Horoscopes | Week of March 7-13, 2011

ARIES (March 21-April 19): Observe the surprising 'snap' of certain doors abruptly opening or shutting in your face… game-changing bits of cryptic information suddenly becoming available… your own mind turning from 'confused' to instantaneously 'aware' in a split-second flat… and/or some sign akin to a flag being waved to kick off a race. Yes, Aries, any or all of these possibilities are ripe at the same time I stick by last week's description of this as an 'in-between' interval. Think of this simultaneously as a game-changer kickoff and still a somewhat premature moment for biting into it full-hog. Your actions remain heavily influenced and/or impacted (if not all-the-way blocked) by someone or something else involved; yet you're beginning to attain a more resounding mental clarity on what your best next moves will be. This week and into next, you should continue feeding your mind as much positive reinforcement as possible, to nurture the perspective that (1) opportunity abounds everywhere and (2) any perceived problem or obstacle is merely a symbol of your need to think more creatively. Consciously envision yourself as free to proceed as you'd like, though with the possibility that the interim steps look different than you'd previously imagined them. Taking the actual steps, however, is another two-to-three weeks ahead.


TAURUS (April 20-May 20): The time for socially-minded manifestos, declarative utterances, or other 'official statements' on behalf of a group and/or intended to perpetuate dialogue in the community sphere is coming to an end this week, Taurus. If you haven't offered your final words on the matter by now, please do so by Tuesday (Mar 8)—then, let the issue be, even if your final words appear to spark startling fallout or chaos you'd like to try to contain. From here on out (for the next few weeks at least), you can't 'contain'; rather, you've got to release the controlling concern. On the level of rhetoric and belief, you ought to be moving into a more deliberately soft, open-minded(-and-hearted) zone of possibility… and your mind and/or others' may yet shift in their thinking, but due to a personally contemplative spaciousness rather than under any pressure. (In fact, the brewing Mercury-Pluto square makes a painful backfire likelier, should you push harder against perceived opponents. Your supposed 'rationale' will show itself to be far too emotionally reactive to win anyone over.) Meanwhile, the career/work zone looks quite favorable, with Venus in your 10th trining a 6th-house Saturn. Any extra energy should be spent on integrating new opportunities, improvements or advances into your routine regimen, to turn your day-to-day rhythms that much more productive… and not on ideological debates.


GEMINI (May 21-June 20): It's time to remind everybody just what being your friend entails. Get up-to-date with what's happening in the lives of your people, Gemini… and as they draw you into the tales of their latest goings-on, please don't neglect to contribute the lively commentary they adore you for. Don't sit idly by, leaving your envelope-pushing opinions or devil's-advocate perspective-flipping observations unvoiced. By all means, stir the pot… but do so with the principal intention of shaking up your allies' too-tidy attempts to make sense of their lives, for their ultimate benefit and because it's personally fun to involve yourself in the details of others' drama (for a change?). It wouldn't surprise me if there's now a qualitative difference, alas, in how you offer your engaged feedback to others: Recent developments or discoveries in your life have definitely impacted the way you see life in general, instilling the philosophies you espouse (consciously or not) with a 'life's too short to fuck around' attitude that supports a belief in making the most of what you've got. Give your pals a taste of this medicine. Even if you momentarily ruffle feathers, they'll appreciate the alternative vision you help them achieve.


CANCER (June 21-July 22): The public eye is calling your name, Cancer… paging you to not only show up suited in your camera-ready best (in what feels most comfortably and authentically you) but also with confidence that you can say whatever comes to your head, knowing you'll come off clever and inspired and engaging. I hope that doesn't seem like too tall an order, considering this still-growing momentum in your solar 10th promises to provide an incredible boon to your professional position and/or outward reputation—if, and only if, you're willing to grab the ball and run with it. After all, all the other game-players are on the field, ready to jam their little booties into the end-zone and score that decisive touchdown, should the opportunity present itself. Why shouldn't you be equally as on-your-toes? There's nothing wrong with consciously fueling a beefier competitive streak in you. As long as you're angling to prevail fair and square, you owe it to yourself to go 'all in'. Success is not for the weak-willed. For the time being, concentrate on pep-talking yourself… while simultaneously talking yourself up to the right peeps (and yes, this can be done without coming off as obnoxious). From there, opportunities will develop further over the coming weeks.


LEO (July 23-August 22): I received a very reasonable email from a reader last week, pointing out that a lot of recent Leo horoscopes have focused on relationships. 'What about us single folks?' she went on to inquire. 'Every time I read one of your horoscopes, I have to say, "Well, here's another one that's totally irrelevant to me…"' Obviously, I need to clarify: When I'm discussing the ongoing need to acclimate yourself to the intrigue of 'togetherness' thinking, or to not treat interpersonal situations casually, this doesn't strictly apply to coupled-off Leos and your relations with a significant other. In line with the current astrology, which just this week begins featuring your 9th house more prominently, I urge you to be more philosophic about it. Regardless of romantic status, your present destiny is inexplicably tied to your contacts and compacts with other people… which could include close friends, creative collaborators, co-workers, clients, creditors or competitors, as easily as a spouse or main squeeze. And whether it is a pleasurable relationship or one that's seemingly always causing headaches, it must be engaged with rather than overlooked or falsely presumed to be on low-maintenance autopilot. If you can't identify anyone who you're forced to consider with more attention than usual… well, I encourage you to think more deeply about why that is, and if that condition is treating you well, since a happily-aspected Venus in your 7th now wants you to enjoy the fruits of conscious interactivity.


VIRGO (August 23-September 22): Don't hold your tongue, Virgo. Liberate it. 'Holding your tongue' equals singlehandedly carrying a burden of withheld thoughts or feelings, when the reality of the situation more likely warrants you sharing the responsibility. You mustn't maneuver to keep a controlled lid on matters that really ought to be discussed, negotiated, and actively processed in dynamic exchange with the other party. Such tight-lidded efforts would work against everything the present astrology is telling us. Instead, purposely pop the lid. Blow your cover. Open the door to bumpy reactions, exposed vulnerabilities, intimacy-building surprises, confessions of uncertainty or freaked-out-ness, and/or triumphs beyond your wildest imagination. Who knows which way it'll go? Nobody… at least as long as you try to manufacture false resolution inside the self-enclosed chamber of your own analytic wranglings. And if you have absolutely no unspoken sentiments of noteworthy significance weighing down your tongue, the other possibility is that somebody else has something weighing on their mind… and probably needs an invitation, whether explicit or implied, from you to release their tongue. At this stage of the game, all information—no matter how disruptive—should be welcomed into the open between you. Complications be damned, it's still better to know…


LIBRA (September 23-October 22): I'm really liking the condition of lady Venus in your chart this week, Libra… in the pleasure-seeking solar 5th, playing along well with both a 7th-house Jupiter (enhancing your ability to proceed successfully in any one-on-one relationship, on your preferred terms) and that ever-persistent Saturn in your 1st (the strong-arm arbiter who's testing how uncompromisingly forthright and sincere you can be). This astrological blend reflects quite positively on your present knack for attracting romance (or at least momentarily entertaining companions), enjoying playful encounters or activities, bringing more beauty or creative energy into your life, and/or getting the juice in your fun-battery sufficiently recharged. Though it appears you're still moving through a moment with steeper day-to-day responsibilities than usual, that's no excuse to work yourself dry… and tune out all the leisure possibilities that could happily fill the other hours of your day. If you're hesitant to dive into this Venus-scented loveliness, please get in touch with your most spontaneous fire-starter types of friends as quickly as possible—and let them know your ass badly needs to be dragged along on the next adventure.


SCORPIO (October 23-November 21): As long as you give yourself some breathing room, you can expect to play host to some zingy quick-fire ideas (that somehow you'd never thought up before? how is that possible?) to markedly move the progress ahead on projects that needed an injection of reinvigorating energy. In this context, Scorpio, we could be talking about major work initiatives, household chores, fitness regimens, care-providing structures and/or any similar such duties—wherever you've slipped, over time, into a day-to-day drudgery that's led to a decrease in efficiency and/or enthusiasm. Now's a wonderful moment for reinvesting your brainstorm potential into this arena, to freshen what's grown stale, to innovate, to give yourself something new to figure out. This is the creative process in motion, as applied to improving real-world situations (rather than, say, dreaming up 'art for art's sake'). Of course, I'm also still endorsing an uptick in raucous rootin'-tootin' revelry (a.k.a. 'partying like a rock star')… which is where the 'give yourself some breathing room' remark comes in. Harness that heightened interest in enjoying yourself into an exciting evolution, so you can keep on 'enjoying yourself' even while you get shit done.


SAGITTARIUS (November 22-December 21): Though I'll continue encouraging you to heed the drive for some private peace-and-quiet on the homefront, Sagittarius, let me simultaneously assert that I'd be surprised to learn you resisted the urge to outwardly boldly remark on the latest goings-on. While you haven't yet moved completely past the draw of the 'stay-cation', your 5th house—the one where so much of the brash fun and uncensored self-expression lives—is now getting even more astro-energy, courtesy of Mercury and Uranus, as an incentive to do or say whatever will most please you. And yes, from this angle, I believe controversial comments and hair-trigger quips, as well as daring provocations and shit-stirring flirtations, are included in this category. It's fair to provide the standard warnings: In this case, if you're not careful, you'll represent yourself with a potentially intimidating overconfidence, which could come off as menacing or aggressive to those who'd feel threatened. No need to get pointedly personal, just to make a point. Yet, at the end of the day, I suspect you'd prefer to gingerly pop in and out of the public arena at your whim… still cherishing those few moments of domestic simplicity while you can, as the astro-tides shift you increasingly further into non-negotiable extroversion.


CAPRICORN (December 22-January 19): Your central focus is shifting toward concerns that are 'closer to home', Capricorn… whether we're talking about specifically domestic issues, questions of personally resonant geography, and/or consideration of how you and your immediate family are taking care of yourselves. It appears as if some action is being imminently called for or has already been taken, which would put you in a situation more immediately satisfying than what you've been dealing with—but which, if successfully handled, will likely include a burst of two of unbridled disarray along the way. In other words, you can't bust the stalemate without at least a few (if not several) instances of holding-your-breath-and-taking-the-risk, knowing the subsequent 'messes' created are an unavoidable side-effect of the personal advance. You could become your own worst enemy, if you impose a potentially intimidating firmness over the process… threatening both (1) your own okayness with unanswerable questions and let's-wait-and-see spontaneity and (2) other relevant parties' ability to participate without harsh criticism or undue worry. 'Laying it on heavy' won't get you better results, merely a reputation for unrealistic expectations and a dictatorial tone.


AQUARIUS (January 20-February 18): This is an excellent time for you to take social risks, to throw yourself more freely and un-self-consciously into the game, in anticipation of favorable results. Venus, the empress of the glowing aura, continues to shine happy colors down upon you… and this week, she makes lovely supportive aspects to both Jupiter and Saturn, fostering a climate where you can gain more from purportedly 'casual' encounters than you might ordinarily. It helps, Aquarius, if you don't immediately rule certain individuals out as potential companions or conversationalists, just because they are or aren't of a particular political or religious persuasion. In fact, part of what might circumstantially transform a brief exchange into a thought-provoking experience is the notion that you are commingling with someone of another bent. If you find yourself in such a circumstance, I encourage you to open-heartedly ask the other person questions—the type you always wished you could ask 'someone like that', in a non-threatening, genuinely curious manner. Meanwhile, don't worry about making your stance clearly known. By virtue of treating this 'someone' with interest and respect, you'll already be making a statement about 'people like you'… without the distracting pushiness that can often accompany statement-making.


PISCES (February 19-March 20): You've got to take care of your own needs first. This is not, incidentally, a time-sensitive piece of advice, Pisces—though the currently accelerating cascade of planets into your 2nd house does make it especially timely now—but rather one of the most essential challenges for your sign to confront. There's something in your astrological DNA that has you always already seeking avenues where you can contribute to improving the quality of someone else's life, bringing out those qualities in them you see so clearly (even if few others can), sacrificing your own time or energy in support of their efforts (if not actually carrying 'em out on their behalf), and/or devoting emotional care to facilitating their evolution (as if it's your duty). Gestures such as these I've just listed convey lovely intentions… yet they are not your top priority, particularly not now. Flatly put, you presently need to reorient your mindset toward 'me' thinking. Analyze your individual income and expenditures. Independently strategize your best next steps toward earning more and/or spending less. Invest budgetary forethought into what's required to snag yourself the big purchase that'll make your life that much more secure and/or satisfying. In the long term, you'll be a better spouse, partner, friend, colleague or (not that I'm terribly comfortable with this concept) savior if you've already, on the pragmatic level, saved yourself first.