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Still Waiting to Exhale

For the week of August 11-17, 2010.

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The world may not have come to an end on July 26 with a single cinematic event reminiscent of a scene directed by Michael Bay, but there were enough micro-Armageddons to tilt plenty of personal worlds at a new angle to the Sun. And this week, as dynamic planetary patterns continue to generate an unsettled atmosphere, reactions to those personal pole shifts are likely to play out as a need to act out. Expect outbursts that at first glance seem disproportionate to the immediate or obvious cause, but upon deeper inspection reveal anxiety about how to handle the current emotional disruption. While the worst of the astral weather is starting to recede (it won't be over completely until mid-September), we are still in the wake of gigantic waves of change — and that translates to continued uncertainty about the future. So if and when you encounter extreme emotional reactions, yours or others', try to remember to breathe before you blurt. Beyond the pleasure of blowing off steam, there's no need to contribute to the agitation. We co-create the future with our every thought, word, and deed, and although we can't necessarily control what is already set in motion, we can make every effort to neutralize negativity by staying positive and enthusiastic about the potential for conscious transformation.

Several factors contribute to this week's disconcerting air. First, Uranus retrogrades back into Pisces on August 13, where it will stay until March 11, 2011. Its return to Pisces will dial down the heat of the moment just a tad — say, from eleven to ten. But the planet of revolution continues to stay in close proximity to Jupiter, who also returns to Pisces on September 9, which means that startling plot twists will continue to confound even the best prepared. Be aware: As Uranus and Jupiter retrograde and revisit the events of the last several months, so will we. Don't be surprised if you have a change of heart, but also understand that when Uranus moves back into Aries, you just might change your heart and mind, again.

Next, we are still in the throes of the final Saturn/Pluto square, which is exact on August 21. This signature symbolizes self-destruction, and the poisonous venom of harsh judgment that denies the humanity of another. At the risk of repeating myself, avoid pointing a blaming finger. Instead, recognize that most of what we judge so severely in others is what we despise most in ourselves.

We are also in the approach to the next Mercury Retrograde phase, which begins on August 20 and ends on September 12. Mercury Retrograde is always about review and reflection, and because we have so much to think about, this retrograde ought to be quite revelatory. Be aware that the three days before and after a retrograde pose just as much of a problem as the retrograde itself, so back up all of your data now.

As the week unfolds, do your best to manage the stress by focusing on what brings you joy. While that may involve overcoming enormous obstacles, a joyous heart is a resilient heart.

If you know your Ascendant and/or your Moon Sign, read that too.

ARIES Just let the brouhaha pass without getting involved. Stay anchored in the truth of your heart, not agreeing with those you love for fear of losing them, and not arguing with them for fear of being ignored.

TAURUS The missing piece of the puzzle is knowing how to harmonize a wide variety of opinions about how things should be. Soothe the pent-up tension by finding the positive ground of compromise, and everyone will feel like a winner.

GEMINI Try not to let concerns about the future devolve into constant anxiety about what's going to happen next. Instead, stay in present time and make your decisions based on the current situation.

CANCER I could promise external relief, but the only genuine break in the weather is within you. Adjust your attitude, and you'll find the potential for positive breakthrough.

LEO Simply listen. But don't mistake this listening for anything casual. Hear with your heart as well as your soul, and you'll hear so much more than is actually said.

VIRGO Manage your expectations, and you won't be disappointed if others fail to meet your high standards. Remember, not everyone is as efficient as you or as invested in a positive outcome.

LIBRA Resist the temptation to pull away as a means of self-protection. Instead, soften your stern approach. If you can stay open, you'll access the potential for positive solutions.

SCORPIO The best way to keep brooding at bay is to embrace the broadest possible perspective, one that includes time as well as space. From that vantage point, you'll start to make sense of your situation.

SAGITTARIUS In the realm of personal transformation, it's not possible to go through too many changes — but it is probable that going through too many changes too quickly will overwhelm. Pace yourself, Grasshopper, and you'll do fine.

CAPRICORN Channel your intensity into work, but spend your time and energy wisely. Apply your innate discipline and organization skills to every project, and you'll handle each situation with ease.

AQUARIUS Resist the attraction of a quick fix or spiritual bypass. You are processing a lot of information, and it may take you more than a moment to arrive at what you really feel about your current circumstances.

PISCES As Uranus moves back into your Sign, déjà vu becomes part of your vocabulary. Just realize that you are not backsliding; you are simply revisiting areas that are still in need of attention and awareness.

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