Horoscopes | Week of November 25-December 1, 2013

ARIES (March 21-April 19): Taking maximum advantage of the opportunities in front of you, Aries, shouldn't require you to pretend you're an automaton-like machine, without any of those pesky human emotions that often impact one's capacity to proceed on pure uninterrupted rationality. Actually, you would do better to integrate your present psychological reality—even if it includes a recurrence of some relational hiccup from yesteryear which still triggers your reactivity, a fear which needs words put to it in order to neutralize its power, and/or a recent divergence of interests which hasn't yet been fully processed—into your next-few-months' professional strategy, rather than plastering on a superficial everything's-awesome facade while your innards continue to quiver and squirm. Your good fortune will be fed (courtesy of Jupiter-in-your-4th) by granting your emotions their due honor, by properly balancing your worldly aspirations with more subjective concerns such as 'inner satisfaction', and not impinged upon. Unashamed humanness is a quality worth investing in your career (or whatever else you're working on out there).


TAURUS (April 20-May 20): Express whatever ideas you believe are critical to a certain someone's understanding, Taurus, in a manner that's specifically intended to sync up with their particular mode of receiving and processing information. We call this 'playing to the audience'… and it's a very effective state-of-mind to hold, to indicate you are uniquely focused on how they think and care distinctly whether they feel properly valued as an integral part of any meaningful conversation. If indeed you value the person more than the idea (which, to my mind, is usually the preferable rank of priorities), then treat your interactions as such—each, a precious opportunity to demonstrate interpersonal generosity and respect above all else—rather than as another opening to prove your knowledge or push your point. Provided that you've consciously fostered a safe environment for all parties to share what's on their mind, what they may add to the discussion could initially seem to be trivial, tangential, and/or based on a misapprehension of what you thought this discussion was supposed to be about… but upon further reflection (presuming you bother to engage in it instead of hastily heading off their remarks), you just might learn something strangely relevant, maybe even profound.


GEMINI (May 21-June 20): The pertinent flipside to last week's horoscope goes something like this, Gemini: If you are struggling with logistical snags or other questions about something on the physical plane you're not quite grasping, please, oh please, do not hesitate to ask for help. Just as you mustn't forfeit your productive hold on that which you do feel confident and/or knowledgeable about, due to pressure from someone else, you likewise ought not to feign confidence or knowledge—and, in the process, handicap your own best efforts—because you're afraid of looking stupid and/or inviting another person's grubby hands into your pet project. Put sheepishness or pride aside, dare they attempt to impede your practical progress. A key facet of maximizing your currently-unfolding breakthrough in personal profitability involves distinguishing between (1) what you do well as a solo-agent and (2) what you do less well, so you can shrewdly seek outside assistance or farm it out altogether. All the richest folks know the high value of their time… and rarely waste it on items best done, or at least best explained and mapped out in advance, by someone else.


CANCER (June 21-July 22): This amount of interpersonal charm—a concentrated dose one isn't typically fortunate enough to possess for too extended a span of time—is not merely a fun toy to play with, Cancer, in the process of seeing just what you can do with it. You're wielding a tool of some strength, which can either be squandered on wooing any pretty face, hot bod or brilliant mind you come across (whether or not the act of successfully impressing them adds any actual value to your life, except perhaps proving to yourself that you can) or put to better use in wooing a particular individual and/or experience that's authentically a match for your interests and affinities. Don't therefore play to whatever you believe this or that someone wishes you to be, people-pleasing-style, just because you're likely to pull it off. Play to what you wish to be… and, as a result, plan on pleasing the right people with it (and/or maybe fruitfully exemplifying to the wrong ones why they're so wrong for you). Looking back on this fortunate moment, you'll want to feel like you legitimately made, rather than just a few shows of superficial likability, the most of it.


LEO (July 23-August 22): If I were you, Leo, I'd honestly be hoping for a series of considerably more upbeat and excitement-inspiring horoscopes from me than, regrettably, I'm able to provide you at the moment. But you really must believe that all these recent calls for serious emotional consideration—for conscious self-esteem-building, through the process of properly rooting out the untruths unwittingly fed to you by familial saboteurs and the like, and of participating in any retroactive grieving-and-letting-go which might go along with it—is indeed leading somewhere far more inspiring, energizing, and, frankly, fun than you've lately been. You're not there yet, of course, but it's not years away either. And you will be so much readier to celebrate your arrival, and to dive into the next adventure whole-hog, if you patiently stay with this process. I return your attention to your two-weeks-ago advice to take purposeful pleasure in productively meeting your duties, a mindset that's still astrologically favored. At the same time, please keep alive the hope this really isn't all you've got in store for you. This is like the 'eat all your broccoli first' phase, which, by the laws of celestial timing, must come before the cart of delicious desserts can arrive.


VIRGO (August 23-September 22): Over these past weeks, having listened and talked and listened some more and then really said your piece and/or decided not to listen or talk more, my guess is that your matrix of alliances-and-acquaintanceships has now reoriented itself, Virgo, so certain folks' relative desirability and/or unsuitability as key figures in your life ought to be markedly clearer. This is decidedly for the best (since it generally behooves us to consider which interpersonal investments are likeliest to pay worthwhile dividends), even if this shaking-out has brought you a measure of discontinuity or disappointment. In fact, you're at a point where you're due to settle into a new level of agreeable self-satisfaction, only heightened by how adeptly you've moved those who don't fit out of your imminent social sphere while inviting those who do fit further in. Any residual feelings about 'other people' raining on the parade or otherwise getting in the way of your ease-of-mind, as a result, may now be put to bed. This updated slate of other-people characters should soon prove to stir quite an opposite response.


LIBRA (September 23-October 22): First and foremost, Libra, please watch yourself for those insidious instances when you might utter a self-descriptive statement that downplays or outright devalues a quality or skill you possess. Such statements are not as innocent as you might lead yourself to believe, especially during this period in which you should be consciously working to fortify your sense of worldly worth based on unapologetically owning your factual assets and strengths. Humility (whether authentic, false, or intentionally performed because one's been taught not to get too big for one's britches) is often taken too far, at the literal expense of your garnering what you would legitimately merit, if only you weren't testifying to some notion of, oh gosh, 'I'm really not all that.' If you can keep those tendencies toward excessive (and maybe also feigned) modesty in check, then this could be an excellent week for following up on prior career-related conversations that address your station, your salary, and/or your future ambitions. But make sure you're feeling emotionally fresh and vibrant in such cases: To prepare, be purposely, indulgently self-nurturing while at home… because, of course, you deserve it. (See the connection here?)


SCORPIO (October 23-November 21): Your interactions this week will thrive, Scorpio, when you choreograph them as a beautiful delicate dance which balances purpose with process. You won't want to thrust too totalizing an agenda down anyone's throat (especially since it'd likely be tinged with a touch of self-righteousness)… though that's not to imply you shouldn't take comfort from your own agenda (and, if met with curious ears, should feel free to share personal reflections on how it lends you comfort). On the other hand, you mustn't play off as if nothing matters but the here-and-now (and wherever it may meander), a spiritually-astute-sounding observation which is also sometimes used to justify wasting time or to evade ethical discernment (because 'everything's relative' is ultimately a hunk of B.S.)… though that's not to suggest others shouldn't be allowed to veer into or out of whatever topic they find sufficiently compelling (without being unnecessarily confronted by your judgments). That ideal dance would have you gently leading a social exchange toward your desired ends for a few steps, then backing off somewhat from such direct intent and following for a few more, for a footloose-and-friendly(-but-equitable) waltz around the room.


SAGITTARIUS (November 22-December 21): The most profitable possibilities—and, yes, we're talking specifically about your financial situation again, Sagittarius, courtesy of Venus-in-your-2nd—will most likely require a certain degree of risk. But that riskiness is probably predominantly interpersonal in nature, meaning you might have to go in together with somebody else, share the burden-of-responsibility and the potential payoff with them, rely on them for a certain expertise you don't possess, and, in the process, engage in a lot of back-and-forth negotiation. In other words, you'd need to give up a chunk of the control, in order to reap more than you ever could as a lone rider. For now, I mainly want you to just start wrapping your head around such a mode-of-thinking, since this isn't your best week to make formal commitments or initiate a potentially huge collaboration… though it can be a useful time for feeling into the future promise such arrangements might hold. At the same time, though, you must always be contemplating how to protect your own personal interests, even with a partner-in-crime in tow.


CAPRICORN (December 22-January 19): It's an excellent week for smoothing over any interpersonal tensions (new or long-brewing) with someone you genuinely care about maintaining a relationship with (or at least know is in your best interests to maintain a relationship with), Capricorn… for encouraging them to explain to you, from a more consciously broad perspective, what ideals or attitudes motivate their self-selected positioning amongst the collective… and/or for sharing with them the angles from which you most appreciate the principle of diversity. Dynamics between you and a certain someone can dramatically improve (even if they were already pretty decent) by virtue of engaging, heart-to-heart, in an intelligent dialogue about societal issues and/or what one's personal responsibility in relation to a greater whole might be. Though there may not be a directly obvious relevance between such broad topics and what's transpired, on a more microcosmic level, between the two of you, your connection will benefit from the mutual learning-about-each-other that arises from this type of conversational exercise. One thing we know about you Capricorns, after all, is how you've really got to respect someone's thinking in order to reserve them a prime role in your relationship life.


AQUARIUS (January 20-February 18): It's been three weeks since I told you about how benefic Venus is now hidden from view in your 12th, and will remain so for an unusually drawn-out length of time, leaving her good tidings essentially inaccessible for your perceivable use through early March. I wanted to remind you of it, Aquarius, because this Venus placement will continue to serve as a key influence on your horoscopes… especially insofar as you're being told to 'bide time' or 'hold steady' without any obvious signs of positive progress, since these aren't always the most motivating messages to hear. But positive progress is being made—as long as, of course, you're working both hard and psychologically honest—only you're going to have to accept that fact on trust rather than on hard evidence. Here are two additional tactics for further feeding the invisible positives now developing: (1) Don't wuss out in circumstances where providing your honest-to-god answer threatens to upset another person, not because you're being cruel or uncaring by saying it (you better not be) but because the truth could be hard for them to digest. Difficult though it may sometimes be to deliver, the truth will keep you karmically clean. (2) Pay grateful homage to Venus, with whatever witchy or spiritual (or rational version of such) practice of your choice will meaningfully show your personal gratitude. Even when you can't see her, you'll want to keep Venus happy.


PISCES (February 19-March 20): Spend as much time as possible this week, Pisces, with those friends or allies who make you feel so secure you all belong together, their companionship emboldens you to do more of the strange and silly stuff which truly floats your boat. Not only does the current astrology strongly favor your joining forces with folks who positively egg you on (and who, all the while, watch your back), it also encourages you to be less an ancillary wallflower… and instead to stand in the center of the action, setting the scene and blasting the beats, dragging others onto the dancefloor with you, and wrangling the rise in enthusiasm which will get everybody having a good time. In other words, you can embody your best self because of the supportive influence of your peeps—and then help your peeps embody their best selves because you are so grateful for their support. This, my dear, is about as 'win-win' as it gets. Be careful, however, not to fall out of alignment with what you actually fancy, trying too hard to entertain or inspire someone who's not on your page: Mars, still in your 7th, reminds you they're not all your peeps.