Change Is Worth It 

For the week of May 2-8, 2012.

The planets tilt the routines of daily life toward even greater intensity this week, so don't be surprised if you find yourself increasingly skewed toward how things "should" be. These leanings could include opinions, decisions, or actions you never imagined you would embrace or embody; or, conversely, you might find yourself clinging to established positions with a fierce and poignant loyalty that refuses to be budged by reality. We're in a process of transition, in preparation for an even longer process of transformation, and the next several weeks represent a "that was then, and this is now" threshold between what was, what is, and what will be. Figuring out how to move through these shifts is going to take skill. Transitions are often uncomfortable, especially when they require a change of mind or a change of heart — or both. Anticipate feeling vulnerable or exposed. Do whatever it is you do to protect yourself, but make sure you stay open to the potential for profound change. Personal pole shifts require courage, but they are almost always worth the energy and effort.

The astrological threshold we're standing on opens into several years of squares between Uranus and Pluto, the two most powerful change agents in the astrological system. The first exact square is June 24, and while that sounds as if it's too far in the future to have an effect right now, from the perspective of cosmic time we're already in it; Uranus and Pluto signatures are always present in times of revolution and evolution. Protest thrives under this influence, and as the next several months unfold, we are certain to see an increase in dissent. Expect those demonstrations to be more than political; personal revolutions are just as likely, as individuals chafe from restraints, real or imagined. Over the next several weeks, as this square tightens its grip, daily life will preview what needs to shift. Pay close attention to what you are resisting the most — that's usually the first sign that something's gotta give.

A Venus/Saturn trine adds a sobering and steady touch to the week. Venus is in Gemini, the Sign of communication. Saturn is in Libra, the Sign of relationships. And as they form a positive connection, we have opportunities to do the same, especially through conversations aimed at conveying important information. This trine supports heartfelt exchanges, but be careful not to be too blunt. And, as always, consider your situation from the other person's point of view before you make proclamations you might regret.

A Sun/Jupiter conjunction, in Taurus, provides an optimistic attitude that can also serve as a soothing balm to mounting tension. The core of this idealistic combination is joyous vitality. It also fosters humor. Laughter is the greatest medicine for the heart, so this week, when possible, lift your spirit by finding the funny — it's almost always there.

If you know your Ascendant and/or your Moon Sign, read that, too.

ARIES Survey your recent past, and acknowledge just how much you have accomplished. Of course, there's always more work to do, but don't let that awareness keep you from appreciating the richness of the present moment.

TAURUS Strong and unexpected emotional responses, yours or others', have the potential to throw you off balance, but only if you insist on clinging to a specific outcome. Be willing to be surprised, and you'll maintain your equilibrium.

GEMINI While there's no reason to continue to wear heavy armor for self-protection, it's still important to practice moderation. Refuse to engage in any extreme behavior, and you'll create safe passage into the next phase.

CANCER Be willing to view your situation from as many perspectives as possible — over, under, sideways, and backwards — and you'll access a new angle and a fresh approach. It's never easy shifting out of a staunch position, but it's always worth the effort.

LEO Break free from any self-imposed constraints keeping you from seizing the moment and stand firmly in your power. Remember: The universe rearranges itself to accommodate our picture of reality. Think free, and be free.

VIRGO Try not to let strife of any kind interfere with your capacity to move forward. Put aside old grudges, let go of the need to punish, and do your best to embrace compassion. Simply allow the power of kindness to ease your anxiety.

LIBRA There's no need to pretend about how you feel or to hide your emotions. Wear your heart on your sleeve, and let the power of your authenticity encourage others to be honest and open.

SCORPIO Refine your intuitive skill, and do whatever it is you do to clear your mind and strengthen your internal center. If you rely on your innate capacity to grasp what's unspoken, you'll have an easier time understanding what's said.

SAGITTARIUS Continue to let go of internal attitudes that could be keeping you from simply enjoying your joy. It's not your style to lean toward negativity, especially now, when so much is moving in the right direction.

CAPRICORN Refuse to be swayed by personal bias, and you'll access the wisest approach to your current dilemma. Be objective, even if that means releasing control of the outcome, and simply allow the situation to unfold.

AQUARIUS Be confident in your ability to handle this transitional phase. While it requires adjusting to a new setting, it also offers the possibility of deep and abiding personal and creative transformation.

PISCES One of the most important qualities of the Fool in the Tarot is that he is neither foolish nor reckless. He leaps into life in the knowledge that he will grow from each and every experience.

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