Horoscopes | Week of July 10-16, 2017

ARIES (March 21-April 19): The astrology suggests you may be prone to dramatics this week, Aries… whether we're talking about the tendency to speak in hyperbole, to claim a deeper understanding or greater impact than your actual subject-position warrants, and/or to respond with disproportionate emotion when some outside trigger activates your already-aroused instinct to fight. I'm not being especially restrained in my words, mainly because I can see this potential being exacerbated by multiple planetary influences, making it highly unlikely you'll do much which could be deemed 'understated' in any honest way. Admittedly, there isn't anything inherently wrong with being dramatic. It certainly gets your point across, while presenting yourself with a strong-and-striking enough personality that you won't be mistaken for anyone's pushover or puppet. Other than whatever you might bring about by picking unwise battles, trouble will be likeliest to emerge when you posture as if you know more than you possibly could. Be as dramatic as you want about what you do know, but please don't overstep the bounds of what you can reasonably conclude. A louder voice and/or a passionate pitch won't buy you infallibility.


TAURUS (April 20-May 20): In deciding whether or not to say something, Taurus, it'd be useful to first reflect on if you might be too indiscriminately confusing your own personal interests and/or philosophies with what'll productively serve others. Generally speaking, with Mercury now transiting your highly-subjective 4th house (and making awkward angles to both Neptune and Pluto), you're probably better off not saying something… and instead articulating your argument to yourself, by writing it in a journal or, if need be, discussing it with a person (like a therapist or a far-off friend) who's not part of your main peer-group or gaggle-of-pals. I'd even extend this warning to your exchanges with casual acquaintances, neighbors, and random strangers. There's momentarily a barbed-like quality to your most offhand remarks, liable to read as abrasive to the listener's ears even when you intend to offer a helpful suggestion or warm word of encouragement. You may hold no hidden agenda whatsoever (though, to be fair, most of us have something we aren't saying while we speak), and still they could wonder 'what you meant by that' due to your inadvertent inflections. Why deal with the potential for absurd responses when you could just reserve inessential commentary?


GEMINI (May 21-June 20): Because you've got so many balls flying through the air and plates spinning every which way at once, Gemini, you could experience this Venus-bestowed boon as a sudden superabundance of promising possibilities. While I suppose there are much worse problems to have, you're flirting with a real potential for overloading the decision-making part of your brain… and, as a result, agreeing to something you may legitimately want (because it sounds engaging or fun? draws you closer to a certain someone? seems to situate you in a more prime spot?) but which would consume more time or energy than you have to give and/or comes with strings attached. Please don't, therefore, romanticize what's involved with any of the opportunities now at hand. They may in fact turn out to be as great as they appear, but each will demand a particular investment of effort and attention from you in order for it to yield dividends. It's best to gather a good grasp on these details prior to going along with an appealing-sounding proposal. You ought to know what you'll be getting into before you're already in.


CANCER (June 21-July 22): I urge you to watch your step this week, Cancer… particularly in all of your exchanges on the professional front, and/or if you're dealing with a stodgy higher-up, an important customer or client, an institutional bureaucracy, or officials of whatever sort. Not only is Mars still amping up the assertive edge to your prevailing vibe, but it's also moving into a square with Uranus-in-the-10th—an aspect that tells us anything could happen as a direct result of you awakening the erratic side of anyone with a certain authority over you, intentionally or not, by affronting them too abrasively with your personal agenda. Even if you don't 'do' anything incendiary, you should still be ready to roll with shocks or surprises coming from those in charge. Your smartest responses will account for the possibility that you may not know whether someone else's above-face or sharp-left-turn will ultimately cause you problems or perhaps benefit you greatly. If you aren't willing to suspend that first-instinct judgment long enough to let this play out, you're liable to get yourself into muddier waters by reacting immodestly to perceived slights or smackdowns which aren't necessarily what you think they are.


LEO (July 23-August 22): On the one hand, it ought to feel real good to have regained a natural, unforced and free-wheelin' tone to your social contributions, Leo. Your most authentic self-expressive sentiments should come rolling off the tongue, with both charm and substance. On the other hand, you must guard yourself against presuming these sentiments will accurately apply to any- or everyone else's experiences… a recurring threat you're under whenever Neptune-in-your-8th trips a tricky transit, as it does this week. As long as you're speaking on your own behalf—and are respectfully willing to see how the biases and blindspots of your unique position may prevent you from wholly understanding others' dissimilar attitudes (as is true for each of us)—you should be good. Should you instead preach your first-person observations as if they're gospel and/or talk over someone else's subjectivity with imposed universals, you'll subject yourself to the uncertain threat of retribution… though you might not even know it's being carried out, as it's likeliest to occur behind your back, in the form of reputational damage and/or broken trust. Be loud, lively, and expressive; just don't claim knowledge that isn't yours or trample on another person's truth.


VIRGO (August 23-September 22): Try steering clear of situations which put you on the spot to detail your desires, clarify your feelings, and/or make a new commitment to a certain someone because you feel they need you to do so, Virgo. This is more properly a time for introspection, observation, and self-contained analysis than for making specific preference-statements or re-brokering an interpersonal arrangement. You'll have to choose to turn inward, however, since other astro-influences (namely, Mars-in-your-11th approaching a tussle with Uranus) would rather you stay fiercely engaged in an externalized effort to distinguish yourself from those you'd rather not be lumped together with. You'll be safer in continuing such fierce engagement if you're asserting ideas and opinions you've already thought through at length, confidently comprehended, and expressed plenty of times before—and if the relational context is broad (e.g., amongst a group of people, community, or political sphere). Once it's just you and another person in a more one-on-one setting, it'll be harder for you not to drift into less well-mapped-out territory and end up, in a moment, giving them an incomplete or otherwise mistaken impression.


LIBRA (September 23-October 22): And yet, despite the advice I already gave you about repositioning yourself to be more politically tactful, you may continue to struggle with wholeheartedly echoing a dominant opinion if, for whatever reason, it's not really sitting right with you, Libra. Perhaps you aren't sure how the prevailing ideas will actually function in the real world? Or maybe you just feel strongly that you won't end up personally satisfied by following along with their drift? In any case, that uncomfortable rub from having to perform a general amenability when your true attitude is more complex and critical isn't necessarily pleasant to bear. But as a Mars-Uranus square builds across your 10th and 7th houses, your other choice—to not 'bear' it, but instead to outwardly oppose the current leadership—could carry unexpected consequences that unsettle a relational dynamic central to your participation. Yes, 'unsettle' is an action word that doesn't specify positive or negative, merely describes some discontinuity from what's comfortably familiar or routine. If you aren't ready for all that, then you should probably stick with 'politically tactful'… not as if that's a guarantee someone else won't do something unsettling anyhow.


SCORPIO (October 23-November 21): If you really want to get somewhere, Scorpio, please be ready and willing to temporarily function within a messier and/or more chaotic day-to-day environment. The impulse to refocus on your highest priorities, reiterate your primary reasons why, and/or simplify what's become way too convoluted is presently an excellent one to follow… but to concretely do so will probably mean clearing out a bunch of outdated shit, starting a brand-new process from scratch, and not being entirely certain which steps ought to come before the others. No need to try to avoid such disarray, then, if your ultimate intention is to sort through it all for what's most important. Meanwhile, the stimulating sensations from delving more deeply (at least with one foot, if not both) into a promising deal, close-up collaboration, libidinous liaison, or other relationship-of-interest should of course be reveled in—yet only with the concurrent awareness that your own yearnings for loving connection could be blinding you to something about this person or partnership which doesn't suit your style. While compromise is a natural facet of interpersonal engagement, be real with yourself about what exactly you'd be signing away to continue further down this path.


SAGITTARIUS (November 22-December 21): Excitedly 'looking ahead' to your next adventure alongside that certain someone(s) you'd most like to move forward with, Sagittarius, isn't an invitation to totally dismiss all other unsettling feelings which might otherwise collide with the excitement. While I must again stress the pointlessness of fixating on discouraging or disappointing developments that have already occurred, you probably should acknowledge any nervousness or cautious second-guessing you're experiencing about what's just starting to happen. These anticipatory worries or warnings are not, let me be clear, a reason to presume you're making a mistake or should cease proceeding forward. But they are instructive aids for drawing your attention to nuances, concerns, or mixed-emotions that are worth pausing to chew on—even if they threaten to momentarily damper the thrill of your optimism. Don't dismiss such anxieties as meaningless. Let them clue you in to the places where you're most uncertain or reluctant, giving you food for continuing thought. Then, if you feel you must, make the game-changing move and/or revel in the romance of shared purpose… with your eyes wider open to what's likeliest to later trip you up, freak you out, or cause you to backpedal.


CAPRICORN (December 22-January 19): When you 'tell it like it really is'—which is obviously the right thing to do at the moment, Capricorn, as we discussed last time—don't be startled if any recipients of your 'realness' accuse you of being mean and/or defend themselves with an out-of-whack viciousness. Just as they say, the truth does sting. And those who'd prefer to skate along the pleasanter surfaces or couch a challenging circumstance in palatable terms that don't do it justice? They won't take kindly to your refusal to mince words and gloss over difficulties, and are liable to view your raising of such difficult topics as a personal attack no matter how sensitively you go about it. But in case you're interpreting this description as an implied deterrent to your engaging with them on this, don't get me twisted. You mustn't shelve your own need to say your piece, in an uncertain attempt to avoid their misplaced animosity. Just understand the dimensions of what you're likely to be dealing with, and gird yourself appropriately. A healthy dose of detachment from their reactions, judgments, or lashings-out (which are more about their psychology than anything you did wrong) will keep you centered in your self-knowledge.


AQUARIUS (January 20-February 18): Please take note of any moments when your conversational flow with someone triggers a discomfiting self-doubt or menacing sense of doom, Aquarius… not because you should doubt yourself or be on guard against the sky falling, but as a clue that your continuing to 'flow' so easily with this person may come with certain subtle costs to your confidence and/or psychic well-being. Just because you can click with them with such ease doesn't mean the connection is necessarily a positive influence on you (especially when it comes to how highly you think of your own capabilities). However, if one of these uncomfortable 'clues' presents itself, you needn't take up the issue with the person who triggered it. The triggering is yours to own and understand—and trying to process it with them is unlikely to yield fruit (since they legitimately might not have a clue what you've been triggered by and could, as a result, leave you feeling more paranoid or off-balance than if you hadn't said a word to them). Instead, do something immediately practical and/or physical that promotes your personal progress with whatever issue got poked within you. That way, you can see the triggering as a gift.


PISCES (February 19-March 20): Don't fall prey to compartmentalized thinking, Pisces, wherein you convince yourself that whatever you're up to in the various sectors of your life aren't interdependent. You mustn't pretend, for instance, you can go all-out on your off-time and it somehow won't impact your performance in the slightest once you're back on the clock. Likewise, you probably shouldn't look at your everyday workflow as an assortment of discrete tasks you address one by one… without considering the order in which they should be tackled, how long each will likely take, who else may or may not need to be involved, whether some are more mentally exhausting or physically draining, and what's a sensible day's load to take on. Skip such considerations, and you've got a recipe for unrealistic expectations, ungrounded worries, and/or an overburdened body. Further, should you set yourself up to feel bogged down or muddled, you'll only become likelier to want to overcompensate with excessive playing or partying… which then makes it even harder to wrap your mind around what needs to get done, which then inspires more escapism, and so on and so forth in a vicious cycle. Instead, please look at everything together, holistically.