Thursday, February 11, 2010

Finding the I in You

In preparation for the NY Writers Workshop Non-Fiction Pitch Conference this weekend, I got to thinking about self-definition. Over this weekend, I’m going to have to pitch my memoir to various editors in the publishing world. As much as I’d like to sell my book, the very idea of selling myself – out loud – to deemed experts, is a little daunting.

For me, there’s a pattern here of defining myself from the outside-in. Sure, other people’s opinions are important, especially when they’re making decisions related to my future. But, are their opinions the only ones that matter? As I got to thinking more about this, I realized that I’ve been falling prey to this not-so-helpful pattern for most of my life. Well, I’m done. I’m ready to break those old patterns of self-definition. Thank you very much Mars in retrograde. Yep. I believe I’m onto something here.

With Pluto in my 12th, I’m getting a lot of help with this. Pluto’s been shining the light on all things dark and scary. The 12th house represents all things in the background – it’s our psychic closet if you will. Insert Pluto into the mix and it’s a regular, “Wow. I haven’t thought about this in years fest.” Pluto’s energy is emotional, so there’s a lot of instinct involved in any Pluto transit. I’ve experienced and heard from others that with Pluto around, it sometimes feels like crawling around in the dark feeling your way through.

Mars takes things to yet another level. In Leo since October, Mars has been stirring up all things identity-related. Leo’s ruler, the Sun is the quintessential representation of ego and self. Think of the Sun and its presence. Now, think about a Leo and his/her presence. Leo’s know who they are – they are true individuals, never asking for permission to be who they are. Mars is energy – warrior energy. Put the two together and you’ve got a whole lot of people out there trying to assert themselves individually, without apology.

But the Universe is smart. Retrogrades get a bad rap, but I’m here to tell you, they are necessary. This particular transit needs a retrograde or else you’d have people going like gangbusters without any attention to circumstance or more importantly, consequence. I’m all for individuation. In fact, I think the world could use more and more of it. However, it’s not something to be taken lightly. The process of the Mars transit through Leo will take six months in total, ending in early June. Until then, it might be helpful to take a look at the process and how to use it your advantage.

As I said earlier, the energy of Mars in Leo centers around individualization. For some, it’s natural and the Mars transit has accelerated their already unique position in the world. For most, however, it’s a bit more tricky. Mars is power and its entry into Leo may have left many of you feeling like you woke up one morning and wow! - who is this person staring back at me in the mirror. But, you ignore it and go about your day, your week, your life. However, something’s different. Slowly, you notice that certain things are no longer working for you in the same way they’ve been for as long as you can remember. Maybe you’re tired of listening to your friends go on and on about themselves, never bothering to ask about your life. Perhaps you’re sick of pretending that your boss’ blatant disrespect doesn’t bother you. Whatever your story is, if you’re “mad as hell and not going to take it anymore”, you’re feeling Mars alright.

Just when things start to get interesting, say, peak, Mars goes retrograde. The energy is like riding the brakes on a fast-moving car. You’re still moving forward, but the speed is noticeably diminished. As annoying as it is, it is essential! Retrogrades are meant for review and revision. So, before you clock your boss in the face, you need to turn inward and look a little deeper, perhaps identifying the reason why you let your boss speak to you like that in the first place. Mars can makes us feel an unusually strong sense of urgency, but I am here to tell you, once Mars goes direct, you will have an opportunity to take steps to make the changes you so desperately need. The difference however, is that if you use the retrograde wisely and do your work, the outcome is more likely to be a positive one without drama or rash decisions.

We’ve got about a month left of the retrograde, so if you haven’t tuned into this energy yet, I suggest you start now. A few simple ways to do so would be to begin by looking to see if there’s been a common theme in your life since October related to all things you. Remember Mars represents war, so if you’ve had your share of fallouts with friends or loved ones, go deeper and see what’s underneath that. Are you longing to assert yourself in situations where the power play is not balanced? Are you anxious to make headway in your career and finally be recognized for your unique talents? Once you identify the root of the problem, you can start working on it.

Mars in Leo most certainly amps up the pride factor and at times it can exacerbate the victim mentality a bit leaving people to feel like everyone is against them and it’s better to just lie in the corner, lick our wounds like a proud lion. Use this retrograde to get past the surface stuff, tossing aside ego for the sake of ego and utilizing the ego to fuel who you are at your deepest core. THAT is the ego. defines ego as: the “I” or self of any person; a person as thinking, feeling, and willing, and distinguishing itself from the selves of others and from objects of its thought.

Is the “I” in you out front and center? Are you living the “I” in you out loud or is she/he hiding in the closet?

If you’ve done your homework during the retrograde, you will get to try the new you (or “I”) on for size when Mars returns to it’s forward to direction on March 10th. Remember that once the proverbial foot comes off the brake and things go full steam ahead, it’s important to walk with consciousness and humility remembering the work you’ve done during the retrograde. Change can be liberating, but it can also be difficult especially if it involves identity. Take care for those around you as they will inevitably have to adjust to this new you. By taking care, I mean, of them and you. After all, what’s the point of finding the “I” if you don’t nurture and take care of it?

We’ve got a powerful New Moon this weekend – a great time to plant the seeds within yourself, creating powerful intention to change. Think BIG!

If you'd like to know more about your astrology chart, book a private reading with me here.

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