Updated: Feb 22, 2019
This post is the first in a series called “Self-Care for your Sign.” Within this series, I will explore the Sun and the Moon through the signs as they offer strategies for self-care.
When someone seeks out a reading of any kind, it’s not usually because everything is fine. Some of my clients do come to me for a yearly check-in, at which time they may only want a forecast of the coming trends. But most often people who want a reading are in a challenging time in their lives, and they are looking for insight.
Of the common themes that show up in my consulting room, there is one that can be boiled down to its simplest form: People are looking for permission.
Permission to be themselves. And permission to put themselves first in their lives.
The “prescription” that I give to my clients at the end of a reading is often a recipe for self-care based upon a combination of their birth chart and their forecast.
Self-care seems as though it should be an easy thing to do. But it’s not as simple as taking a salt bath or getting a pedicure. We are all different in terms of what energizes us and what nourishes us.
And, so many people I see are chronically busy. Busy with work. And/or busy taking care of others: children, spouses, aging parents, sick family members, friends in crisis. But overwhelmingly, these people are not finding the time to take care of themselves. They put others first, thinking that’s what a “spiritual” or “compassionate” person does. We are taught in this culture that sacrifice is a virtue, while putting one's own needs first is selfish. These clients then suffer from overwhelm and exhaustion. They feel unappreciated for all they do for everyone else. Or, they feel stuck in their lives, unhappy with the status quo but unsure of how to move forward.
This stuck feeling is often what prompts a client to come to me. An astrology reading not only provides a container in which the client can go deeper into themselves, but offers strategies for moving through crises.
Even as I offer my astrological prescriptions, I struggle with the same dilemmas. I'm no master at dealing with these challenges, but I have learned how to identify what gets in the way of my own self-care. I have taken action on my awareness by creating and sticking with a solid self-care practice.
My ability to do this is grounded in an awareness of my own astrology. Two pieces -- my Sun Sign and my Moon Sign -- create the foundation of my understanding. These tell me what energizes me (Sun) and how to soothe and nurture myself (Moon). With my Cancer Sun, I know how to rejuvenate when I get depleted. With my Taurus Moon I know how to calm myself down when I am stressed. I know how to hold myself with compassion when the world feels like too much to deal with.
I share these strategies with others in my readings. My recommendations for self-care based upon your chart have previously been sprinkled into almost every reading I’ve done. But I’m finding that now, more than ever, there is an increased need for a focus on self-care.
What is Self-Care
There is a culturally understood definition of self-care that usually includes things like:
-Getting a massage -Going to a movie -Going on a walk in nature -Getting a pedicure or manicure -Meditating -Sleeping in on the weekend These activities are generally good for self-care. But we can widen it to include things that might seem counter-intuitive, such as:
-Cleaning and organizing -Taking care of tasks that are piling up -Taking a step toward a goal you desire -Setting aside the time to work on a project or hobby While some people might relax through getting a massage or a pedicure, I have known others who don't find these things relaxing at all. Instead, they might be unable to relax until their house is clean. So housework becomes a form a self-care. Or, when we look at our desk and see the papers piling up, it can be a form of self-care to stop and take care of each task, one at a time, until your desk is tidy. This makes clear the distinction between "self-care" and recreation. Self-care requires forethought. To truly take care of ourselves is a sacred task, and to do it well, we may even have to do things to which we are initially averse. For example, I have talked to so many people who have trouble setting aside time for a pursuit of a hobby they enjoy. When we are busy, these pursuits go by the wayside. It's almost easier to stay in the default setting of "too busy" than to carve out two or three hours on a weekend for our own creative/play time.
Self-care isn't just one activity we do, then check off the list. We need to cultivate a self-care practice that is ongoing, infused into our daily life. And it is helpful to know our Sun and Moon signs' core needs so that we can design a practice that is in alignment with our specific makeup.
In this series, I’ll be posting self-care recommendations for each Sun and Moon signs.
We’ll begin with the Sun.
Self-Care for your Sun-Sign
The Sun is our core, our essence. It is the engine within us. We need to give our Sun the right kind of fuel, based on its natal placement. The Sun sign’s qualities help to answer the question:
What energizes you?
Here is a brief overview of how to energize your Sun sign.
Note: I have boiled these descriptions down to their essence here. I’ll offer specific strategies and recommendations in future posts, but these short recommendations can point you in the right direction.
Your Aries Sun enjoys the opportunity to start new ventures, face fears, overcome challenges, and pursue creative passions.
Your Taurus Sun enjoys the opportunity to inhabit peaceful places, to deeply experience physical comforts, and to engender simplicity in all aspects of life.
Your Gemini Sun enjoys the opportunity to be stimulated intellectually, to communicate via writing or teaching, and to be immersed in the life of the mind.
Your Cancer Sun enjoys the opportunity to offer healing to others, to nurture the growth of a project or a living thing, and to experience deep bonding and emotional connection within relationships.
Your Leo Sun enjoys the opportunity to pursue creative projects, to have your creative work seen and appreciated, and to have ample time for play and recreation.
Your Virgo Sun enjoys the opportunity to refine skills over time, to solve problems, and to help others in practical and tangible ways.
Your Libra Sun enjoys the opportunity to mediate conflict, to be immersed in beauty, and to create beauty in one's surroundings and in the world.
Your Scorpio Sun enjoys the opportunity to live authentically, to face fears, and to engage in psychologically complex, intimate bonds with others.
Your Sagittarius Sun enjoys the opportunity to expand its horizons through travel or higher learning, to follow the call of adventure, and to coach and mentor others.
Your Capricorn Sun enjoys the opportunity to build projects over time, to gain outer-world recognition for accomplishments, and to embody the role of the elder or authority figure.
Your Aquarius Sun enjoys the opportunity to break new ground in ways that can benefit the collective, to display unique and inventive solutions to problems, and to live authentically in contrast to cultural expectations.
Your Pisces Sun enjoys the opportunity to engage in compassionate service to others, to experience altered states of consciousness, and to ground spiritual wisdom in order to teach others.
In the next post in this series, we’ll go deeper into "Self-Care for Your Sign" with specific recommendations for the Sun Signs.