Horoscopes | Week of February 2-8, 2015

ARIES (March 21-April 19): Be very suspicious of yourself, Aries, if you feel the impulse to do something wonderfully-and-crazily freeing… but, at the same time, fear telling your friends about it, lest they try convincing you that following this impulse isn't exactly the correct thing to do. This week's Jupiter-exaggerated full moon is a beckoning influence on you, swelling your desire to have all kinds of envelope-pushing fun. Yet, Jupiter's currently awkward relationship to an untrustworthy Mars-in-your-12th suggests that too unbridled a surge of overeager revelry could cause you an unforeseen headache—from something as a minor as a nasty hangover or overexhaustion, to more significant problems related to overreaching the proper bounds of bodily responsibility, legal compliance, and/or sanity. This warning doesn't, however, mean you shouldn't have your fun. Rather, those same friends your shadily-secretive side was considering not talking to about this are your best safeguards against overstepping your bounds. Discuss your intentions with them, and let them help you work out the right balance between 'throwing caution to the wind' and 'protecting yourself'. They'll be better able to discern between daring play and risky nonsense than you. With their guidance, you can still have a damn good time… without tempting a fleeting moral lapse to wreak needless havoc in your life.


TAURUS (April 20-May 20): This is a week in which you might struggle not to take certain discussions or developments personally, Taurus… for, if you do, you might inadvertently spark friction or conflict among peers or colleagues who can't understand why you're 'making this about you' and create an undesirable circumstance which will, in the end, become personal. Even the phrase 'don't take it personally' itself can sound galling to anyone feeling sensitive enough (and we all have our moments) to wonder why their own personal reaction shouldn't be a factor to consider. Yet, in this current situation—with Mercury still retrograde, mind you, and thus subjecting us to a heightened risk of flubbed communications and misunderstandings—it's just as likely your 'taking it personally' is based on a partially-askew perception as it is that you're being somehow singled out or slighted. For now, it's probably enough to just take note of any personally uncomfortable feelings which may arise due to how other pals or community-members are behaving… and to allow yourself to consciously stay uncertain, confused, and open to the possibility these feelings will just resolve themselves over time. Over the coming weeks, if you give everything time to evolve (and for additional insight to emerge without your demanding it), you should very clearly see whether or not you were justified in taking this personally.


GEMINI (May 21-June 20): With your public standing and/or professional aspirations continuing to be a hot topic for another couple weeks, Gemini, please understand you'll benefit your position far more by admitting your lapses, imperfections, or confusions than by faking anything. No matter how masterfully we may assume the throne of our own earned career heights, we still cannot meet every last duty with impeccable precision or know every last relevant detail of our expertise. Sometimes, we miss some significant consideration in our training, experience, or strategic forethought. Sometimes, we're distracted or tired or emotionally overwhelmed at a critical moment… and, later, must return to the scene of that oversight to clean up an untidy handling. But it almost always behooves us, as confident leaders, to wear our humanity on our sleeve. We gain more supporters with vulnerability-exposing sincerity than with showy flourishes which flaunt our amazingness in too unbelievably seamless a fashion, as if impressing someone is more important than connecting with them. In your present spot, you might actually build and/or strengthen a good connection with somebody who'll respect your willingly drawing attention to places where you need help, guidance, or advice. To do so, though, you must enter such dialogues with a sincerely open mind and a transparent conscience. Otherwise, they'll feel you trying to (consciously or not) manipulate their perceptions of you—and such maneuvers will not reflect well on your outward credibility.


CANCER (June 21-July 22): What feels like the most obviously upright gesture to demonstrate how much you sincerely care about these important issues, Cancer, may in fact be a somewhat unrealistic or practically unwise idea. Your presently exalted passion for supporting a particular principle, belief-system, or collective cause is on a collision course with certain self-supporting interests you must simultaneously look out for, especially as you're trying to determine how much money to contribute or conserve, work for or let go. You won't become any more convincing an advocate for this passion, please be clear, by sinking your own economic ship or behaving as if more 'evolved souls' never concern themselves with petty worries like bills or job security. In fact, the opposite is true: You will have more to give (e.g., cash, camaraderie, energy, enthusiasm) if you can responsibly relieve yourself of as much hand-to-mouth attention to your own survival needs as possible by building a more stable future. If, for instance, you already knew in advance how your next month or two of expenses would be covered, you could devote a less-compartmentalized dose of your efforts to what you're really moved by. Convoluted though this logic may sound, you'll actually do a better job at promoting your driving purpose by not dropping everything to chase its momentary developments. Your help will be more shrewdly dispensed over time, not by shooting the whole wad now and having nothing left later.


LEO (July 23-August 22): Under this week's Jupiter-conjoined full moon in your sign, Leo, you could unknowingly invite unpleasant feedback, criticism, or even a ferocious attack by innocently overstepping your role, assuming too much solo sovereignty over what's legitimately a joint venture. Though your heart may well be in the right place and/or your deeds meant to benefit all participants fairly, the manner in which you go about taking directional charge—what you might consider 'enthusiastic'—could ring to the other person as pushy, presumptuous, or egotistical. Should you find yourself confronted by someone's distaste for your approach, then, please see this as another chance to get more deeply acquainted with each other… and respond with as little defensiveness as possible (though you may feel genuinely irked by their unflattering implications), allowing them room to more thoroughly explain what about you has rubbed them wrong. If you are sincerely taking in what they're sharing with you, your openness ought to defuse the situation. And as long as you both steer away from mean-spirited or malicious tones, there could be a lot of really useful psychological data exchanged between you two, with opportunities both to better understand how others see you and to grasp what it is about them which causes your boldness to somehow rile them up. However, if it starts to get nasty on anybody's part, the constructive quality to such a standoff will be gone… and, as quickly as possible, so should you.


VIRGO (August 23-September 22): This week's full-moon-inflated astrology could exacerbate any conflicted feelings you may now hold, Virgo, about how much to share with that certain someone or significant other… and how much to keep to yourself. Your compassionate care and understanding for them (or whatever you're calling it) could instinctively point you to the 'keep to yourself' side of this conflict, as if to 'burden' them with your anxieties, fears, or concerns is to somehow fall short of being present to their set of distinct emotional needs. However, I strongly question that instinct… not only on the grounds that withholding any outward symptoms of this palpable feeling-surge could lead to unintentional behavioral leakages (e.g., you acting like you're sad or pissed off without actually telling 'em you're sad or pissed off), but because it seems like a wasted opportunity for mutual exchange of intimacies. Though opening yourself up to them in such a sensitive fashion is likely to bring with it that momentarily menacing sense of control-loss (because, of course, you will be 'losing control' over a certain level-headed impression you prefer to uphold), it also helps even the relational balance… in a way that ultimately supports the relationship, if indeed you want it to be a union of equals, rather than a lopsided pairing of 'responsible one' and 'needy one'. You're setting yourself up to endure repressive emotional stoicism if you insist on perpetuating your monopoly on the 'responsible one' role.


LIBRA (September 23-October 22): It may be wonderfully gratifying to hear that those around you (pals, loved-ones, neighbors, teammates, etc.) are excited about the latest turns in their lives… but for the present moment, Libra, what they're up to has little-to-no direct relevance to what you are doing. Or at least what you ought to be doing. Friend-group excitement, collective enthusiasm, and community-related upswings should only serve as complementary side-dishes to your main-course of nose-to-the-grindstone diligence. While your present astrological assignment to work hard, long, smart, and smooth on the duties you've been charged with isn't brand-new news, you're now likelier than you've been to feel pulled outward by others' zealous influences, as if you fear you might miss some noteworthy milestone in the lives of your important people if you keep up the accelerated work-pace. Any such fears are phantoms, as I see it at least… not because what's up with them isn't noteworthy, but simply due to the reasonable observation that you still can take short pauses from your work to offer loving solidarity without going too far with the distraction. There's no need to indulge all-or-nothing thinking when it comes to balancing personal duty with collegial consideration. You just have to moderate your side-dish investments. As soon as you start lamenting to yourself about all that you're missing, you're feeding the phantom fear—and sabotaging both your work momentum and your capacity to enjoy anxiety-free social interludes, no matter how brief.


SCORPIO (October 23-November 21): Even as you continue to be at a creative and/or romantic high-point, Scorpio, there's a strange underlying disconnect between your expressing your totally-uncompromised personal style and what's needed to exploit your professional advantages to their fullest. Though I still see you accomplishing the next step-up on your ladder-climb by forefronting what makes you an unparalleled individual, there's also a less-pronounced pressure on you to stop just short of speaking everything that's in your heart when talking business with those whose blessings are critical to your increasing success. To their eyes, you'll want to come across as the ambitious idealist you are… but without letting the idealistic part sound so dreamy or far-fetched that they start to question your capacity to address the on-the-ground, common-sense considerations like timelines, budgets, and objective data-measures. I know I've recently been giving you carte-blanche encouragement to disappear into your artist-of-the-heart guise—and that hasn't completely changed. I'm merely reminding you that, in certain very-public contexts and/or around certain very-important individuals, it'd probably behoove you to integrate the artistry with overt attention to how you present yourself to those who may be entrusting you with major responsibility and respect. You know better than to tell everybody everything, don't you?


SAGITTARIUS (November 22-December 21): Much as we might warn someone who's visiting a bounteous buffet not to let their eyes grow bigger than their stomach and sicken themselves by eating more than they can handle in one sitting, you, my dear Sagittarius, should probably not let your ebullient visions for your very-near future drive you to prematurely emerge from this incubation period with too much fanfare… and unfortunately, in the process, create more outward activity than your still-somewhat-sensitive self can properly digest. A mix of inspiring conversations and fevered anticipation could have you surfing atop a frothing crest of 'let's do this!' before you're actually emotionally ready for it. But once you've thrown yourself into the action, it'll be somewhat challenging to change your mind mid-feat. Will you tell the spectators and co-conspirators that you were 'just kidding' or 'jumped the gun', only to retreat back off stage again and hope nobody remembers this false-start later? Such a scenario seems likely to cause more unsettling inner anxiety. I promise promise promise you that your time to externally act on what's burgeoning within you is coming real real real real soon—in just a couple more weeks' time, once both Venus and Mars hop over the border from your 4th to your 5th, igniting the next round of ultra-fiery forward-dashing dynamics. Until then, despite the hunger to gobble up all these delicious offerings right now, you've got some more inwardly-focused preoccupations to engage with.


CAPRICORN (December 22-January 19): Just because an earnest exchange could go from 0 to 100 on the intensity scale in a matter of moments, that doesn't mean it's in your best interests, Capricorn, to flow with the unchecked intensification as if it's your own choice. Though the other party might prefer you both go to that hot-and-bothered place (because it'll show you 'really care'? because your 'true feelings' will come out?), it behooves you to keep it light and breezy, exploratory rather than commitment-oriented, and, perhaps most importantly to you, not quite so potentially triggering. Once you hit a certain emotional register, you're liable to lose your capacity to manage your mouth (Mercury is still retrograde, you know)—and could end up saying something which, on the practical level, cedes some ground you'd do better to reserve for yourself. So this week, it seems, is an ideal opportunity to artfully use your power to control the lengths to which any social interaction goes… all while, as I endorsed last week, staying socially active (as opposed to trying to limit your exposure to excessive interpersonal intensity by hiding yourself away). In this context, it's better that someone find you, in this short term, a bit politely chilly, guarded, or standoffish than to allow their provocations to unhinge you from your composed posture.


AQUARIUS (January 20-February 18): Despite any trite insinuation that, when you help another person win, it means 'we all win', your horoscope for the week ahead, Aquarius, indicates your own esteem-and/or-wealth-building intentions are presently in a subtly lurking tension with your tendency toward interpersonal generosity. It's not a simple mathematical equation of 'giving more stuff to them' equals 'giving less stuff to yourself', however. This is less a question of where you devote your concrete resources, and more a simple matter of what'll happen if you get caught up in whatever they are so exuberantly engaged with… and what it may 'cost' you in terms of paying adequate attention to selfishly relevant details. With Mercury still retrograde in your sign at the same time Jupiter-in-your-7th is in the astro-spotlight, you remain too unfortunately susceptible to impulsively uttering a commitment to someone else's optimistic scheme—though, if you're signing over your precious enthusiasms to them, you'll have far less of 'em to dedicate to your own self-securing needs. Under these aspects, I'm moved to remind you that time is money: Whatever time you invest in devotedly demonstrating your relational support is, from another angle, coming directly out of the coffers of your personal treasure-chest. It's your choice, of course, how to spend what you have. Just don't perpetuate any illusions that your being wholly and completely present for them is a free-and-unlimited asset you won't pay for in some other area.


PISCES (February 19-March 20): Why so serious, panda bear? While I appreciate that staying dutifully on top of your obligations to companions, co-workers, and/or the world-at-large often leaves you feeling like you really make a difference with your contributions, Pisces, you are also 'dutifully obligated' to give yourself a breather, a few pats-on-the-back, and the periodic perk or prize… especially while both Venus and Mars are still skipping energetically through your sign. Indeed, at the present moment, you're liable to fall back on work or other mundane responsibilities as a (huh?) escape from having too much spotlighted glare aimed directly at your gorgeous visage. That's right, dear: You might be so uncomfortable with (or at least conflicted about) the current privileges and blessings at your disposal and/or deservedly due to you that you hide yourself away under a proverbial pile of 'too much to do'… though, as I see it, you are perfectly capable of getting plenty accomplished and still finding ample time to bask in the adoration. Once again, I remind you it's totally okay—hell, more than okay—for you to take your fair turn as the remarkable one (rather than 'just another person'), without worrying about who else might be temporarily shortchanged in attention or admiration while you get yours. And my calendar clearly shows this week and next week are decidedly and unequivocally yours.