The Year of the Rat: Pros & Cons

Posted on January 10, 2020
Updated on March 10, 2021

Two rat statues face each other. One is white and wearing a red vest, another is red and wearing a white vest.

2020 heralds an exciting time as we move out of the Year of the Pig and into the Year of the Rat. The Year of the Rat begins on January 25th, 2020, and marks the beginning of a brand-new 12-year cycle in the Chinese Zodiac.

New cycles are always significant as they usually represent a tremendous upheaval, on both a personal level and a global scale. What’s more, 2020 is the Year of the male Metal Rat. The male and Metal aspects are significant for several reasons: Male indicates that a strong Yang energy will dominate while the Yin energy will take a backseat. This means that action is strongly on the agenda and people are likely to be more focused on their external surroundings.

Metal is a strong element, one of the strongest in the Chinese Zodiac. It is durable, powerful and as strong as a steel blade. Meanwhile, the Rat itself is governed by Water which brings a more emotional aspect to this year; we may find ourselves feeling more stubborn than usual in regard to our beliefs or outlooks, especially ones which trigger a degree of high emotion.

All in all, it looks like it’s going to be an exciting year so let’s crack on and see what pros and cons come with the Year of the male Metal Rat!

Year of the Rat Pros:


The combination of Rat and Metal brings a lot of opportunities for innovation. Two animals governed by Water, the Rat and the Pig, are likely to experience opportunities in the realm of relationships and sociability, while animals such as the Rooster and Monkey, who are governed by Metal, can expect to see opportunities in business and careers. All twelve animals of the zodiac may experience a surge in innovative ideas, but whether these ideas come to fruition depends entirely on the individual.


The Rat is an animal known for its desire to succeed, especially to succeed in the material sense. With Metal and Yang also dominating, this success is amplified and almost all animals of the zodiac should experience good luck and fortune to some degree. Everyone will experience a surge in determination with regard to reaching their goals. But these initiatives can only succeed if they are planned carefully. The Rat is not naturally lucky like the Tiger; his luck depends on careful planning and clever strategy. It is something everyone should bear in mind during the Rat year.

Global Change

Change is not always easy – sometimes it is downright difficult. On the surface, it may even look like change is not going the way it should, but the Year of the male Metal Rat indicates that the change that comes will be for the best. The Rat is a shrewd thinker, not clouded by emotions. A general energy across the world will begin to merge as one and more people will begin to “wake up” to what is going on around them.

Read this next: Chinese Zodiac Palmistry for the First Trine

Year of the Rat Cons:


More of a warning, the Year of the Rat in 2020 brings with it a number of opportunities and innovation, but also the risk of complacency. People may become overly-content to the point of just sitting back and doing nothing; this complacency can mean the difference between success and failure. So while opportunity may abound, people are advised to stay on their guard and keep striving for their goals until the tasks are achieved.

Conflict of Opinion

The Rat is a stubborn individual and will often view things through tunnel-vision. Unlike his nemesis in the Circle of Conflict, the Horse, he is not known for being flexible. As such, tensions may run high among people who may find themselves less empathetic than usual. A resistance to Yin energy (which is always there, but which some people may struggle to tap into more than usual) can exacerbate this, so keeping a check on one’s emotions is important throughout the year.

Mistrust in Relationships (2nd Half of the Year)

While the first half of the year bodes well in terms of relationships, with people striving to make relationships work, parting amicably or meeting like-minded mates, the second half of the year may prove more challenging. There may be a rise in distrust which can put a strain on all types of relationships; it is important to keep things in perspective if this happens to you and not react too hastily. Keeping an open mind is essential; suspicion and paranoia may loom so be sure to keep a check on unruly thoughts if they are not grounded.


The year of the male Metal Rat is indeed an exciting time due to beginning a new cycle in the Chinese Zodiac. Take advantage of the innovative and driven energies that dominate and be sure to keep an eye on any mistrustful suspicions or complacency that may creep up on you!

Related Article:The Best Essential Oil for Your Chinese Zodiac Sign

Did you enjoy this article? Please share it with your friends!

Sarah Brownlee is a harmonious Libra Sun, Conflicted Scorpio rising, and a Tiger in the Chinese Zodiac. A whirlwind writer with a passion for Tarot cards and Astrology in all… Learn More About The Author »

Next Article

You might also be interested in

Neptune Direct in Pisces Alert - Denial Is Not Just a River

Has life felt a little foggy lately? Or have you been confused a lot about very big things in life? That is largely in part due to Neptune retrograde in Pisces since June 18,… Read Full Article »

Your Weekly Astrology Overview: April 22-28, 2019

Hello, friends! We are officially into the second month of Spring this week. After an energetic Aries season, the Sun will leave Cardinal Fire sign Aries and move into the Fixed… Read Full Article »

Looking For a New Book, Virgo? Check Out These MUST Reads

Virgos are an earth sign, meaning you are reliable, grounded and hard-working. You possess great inner strengths and a sturdy foundation from which to launch from and you are… Read Full Article »