Virgo (Aug. 23-Sept. 22)
Kittens, teenagers, and lovers simply don’t respond well to uninvited discipline, no matter how much they need it. Sucks for you, when you’ve got livid red scratch marks all over your ankles and/or ego from their rambunctiously playful antics. It’s tragic that they don’t even stop once they’ve drawn blood—unless it’s their own. Learning to control the frisky characters in your life is hardly a worthwhile objective, either—since their wildness is something you crave and enjoy. So, what to do? My philosophy: If you can’t (or don’t want to) beat them, joining them could be a shit-ton of fun.
Libra (Sept. 23-Oct. 22)
Your mantra this week: This plan is so crazy, it just might work! In fact, if your scheme’s too normal, it’s practically bound to fail. If you were born into another time you’d probably be a starship captain, and, as we all know, insane strategies are practically the modus operandi of interstellar adventurers. Avoiding clichés and predictability this week is your main purpose in life. Surprise yourself with what you get up to! Otherwise, the fleet of enforcer ships in hot pursuit will know exactly what you’re up to, and you’ll be incarcerated in intergalactic jail for the next twenty cycles.
Scorpio (Oct. 23-Nov. 21)
Mama Scorpion has the best-behaved babies in all the zodiac. She’s a good mother—she lets the pale little infant monsters ride around on her back until they’re old enough to poison, maim, and devour on their own. Meanwhile, she does all that stuff for them. Aw, how sweet. That deadly stinger poised above their heads must make them feel completely safe—and utterly unable to act out. Having powerful allies and advocates can be useful—just make sure they don’t cramp your style, especially when you’re so good at stinging and conquering on your own.
Sagittarius (Nov. 22-Dec. 21)
Effectively creating (or tweaking) your reality can require more finesse than a gourmet meal. Simply combining the correct amounts of all the right ingredients and following the recipe doesn’t always work, especially on the first try. No cookbook can possibly account for those intangible variables that might affect the outcome, like your altitude, your mood, or your oven’s inaccuracy. Trying to do things by the book this week could prove more disastrous, rubbery, and inedible than a collapsed soufflé. Trust your instincts instead; especially because half the people you’re dealing with have ovens that run ten degrees hotter or colder than the number on the dial.
Capricorn (Dec. 22-Jan. 19)
“Hardly Trying” is hardly in your repertoire, let alone a familiar act like “Trying Too Hard” and “Giving It Your All.” It might just be beyond you, but could you at least half-try “Half-Trying?” This week you run an extremely high risk of being permanently branded overzealous, too intense, or overqualified for your job, relationship, or volunteer duties. Like all strengths, even your usually admirable focus and persistence can be a weakness in certain contexts. Take a holiday break from your overachievement. Except for my assignment, adopt this mantra this week: If at first you don’t succeed, give up for now.
Aquarius (Jan. 20-Feb. 18)
Can I just tell you how often my big, sloppy ego has gotten in the way of my true hopes? You know what I’m talking about. How many times have you sabotaged something that’s almost in your grasp, only because the means failed to fulfill some grandiose vision of yourself? The irony: your self-sabotage can only reinforce your negative self-images. Fulfilling your desires, by whatever means, can only enhance your greatness. The clue: Sometimes, a little humility is required to get what you want. Think of it as taking one step back so you can take two steps forward. Works for me, when I can manage to do it. Now you try.
Pisces (Feb. 19-March 20)
You tread unfamiliar territory so often that routines, habits, and sure things are more strange and frightening than the unknown ever was. That’s why this newest chapter is giving you some qualms—you can tell already that it’s going to be great, instead of the pleasant uncertainty you’re used to. Would it help if I told you that it’s going to be incredible in a way that you’ve simply never experienced before, and beyond anything even your prodigious imagination has conjured up yet? Got a few nervous butterflies? Good. They’ll help when the latest plot twist blows your mind—and who knows what else.
Aries (March 21-April 19)
A butterfly is far too fragile to be your new power animal, but I’d like to give it to you anyway, perhaps as a totem…accessory. It perfectly embodies the necessary journey you undertake at least once—and often many times—during your lifetime. Periodically (like this week), you’re frustrated because you’re not granted the respect you know you deserve. People see you as little, cute, and fuzzy, perhaps a bit of a pest—something akin to a poisonous (but only if you eat it) caterpillar. There’s not much you can do about it but turn inward and transform yourself (again). Ironically, once you flutter beyond your cocoon, not only will you get more admiration than ever before; you’ll care about and need it even less.
Taurus (April 20-May 20)
I almost started a food fight in the café when I innocently tried to toss scraps to my dog. It was an accident, but no one likes scrambled eggs in their hair, especially old ladies. Luckily, she didn’t notice, and I managed to surreptitiously brush it out when I pretended to bump into her. Bits of your own good deed might piss someone off when they get caught in the crossfire. Remember, one dog’s treat can be another old biddy’s nightmare. When delivering blessings this week, make sure you aim at the right person (the one who’ll best appreciate them).
Gemini (May 21-June 20)
I hate keeping secrets from you, and I’m no good at it either. That’s why I can’t keep my mouth shut about this one: someone you love is hiding something incredible, and mind-blowingly surprising. Before you explode with rage or curiosity, let me explain: It’s the kind of secret that not only improves with time, but one that you’re better off not knowing at all (at least until the time is right). Think: Surprise birthday parties, money hidden under the floorboards, and rich, anonymous patrons. Now can you just shut up and enjoy not knowing, please?
Cancer (June 21-July 22)
Imagine yourself building a brick wall six feet high. Would you start by stacking bricks, one wobbling column at a time? Of course not. If you want your wall to last, you’ve got to build it one horizontal layer at a time, staggering the individual bricks from row to row, and slapping a healthy layer of mortar in between to hold it all together. The same thing goes for the mental defense you’re trying to construct. You don’t want the whole thing to come tumbling down at the slightest touch. But don’t get carried away, either—it’s got to stay just tall enough and strong enough to keep out the losers and prove the mettle of the winners who make it over, or through.
Leo (July 23-Aug. 22)
Flying high on romance can cause a painful concussion, whenever you slam your skull against the glass ceiling beyond which only movies and fairy tales can go. Love affairs are, by far, the most effective destabilizers known to Leo-kind; they have more undertow per square inch than the Bermuda Triangle. Before you become completely lost while riding that hurricane of emotion, let me remind you to tether yourself to familiar territory with an unbreakable carbotanium cable. In case you haven’t already, do it this week—you should be touching down briefly on the last island of solidity before you hit the open sea.