Sign Language

Capricorn (Dec. 22-Jan. 19)Although in practical matters, you’re rarely surprised, the emotional world can still shock and astound you (as you may have recently discovered). Unfortunately, even though in some aspects of life you can prepare and plan for many probable outcomes, when it comes to feelings it’s virtually impossible to predict what will happen next. Stop trying. It’s an annoying (to everyone else), pointless waste of energy. When it comes to matters of the heart, your best bet is to stay in the moment, spontaneously run with the hilarious, passionate, and fun things as they happen—and roll with the punches when they happen, too.Aquarius (Jan. 20-Feb. 18)The skeptic in you doesn’t believe in the power of good-luck charms, but please resist going around popping others’ delusion balloons. Think back to your less-cynical childhood, when you probably held on to a special talisman or two, for luck, security, or comfort. These objects can have whatever power we endow them with. If someone truly believes that they’ll be more successful with their lucky rabbit’s foot in hand, they probably will be—if only because they’ll go into the situation with more optimism and confidence. Don’t rob them of that, and they might spare you the shattering of your own helpful illusions—yes, you have some, too.Pisces (Feb. 19-March 20)You frequently play fast and loose when it comes to your own boundaries, and everyone knows you’re generally more interested in bending the rules than abiding by them. However, when it’s your job to enforce someone else’s boundaries—particularly someone who can’t necessarily stick up for themselves—you must be much more vigilant and strict than you’d be for yourself. This is an opportunity for you—real practice sticking to your guns and holding your own. Bonus: Once you’ve learned to do it on someone else’s behalf, you’ll be much better at doing it for yourself, too.

Aries (March 21-April 19)The silver lining of tragic events is that often when people have nothing to lose—someone’s about to die, a relationship is on the verge of breaking up, etc.—they put all their cards on the table, and things get better than ever. If only people could be motivated to do this before things get so close to disaster! Then how cool would your life be? Fortunately, this week you and yours might be more willing to put more cards on the table than ever before, leading to deeper connections, more exciting adventures, and surprising fun had by all. Make sure you give as good as you get. Taurus (April 20-May 20)Fairness is an important concept for you Bulls. You’ve occasionally dug in your heels or even gone to battle for it. That’s all commendable, of course, and we all admire you for it, but “fairness” isn’t always a cut-and-dried, black-and-white affair. People have their own customized notions and arrangements, and it’s not your job to make sure they get what you consider their fair share, only that they’re happy with the situation—even if you wouldn’t be, in their shoes. That means sometimes you just need to bite your tongue, avert your rolled eyes, and leave well enough alone. Gemini (May 21-June 20)We used to have a smoke alarm we disconnected because it would go off whenever we put on the toaster or cooked anything. It was simply too sensitive. There’s someone in your life who’s an awful lot like that annoying smoke detector—with excellent intentions, but way too thin-skinned to function in real life. Of course, you can’t just take out their batteries. However, this week you should be able to find a good work-around that’s a lot less extreme than the obvious alternative (walking away). And who knows, in time they’ll figure out how to compromise—something that smoke alarm will never be able to do.

Cancer (June 21-July 22)We tend to model our real-life relationships on those we’ve observed—among relatives and friends, on TV or in the movies, etc. While these have hopefully given you a wide range of possible relationship styles to choose from, I hope you now have the confidence to design your own relationships (romantic or platonic), from the ground up, perfectly customized to the two of you and independent of others’ examples or expectations. The more fully you can free yourselves from preprogrammed rules and just be exactly who you are, the happier you’ll be. That may be a distant goal—but this is at least a good week to get started.Leo (July 23-Aug. 22)It’s so easy to get caught up in the drama of whatever’s currently causing suffering or hardship for you. The truth is, if you take about five steps back and look at your life, you’re pretty damn lucky, even if things are very far from perfect. Be grateful already, and proactive instead of complaining about the stuff that isn’t so great. It’s fixable, especially if you’re busy feeling optimistic and glad about all the cool shit you’ve already got going on. Get caught in a whirlwind of whining, though, and things are much more likely to go from “less than great” to much, much worse. Virgo (Aug. 23-Sept. 22)Being arguably one of the most stubborn signs (rivaled only by those bullheaded Taureans and billy-goat Capricorns), you truly have a hard time backing down, even when all reason and logic dictates you probably should. What will it take, my dear, to get you to give up and/or admit you were wrong? Half the time we end up having to lie and say we made the mistake, just to end stalemates like these. This time, though, the stakes are too high for such peacemaking lies—now you’ll need to truly and completely let things go, or face an ongoing cold war with no end in sight. Libra (Sept. 23-Oct. 22)Single Libras*, there’s no right or wrong way to do love. People meet partners from slutty one-night stands, from online personal ads, from blind dates, and a million other ways. Stop making rules for yourself about how things should happen or play out, and your chances of encountering someone who’ll become special to you, one way or another, will increase tremendously. That doesn’t mean the second you stop limiting yourself that you’ll meet someone amazing—these things can’t be guaranteed. But your life will doubtless become more interesting—and isn’t that, by itself, totally worth it?

*If you’re a non-single Libra, this week pat yourself on the back and set up one of your single friends on a blind date, won’t you?Scorpio (Oct. 23-Nov. 21)Even if someone deserves a piece of your mind for what they’ve said or done, that doesn’t mean you should necessarily give it to them. What good, after all, would a conflict do at this stage? That doesn’t mean you need to simply forgive and forget, but butting heads now wouldn’t be good for you and yours (which is all that matters; screw whoever screwed you). Keep your distance and keep your cool while you focus on fixing up the messes in your life, without focusing on their sources. Forget shit like “closure” or revenge—living your life well is a better substitute for either of those.Sagittarius (Nov. 22-Dec. 21)You’re rarely a prude, but sometimes you probably should be. Being free-spirited, non-judgmental, and inclusive is a very good general philosophy; however, that doesn’t mean every crazy thing necessarily has a proper place in your life. It’s all right to say “No, thanks” to many things without feeling as though you’re missing out on anything you’d actually want. By this point, you should be pretty sure when a refusal won’t deprive you of anything special. Although I still think you should say “Yes” almost all the time, feel free to say “No” when necessary, without feeling

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