper. I didn’t want to raise dependent children. I wanted to raise strong ones. To do that, I had to find the strength within myself to know when to step back and shut up.

There’s a tremendous difference between SUPPORTER and SAVOIR, right up there with the difference between Mother and Martyr. I can drop a hint  (of the feather-weight versus leaden variety), offer insight, provide information, and that’s helpful, meaningful support. I can also tell others what to do, turn my life upside down in their name, or simply absorb their issues as mine—that’s running for savior and even if you manage it, you haven’t really done anything beyond emphasizing helplessness.

Saviors amplify weakness. Supporters amplify strength. Often, the most helpful thing I can do help convince someone they can effectively manage their own issues. That’s how I approach my Tarot work, too. I’d rather serve as cheerleader than crutch. Everybody’s happier and it has a much bigger impact, in the long run. It’s a more economical use of your goodwill. Leaves you with more to spend around.

Do you over-help? Can you find a route out?

Radiant Rider-Waite Tarot
by Us Games Systems

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Radiant Rider Waite, Saturn in Sagittarius, Tarot Tens, Tarot Wands, Ten of Wands


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  1. YIKES, Dixie!!

    Yep, this is what I’m dealing with. Walking a fine line between helping my best friend with her mum (Dementia and glaucoma), and letting friend deal with her denial tactics. Right now it works, because I’m getting paid and can use the money, but I’m constantly rethinking my attitudes about money because of it. Most of the time, it’s going ok. And then once in a while the mum becomes difficult and it’s exhausting and looks like a job for a pro.
    But believe me, being Libra, I’m constantly checking on myself to see if I’m doing too much.
    And as I do that, I’ve got my focus on finding my way out. ‘Cause this situation isn’t going to get any better.
    My friend IS listening, and making some changes. She is also very appreciative that I’m making sure her mum eats. (Friend is at work 8-10 hrs.)
    Thanks for the reminder, and the clarification, Dixie!!! I’m doing ok, but will pull this post up to review now and then!

  2. See, Dixie… I am not only one you are handing their heads to them! you be so good. love ya, Dixie.
    btw… just left a friendship that was more a game of drama and control than a real friendship. done with the drama and seeming like the door mat. handing them their heads…nicely. really.

  3. “Do you over-help?”

    My huge stellium in 6th of nearly all my personal planets says “Why certainly! Every chance I get! I love to serve!” But I know that it’s futile. I’ve tried and I have crossed the line, especially with my family, where helping becomes trying to live someone else’s life. And it ends in disaster for both parties involved, so I try to consciously be aware of my tendency to always do too much and help too much and never say “No.”

    1. Me too. Aquarius Sun, Mars and Saturn in the Virgo house, may explain why I relate to the Virgo tendencies and every word of this. It all has been really up for me lately, and especially today. Thank you so much for illustrating this really well for me to see. I am so glad to finally really “get it” that my old tendency/habit of helping is not really so helpful sometimes. It also makes me feel more appreciation for others who do not jump in and help when it seems/looks like help is needed. I used to judge that, but I look at it differently now.

  4. I’m so glad you asked this, Dixie. I have a dear friend who is definitely an over-helper. If you have her for dinner, she brings 4 or 5 dishes! I tried explaining it to her that sometimes helping really hurts. She’s an adult child of alchoholics and still hasn’t completely emerged from the savior role. As for me, I don’t help as much as I used to. I took my own advice. :moon:

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