I am 44 years old, and right up until this week, I didn’t know who I was. Imagine that: the guy who writes to you every week about improving your self-awareness had no clue about himself! For all of my high-minded prodding to uncover your purpose, to explore your strengths and weaknesses, to march to the beat of your own drummer, and to live your Truth, all along I was just flying blind. Clueless.
Now I know.
I know my strengths and weaknesses. I know what kind of career I would excel at. I know how all my relationships will unfold and what has doomed my previous ones. I know who to stay away from and who to get closer to. I even know what my main challenges and breakthroughs will be for today, and even for this week, month, and year. I pretty much have all of the answers figured out now for this little game called LIFE. It should be a walk in the park from here one out.
I guess I was just too stubborn all these years, thinking I would have to carve out my own path through LIFE. I took all of those old adages like “March to the beat of your own drummer” and “Be true to yourself” to heart and figured that since there was only one of me, faith in my heart and mind as my internal compass would have to suffice to carry me through this uncertain world. My intuition would guide me, helping me make the difficult decisions as they arose. I would be unique, and my path would be beautifully my own.
What a fool I was!
I even knew that everyone else was getting the answers to the test for free. They were there all along and I simply refused to acknowledge them, trusting my instincts to get me to my destination instead of using the free map that everyone else was peeking at. It was there everyday in the newspaper.
For as long as I can remember, I have been totally repelled by horoscopes and all things Astrology. I saw them there in my local newspaper as a kid and in the magazines. I understood the idea of them—and I even heard from someone that I am a Libra—but I could never quite bring myself to read them. I cannot explain it, because I have always been a curious guy. Maybe the young Catholic in me sensed something forbidden in it, as though merely dabbling in the stars was akin to Devil worship. Maybe the radar in my naturally logical, analytical mind sounded loudly in the presence something so seemingly fanciful. Whatever it was, something in me just wouldn’t go there.
Interestingly (at least to me), I have always wanted to visit a highly-regarded psychic to get a personal reading. Maybe I would think it was hogwash afterward—depending on how much I wanted to agree with what the person said about my future—but I am very open to it in theory. Horoscope stuff, though? Somehow, just no. Never.
But hey, let’s face it: I have been working hard at finding my own way through this Universe for a long time, and it doesn’t feel like I am very far along. I have big stuff I want to accomplish, and frankly, at this point I could use all the help I can get. What’s the old Thomas Jefferson quote? “If you want something you’ve never had, you must be willing to do something you’ve never done.” Something like that. Anyway, I am overdue to try something new. Horoscope, anyone?
Trying to be open-minded but admittedly cringing a little bit inside, I have spent the last few days as a student of Astrology, scouring the many Internet sites to learn about the twelve signs and how they interact. I certainly am no expert yet, but I have an understanding about my own sign, Libra, and the signs of my family members. I figure I know just enough to decide whether knowing it is going to help me or not.
So what about my Libra self?
Well, for starters, Libra is one of the three “Air” signs—along with Gemini and Aquarius–which means I am generally very social and rational. The 25% of us Air folks would be thought of as thinkers and talkers.
As for the Libra in me specifically, I like things to be fair and harmonious. I can’t stand injustice or cheating of any sort, and my reactions to unfairness might be taken so far to be socially inappropriate. But that is the only time I am unhappy: when I feel like I have been wronged. I like the outdoors and trying new things. I like sharing with people, and I make decisions that benefit the most people, even if it means sacrificing my own benefit. I cannot stand to be alone and must do everything in a partnership or team alliance. I don’t like to be in charge of my team, but I do want my voice to be heard. I have a very sharp mind and get absorbed and inspired by good books and deep conversations with fascinating people. I am gracious and diplomatic, avoiding confrontations, including violence, at almost all costs. And yet, I dislike conformity. I love beautiful things and surround myself with them. I am a hopeless romantic. I tend toward self-pity, can be superficial, and I hold grudges. But my biggest failing is my indecisiveness. This can come off as laziness or absent-mindedness, but it really comes from me weighing all things carefully to achieve balance. In any case, I am very wishy-washy.
As for my current Libra world, the horoscope has told me a few different things this week. Apparently, I have a lot of work to do and should stop resisting change. I have to trim my friend list and do lots of other work on my relationships (because I am so social, remember?). On Thursday, a good friend was supposed to surprise me and teach me a lesson, and I needed more focused energy to get my stuff done. On Friday, I was to have some good career ideas that wouldn’t help my relationships, and I was going to share “TMI” in a social situation (which was a problem on Wednesday, too, believe it or not). I have a lot of relationship stuff happening!
But that’s just how it is for us Libra people. You know us: me, Gandhi, Vladimir, Putin, Snoop Dogg, Kim Kardashian, John Lennon, Jimmy Carter, and Bruno Mars. We can’t help ourselves. The stars made us do it!
Okay, seriously, how accurate was it? How well did Astrology nail my essence? Am I a classic Libra? Did the horoscope ring true with my week?
Not so much.
Well, to be fair, I thought some of it hit the nail on the head. I really am highly sensitive about issues of injustice, including injustice done to me (for which I do hold grudges!). I do like the outdoors and trying new things. My mind is pretty sharp and inspired by deep-thinking books and people. I am nonviolent and dislike conformity. Those are all very Libra-like. I started thinking that those astrologists might be onto something!
Unfortunately, other Libra characteristics were so very unlike me that my excitement soon waned. The biggest bust was one of the most important Libra traits: their social butterfly personality and distaste for being alone. That could not be further from me! The other major Libra trait that missed was the indecisiveness. I am very clear about what works for me. Several smaller traitscc didn’t seem to fit, either.
Then there were the horoscope predictions. That stuff didn’t resonate with me at all! On a few things, I was like, “Maaaaaybe I could see that.” But mostly, it was, “Hmmmm…… No!”
I perused the zodiac signs of my wife, kids, and parents, too, just to see if perhaps I was an aberration (as I seem to be in many aspects of my world!). My wife’s Taurus description came the closest, though even that one was hit-or-miss with the traits. My children, who are quite different from one another, have the same sign—you know, like me and Kim Kardashian–so I was left to scratch my head there, too.
I checked the other signs as well, just to make sure I hadn’t been misplaced at birth (as has long been rumored in my height-challenged family). I thought that Scorpio or Pisces were probably the best fit, then maybe Gemini, with a bit of Sagittarius and Virgo. But none of them produced the “A-Ha! THAT is me!” reaction I was hoping for.
All in all, I would have to give this experiment a FAIL. I am glad I did it, because it is good to know things. But, I suppose I was right all along in trusting my gut and staying far away from the Horoscope section of the newspaper. I always did have good intuition. Like a true Libra!
Oh, wait, no. Sorry, that’s a Pisces. Moving on!
How about you? How closely do you fit your astrological sign? Open up your journal and your horoscope. What do the stars say about you? Start with your Zodiac sign. Who does it say you are supposed to be? How accurately does that describe you? Which of the sign’s characteristics are a perfect match for you? Does that give you confidence that Astrology might have some answers for you? Which of your sign’s characteristics don’t sound like you at all? What does that tell you? On the whole, does the list of traits for your sign have more that match your personality or more that don’t? How confident are you in Astrology’s ability to be helpful to you? Does it make you immediately suspicious when something tries to pin down the 7 billion people in the world into only twelve different personality groupings? How long have you known about your sign? Do you check in on your daily or weekly horoscope readings? How accurate do they seem to be? Do you think that they make them so vague and general that each one could be a fit for just about anybody? Have you ever sought guidance for a particular question or problem from an astrologer or from your horoscope in a newspaper, magazine, or online? Was it helpful? Have you used the signs to find a love match (it says that my wife and I are a bad match, and my parents, too)? How did that go? Sum it up for me: how much stock do you put in this stuff? Is it a random pool of nonsense and gobbledygook, or is there really something here? Leave me a reply and let me know: Do you believe what the stars tell you?
Believe in yourself,
P.S. If you enjoyed today’s interstellar journey, pass it along. Let’s fly together!