Horoscopes | Week of April 4-10, 2016

ARIES (March 21-April 19): Hurray! for the news that Venus arrives to your sign early in the week (on Tue Apr 5), Aries, for 3 weeks' worth of that subtly-sweet something special which seduces everyone else into reacting more favorably, fawningly, and/or flirtatiously to your every word and deed. This extra bit of astro-beneficence should be taken, above all else, as a mitigating encouragement to reemphasize your intent to pursue whatever mind-expanding, perspective-shattering, purpose-driven project has captured your inspiration over recent weeks or months… the novelty, unfamiliarity, and/or exoticness of which might've struck potential supporters as jarring or outlandish at a prior moment, but which now may ring more appealing or admirable to their ears. To ease this upgrade in how they seem to perceive your proposition, you should become more vocally businesslike in fleshing out the concrete details and measures which must be reliably overseen, if you hope to accomplish something more lasting than a single celebratory burst of renegade zeal. That probably ought to involve a certain amount of self-restraint, in terms of not jumping ahead into premature discussions about turning-points still a few steps ahead of where you're presently situated. While you may hold a vision far grander than current conditions can reveal, other people need to be walked through it more slowly, sensibly, and systematically—one stabilizing benchmark at a time.


TAURUS (April 20-May 20): Following Mercury's movement into your sign late on Tuesday (Apr 5), Taurus, you should feel free to speak up in the free-and-easy manner I've discouraged you from adopting in recent weeks… though without expecting to receive much in the way of an agreeable, supportive, or sympathetic response you can clearly observe. That doesn't mean your disclosures will fall on deaf or adversarial ears, or that they won't. Rather, just as Mercury lands in your 1st, your ruling good-favor purveyor Venus slips into hiding in your 12th, making it harder than usual to identify whether others are on board, on the fence, or in stark opposition. As such, in order to prevent yourself from unwittingly fueling an antagonism which doesn't exist in the other party's consciousness or falsely presuming a mutual understanding when they in fact don't get where you're coming from, you should draw absolutely no inferences about where anyone else presently stands vis--vis what you told them. Their succeeding statements might seem to suggest a certain reaction to the truth you've shared, but we cannot be sure you're accurately following their chain-of-logic… if indeed there is a logic to it. In fact, any assumptions you outwardly proceed upon are likely to reveal uncomfortable or unflattering dimensions to your hidden motives, fears, and/or opinions.


GEMINI (May 21-June 20): The time for talking is temporarily over, Gemini. One driving reason? It doesn't currently serve you to define your own ideas in reactive dialogue with someone else, whether it's their persuasiveness which influences you to see things their way or your present animosity towards them which compels you to opt for the opposing view. You need a few weeks of relative retreat from such interpersonal pushes-and-pulls to help clear your head… and to put you in more direct touch with the unambiguous truth of what's right for you, as a distinct individual on your own singular journey of self-development. Now, I don't for a minute believe this 'relative retreat' will involve you actually squirreling yourself away in hiding, since both Venus and Mars are currently placed in socially-dynamic houses of your solar chart (the 11th and 7th, respectively). In fact, I see you taking a sizable amount of enjoyment from staying in the social fray, hopping from one engagement to the next however your personal impulses may carry you. But there's a big difference between hanging out with people and attempting to work shit out with 'em. As far as that latter consideration is concerned, it's best not to spend too much effort trying to clearly and carefully articulate a position at the moment. As soon as disagreeability or antagonism begins to palpably emerge, you should acknowledge that's the case (at least to yourself, if not outwardly)—and then move on to a more welcoming interpersonal climate, rather than muddling through an unpromising processing session.


CANCER (June 21-July 22): During these next few weeks of heightened professional (and/or outside-world) good-favor, Cancer—thank you, Venus in the 10th, for that—I suggest balancing your continued upsurge in day-to-day industriousness with a fair dose of collegial networking and/or group-mind temperature-taking. You want to be seen as a hard worker, of course, but not the type who's so autonomously absorbed in whatever you're doing that you disregard the many vital links between your efforts and what other teammates or community-members are up to. And you certainly wouldn't want your fellow contributors mistakenly assuming you think you're somehow above or outside the pack, as a result of you foregoing the expected social reach-outs and consensus-building check-ins that are implicitly considered a standard part of 'being in this together'. Sure, you might actually need to adjust the scope of your daily workplan so as to make ample room for these essential symbiotic engagements (and, no, this sharing-of-notes is not at all a waste of your precious productive time). Better yet, utilize these contacts to your own advantage: Folks in the trenches alongside you probably have some great suggestions, instructive war-stories, and/or supportive sentiments to help you along… since, lo and behold, you're not alone in this.


LEO (July 23-August 22): As eager, enthused, and/or anticipatory as you may understandably be feeling, Leo, you mustn't expect to charm your way into an official signoff, a higher-up's blessing, or the keys to the kingdom. Though you're oozing an undeniable excitement, that in itself won't prove a solid enough substantiation of your seriousness to convince certain critical stakeholders that you've got the important items handled. You've got to sell your competence and reliability, my dear… using the sort of language (e.g., industry buzzwords, logistics-level instructives, skilled-persons' jargon,) which demonstrates you have the necessary experience, expertise, and level-headedness to successfully shepherd others through these latest developments. Ordinarily I might urge someone who's charged with 'selling themselves' to be sure to keep their energy level visibly spirited and snappy while making their pitch; however, in your unique-to-the-moment case, I almost want to encourage you to tone it down a smidge. Rather than come off too much like a cheerleader (that is, with a peppy chirp which threatens to grate on others' nerves and/or undermine their perceptions of your actual intelligence), you probably ought to temper your tone with enough calm analyses and legitimately sober-sounding reassurances so they can see you really mean business.


VIRGO (August 23-September 22): Still intending to disrupt the discontenting status-quo in a certain interpersonal dynamic, Virgo, as we discussed last week? You might want to consider pivoting the conversation away from any more reiterations of how you feel (presuming, of course, that your feelings are already on the table)… and start talking in terms of whatever underlying principle may be at the heart of this issue, a fundamental disagreement and/or misunderstanding about which is likely largely responsible for the feelings-in-question. Though your feelings are obviously not only valid but entirely relevant to the shake-up you're angling for, you shouldn't expect them to magically shift as a result of one conversation (or two or three). They'll need to gradually deescalate, disentangle, and ease up on their own natural timeline. At the same time, in order to hopefully prevent the triggering behaviors from recurring later, you need to continue talking this out—not from the perspective of rehashing what's already happened, but in an effort to create more universally-applicable codes of agreed-upon conduct to help all parties respect each other's wishes going forward. Your charged-up emotions will just have to understand that, when it comes to effective results-oriented communication, it's wiser to start discussing the future instead of rubbing their noses in any regrettable past episodes.


LIBRA (September 23-October 22): While you cannot control the outcome of an interpersonal interaction (since, of course, the other person is a discrete being all their own, with the right to apply their free will however they see fit), you can maintain a careful grasp on which direction the conversation organically veers, Libra, by refusing to let any disagreeable suggestions, incendiary remarks, or red-herrings on their part spur an impulsive, short-sighted response in you. As long as you rightly understand what specific issue about your mutual dynamic you're addressing, what change you seek to effect or improvement you insist on making, it'll be a whole lot easier to refuse their tangent-based baiting of you. Rather than give in to the lures of being offended, roused to defend yourself, and/or acquiescent to their crafty rerouting of the topic-at-hand, I suggest heartily laughing off any attempt (whether or not they're conscious that's what they're doing) to scramble your focus—not with anger or self-righteousness, but in a playful tone of 'ah, you're not going to get me this time!'—and respectfully reminding them what you're here to discuss. You have a right to expect anyone you're in relationship with to see a conversational thread that's important to you through to some reasonable conclusion. If they can't or won't, that's an answer in itself.


SCORPIO (October 23-November 21): Without letting your attention slip too far from your own practical self-interests, Scorpio, you're entering a moment when you'll have an enhanced capacity for expertly sweet-talking those whose hearts and/or minds you'd seek to win over. I added the opening caveat to that sentence, incidentally, because the presently-well-aspected duo of Venus and Mars really want you to continuing concentrating on methods, practices, and schemes which will immediately contribute to a confidence-boost, an income-hike, and/or an expansion-of-services. Strengthening your material footing remains a top driving priority… and your current astro-forecast shows a few-weeks' worth of surprisingly enjoyable dedication to establishing and/or refining the everyday rhythms surest to support that goal. So, when we examine this 'enhanced capacity for expert sweet-talking', then, I'd encourage you to use it for more than just wooing leisure-time companions or romantic prospects… and to strategically deploy this trick-up-your-sleeve for pragmatic, professional, and/or potentially profitable purposes. If you're looking to pick up new clients, pitch yourself for a promising opportunity, persuade someone to give you another look (and a few extra bucks, while they're at it), and/or position yourself to better showcase your talents, this is an excellent time to initiate the relevant conversation… and to cast your bewitching language so as to beguile them into buying in.


SAGITTARIUS (November 22-December 21): Reserve your playful exuberance—and any tendencies toward bold provocation and/or an exaggeratory tone—for playtime, Sagittarius. When it comes to your work zone, you've hit a moment when recent over-the-top rhetoric must be responsibly backed by a few substantiating action-plans that'll shore up, nail down, and carry out whatever next-step duties are required for proving this dealio's really got legs. Consider this occasion as your metaphoric equivalent of having an outside inspector tour your production facility, as a representative of those potential supporters who want to know if you're legitimately executing the ideas you've so avidly hailed before they officially sign on, and who expect a detailed bit-by-bit explanation of how this grind is actually yielding results. Sincere enthusiasm isn't sufficient for answering these logistical questions. Personality just won't do; this audit warrants concrete facts and figures. You've got to pop open the hood, and show the moving-parts at their most industriously efficacious. If you must therefore suspend your vision-level progress in order to address these functional concerns, that is an entirely appropriate (and possibly quite shrewd) delay. Might I remind you that Mars goes retrograde in your sign at the end of next week? Delays (as well as odd-turns or about-faces) are to be expected. In this case, pausing to iron out your most workable methods would be a welcome best-case-scenario reason to hesitate before advancing further.


CAPRICORN (December 22-January 19): Presently, the surest way to steer yourself clear of unintended conflict—which unfortunately remains a likelier-than-usual possibility, Capricorn, courtesy of Mars's prolonged occupation of your solar 12th—is to very clearly qualify all your outward communications as personal opinion, preference, style, and/or interest. That way, the moment anybody disagrees with you for any reason (whether it's couched in educated research, passionately argued, specious in its self-referential logic, or utterly arbitrary in its dissension), you can goodheartedly throw your hands up in instantaneous surrender and sincerely claim, 'Well, that's just what I think!' and leave it at that. While one could assert that it's important to speak up for what you believe, when confronted by those who may have less direct experience and/or lack specific knowledge you may possess, this isn't your finest astrological moment for capably pressing a certain point… especially since your situational adversary might startle or shock you with how they choose to fight back. Besides, your present astrological advantage is all about reserving yourself a huge berth of self-liberating emotional space. That means, for instance, disconnecting your own inner well-being from whether anybody else is well-informed or misguided, agrees or disagrees with you, and appears to be in good shape or in trouble.


AQUARIUS (January 20-February 18): As it becomes increasingly impossible to ignore the evidence (whether developments you're witnessing, information you're being fed, and/or feelings you'd be foolish to disregard) about which folks do and don't have your back, Aquarius, I'm not sure you're under any credible pressure to publicly say anything which indicates where you now believe the lines-of-allegiance ought to be drawn. Simply acknowledging to yourself that you're keen to which comrades, colleagues, or community-mates are buttering your bread—and which would happily use that butter-knife to stab you in your back—is enough, at this point, to help you strengthen your inner compass's capacity to discern between 'totally trustworthy' and 'understandably undependable'. As far as taking steps to visibly distance yourself from those you question or doubt, please remember this outward act of social self-identification is one which is meant to unfold over a matter of months (and not right away)… and, at this juncture of its unfolding, it behooves you to remain unremarkably cordial, considerate, and non-confrontational as you slyly position yourself farther from the dubious players. Meanwhile, you might as well cozy your butt up a little closer to those with whom you'd like to nurture a closer affiliation. Now's as good a time as any to non-committally explore such burgeoning affinities.


PISCES (February 19-March 20): Piggybacking on last week's advice, you remain in an opportune moment, Pisces, for signaling your high value as someone who's ready to dive in and get your hands dirtied in the literal doing of deeds. This self-representation would serve as a visible contrast to those who issue edicts from on high and/or theorize about 'what just might work', while remaining intractably disconnected from applicable activities which would presumably grant them the on-the-ground experience necessary for making educated judgments. With Mercury now moving into your 3rd this week, a newly-accentuated aspect of your platform should be your capacity to stay in consistent lateral contact with the other players whose informed feedback would be immediately and directly relevant to understanding how all the pieces fit together… as opposed to treating these seasoned colleagues, knowledgeable observers, and engaged stakeholders as if you're in any way 'different' or 'separate' from them, due to your position, nature, or outsider status. The most convincing manner of displaying this capacity? Demonstrating how you participate alongside, rallying others' support by communicating with them on the ins and outs of what they actually do… while actually doing it with them.