Horoscopes | Week of February 8-14, 2016

ARIES (March 21-April 19): Don't broaden your lens quite yet, Aries, while it appears there's one more promising week of hands-dirtied, in-the-trenches problem-solving straight ahead of you. To be clear, I'm not saying you must confront some urgent problem now or else you're going to suffer some terrible consequence. Rather, it's that whatever stubborn and/or ongoing problem you ultimately will have to solve would unequivocally benefit from another week of your passionate concentration. The two benefics are happily in trine across your work-and-career houses, making this an excellent moment for dedicating practical attention toward how you might maximize a given opportunity, root out the wasteful steps, and/or bravely face up to the reality of any apparent dead-ends. Before you involve any additional voices or outside parties in the inevitable context-broadening conversation—a pivot-move which seems wiser to begin next week—I'd give the whole endeavor another comprehensive once-over from your own perspective, offering yourself the chance to embrace tough truths and/or enact a major fix your way first. While this is all ostensibly headed in a more collaborative direction, you still have a final shot to put your distinguishing personal touch on it… and maybe even score yourself some future credit.


TAURUS (April 20-May 20): Lead other people—and/or that certain someone whose companionship or attention you seek—exactly where you'd want 'em to be, Taurus, in relation to the larger project of bringing yourself more of what you fancy. Does following this advice therefore mean you can expect others to follow? Not necessarily. We cannot predict whether they'll flow with your assertiveness or fight it, nor can we do much to command how they express their free will. But at least if you put in the effort to show somebody the sort of behavior likeliest to put a smile on your face, those who are thus inclined to keep you happy will have explicit unmistakable guidelines for just how to do so. On the other hand, if you lay out your desires as such and then the other person chooses to ignore your appeal, dispute the effort, and/or otherwise refuse to meet your expectation, you'll unfortunately know they can't or don't want to give you what you want. Even if the unveiled reality stings, it's always better to know where you stand with a certain someone… though, to be fair, that doesn't make them objectively wrong, just coming at things from a vastly different (and potentially incompatible-to-yours) perspective.


GEMINI (May 21-June 20): Start drawing conclusions and making judgments next week, Gemini. For the time being, then, just notice how it's all feeling… how it feels when you're with the party-in-question versus how it feels when you're alone (a critical component of your decision-making process per last week's horoscope), and what sort of impact (whether energizing or depleting) these feelings are having on your capacity to meet your everyday obligations. This latter consideration is pretty significant these days, by the way, since you're in an extended moment when an escalated dose of day-to-day effort is expected of you—and hopefully you've been dutifully investing that extra amount, rather than allowing your embroilment in any intricate association to totally monopolize your time and/or splinter your focus. Though the answers you're now arriving at should be driven by largely emotional insight, there's also a practical element to consider, too: Does this certain involvement help empower you to accomplish more, as the result of their investing more of their resources, encouragement, expertise, and/or energy? Or are your interests at odds? Can you afford to have someone or something else competing for your attention?


CANCER (June 21-July 22): Concentrate on establishing and/or maintaining the rapport, Cancer, rather than hurrying towards instant resolution on any unsettled concerns, in-process developments, and/or contested issues. Based on the planetary shifts I'm seeing between this week and next, it might be just a tad premature for you to address that singular pivotal core of deep and/or uncomfortable truth upon which so much between you seems to depend. Presuming some sort of conversation has developed over these past couple weeks, perhaps for right now it's enough simply to affirm that much has happened, instead of going too much farther too quickly. I advise using this week as something of a review of items already shared, discussed, and/or decided upon… to verify you have similar understandings, to punctuate any important points with additional emphasis, to express gratitude for their willingness to engage, to sweetly encourage the lines of communication between you to remain open and mutually encouraging. By inserting this simple weeklong catch-your-breath into your developing dynamic, you'll provide each other reassurance... which will hopefully help you both be less freaked out by the intensification of this discussion.


LEO (July 23-August 22): Try your best to reserve your most attentive energies for yourself this week, Leo… to build upon whatever functional process improvements, capacity-increasing efforts, and/or health-promoting initiatives you devoted yourself to enacting last week. Soon enough (as in: starting next week), you'll find your eyes will be likelier to wander towards what other people (and/or certain specific individuals) are up to, which obviously is liable to make it harder to concentrate on your own day-to-day work. Therefore, it seems to me like a no-brainer to squeeze one more full week's earnest effort out of yourself while the benefics are still goading you on to do so. Be especially regardful of those items which, once handled better than you had been until recently, will provide you some immediate payoff (whether by boosting your confidence, bolstering your skill-set, and/or yielding a few extra coins). Why not put yourself in the position to receive such a reassuring reward? All this while, Mars continues scraping uncomfortably against the walls of your internal 4th-house landscape, raising unsettling questions about why you can't shake that certain strain of self-doubt. Respectfully acknowledge the feelings, but don't reach for any conclusive answers—or rebellious outcries—just yet.


VIRGO (August 23-September 22): At a moment when you might ordinarily call all of this a 'done deal' (including the dissenting voices now on record) and just start attending to all the logistical follow-up details, Virgo, I instead recommend that you leave the door open for one more week… in order to provide the other players their extended chance to ask questions, hedge bets, change minds, and/or hand over an endorsement (or other goodies) they'd been reluctant to offer up until now. As before, I'd be sure not to give folks any mistaken impressions about choices you've already made. At the same time, there's no reason to come off too chilly, mechanical, defensive, and/or full of yourself. Be calm, unforced, unattached, and friendly in your certainty. Allow the attractiveness of whatever scenario you've decided upon to work its magic, pulling in new admirers and supporters with the appeal of its own characteristics, rather than trying to convince anyone of anything. All the while, don't blind yourself to the possibility that somebody might surprise you by somehow adding value to your proposition, in a manner you hadn't anticipated. Leaving that door open might end up improving your eventual results.


LIBRA (September 23-October 22): One more week of relatively unremarkable external behavior would probably suit you, Libra, in anticipation of your becoming a touch more outwardly lively, charming, and/or playful come next week. Regardless of what you may be observing on that big bright stage of human interactivity, I cannot stress enough how significantly you're evolving while quietly waiting in the wings backstage. Please do not mistake the apparent sluggishness of your day-to-day slog as a symptom that 'not much is happening'. On the contrary, my dear. Your loyal deference to steady wage-labor, a consistent production schedule, and/or other self-grounding practicalities is not only good for your mental health; it's also serving as a somewhat wily cover for far more dynamic developments still finding their footing behind the curtain. You are sort of throwing others off your scent at the moment… which is an excellent strategy for continuing to preserve yourself a 'safe space' for imagining what could be possible six months or a year from now, without any pressure to justify your yearnings or detail the feasibility of an as-yet-unformed plan. Demonstrating a calm reliability now, meanwhile, is indirectly helping to build your case for why that 'crazy' thing you're privately considering isn't all that crazy after all.


SCORPIO (October 23-November 21): You remain most likely to be received as the spoiler, Scorpio, as long as you're out in the world brandishing that flagrant Mars-in-your-1st prominence which makes it incredibly difficult to 'blend in'. You're the one who can start it up or shut it down with a single act of asserted presence… who can get 'em hot-and-bothered or pissed-off-as-all-hell by shifting your posture or glaring that certain way… and who's hardly capable of containing any reaction of piqued interest, worn nerves, or lost patience, totally dashing your typical poker-face abilities. Even more than usual, you're now serving that conspicuous 'button-pusher' role. But past a certain point, there's not much use in bothering to further engage any exchange which results from your drawing attention to a protrusive pink-elephant, and from the other person trying to avoid it, downplay it, explain it away, or apologize for its very existence. I doubt you'd wish to continue repeating yourself (with a diminishing capacity to tolerate their denials), and you surely won't be able to pretend very effectively. Once this week's in the can, I'm not sure you'll have anything else to say about it for a little while.


SAGITTARIUS (November 22-December 21): It's a good week for responsibly lining up all your ducks in a neat row, Sagittarius, in advance of having to become a bit more interactive, socially versatile, and free-flowing with your energies beginning next week. First and foremost, any lingering financial income- and/or expense-related issues demand one more earnest week's-worth of your attention… mainly because you're under a gorgeous Venus-Jupiter trine across your 2nd-and-10th, and you owe it yourself to keep striking while this iron's so very hot. Beyond attending to such critically timely economic openings, on a more general level, you ought to spend some time formulating as clear-cut a distinction between 'in play' and 'out of bounds' topics as you possibly can, before you must dive back into that socially interactive free-for-all. Though it's not typically your style to purposely steer clear of certain discussions (for you possess a natural talent for creating a lively back-and-forth out of nearly any prompt), I strongly urge you to heed my Mars-in-your-12th warning: If you let yourself get too comfortably loose-lipped when shooting the shit about private plans, unconfirmed rumors, sensitive material, or top-secret information, those who don't necessarily wish you well may be only too eager to lure you into a potentially embarrassing debacle.


CAPRICORN (December 22-January 19): Play up the facts of the case, Capricorn, and especially how they build upon each other to frame a certain inarguable logic which most anyone would be able to follow… even if, at the end of the day, not everyone is willing to embrace the conclusion you've drawn. You shouldn't strive for unqualified consensus if it'll mean contaminating your principles in order to score certain folks' signoffs. It's better for you to allow for open disagreement, on the grounds that you're wholly aware of what's at stake and can confidently allow the data to speak for itself (with you, of course, as its capable mouthpiece). The undecideds and hasty-conclusion-drawers are likelier to respond rather favorably to being presented information or ideas in as straightforward, concise, and non-manipulative a manner as you can… minus the underlying insinuation that any interpretive understanding other than the one you've arrived at would be impractical, ignorant, or short-sighted. The moment they feel like they're being sold to (presumably because your own interests profit from their buying-in), they're apt to become suspicious or ornery.


AQUARIUS (January 20-February 18): I spy a 'new beginnings' energy trying its damnedest to express itself, Aquarius, with your week kicking off on a seed-planting note courtesy of Monday (Feb 8) morning's new moon in your sign. Only problem is, every which way you look, there's some preexisting interrelational complex preventing you from having as much autonomous control over the overriding direction, momentum, and/or strategy as you'd probably prefer. So, if you hope to sincerely arouse a reviving stride of fertile advancement, you must first accept the need to work within the current parameters—no matter how irritating, inhibiting, and/or unjust you may find them—or else you'll just continue fruitlessly grappling against circumstances you aren't able (at this point, at least) to do anything about. But once you can swallow that pill all the way down, and come to understand any apparent 'limit' instead as a creative-challenge frame within which you can still forge beautiful results, you'll be better ready to utilize your 'limited' power for its maximum potential. By the end of the week, Mercury will be back in your sign, followed by Venus early next week: With these tides thankfully turning in your favor, you'll soon have a fresh set of next-step ideas and a keener astro-climate in which to express 'em.


PISCES (February 19-March 20): Arguably the most effective way to take care of yourself this week, Pisces, would be to actively seek out the company of those who believe in what you're doing. While constructive criticism and other such loving reality-checks are important to generally include as part of your perspective, this particular moment would be more wisely spent on calling in some true-blue support. You're moving into a phase when a lot of preparatory self-rallying will become necessary, in advance of putting yourself more prominently out there during March… and the messages you absorb from others now are liable to continue ringing through your head over the weeks to come. The last thing you need to expose yourself to, then, is the fairly irrelevant feedback of those who would already be discouraging or hostile to your premise, based on big-picture differences that'd exist between you no matter how beautifully brilliant your vision may be. In other words, don't needlessly put yourself in the path of those who aren't willing or likely to understand where you're coming from. Instead, go for the easy strokes, the sideline cheers, the preaching-to-the-converted, and the enthusiastic amens… taking in every last bit of positive reassurance you can get.