by Amy Elliott
We usually think of maturity in terms of taking on the many dull yet necessary duties of adulthood, such as managing one’s accounts or keeping up with the housework. Yet there are other qualities also, one being the ability not to take life too seriously. However paradoxical that sounds, it relates to a commitment to learn and grow throughout life, to treat it as an ongoing adventure, and to avoid general complacency. Regardless of what other people do and think, it is not your business to be satisfied with the dull. Give yourself time and space to frolic.
The question of what we would say to our younger selves can be a double-edged sword. On the one hand, we can more easily see what we’ve learned since the year specified. On the other, it’s possible to feel regret for what one might consider missed opportunities. All that said, the present-day you is the younger self you could address in the future. Likewise, there are plenty of ambitions and dreams that it’s never too late to fulfill. If there’s anything you regret not having learned, ask yourself whether you could start now.
In the public eye, the right to freedom of speech currently seems most often to be associated with its abuses, perceived or real. Yet its importance as a cornerstone of democracy cannot be underestimated. This is similarly true in terms of individual self-actualization. Too many of us have been silenced in one form or another; prevented from expressing ourselves as we need to. If there have been obstacles to you doing this, now would be an excellent time to root them out, face them, and begin knocking them down one by one.
With self-publishing tools like Facebook and Instagram so readily available to everyone, it’s no wonder that there is confusion between the concept of living right and that of appearing to. It’s expected that successes, failures, and the good and bad of each person’s character are displayed in full public view. Yet you know, really, that doing good in the world and acting in accordance with one’s principles does not depend on ‘likes’. You have nothing to prove, and can value your conscientiousness regardless of who else sees it.
As we approach the zenith of your birthday season, feel free to take some moments to relax and experience pride in all that you’ve accomplished, especially in the past year. Despite the cultural messages we usually receive about pride, it’s normal and healthy in moderation, like many other things. Let the child within you out to play; spend some time on activities you really enjoy, and bask in the sunlight for a while. Your natural effervescence draws people to you, and your good cheer may well brighten their days as well as yours.
The most potent healing certainly feels challenging, and may even be somewhat scary. That’s because the deeper sort of growth tends to involve confronting what holds you back, which usually comes in the shape of fear or guilt. This is an ongoing fight for many, and there are invariably both triumphs and setbacks. The thing is to persevere. As you do this, be gentle with yourself; pay attention to how you’re feeling, and explore those emotions as fully as you can. More often than not, the rewards are proportional to the difficulties.
If you’ve been feeling challenged, tense or unlike yourself recently, that should take a turn for the better this week. If there’s something you need to get off your chest, however, remember that there’s probably at least one person willing to listen. People need one another, regardless of how many judgmental types would have you believe otherwise. When you are grappling with any problem, input from others — even if only advice or moral support — can often be of material use. Take courage, and confer with a trusted friend or three.
While Mercury being retrograde comes with certain cautions, usually around making purchases or big decisions or signing contracts, this doesn’t preclude flights of fancy or inventive concepts from forming at all. Indeed, the general slowing down that this phase tends to make requisite means that people sometimes have more room for their imagination to take wing. Yours could well be on point this week: be sure to jot down any ideas that come to mind, even if they seem quirky. You may view them in a different light later on.
Finding oneself in new surroundings affords a certain amount of license, rather like a blank sheet of paper, since old habits and limits are essentially no longer relevant: in effect, you can reconstruct who you are almost entirely, if you choose to do so. All this depends on what you want, in the deepest sense of that question. Consider your most fundamental desires and highest spiritual aims alike; assume you can fulfill them, and sketch out a plan for how you might get there. You are a child of the universe. Much is possible.
The problem with ingrained patterns of behavior is that they can be activated more easily than changed. By that I mean: if some former figure in your life tended to make you feel small or lacking in power, it may take effort to prevent that happening again. The good news is that you can do it, even many years later. The main point is consciously to practice loving yourself, trusting yourself, and giving yourself permission to live your life. You can make great strides in that this week, and it will likely lead to a new sense of peace with the past.
Part of the delight of relationships and of sex is the opportunity to have fun together, to be playful, to experiment and to relax. There’s also the ability to be completely yourself in someone else’s presence, which is an extraordinarily liberating experience. Of course, everyone involved needs to hold space for each other, which requires mutual trust. Surround yourself, this week, with people who are willing to do precisely that, and for whom you can do the same. Give yourself real opportunities to be saucy and/or creative.
It’s possible that a good work-life balance, especially on a daily basis, may be more important to you than any other sign. This week might be a particularly helpful time to weight that scale on the side of play, though that can include anything productive that helps you to feel enriched as a person. When at your most organized, you can get the more mundane tasks out of the way pretty quickly. Go to places where the nurturing, loving energy of the Earth is tangible, and draw on the support of those who are happy to take care of you.