Horoscopes | Week of August 24-30, 2015

ARIES (March 21-April 19): Injecting your personal style into some vision or venture dear to you, Aries, should not occur by brute force… unless, of course, you intend to develop an ongoing vibe of personality-based competition that'll pervade the whole thing throughout its life-span. 'Because that's how I want it' doesn't make a very convincing case for why anyone else would choose to believe in your approach (except, perhaps, those few who are indeed dazzled enough by shows-of-strength that they'll follow anybody wielding sufficient bombast). Not just for others' benefit but for your own, too, you must show by doing: Walk yourself step-by-step through a prototype of your methodology, turning raw materials into finished goods, letting that concrete result which can be held in your hands flatly demonstrate what you're trying to accomplish. The devil may indeed dwell in these details, but it's a devil you'll want to make peace with now—before you get any further down this road. Especially if there are romantic considerations involved, you're reaching the pivotal moment where you must start integrating the latest exciting turns into your 'real life'. Love threatens to become a problem if it keeps you from getting any of your other stuff taken care of. Want this to become a sustainable part of your life's fabric? Show us how it's done.


TAURUS (April 20-May 20): Spending time with your main squeeze, a central character, or some other very important person ought to be pleasant enough, Taurus, provided you proactively highlight the activities and topics-of-discussions you most want to engage in. Just because their expectations of your companionship may feel more like a responsibility than a carefree delight, you are under no obligation to broach certain sensitive issues or give more of yourself than you feel comfortable giving. In fact, you'd be showing them great respect by not attempting to unpack your still-muddled melange of mixed-feelings while you're supposed to be enjoying each other's company. At the moment, your emotions remain caught between (1) strict adherence to a powerful belief you harbor about how you should behave and (2) awareness of renegade impulses from within which rebelliously seek release, in potential betrayal of said belief… and, to be honest, I don't think involving this other person in what's genuinely an internal conflict is liable to prove helpful. Still, your uninterrupted relational participation is critical to maintaining the ties that supportively bind (even when, in a given moment, those 'ties' may feel bothersome). So, therefore, it's on you to purposely make those togetherness moments as enjoyable as they possibly can be. Focus on the easiest, most uncomplicated means of sharing a good time—and carefully strive to keep the interactions there, at least for now.


GEMINI (May 21-June 20): Don't be misled into thinking that all this outward activity is, in fact, a fair representation of what's genuinely going on with you, Gemini. While these copious amounts of narrative developments and events would sure seem to suggest that this is the main news in your life, I'd suggest they're merely providing you the most-obvious fodder to conveniently occupy your attention with… especially if they keep you from spending enough personal quiet-time considering subtler questions about your own peace-of-mind. In other words, there's plenty of externalized 'noise' (and though I hesitate to use such a potentially judgy-sounding word, I don't think it's totally off-base here) which could easily monopolize your attention, but unfortunately at the expense of you taking the necessary time to cohere your still-somewhat-unformed emotional whispers into clearer form. In relative silence and/or seclusion, you could surprise yourself by realizing there are certain agreements you can no longer keep, compromises which have become unamenable, or tradeoffs you're unwilling to continue making… if, that is, you want to follow what you sincerely know to be right for you. But coming to terms with such inner realizations may be difficult, particularly once you can't ignore the knowledge of what you must do to help yourself become happier. Paying all your attention to the 'noise', on the other hand, may postpone such realizations—yet, at the same time, perpetuates the dull dissatisfaction you're going to have to address eventually.


CANCER (June 21-July 22): Allow your moment-to-moment interactions to carry you beyond the scope of what you initially thought you'd be talking about, Cancer. Don't be too nervous or fearful once an interaction has departed from the preordained script, as it's just these sorts of drifts which transmit the hidden serendipitous treasures of synergistic exchange. One sentiment or suggestion rolling off your tongue spontaneously spurs the other person's connection-making creativity… and the next thing you know, entire fields of unexplored possibility open up. Your main job (beyond, of course, your genuinely open-minded participation in all such fertile interactions) is to persistently offer yourself up, in whatever capacities you may hold skills or knowledge or enthusiastic willingness to give it a go. Stop short only when you feel yourself faking an interest. As far as whether or not your experience legitimately qualifies you? That is actually less important than your audacious ability to make a case for yourself, to explain in copious specifics how a particular talent or knack you confidently possess would be obviously transferable to some different context. No, you don't know where exactly, or how far, this conversational detour could indeed carry you. That's the 'magic' part you must leave room for, once you invite destiny to help broaden your horizons.


LEO (July 23-August 22): Gestures of 'pure goodwill' offered in a moment of heightened generosity might leave you feeling really awesome about yourself, Leo… but, if you're not careful, could bring more lasting expectations upon you which you may not be prepared to meet. My main concerns center on the concept of you overextending yourself, based on unexamined assumptions that what's presently true for you—at this unusual juncture where many things are going your way and you possess a high capacity to pull off impressive feats, seemingly by magic—will continue to hold true well into the future. But unfortunately, there's little reason to believe your current experiences represent some sort of 'new normal' (as opposed to an exceptionally lovely peak in auspicious potential)… unless, that is, you are specifically dutifully planning a workable structure for perpetuating these gains. And any part of such a plan must, by its nature, restrict you from making too many on-the-spot offers to assist or include other people (and all their qualifying quirks) unless you've reasonably considered how such an added responsibility might be managed over any length of time. Though I admire your willingness to share the proverbial wealth, I also want you to protect yourself against exposures which could later freak you out, due to your having taken on more than you can legitimately juggle once you return to earth from this meteoric high.


VIRGO (August 23-September 22): Whatever you do, Virgo, remain in the conversation. Just because you may be somewhat uncertain about precisely what you hope to walk away with and/or hesitant to come across as too unabashedly assertive (and rightfully so, with Mars still in your 12th), that doesn't mean you ought to stay away until you've better figured yourself out. On the contrary, your mere presence serves as something of an implicit advertisement of your mental magnificence; even if you're not deliberately attempting to leave your mark on the proceedings, other participants can't help but notice your intrinsic thoughtfulness shining through. And so, by virtue of you just being there, you're likelier than not to attract interest from others who desire your feedback, want to use you as a sounding-board for their ideas, or perhaps even wish to reserve a role for you in their latest endeavor. Whether or not such a role would be ultimately suitable for you remains to be seen, however, a reality which you should remember before hastily agreeing to something under this astrology. Still, it's an honor just to be nominated—and that is the angle I encourage you to take with regards to any such offers or suggestions. While you probably shouldn't rush to accept, you similarly needn't rush to reject either. For now, keeping the conversation going (with confidence that, though they may want you, you definitely don't need them) only keeps you in an appealing spot.


LIBRA (September 23-October 22): Spend the first half of your week continuing to put the pieces of information together into a consistent picture, Libra. After having kept relatively quiet for some time, you are just about ready to start talking again… a shift which will put you in greater control over the unfolding discourse once Mercury lands in your sign on Thursday (Aug 27). But though you'll then be in a better spot to communicate your fuller thoughts and/or solicit answers to your burning questions, you must still proceed strategically, with keen awareness of who the other players are and how you might best pitch your remarks for maximal response… while stirring minimal suspicion. Like any good Libran, you ought to be able to set up those who might be hostile to your interests to betray their own hostility without having to directly confront them, but by laying traps they'll hardly be able to resist falling into. Likewise, those who may be considered surefire allies shouldn't be counted on for their tacit assent, when it'd be shrewder to lead them into on-the-record endorsements of the ideas themselves (so nobody could accuse them of merely 'playing favorites' rather than actually addressing the issue-at-hand). As far as all appearances are concerned, you'll simply be initiating a lively discussion among peers. What you'll really be doing, of course, is baiting all the participants into exposing their loyalties—and there's no reason they ought to notice your deft sleight-of-hand.


SCORPIO (October 23-November 21): Fighting realistically for your own highest successes, Scorpio, requires you to conceive of your own most-successful position in strategic relation to the other relevant players. In other words, it's not enough to simply envision your dream role as if it might emerge fully-formed from a self-enclosed incubation chamber, divorced from the impact and influence of all those characters already conducting their corresponding business in this same crowded matrix of overlapping interests. It would not matter if you were the unqualified best at what you do, for instance, if the spot you're vying for remains occupied by a longstanding pillar of the community who's locked into place and unlikely to budge until their eventual retirement another decade or so from now. You cannot sell yourself into an already saturated marketplace, nor expect to talk anybody out of their existing loyalties. What you can do, however, is to understand the critical importance of carving out a specific niche for yourself… one that shrewdly situates you in dynamic engagement with what already exists, whether as extension or exception, by meticulously playing up the small-but-meaningful differences between your unique style and what the others are doing. For the record, you needn't speak negatively about anyone else's work in order to point out how you might conduct it in another way. By accepting that each individual has the right to make their own choices based on preference, you can make a better case for why they should choose you.


SAGITTARIUS (November 22-December 21): I won't deny there's a lot for you to be excited about these days, Sagittarius. Nor will I try to dissuade you from experiencing this amplified eagerness to its fullest, in terms of its generating in you a powerful momentum unlikely to leave you feeling in any way 'stuck' in a bad situation. I simply ask you to hold a certain amount of this unqualified zeal somewhat close to your chest, a pose of relative discretion intended to proactively protect you from having to answer for your enthusiasms, to explain your driving inspirations to potentially unwelcoming audiences, or to open yourself up to having your focus hijacked by someone else's need to one-up or show off. As far as public declarations and communications are concerned, I think it's probably better to downplay the extent to which your consciousness is presently dominated by whatever spectacular circumstances are now headed down your pipeline… and to adopt a more apparently 'reasonable' tone closer in line with what they've already seen from you, over the course of these past many months, so as not to attract too much attention to any impending departures. Again, I want to be explicit that this is a protective measure designed to throw others off your trail, in order to preserve yourself a greater freedom to explore these fledgling plans away from the prying eyes of those who'd supposedly love to help (but who perhaps really just want to shoot holes in your premise). I want you to be excited, without the pressure to justify your excitement to anyone.


CAPRICORN (December 22-January 19): Please let yourself be inspired by the fact that you can now palpably sense the impending arrival of 'something else', Capricorn. Whatever you've been immersed in for some time already is not all there is, a truth that's becoming increasingly evident as your mind's been scanning the outer-limits of your present reality for openings, opportunities, and occasions for future development. Over the course of the next several weeks, in fact, you will (hopefully) be setting yourself up to take advantage of such an edifying departure from the same-old-state-of-affairs… preparing to reinvigorate your capacity to learn, orienting yourself toward a compelling target of interest, packing your proverbial bags, gathering the items you'll need for deepening your knowledge, and all that encouraging jazz. Yet, as I've repeatedly advised during these recent months, you won't want to rashly hurry through the residual demands still hanging over from 'whatever you've been immersed in for some time'—not if you wish for your 'something else' to be a true progression from where you are now, rather than a mere repetition of what you've already been doing, only with different characters or a new backdrop. If you're about to embark on a phase in which you can better align your everyday efforts with what you claim 'really matters' to you, then kick it off by handling the final throes of this former reality in a way that cleanly and clearly shuts down what supposedly 'doesn't matter' as much. Silently walking away probably won't do the trick.


AQUARIUS (January 20-February 18): The data you've been quietly collecting about where you stand vis--vis a certain colleague, collaborator, partner, or complicating entity ought to be used shrewdly, Aquarius, rather than discharged too brusquely while feeling hot under your proverbial collar. If you start railing off a list of observations, opinions, or offenses in an effort to rouse some clear-cut reaction from them, you're liable to succeed at getting 'em to react. But any satisfaction you derive will probably prove short-lived, based as it is on perpetuating this dynamic of calling each other out… which means another round of highly-charged comments and/or contentious challenges will probably be just around the corner. The more strongly you deploy your insight as a tool for direct engagement (or as a weapon) in this ongoing chess-game, the likelier you can expect to be met in kind by their maneuvers and machinations—and it only goes on and on from there. If instead you rightly understand your longer-term interests are best served by addressing your own agency in this continuing standoff (meaning: you alter your reaction-patterns by refocusing on whichever of your personal ambitions transcend the limited scope of this singular situation), you'll see why it might be better to hold on to what you know. Merely playing it off of them (rather than applying it from a wider perspective) keeps positioning them in the center of the action… when you should be your central concern.


PISCES (February 19-March 20): While it currently behooves to let other people help you, Pisces, you must make sure the 'help' they provide would be practically applicable to your specific goals. It can be quite a slippery slope which leads from a useful bit of advice or two to a few more somewhat-less-pertinent suggestions which, if obediently followed, would pull you in a direction distinctly different from where you'd already decided to head. The onus rests on you, of course, to notice when someone's helpful tone starts to become too urgently attached to whether or not you blindly accept what they're telling you as the gospel. Though you might be legitimately struggling to determine which methods to use or which priorities ought to come first, I highly doubt you are as confused about questions of overall purpose as certain 'helpful' pals or peers might believe… especially if they misunderstand your interest in their perspectives as a wholesale cry for emergency intervention. But if you want to keep their role as 'helper' in its properly limited context, then you mustn't mistakenly give off a lack of clarity about those decisions already decided upon. Otherwise, you're unwittingly participating in a dynamic that leaves you seeming needier than you may be—and which consequently invites the other person to assert more sway over your mindset than is genuinely needed. Please take the help that's available to you; just be exceedingly clear about what specifically you need help with, and what you're handling just fine on your own, thanks.