Horoscopes | Week of September 17-23, 2012

ARIES (March 21-April 19): Though the situation likely demands you uphold as even-keeled and interpersonally prudent a mindset as you possibly can, Aries, your sincerest attempt may still not be sufficient for neutralizing the charge you're transmitting. And if that's just the reality of where you are, it's probably pretty healthy you can't hide it so well. To fine-tune how it all plays out, however, let me suggest saying less rather than more, once you get going, so you don't dilute the potency of your message with a bunch of extraneous leftovers from other incidents. Likewise, be sure you aren't misdirecting any combative urges to the wrong party, inadvertently heightening the power with which you confront somebody due to unresolved frustrations from an entirely separate challenge. Finally, if you're aiming for a particular outcome in your faceoff with this certain individual, please keep that goal in the forefront of your mind at all times… to hopefully ensure you not communicate with them in any alienating fashion that, though it might feel cathartic to release your full brunt, actually detracts from your likelihood of securing that outcome.


TAURUS (April 20-May 20): Do what's within your power to confine the discussion to only whatever's logistically essential to getting the job done. Opening it up to larger questions about Greater Purpose or allowing unbridled brainstorms to shoot off totally tangential brilliances—though worthy endeavors in their own right, if indulged during your own off-hours, Taurus—will just scramble your concentration. If you have been charged with managing a task, it's also your job to curtail the distracted wanderings (others' as well as your own)… even understanding that certain 'creative thinkers' (i.e., those who aren't 'grounded pragmatists') may grow disproportionately angry at being cut off or corralled. Please calmly inform them your intrusion is decidedly not about your personal opinion on their latest theory or impression, but merely a matter of designating appropriate times for achieving particular goals. Then, make sure you back this up by withholding your engagement on said theory or impression, regardless of how tempting it might be to 'set them straight'.


GEMINI (May 21-June 20): Despite being better at it than most, Gemini, you can't expect to keep everyone happy… especially if you are proudly acting on uncompromising behalf of what most pleases you. Even taking outwardly diplomatic steps to smooth things over with certain allies who seem not to endorse the direction you've chosen may not prove enough to deflect their expressions of disapproval. Rather than trying to charm them into half-hearted tolerance of your differences, I suggest altogether refusing to kowtow or justify. Let the cracks show. Allow the division to occur. Gamble those precarious alliances, betting you'll walk away with more respect by broadcasting your particular personal proclivities than by playing them down, just to try to please folks who'd otherwise scoff at you for flying your flag high. What would you be losing, anyway? A relationship that requires you to perform a certain persona in order to perpetuate it? After everything that's happened, I say: Fuck anyone who doesn't enjoy watching you enjoy life in your special way.


CANCER (June 21-July 22): Part of coming to terms with certain stubborn relationship patterns in your life, Cancer, may involve accepting the other person (an actual partner or collaborator, or simply the proverbial 'other person') simply cannot fully understand where your head's at. Though perhaps you feel you've tried your hardest to translate these elusive sentiments into accurate verbal capsules (and, therefore, maybe it reflects poorly on them that they still don't friggin' get it), it doesn't change the fact of some lapse in mutual apprehension existing between you. And then, a question presents itself: How much of that can you live with? The transmission of personal truth among discrete individuals always leaves out something, due to the impossibility of actually getting inside each other's heads. But depending on how well we sympathetically tune into each other's hearts, this slippage may be easy enough to navigate—or it may pose an unbridgeable gap that's continually torturous, as our words prove repeatedly insufficient for explaining to that certain someone how their manner infringes upon us. If words fall short, yet you remain on separate pages, the dynamic may be irreparably off.


LEO (July 23-August 22): Even Venus's continuing Leo-bound blessings are not quite enough to excuse you, should you attempt to sweet-talk your way out of some important responsibility or ethical pledge. You may well succeed at throwing other people off your scent, Leo, by very deliberately selecting which words you use—and which you omit—in reporting how you feel and/or what you're up to. You'll likely be able to unassumingly mingle with the group without setting off anyone's alarms (except if go overboard by brazenly lying to their faces about your 'unwavering commitment'), and nobody will be the wiser. However, maintaining appearances in other people's eyes is not all there is. Any 'important responsibility' must be met for its own sake, or you won't receive the results you need: Your work will suffer, and/or your body will respond with its displeasure. And presumably, any 'ethical pledge' was originally formed because you decided its guidance was essential to your leading a meaningful life: If you squirrel yourself out of it or wade through its loopholes, you'll only feel bad about yourself. Worrying about anybody else's perceptions is already a distraction.


VIRGO (August 23-September 22): You might need to repeatedly simplify the terms, Virgo, in response to a slippery partner or collaborator who insists on convoluting the situation with additional concerns that you'd probably consider 'beside the point'. But I hope you can do so with sensitivity to the extra emotion they may be bringing to the table. What's 'beside the point' to you could, in fact, be the very psychological complex they need to push through in order to continue moving forward alongside you. Still, that doesn't have to mean you sideline your own organizational handling of the practical matters at hand, just to cater to their maybe-freakout. It's totally acceptable to expect them to manage the emotional aspects of this situation on their clock. However, if you're not careful about how you communicate this sentiment, your high-and-mighty insistence on shutting down their expression of deeper worries (no matter how circumstantially irrelevant they may seem to you) could stir up one more reiteration of the very personality dynamics causing them worry in the first place… and now you've become part of the emotional problem you never wanted to deal with.


LIBRA (September 23-October 22): First, get yourself in the right mood with a few private moments in front of the mirror, Libra, staring your unintimidated self in the eyes as you dramatically clear your throat with an expectant boom. You will not stutter or choke. You will not abdicate the right to initiate the tone of this exchange to the other party. And you will not begin your piece by apologizing for yourself for any reason whatsoever. Now, only after buttressing your stance, you're ready to finally clue 'em in to what's been brewing in your brain. They may not like where you're going with this. They may attempt to interrupt you, commandeer the conversation toward their framework, criticize you for being too this or not enough that, or otherwise resist following agreeably along. Do not cave in to these tactics. You've got the rightfulness of honest disclosure on your side: Though it may ache for you to bear witness to their contentious reaction (and though you might hold some responsibility for having worsened it, if you'd circumstantially misled them prior to now by downplaying the import of this issue), you owe yourself and them this now-necessary transparency.


SCORPIO (October 23-November 21): Everything always fits together so neatly inside your head, Scorpio… but then the inevitable meeting with reality occurs, crashing against this flawless vision you engineered from within your sensory-deprivation tank, polluting it with those renegade fragments of everyday life you never would've accounted for, possibly making you even more displeased by all the fucking randomness. Let this hypothetical scenario I presented, then, serve as an incentive not to escape into hypothetical scenarios of your own making… mainly because, this week, it's highly likely you'd face variables and/or interferences that would end up intruding upon your imaginings anyhow, no matter how good you are at 'thinking of everything'. We don't want you to make an enemy of life's mundane unfoldings, portraying each surprise as a grave danger to how things should be (according to your presumptions, that is) instead of, say, embracing it as an opportunity or a potentially fortuitous twist-of-fate. Embrace lived reality, rather than fighting it. Though you (or, for that matter, any one of us) might've devised it more wisely than it ends up playing out, that's a divine privilege not accorded us.


SAGITTARIUS (November 22-December 21): Coolly civil talks could bust out with more sparks than anyone anticipated. Your tolerance for the sort of overly gracious and considerate conversational pitch that's held all simmering stresses at bay for a few weeks now is hitting its limits, Sagittarius. I hardly see you sitting back and blandly muttering 'yes' to every suggestion they throw out, particularly if the way it's heading starts to sound threatening to your underlying independence. It's wiser, therefore, to arrive at the proceedings already mentally prepared to stand up for yourself, knowing you may have to address items that have heretofore gone unmentioned. The less surprised you are, the less likely you'll lose your cool and flip your lid… potentially unleashing a rant riddled with self-centered indignation, which doesn't actually help you get your needs met (since you still must keep these certain teammates happy, even while looking out for numero uno). Plan on having to raise the assertive temperature of your communications, but with a fine polish that preserves your ability to convincingly defend your fair-mindedness.


CAPRICORN (December 22-January 19): The 'powers that be' will know if you are just telling 'em what they want to hear while secretly harboring scorn for how you must still pretend to 'look up' to them. You shouldn't even bother attempting to exude indecisiveness or ambivalence, Capricorn, when you indeed do hold a very particular vision for your ideal scenario. Once you accept that reality, you'll be better able to calculate the perfect mix of (1) due honor for others' process and authority and (2) unwillingness to implicitly offer insincere agreement if you in fact don't agree. This is your key to communicating both tactfully and truthfully. However, should you refuse to acknowledge your own wayward convictions and instead try to fool yourself into behaving like 'everything's fine', you'll be backing yourself in that familiar stoic corner—a place from which you merely emanate rigid resentment for not doing what's in your power to improve the circumstances. Meanwhile, nobody likes the hollow ring of a capable and opinionated individual (such as you) acting if they're content to wait around for instructions and then do what they're told.


AQUARIUS (January 20-February 18): It'll be way too easy to get thrown off course, Aquarius, if you don't constantly remind yourself the overarching principle(s) behind what you're striving for. In the act of complaining about some annoying (though relatively minor) detail or venting to your pals about how hard (though rewarding) all of this is, you can quickly lose sight of the fundamental positives that are ultimately motivating you… and thus quickly lose your motivation, too, since you could keep the venting and complaining going all day (and, while you're at it, the discussion slides from one loosely-related topic to the next). In other words, fixating on the difficulties and annoyances just creates a self-sabotaging resistance that neither assists your functional progress nor strengthens your purposeful resolve. By the way, you're the lucky recipient of a pleasant Venus-Jupiter interaction that ingratiates you to nearly any-and-everybody you express yourself to. It would be a shame, therefore, to squander this influence on giving off an earful of gripes and grumbles… when, instead, sharing the spirited aspirations behind your ongoing efforts is likely to win you another admirer or two.


PISCES (February 19-March 20): Don't back down, Pisces, should you find yourself on the spot for having so unabashedly prioritized what you're into over any (or every) other issue. Let them call you out on it… and then dare to agree with their assessment of your self-concern. So fucking what? Isn't this really about them just having to learn how to deal with you not being available at their every whim? All relationships require their participants to balance (1) the pleasures and privileges of having joined forces with each other and (2) the need to focus on one's self as an individual. Otherwise, the whole thing lapses into codependency, or the inability for either person to successfully function without the other… which is not only not a good look, but impedes upon everybody's ability to develop sufficient self-care skills. While I don't think it'll suit your case to actually tell them they're acting codependent by needling you for showing yourself some attention, you really shouldn't hesitate to defend your self-selected priorities—and to deftly make their needy obtrusiveness a topic to scrutinize instead.