Horoscopes | Week of March 12-18, 2012

ARIES (March 21-April 19): You're something of a magnet for disarray at the moment, Aries, thanks to Mercury turning retrograde while conjunct Uranus in your sign… though I see this less as a problem, and more of a natural side-effect of your pioneering aspirations to launch something unique that the world has never seen before. Of course the road will be bumpy: You are carving it yourself, out of previously undeveloped wilderness, so it's not yet paved smooth with asphalt. Don't overreact to confronting logistical items you neglected to remember or underestimated in their complexity. Think of it as on-the-job education. The next time, you'll have a much better understanding of what to do. If something doesn't work as you'd expected it to, simply dive into trying a different approach. Indulging your ego's attachments to whether you allowed a 'mistake' to occur won't get you any closer to the goal. You can always go back and analyze later, if you're so inclined. For now, just meet the chaos as it comes. Better yet, express your gratitude for its heightened activity-levels. Movement's definitely happening.


TAURUS (April 20-May 20): Make at least one move this week, Taurus, that utilizes your newfound confidence and/or burgeoning prestige to lend a major leg-up to someone you believe in. Each of us is at a different level of relative success in what we've set out to accomplish, always with more to learn and to strive for… and if we concentrate too fixedly on the next step we're trying to lift ourselves up to, we can easily forget all that climbing we've already done. This is an especially charmed wrinkle-in-time for pausing to acknowledge and appreciate how far you've come, particularly since you're recently rising even higher—and for sharing the victory, by using your power to help a younger or less-experienced comrade ascend to their latest high-point. There is no better deployment of such personally fortunate astrology (which I described last week) than by passing the blessings along. As you help pull somebody else through the tunnel to where you are, the favor will be returned in kind… via the unsuspecting hands of other benevolent agents of The Universe's pay-it-forward principle.


GEMINI (May 21-June 20): Start with believing, Gemini. The page always turns. The present always passes… and in its falling-away, a future always arrives, with countless 'pull-here' tags that'll open up surprising treats with a single tug. Even when periods of trial or tumult to stretch on seemingly longer than any person could handle (though, in fact, we can and do), I promise you, they always end. Your life-story, however, holds the potential to drone on with the same tired themes and plot devices for all of eternity as long as the narrator—who, duh, is you—keeps repeating a predictable narrative-arc (due to a lack of imagination?), or doesn't afford the protagonist (also you) to draw any significant meaning-lesson from the events. If you want the deus ex machine, drop-from-the-sky plot twist, discontinuous from the prior line and ripe with the divine promise of transcendence and delivery, you have to believe it's available to you… and you have to be brave enough to pull the story in that wild direction, with the author's authority, because that's where you feel the character wants to go. If this is to be a heroic tale, you must be willing to be the hero. Heroes, first and foremost, always believe.


CANCER (June 21-July 22): Graciously welcome the conspicuous assistance of friends, colleagues or teammates, Cancer, rather than putting forth an impenetrable shell of self-sufficiency and politely declining. Perhaps you're under the false assumption that, by accepting any help at all, you will also surrender any legitimate right to specify exactly what kind of help you actually need (and don't need)… as if you somehow can't show gratitude and be discriminating at the same time? On the contrary, I believe part of your learning how to better behave on the 'receiving' side of such exchanges—since we both know Cancerians are typically more comfortable with the 'giving' end—is getting yourself okay with explicitly communicating your needs (and don't-needs), in plain unconditional language. Folks who genuinely support you will be happy to heed your guidance, should you provide them detailed directions… not affronted (or whatever else you fear) by your directness. You must get used to teaching people how to best assist you, as it's not as easy to anticipate your needs (and don't-needs) as you may imagine. We're not mind-readers, you know.


LEO (July 23-August 22): Opportunities to solidify your rightful place in the public world presently abound, Leo, if you're honestly interested in maximizing your everyday productivity. But you can't expect to reap the worldly rewards without also situating yourself within a regular routine which suitably matches these benefits… some manner-of-being which balances a consistent and reasonable amount of work (the sort you don't mind doing, of course) with a physically healthy lifestyle. In other words, success is yours for the taking as long as it's based on a realistic vision of how you'd like your actual days to go, not merely what label you'd like to be called by or what wage-level you want to see on your paycheck. The day-to-day experience is what it's got to be all about. Otherwise, you are pinning pie-in-the-sky hopes on some imagined self-esteem boost you'd receive from simply being at the top, without considering whether the real life that comes along with it is something you'd genuinely relish. This is a very fortunate 'get real' moment, during which a fine-tuning of your ambitions and expectations can set up you to be infinitely more satisfied with the pros and cons of your professional situation.


VIRGO (August 23-September 22): Okay, I will freely admit to you that I'm a fan of crappy reality-TV… the kind of shows where a baker's-dozen or so diverse strangers are thrown together in some competitive environment, each being voted off by judges or home-viewers or each other, until one is left standing. The contestants are always given their turn at directly addressing the viewers with their solo straight-on commentary, usually chock-full of bitchy remarks about their adversaries (and 'allies'). One of my favorite clichés, which is repeated over and over on countless reality-shows by whoever that show's villain is, is this statement: 'I'm not here to make friends. I'm just here to win the [insert sum of prize-package].' For some reason, Virgo, this is what popped into my head when pondering (1) the present strength of your competitive edge combined with (2) the likelihood of your making a move or uttering a statement which upsets or unsettles another player, in your process of triumphantly moving yourself toward the goalpost. You needn't be mean or hurtful about it. But you definitely shouldn't squelch the truth or tie your own hands—and potentially surrender your victory—just to coddle or cater to someone else's complexes. Do not waver from constant awareness of your purpose, even if it requires dispensing with niceties. You're not doing all this to 'make friends', are you?


LIBRA (September 23-October 22): Being receptively involved or engaged with the turbulent happenings of somebody you care for, Libra, is currently an excellent subject-position for you to occupy… with benefit to all parties' psychological development, both together and separately. Accepting it's neither (1) your job to 'stabilize the boat' for them nor (2) even something you're capable of doing, your willingness to simply ride the ride alongside will demonstrate your mature relationship to these emotional intimacies. One minute, there's one reaction; then the next, it morphs into something else entirely. How reassuring to the other person it'll feel to know you'll greet each strange bump of theirs with the same even-keeled compassion, never daring to judge whether they're having an 'appropriate' response to the circumstance, but merely bearing supportive witness. And how reassuring to you, too, to observe yourself holding the room for such expressions of the erratic and the irrational, which are hallmarks of human emotion: Maybe you'll treat yourself with this same sympathetic understanding, the next time you dearly need it?


SCORPIO (October 23-November 21): A zippy week-ahead of astrology is anchored by a conjunction of Venus and Jupiter, the duo of traditionally 'good-luck' planets, in your relationship house… which says, in fairly distinct terms, your number-one priorities should all involve your showing up, in a strong and cemented manner, for the individuals who matter most to you. Everything else, Scorpio, ought to be secondary to your fully-grounded presence in your one-on-one encounters. But when you really think about it, this advice holds a perennial logic: What's the point of muddling through this convoluted funhouse of earthly existence, if not for the simplifying pleasures of enjoying one another's company? The absurdity of life is a dish best shared with other connoisseurs. I even endorse your trying out newfangled methods for meeting your day's responsibilities, if you spend your extra freed-up time connecting with your main squeeze, your best friend(s), your creative partner, and/or your sidekick in mischievous wonder. Feeling lonesome, meanwhile, is simply not allowed. Even if you're enduring heartache over one absent individual, there is surely another whose companionship (even if not quite the same) is worth seeking out.


SAGITTARIUS (November 22-December 21): My incessant drum-beating on the theme of work in these recent horoscopic column-inches, Sagittarius, has been intended to (among other things) deliver a particular message: You are incredibly competent at getting the job done. The confidence I hope you derive from this acknowledgment is a vital tool for helping you discern (1) your capacity for productive success from (2) whatever institutional or personality-driven minefield you've had to tiptoe through, in order to defend your very ability to accomplish anything at all. In other words, it's not a deficiency of yours if your free-wheelin' communication style, or tendency to question what doesn't make sense to you, isn't appreciated by the boss, the corporate culture, or the general malaise of bureaucratic apathy. You are who you are… and in case it wasn't clear, that is a personal asset, and only a 'liability' in circumstances where you aren't a good attitudinal fit. Even though the workplace is typically a zone of servitude, where we must sell our labor for bits of official currency, you still ought to feel generally good about your what you're getting done while there. (And what to do if you don't…?)


CAPRICORN (December 22-January 19): This time, your non-optional role as our leader—and, yes, I'm going to continue laying this trip on you, Capricorn, as long as Pluto is spurring you to model for us the correct uses of personal power (and that's for quite a long time more)—is asking you to help us not overlook the gorgeous, fantastic, entertaining and engaging elements of our lives begging to be appreciated, without our having to 'do' anything to improve upon them. Why stress, after all, about the items that are still in development, we're actively working on, aren't yet formed, and/or require us to be humbly open to continuing instruction… at the total expense of all those things that are proven pleasures, demand little exertion, remind us of skills already refined or past victories integrated, and/or have no real purpose other than fun? In case you didn't notice, plenty of people (and yourself included?) have recently been causing themselves larger headaches than necessary, simply by focusing undue attention on the more challenging angles of their lives. But guess what? There'll always be a challenge to consume one's self with. A happy life is one that balances the challenging circumstances with what's easily gratifying. Preach that message, dear leader, by both example and loving peer-pressure.


AQUARIUS (January 20-February 18): Support the restoration of your inner sanity, Aquarius, by concentrating conscious energy on the basic building-blocks of a stable home-life. Sit for family meals (yes, even if you're a family-of-one), so you can plant yourself in a chair with good posture and mindfully notice what you're eating, rather than grabbing a pre-packaged factory serving on the go or forgetting to eat altogether. Spend long gratifying hours on a project that simplifies a domestic space or frees up material goods which could be better utilized somewhere, or by somebody, else. Tend to your garden, literally and/or metaphorically: Root out weeds, prune to support further growth, properly nourish, and don't forget to whisper soft encouraging words. Do not underestimate the profundity of carrying out such modest and seemingly uncomplicated tasks around the house. Beyond the obvious self-care benefits, this focus also stirs a deeper-than-what's-perceptible detoxification process in your subtle energy-body (or whatever you want to call it)… effectively neutralizing a quiet self-destructiveness you perhaps hadn't realized was beginning to take too insipid a hold.


PISCES (February 19-March 20): Be quite vocal, maybe even startlingly so, about what you would like to make happen for yourself… operating under the assumption that you never know who might have an amazing contact or a wealth of experience in the field, who might be sitting at the next table over and politely interject, and/or who can direct you to the next clue in this treasure-hunt of uncovering your individual potential for prosperity. Don't forget to mention what specifically you are good at doing, too, Pisces, since we can't expect anybody else to pay us handsomely for what we aren't able to, first and foremost, claim as a personal skill or trait with handsome value. There's presently too fine a line between 'modest' and 'self-effacing' to dare flirt with underplaying your worth, lest anybody perceive you as too insecure to adequately fill a role of much import. 'Talking yourself up' is not only for those who revel in the glare of the 'look at me!' limelight; it's an essential step to earning your deserved keep. Differentiating yourself from the crowd comes with risks, sure… but also much richer rewards.