APRIL 29 – MAY 5
Tis better to give than receive, Ram… or is it? Mars and Saturn retrograde square shoulders and face off in your second and eighth houses of money all week, bringing some tension to your economic equations. You may find yourself wanting to draw back from any partnerships that have financial components to them, and/or create clearer agreements around what each of you contributes. Likely discussions include which bills you cover, and how much you’re both really responsible for. The idea of being dependent on another person never really appeals to you and your independent sensibilities, but on the other hand you also don’t mind being spoiled a little (it’s nice to be queen for a day, no?). That being said, watch any tendencies to take more than you give. You could wind up feeling permanently indebted. This week, it’s time to settle any scores that are out of balance. If you can’t pay it back in kind, work the barter system, offer helpful services, or create a payment plan. The kind of clarity you’re looking for is of the black-and-white variety, not in fifty shades of grey. Fortunately, Mercury enters the equation on Wednesday, moving into Taurus and your money-earnin’ second house for a two week stay (May 1-14). With silver-tongued Mercury in this position, you’ll have an easier time raising the awkward and often taboo topic of the almighty dollar. Are you in debt or trying to figure out how to get square with the IRS with that extension you filed? Mercury will help you create a rock solid payback plan. Even if you don’t have any outstanding debts, this two-week Mercury phase will give you a chance to recalibrate your budget and start socking some money away for that round-the-world trip you’ve been longing to take. In the market for a new job or a steadier stream of income? Time to shop yourself around, or if you’re an entrepreneur, go ahead and create a new client package that allows you to work with people on a longer, committed contract basis. Sign ‘em on for six months instead of the one-offs, Aries, building your business this way will save you time in the long term. Did the planetary pileup in Aries leave you with some brilliant business ideas last month? Mercury’s here to help put your vision into a practical plan. This two-week phase is all about project management: ask yourself what budgets, resources, and people power do you need to pull them off? However, with the Mars-Saturn faceoff, don’t rush to the bank to take out a startup loan. You might get some funding through Kickstarter or through an investor…but again, it’s oh so important that the terms be spelled out clearly and that you keep a majority stake in your own enterprise! On the personal frontier, Mercury’s move out of Aries and into Taurus helps you slow down into a sensual groove. You’ve had a little case of relationship ADD, making it hard to focus on another since April 13 (the date Mercury went into Aries). Or, you may have found yourself drawn to the very types your mama warned you about: those irresistible bad boys who have the attention span of a gnat. Mercury influences your social interactions and suddenly, you could go stone cold for the players. Give the “nice guy/girl” a chance to woo you. Security and consistency are underrated but oh-so-necessary in long-term love. Use this time to get grounded. Book a massage, a mani-pedi, or other sensual treats that get you out of your head and back into your body. You might grab that bottle of warming oil and head to the bedroom with your boo to rub each other the right way. Cook together with friends, linger over luxe brunches, or treat yourself to a signature accessory (just as Aries Sarah Jessica Parker made her Carrie necklace a signature what trend will you set?). On Thursday, the quarter moon in Aquarius helps you recalibrate your role in a group setting. While there may be no “I” in team, losing your identity to a collective is a no-go for you, Ram. Carve out a niche for yourself, perhaps taking on a coordinator role. Or step back if you’re carrying too much responsibility, a noteable Aries pitfall. While you’ll have to give up a measure of control, delegating can bring mega relief. Also, networking and joining a networking group (both online and in real time) is a great way to get your message out to the masses. Tweet away!
The pull between your personal life and your career could leave you feeling stretched thinner than the fabric or an Alexander Wang T, Aquarius. And while you certainly look gorgeous in a classic white tee, it’s no way to live your life. Something’s gotta give in order for you to find the right balance again. It’s a rare sight to behold, but there’s a lightning bolt temper lurking behind your laid-back entertainer’s persona. And it’s threatening to strike this week if you don’t do some damage control fast! The main issue here is managing people’s expectations. You’re a super achiever and a people pleaser rolled in one, and as such, the people you work with may have come to believe that you will just handle everything, no problem. (And hey, you told them you would!) But seriously? You’re probably doing way too much in way too little a time period. Time to recalibrate and change the game plan. Better you should disappoint people than to leave them in the lurch. The sooner you speak up, the sooner they will be able to come up with a Plan B. The same holds true with relatives and roomies. Have they come to expect a little too much of you? Hang up the superhero’s cape and get everyone aligned on working together. Heck, post a chore chart on the wall if you must. Also, do you have enough space for yourself? Mars can throw some tension into your living situation and this week it’s enough to find you considering a move or at least a reconfiguration of your current space. You need a private zone to retreat to. That might even mean renting a little work studio outside of your home. Your inner circle will be a big focus for you from May 1-1, as Mercury tours your family-friendly fourth house. Mercury is the planet of communication so you’ll find it easier to hash things out with them or finally address that topic you’ve been avoiding and hoping would just work itself out (it won’t.). You’ll be longing for the company of your supportive peeps too, making it prime time to reconnect with old friends. On the home front, your wheels of inspiration might start turning as you putter around Chateau Aquarius. You could take on a DIY household project (painting and hanging chandeliers anyone?), work on your garden (it is planting season after all), or even just change the sheets out from plain old cotton to high end linen. The fourth house also rules women. Bang that gong and get those ladies together for a soulful BYOB dinner, or regular walks in the ‘hood. You might also jump start a business collaboration with a close female friend in your life. Thursday’s Aquarius quarter moon gives you a hall pass to be completely self-absorbed for the day. Between the demands of your work and your peeps, what about Numero Uno? What will make you happy? Where do you want to travel next, literally or figuratively? You might prefer your own company above everyone else’s for the day as you daydream about a bright and inspiring future. Also make sure that your soul feels in alignment with the direction of your career. If it’s carrying you away from your happiness and fulfillment rather than towards it, recalibrate. Are you getting the credit you deserve for your work? Some Aquarians might even work with a publicist now to make sure you properly angle your message and get your due props for all the efforts you’ve been putting in to make your mission major.
Afraid that if you step out of the spotlight you’ll fade into the background, Cancer? This week Mars opposes Saturn in retrograde, forcing you to sort out just how you manage in groups. You’ll want to strike a balance between being a team player, and not losing your well-defined edges in a crowd. So how do you go about evaluating your level of involvement? Start by investigating to see if there is room for you to take the lead. See if people are receptive to your creative ideas. And then put it to the test by taking the reins as an inclusive, magnanimous leader. This standoff could also put the demands of friends at odds with both your love life and your creative ambitions. As you forge compromises, don’t forget who keeps you warm at night, Crab. Your friends could also help you make a comeback from the effects of a bad romance, by rallying around you and dragging you out of the house. Don’t resist! Alternately, if you’ve put too much pressure on your relationship to be your everything, Mars will remind you of the power of being friends with your lover, and having fun together, within a group. Be forewarned though, this aspect might have you searching for a new shared social circle, as your friend groups may clash. Innovative couples might try out a workshop together–anything from cooking classes to communication intensives will do, and can introduce you to other couples who share your mutual interests. Thankfully, Mercury moves into Taurus and your eleventh house from Wednesday through May 14, sharpening your logical mind, while cooling your emotional nature. Once again, you’ll have room to think rationally, and your social organizer skills will be in rare form. What could you rope your crew into: caravaning to a music festival, creating a giant piece of community art for an installation, renting out an 8-bedroom beach house (and DO make sure you have your own room, Cancer)? Take the helm on planning and give everyone something major to look forward to. Your techie nature is awakened too by Mercury’s “geek is chic” tour of this part of your chart. Take command of your web presence and learn the fundamentals of Photoshop, WordPress or another software skill that can even spell money in the bank. Has an e-commerce idea been ruminating in the back of your mind. Do more research into it now. Setting up shop could be easier than you think, and if so, it wouldn’t hurt to see what kind of passive or extra income you can make this way. Thursday’s quarter moon in Aquarius and your eighth house gives you a moment to draw back and check in with yourself. You haven’t had much space to retreat into your shell with all the social energy buzzing around. But if you don’t give yourself a little time to draw back you could easily wind up burning out. Before the week is through make sure you’ve had one night for unstructured me time, even if you’re just lounging on the couch re-watching Season2 of “Girls.” Pass the popcorn!
Are you getting lost in the shuffle, Capricorn? There may be no “I” in team, but that doesn’t mean you have to sacrifice your identity. Red-hot Mars faces off with your ruling planet Saturn this week, pushing you into the limelight. Forget about going along to get along. You need to let people know where you stand on matters, dare to dissent, or shake up the status quo with completely original ideas. If you’re not getting enough time in the spotlight, perhaps it’s time to branch off and develop a solo project on the side. If you don’t tend to your individuality you’ll wind up resentful and grumpy and might even go mutinous on the team. There’s competition in the air this week too, which can create tension under this challenging opposition. Although you might have a sense of loyalty it turns out others in a group are happy to go for the brass ring even if that means pitting themselves against everyone else. The whole thing will feel a little Hunger Games-ish, so pack your bow and arrow! Being the nice guy/girl could leave you a little too defenseless. Forget about killing them with kindness and instead bring your A Game and let your great work speak for itself. The cream always rises to the top, which is exactly where you’ll end up. Romantically, Mars snaps you out of the lather, rinse, repeat mode. While Internet dating can serve up some interesting prospects, opt for the face-to-face meetups for now. Plant yourself among eligible options–and yes, this will require you to go out of your comfort zone. Forget about your go-to hangouts and get creative. You could meet someone while out dancing or carousing with the culture vultures at an art opening or indie show. If it makes you mildly uncomfortable, that’s your cue to say yes and give a new idea a go. Your creative, romantic side will get a boost from Mercury on Wednesday, which tours Taurus and your 5th house until May 14. Feel free to take more chances with your personal style: add more bright colors, get an edgy haircut like an asymmetrical bob or a shaggy layered look. Or maybe even go for a bright red buzzcut like retro Capricorn icon Annie Lennox if you’re ready for an extreme makeover. It’s also a great time to work on a project, join (or start) an “Artist’s Way” group if you need motivation and support, or take a weekend painting workshop or computer graphics intensive. Mercury also green-lights promotional efforts, all the world’s your stage this week so get on the soapbox and sell people on your great ideas and inventions. Romantically, you’re a fearless flirt during this two-week Mercury stint. Take the lead in all things amorous, even if you do so in a cleverly seductive way that leaves them eating out of the palm of your manicured hand. Inventing a project that you can link up with you-know-who on is one idea that could bring major sparks. Coupled? Go public! You and your arm candy are the pair that inspire awe, and a little bit of jealousy now. Dress up and paint the town crimson as a twosome. Is that babymaking music we hear on your iPod? The desire to procreate could strike, and talks could turn to family planning. If you have kids, be playful together and really enjoy your offspring. Think: family field trips, hosting an all-ages party at yours, or gathering up the troops and going on a weekend trip. Thursday’s quarter moon falls in your second house of finances and calls for a budget review. Has a group expense gotten unwieldy? Are you setting aside enough for a personal aspiration and investment? If you’ve been stretching beyond your means or just plain spending a little too much on dinners out, get things back into a manageable place. Tighten your belt but don’t cut off circulation. If you starve yourself of luxury and pleasure, you’ll only binge later. Trim back impulse buys and cancel unused subscription services so you have enough saved up for a bigger purchase–a high-end indulgence that will stand the test of time. With the weather warming, you can also merge your social life with outdoorsy adventures, bringing the bonus of a stress-reducing workout to boot. Plan hikes, bike rides, or strolls through the park in lieu of indoor (and expensive) activities. You’re an earth sign after all, and Mother Nature provides the perfect playground for the natural (wo)man in you.
Mutiny on the bounty? A tense opposition of Mars and Saturn retrograde could have you dreaming about jumping ship this week, especially when the details of a project or work undertaking seem to overwhelm you. Breathe, Gemini, breathe. Mars can make one rash and rebellious and the last thing you want to do right now is adhere to protocol, learn the rules or follow any kind of structure. (Do you EVER really want to do that? Sigh). Before you go (wo)man overboard, consult your tribunal of wise advisors. Meditate. Go for a soul-searching walk in the park to check in with yourself. Are you really “so done” with this or just baffled by the challenges facing you? As the expression goes, “wherever you go, there you are.” Quitting on this one could simply mean picking up and reinventing it somewhere else. It might be smarter to stay put and see if you can work through the kinks, with the help of your supportive peeps, of course. How about pinging them this week to see if they will lend an assist? In no way is this a sign of weakness, Gemini. Also, surrendering PART of the duties (not all of them) to another capable ally can get you back to the business of happily doing what you do best in an area where you shine. Fortunately, your creativity will be amped up from May 1-14 when your ruling planet, Mercury, moves into Taurus and your fantasy-fueled twelfth house. With the productive Bull’s energy ruling this part of your chart, it’s no wonder Geminis are such whizzes at turning completely offbeat ideas into tangible realities. The dreamy influence of Mercury will make you a bit of a ringmaster now, so don’t take down the Big Top before you’ve paraded your circus of ideas before people. The world is more receptive than you think to your visions now. The twelfth house also rules forgiveness, making it the right time for clearing the decks and making amends. You may indeed realize that it’s time to move on from certain friendships and social allegiances. Toxic peeps begone! PS: forgiving doesn’t mean inviting trouble into your life or putting on the blinders to someone’s unhealthy influence. It simply means accepting that people are doing the best they can with the tools they have. You are, however, allowed to put up boundaries and choose who is in your inner circle. A spring cleaning of outgrown friendships is now nigh, sad though that may be. Don’t worry. On May 14th, Mercury comes home to Gemini, quickly filling your calendar with exciting social events and new opportunities. You may need more time in solitude while Mercury is in Taurus for the next two weeks. It’s totally fine to pull a disappearing act, just be sure to give people a head’s up. Change your email autoresponder so you don’t feel pressured by people to write them back immediately, and bow out gracefully of any plans you need to cancel. Ducking into your cave and working on a creative project could consume you. You could (finally) finish that screenplay, create a series of paintings based on a single color, or lay down those tracks you’ve been humming to yourself in the shower. In addition, if you have some mourning to do, this Mercury phase helps you release…finally! Go into the woods for a primal scream, do some intensive therapy sessions, try hypnosis or EMDR. Romantically, Mercury can have you wearing those dangerous rose-colored glasses. You’ll have a fantasy-fueled couple weeks for sure, but you might also labor in delusion about your crush du jour. Enjoy the daydreaming, but make sure you’re giving yourself reality checks at the same time. In other news, the “a-ha! Moment” you’ve been searching for could come Thursday near the quarter moon in Aquarius. Go long, Gemini! Taking a day trip or pinging contacts in other parts of the world will get the wheels of innovation rolling. There’s nothing like a getaway to bring you perspective. Could you hop a quick flight this weekend to visit friends in another city? You’ll return home with a remarkably fresh perspective. If you can’t leave home base, do your best to get out into nature. Fresh air, budding trees, spring flowers: this renewal energy reminds you of life’s amazing ability to regenerate. As you are part of this same universal system, you have the power to move on, reinvent, and begin fresh cycles for yourself season after season.
The demands of your work life continue to pull you away from home and family this week as Mars and Saturn retrograde form a tense opposition. Oh the guilt! As a loyal lion, you feel a sense of duty to be there for your peeps. But you simply don’t have the space for handholding, coddling, or being codependent now. Maybe that’s a good thing! Just as baby birds are being nudged out of their nests, your absence could give your loved ones wings. They aren’t as helpless as you might worry they are. Have a little faith and they’ll probably impress you. When you ARE home, however, don’t just lock yourself into your office area with your laptop. Giving your crew your undivided attention, if only for a short while, lets them know they are seen and loved. It’s quality over quantity, but make it a rich experience. Warning: A female relative or close friend may be the loudest complainer in the bunch. Although she might need a little extra support right now, don’t let yourself be guilt-tripped into sacrificing your own life goals to be at her beck and call. Besides, you are needed among the movers and shakers now. Your career is center stage of your life this May, and public recognition for your efforts is finally coming your way. Speaking of which, be careful not to be too heavy-handed in your dealings with other. We know you were meant to rule the world, but acting like a military dictator will only create an uprising of rebel factions. Bring some of that family-oriented energy into your work life. Show up with cupcakes and coffee or a healthy snack to share during that 3PM meeting. Send a handwritten thank you card or flowers to a new client or someone who helped you out with a deal or professional move. You’ll catch more flies with honey than with vinegar! Communicator Mercury enters Taurus and your ambitious tenth house from May 1-14, bringing even more energy to your career and long-term aspirations. This Mercury cycle helps you streamline your goals so that you don’t wind up spreading yourself too thin, a noted Leo pitfall. Instead of being the juggler with ten pins in the air, prioritize the top mission and put your all there. Concentrated focus could bring prosperity and a promotion your way. The tenth house also rules men, so the fellas will play a starring role in your social life over this two-week phase. Light a cigar, pour yourself a whiskey (and make it neat), and join the proverbial boys’ club. You won’t feel the restrictions of any glass ceilings now (they’re no match for your shattering roar and confident swagger). This is also a great time to socialize in an elite environment. Apply to be a member of a prestigious group, join a high-end club (even a fitness club) to make contacts in a more relaxed environment. Beware snobbery though! You run a little risk of judging a book by its cover and social status during this Mercury phase. It takes all types to make the world go ‘round and not everyone can be a tycoon, Leo. Treat “the little people” with the utmost respect. Your love life will come back into focus this Thursday during the Aquarius quarter moon in your seventh house of relationships. Have you been neglecting a partner as you race between work obligations and home duties? Or has your love life fallen by the wayside? Make time for a coffee date or send a couple winks to online cuties. Plan a date night or a commit to a firm weekend “just the two of us” moment. Above all, socialize without an agenda this weekend, kick back and enjoy yourself.
Still digging in your heels, Libra? That stubborn stance gets a major challenge this week, courtesy of a Mars-Saturn faceoff. We know you love doing things “the way you always have.” Your sign is not quick to change especially when you’ve found a comfortable (and decadent) groove. But this week is not about staying in “your lane.” Turn on the blinker and merge, baby. And while you’re at it, how about stepping on the gas too? Mars is in your eighth house of transformation and wants you to be a bit more daring, living on the edge and dancing with the “danger” of change. No, this doesn’t mean being destructive–unless of course that means excising bad habits, toxic people, and eternally stalled situations from your life. You can definitely say a final farewell to an energy zapping vice this week…and quit it cold turkey, at that. Shared resources also come into focus under this Mars-Saturn faceoff. Rather than dipping into your own coffers, consider the possibility of having someone else put some dollars behind your dreams. What’s nice about the shakeup of this planetary opposition is that it can force you to turn your attention towards new possibilities. Look out for tectonic shifts in your income streams though. A reliable client or income stream may draw back a little, forcing you to find another source of cash. Or you may get notice of a fee increase (your rent might be going up or your kid’s daycare could be raising their fees). Approach these changes with pragmatism, Libra, necessity is the mother of invention after all. How can you make your money work harder for you? Two words: passive income. You might look into a side business, selling products through an affiliate website or a network marketing model. When you truly believe in a brand, you can hawk it like nobody’s business. Do you have advice that people would clamor for? You might hire yourself out as a consultant for a few hours here and there. From May 1-14 Mercury brings sexy back, moving through Taurus and your sultry eighth house for two weeks. Drop that neckline, raise that hemline, and dab some perfume behind your ears. You’re quite the provocateur now. But you’re also craving a deeper kind of love. Save the final rose for someone who hits it on all levels: mind, body and soul. Your attraction to the bad boy types might intensify too and you’ll have to be careful not to get swept up in a distracting obsession. Sure, the chase and seduction is fun, but the reality of being in a relationship with someone like this is a totally different story. If you’re already attached, Mercury helps you kick things up to new levels of intimacy. Much as you love the idea of being a “seen and be seen” couple about town, you’ll have more fun behind closed doors now. Ooh la la! On Thursday the quarter moon in your house of fame gives you an opportunity to spotlight your latest ideas and efforts. Promote away as the workweek wraps, you could be the topics of major buzz! This is also a day for balancing your romantic aspirations against a reality check. That Big Love you’re craving: does it only exist in fairy tales? To some degree yes, so cut your sweetie (or future partner) some slack! You may realize that you’ve been a bit of a diva in relationships lately too. While it’s nice to have the red carpet rolled out, people do not exist solely for the purpose of wooing you. Bring back some balance. If you want something, give it away. How can YOU creatively express your affections this week? Think flirty notes in pockets, funny haikus left on mirrors, or booking a night out for your beloved doing their (not your) favorite thing. Remember, generosity begets generosity.
It’s fun to dream about the future, but what about the here and now? This week, Mars faces off with Saturn, bringing you back to the moment. Keep on planning for the long-term, but rather than waiting for that “someday maybe” or the big “if” to make you happy, what can you do NOW to unleash your bliss? Shocker: this could be a simple as re-framing your outlook on your current circumstances. Perception is reality after all. And with Mars in your house of communication, your words have major power. You might even try declaring this a No Complaints week. The more you dub something hideous, awful, dramatic, torturous, and untenable, the more it lives that way in your reality. Can you “bless this mess” instead, Pisces? What did you learn from the “negative” experience? Make a gratitude list, even if the only thing you can find to be thankful of is that it revealed what you DIDN’T want. Hey, that’s mega important to know! But surely you can find something nice to say. Vocalizing your appreciation for the little things is a magical elixir. Also, when you tune in to your present day life (instead of wringing your hands about tomorrow), you start to see beautiful opportunities that you overlooked. New friendships perk up this week, perhaps even with a neighbor or coworker, or someone else you breeze by every day. On Wednesday, Mercury joins Mars in your third house of communication and local activity too, heating up action close to home between May 1 and 14. Remember: the more you water your own grass, the greener it gets. If the culture is a bit lacking in your immediate ‘hood’, turn on the proverbial hose. How about starting up a group or event that serves the need in the community? A local restaurant or bar might be more than game to give you a venue for your vision, and in turn, you’ll bring new customers in to support a neighborhood biz. A win-win indeed. Some Pisces might be pondering a move to a more culturally appropriate landscape for your interests. Make like Magellan and go exploring. Before you scope out real-estate listings, spend some time hanging out in different ‘hoods’ to see which captivates you the longest and where you feel most at home. Spend some time networking online, too. Shout out your online friends on Twitter (a loyalty-building act), send someone a virtual high five by sharing his link. This could bring you a bevy of new contacts–and, if you’re single and looking, fresh dating options. No need to go ring-shopping this week though. This lighthearted Mercury phase is more about flirting and experimenting. Try on a few new types for size before you declare anyone a perfect fit. On Thursday, the quarter moon in your house of boundaries and completions forces you to deal with that pile you’ve swept under the rug. Denial ain’t just a river in Egypt (as you’ve learned many times). But just because things have gotten a little messy doesn’t mean all is lost. Don’t throw the baby out with the bathwater, Pisces. While some adjustments are definitely in order, and you may even have to cut something (or someone) loose, there is lots of promise ahead for this endeavor. Are you holding a grudge? Forgiveness may be the key to blasting through a barrier. No, you don’t have to invite any toxic people back into your life. But accepting that they’ve done the best they could with the resources they had can give you some peace and closure. Move on instead of endlessly trying to “work on it” with an incompatible person, situation or aspect of your endeavor.
Just the facts, Sagittarius. Tell-it-like-it-is Mars in Taurus faces off with Saturn retrograde, insisting upon a reality check. What you imagine might be happening may not line up with what is actually going on. Saturn is well into its three-year tour of Scorpio and your twelfth house of fantasy and illusions (it entered Scorpio last October 5). This is not an easy journey for you, as you’ve had to face down some of your deeper fears and anxieties ever since. But there’s also a tendency to go into crisis mode far too quickly now, or even let your fantasies spiral you too far away from the realm of what is doable. As a result, you could feel stressed, exhausted, or on an emotional rollercoaster. Fortunately, Mars barrels into the mix, insisting that you step off the ride and get grounded and centered. The best way to do that right now? Begin with the physical. Daily movement for a minimum of twenty minutes is a must (preferably longer). Getting your eating on track helps you stay centered too. You might even track this in a mobile app or diary. Pay attention to how your mood and energy levels feel after you eat certain foods. You might discover a sensitivity to gluten, dairy, eggs, or another substance. If needed, get a food allergy test done by a doctor or work with a nutritionist to develop a plan tailor made for your bod. Consider entering the realm of “plant medicine” too. You might check out flower essences or aromatherapy tinctures to rebalance your frazzled nerves. This healthquest becomes all the more intriguing when messenger Mercury blazes through Taurus and your sixth house of well being from May 1-14. You could find yourself fascinated with reading all the information you can get your hands on about nutrition and exercise. Social Mercury will shine the spotlight on physical fitness too. Change your standing cocktail hour to a meetup for yoga and raw juice mocktails. You might think about growing your own food too. Do you have outdoor space to work with? Plant a garden of your favorite salad fixings and herbs to bring the fresh food and live enzymes to your plate all summer. No outdoor space? There’s plenty of “indoor gardens” to be had, so play around with terrariums, window boxes, and hanging planters of herbs. The sixth house rules service too, so how about volunteering for a community garden? You’ll make new friends and keep your ‘hood thriving. You might even head up that initiative, getting a local business to donate a small segment of their parking lot to a neighborhood planting project or commissioning the city to let you and a local nonprofit turn an abandoned space into a food source for the community. This Mercury phase brings some order to your court too! Streamline, systematize, get your messy areas into shape. Run the paper shredder while you’re watching The Real Housewives then recycle the “confetti” of your old bills and other things that are just taking up space. You might even get crafty during this DIY Mercury energy and repurpose and upcycle. Try making your own laundry detergent (http://manvsdebt.com/dirty-laundry-experiments-with-homemade-laundry-detergent/) or creating art out of old book pages, or even DIY-ing your own light-up headboard (http://www.abeautifulmess.com/2012/12/diy-light-up-headboard.html)! On Thursday, the quarter moon in Aquarius brings a planetary PSA: Embrace the power of partnership! Joining forces with another go-getter helps you gain ground. Although it takes guts to share the glory, you’ll actually make it to the finish line a whole lot faster if you work the buddy system. This is a great day for promotion and publicity too, especially using social media. Lift your nose from the grindstone and let the world know what you’re up to.
Feeling torn, Scorpio? This week Mars faces off with retrograde Saturn in Scorpio pulling you back and forth between what you want versus what “they” want. You’ve got an agenda and plans, and as it turns out, so does everyone else. This revelation might have you s t r e t c h i n g big time to find compromise. Keep in mind that in strong winds, the trees that bend survive while the trees that don’t break. You might feel friction in your professional partnerships, as someone’s persistent agenda may put pressure on you to buckle to their way of doing things. Remember that the best way to “win” a power struggle is to not engage in the first place. Pull back and give this person some space. If the idea is sketchy, s/he’ll see it fall apart on its own, without any interference or advice from you. But alas, you might just have to compromise a little more than you prefer this week, Scorpio. (Bend like an oak…remember?) Pull back and look at the big picture. Sabotaging a strong relationship is probably not worth proving a point in this instance. Letting one battle go does not mean losing the war either. On the flip side, Mars can you make you incredibly passionate about other people’s ideas. It’s fine to be a cheering squad, but don’t abandon your own vision in the process. Fortunately, Mercury brings some healing salve this Wednesday, when it decamps to Taurus and your diplomatic, cooperative seventh house. You won’t get so up in arms about compromising midweek, in fact, your mantra may switch from “give me a chance” to “give peace a chance.” Romantically, Mercury in Taurus can be great for your love life, ramping up your urge to merge. Discussions could turn to long-term commitments, which you’ll be happy to nudge along to a deeper level. Brainstorm: how can you join forces with another to make your individual lives easier? Sharing is more than just caring now; it can actually save you time and money. Socially, Mercury anoints you the party planner and organizer. How about throwing a Derby party to fete the spring in style? Think: ginormous hats, macarons, and mint juleps. You might even get your amour in on this one, using it as a chance for merging your respective groups of friends into one. On Thursday, the quarter moon in Aquarius focuses your attention on your inner circle. Are the people you count as your BFFs supporting you in the way that you need? You might need to send out clearer instructions or make more obvious and vocal requests. It’s not just anyone who has the privilege of seeing you drop your guard, and you really need to know that you’re safe doing that. If a friend has been a little too advice-y or critical lately (when all you want is a compassionate sounding board), have a heart-to-heart about your hurt feelings. This doesn’t have to turn into a major drama, Scorpio. She was probably doing what SHE thought was helpful. Don’t get too up in arms. As for friends who are drifting into the energy vampire category? As the week draws to the close, you might consider booting them from your close-knit cabal, or moving them out of the VIP room. Once you do, another star player from Team Scorpio could emerge as your newest confidante.
If you turn the “m” in me upside down, you’ll get “we.” This week is all about finding the balance between being a free agent and working the buddy system. Mars in Taurus will oppose Saturn retrograde in Scorpio all week ping-ponging you between control and cooperation. You can be a devoted partner, Taurus, making sacrifices and standing by your peeps through thick and thin. But you can also swing to the opposite extreme by being fussy and demanding in the “I want what I want when I want it” kind of way. This week, strive for a healthy middle ground. If you’ve lost yourself in someone else’s orbit, you definitely need to pull back and find your own center. What are you passionate about? And more importantly, can you even remember? You’re not abandoning your loved ones by pursuing your own dreams, Bull, it’ll only serve to make you more grounded and supportive in the long run. Coupled Taureans, take heart, if a relationship is flatlining or going through one of its less-than-thrilling phases, Mars will help you pump up the passion factor. Look out though! Your mind could meander and your eyes could wander, especially if you’re having a flirty attraction with someone other than your beloved. Enjoy the spring fevered banter, but take care you don’t cross any lines. It’s easy to get swept up in the thrill of “new relationship energy” but breaking your code of honor to someone else will only bring you crashing down from the romantic high. Of course, your sign does tend to stick around (stubbornly) long past the expiration date at times. Have all your friends been pleading with you to dump a negligent loser…and you know in your heart it’s time? This is the week to remember that YOUR happiness is the only thing you hold sway over. If you know you’re walking down a dead-end street, the Mars-Saturn opposition spins you 180 degrees. U-Turn! Thankfully, this all is made easier by mental Mercury, the planet that governs your communication and thought processes. From May 1-14, the speedy messenger planet moves through Taurus, clarifying what’s best for you and sharpening your vision about the future. No more delusions or denial, Bull! Things become remarkably black and white during this two-week phase. And just what is best for you AND other people? Being self-directed (not selfish or sacrificial) is the name of the game. In many cases, it’s simply a matter of speaking up for yourself and negotiating better terms. People are not mind readers and while you may have dropped copious clues since April, until you come right out and make a clear request, you will never get a yes or no answer. With Mercury in Taurus you could find yourself speaking in public, standing up in front of a group to vocalize your opinions, writing a memoir or posting in a public forum. This is a good time to work with a speaking coach, take a Toastmaster’s workshop or sign up for that improv class. Use these two weeks for self-development, research, dabbling and exploring new ideas, but don’t commit to anything long-term just yet. You are too “mercurial” now, and what interests you one minute could bore you the next. On Thursday, the quarter moon in your tenth house reminds you that “it’s all about who you know.” Advancing your personal and professional goals can also be a matter of aligning with the right people. Give your network a once-over. What are the attitudes and views they have about money and success? Are they in healthy relationships? Surrounding yourself by people who are in it to win it will be the wind beneath your wings. No, that doesn’t mean you have to ditch your struggling pals (unless they are bringing you down), just make sure you have a healthy infusion of people who you consider “way-showers” and guides. This may require some networking. Try out industry groups–ones where you have to get your “suit and tie” on–or socialize strategically. Joining that country club for a couple months might give you the in you need.
Details, details. It’s so easy for you to get swept up in them, Virgo, losing sight of the big picture in the process. This week, temperamental Mars faces off with a stern retrograde Saturn blasting through the drama and bringing it to the surface. Mars is occupying your ninth house of vision and truth, pushing you to take the high road and rise above the petty squabbles. Put an end to gossiping, sniping and spreading rumors. You’d call it “venting” or “getting a second opinion,” Virgo, but this habit is far more insidious. Your words have power and when you “speculate” about another you plant a negative thought in people’s minds about that person. If you’re going to call it like you see it, make sure the person you’re talking about is in the room to defend him/herself. Otherwise you risk shooting yourself in the foot, getting a reputation as untrustworthy. Be, as Four Agreements author Don Miguel Ruiz says, “impeccable with your word” this week. Of course that doesn’t mean you have to sweep B.S. under the rug! Communication planet Mercury shifts gears into Taurus from May 1-14, dousing you with truth serum. You cannot tell a lie during this two-week phase. The best way to handle conflict now is to bring issues out into the open, and be proactive and solution-oriented with them. You’ll have to take care to use extra tact, of course. Mercury also brings mental clarity, allowing you to see what’s really going on beyond all the smoke and mirrors. You may simply decide to remove yourself from a situation that’s too mired in confusion and red tape. This Mercury phase helps you stretch beyond familiar territory too. Your interest in other cultures continues to percolate and you could make fast friends with someone from a different background or with a radically different upbringing than yours. If you’re traveling, say “Aloha!” to strangers, you could make friends and contacts in many new ports. Got a few vacation days to cash in on? Plan a trip to meet them friends in Maui, or book that trip to visit your friend in her new London flat. It’s also a good time to feed your entrepreneurial appetite and develop a business idea or expand the one you already have. You might even take a course to help learn something that is missing from your biz equation, like rounding out your social media knowledge with a subscription to Laura Roeder’s Social Media Marketing, or jumping into Ramit Sethi’s Earn 1K class. On Thursday the quarter moon in your sixth house of efficiency helps to bring more levelheaded clarity to the mix. Just the facts, Virgo: that’s your mantra. You’re able to pull back and get down to brass tack, at last! Do you need to simplify an undertaking? Trim away excess and go for minimalism–this brings the wow factor. Also, it’s important that you incorporate some stress-reducing measures. You can really get yourself into quite a spinout worrying and stressing about the what-if’s and what others might think. Devote the rest of the week to health and healing. Go for regular walks throughout the workday (fresh air is medicine!), dedicate five minutes a day to a breath and meditation practice, eat clean and green, dab lavender oil on your temples, and steer clear of stressful people. That’s not so hard, now, is it?