Part 1 of a few parts on Self-Esteem.

I hear this a lot: 

”I need better self-esteem.” Or, “My self-esteem isn't that good." 


In addition to judging oneself for our long list of failures, we judge ourselves for not having good self-esteem. How impossible we make it for ourselves! Nothing makes love leave quicker than the feeling that it’s an obligation we have to fulfill for others, so how would it be any different for ourselves! Self-care and self-love become exhausting when they’re something we feel we are supposed to do. With this phrasing and thinking, self-esteem becomes acquisitional. Another thing to get done or to consume. Feed the cat, do the dishes, buy acupuncture, get some self-esteem. If you haven't figured out how to get some then this too can be a way you can feel inadequate. You don't have the right clothes or the right work or the right way of talking about your work or the right instagram photos or the right partner AND ADDITIONALLY you don't have good self-esteem. AND you need to spend a lot of time (mysteriously, somehow?!) trying to get it, because having good self-esteem is the only way you are going to get those other things you want! This is a story we are told and then retell ourselves, which feels like a distortion of a truth about how to live in integrity with ourselves.

Acquiring self-esteem sounds at best boring and at worst impossible. 

What if we just had "bad" self-esteem and were a little more patient and accepting of that. 

What if we were like, I'm not putting self-esteem on my to do list. 

What if we were like, Self-esteem cannot become another thing I need to get done. 

What if we were like, Maybe I’ll never have good self-esteem, and that’s just fine. I can just let go of the burden of trying to get better self-esteem and see what happens.

What if we were like, What if self-esteem isn't something to acquire, but something to remember, that's always been there?

Jupiter and Mars are conjunct in Scorpio right now. I'm taking this as a boost in our capacity for transformation. And by transformation I mean, the opposite of effort, just letting nature work on us, just trusting that it will. 

And! Sometimes trusting feels too hard. In this case, I recommend eating oranges in winter, for self-esteem. Because eating oranges is like eating tiny globes of sun, and we all need sun to live. Eating oranges is an affirmation of life, and affirmations of life are ways to practice self-esteem, even when we don't feel it. (More on this next week.)

ARIES (March 21-April 19)

Question - When are you so absorbed that you forget yourself?
Meditation - absorption.
Assignment - I want to tell you to interact with wood in some way. Find some wood. Spend some time with it. Spend a longer time than might seem comfortable. This is weird I know. But weirdness is underrated. What is the story of wood? What was it before it was wood? What is it now? What will it become after? How does this mirror your life?


TAURUS (April 20-May 20)

Question - When do you experience pleasure?
Meditation - Pleasure. 
Assignment - Do the things that you love, that come easily this week. Look for where there is the least resistance, and spend as much time there as possible. When you are doing things that don't come easily, let ease fill your body like food or sound or color. Imagine that there is a way to be easy in any circumstance. Just imagine it. 


GEMINI (May 21-June 20)

Question - When does an idea become a real thing?
Meditation - The Light Spectrum.
Assignment - Considering the light spectrum for you this week. How light includes all of the colors. How the light spectrum is just the visible part of a spectrum of waves of energy. What is the transition moment where an idea becomes manifest as an object or event? How might it be helpful to understand this transition very, very intimately? 


CANCER (June 21-July 22)

Question - What objects are around you right now and how does that affect your health? 
Meditation - Lavender light.
Assignment - Consider your connection with the past and history and how that relates to the objects you are around on a regular basis. Is there anything that needs attending to in this area that can contribute to your well-being? Do that.


LEO (July 23-August 22)

Question - When are you laughing? 
Meditation - Humor.
Assignment - Make it your assignment to laugh every day this week. How does one laugh on purpose? What is the point of laughing?


VIRGO (August 23-September 22) 

Question - What is extravagant to you?
Meditation - Extravagance. 
Assignment - Virgo is perpetually humble, and tends to not want to ask for "too much". The assignment this week is to get extravagant. What does extravagance mean to you? Talk to other people about their extravagance, and yours. Get extravagant and see what happens. 


LIBRA (September 23-October 22)

Question - What physical spaces do you occupy and how do they affect your moods?
Meditation - Permission for aesthetic sensitivity.
Assignment - Let the information in about your environment not feeling right, when it doesn't feel right. Right as in nourishing and expansive. You are an aesthetic being and it's okay (essential, even) to tend to your vitality by tending to the spaces you occupy.


SCORPIO (October 23-November 21)

Question - What happens for you when the light changes at the beginning and ending of each day?
Meditation - light blue.
Assignment - Watch the sunrise and sunset this week, each day. Even if you only have one minute to watch, even if your vantage point is a tiny sliver. Connect to the source of life which has to do with time and light and space.


SAGITTARIUS (November 22-December 21)

Question - What is working well?
Meditation - The opposite of searching.
Assignment - What is the opposite of searching? Spend this week noticing what is working in your life. Give yourself that one task of noticing and return to it daily. Make a list of what is working each night. Read it over at the end of the week. Read it out loud to someone! What do you notice?


CAPRICORN (December 22-January 19)

Question - Where do you notice symmetry and asymmetry?
Meditation - Symmetry.
Assignment - Read about symmetry here. What is symmetrical in your thinking? What is symmetrical in your life? Draw how your mind works in relationship to symmetry. What does the drawing show you about your next moves?


AQUARIUS (January 20 to February 18)

Question - When do you speak up and when do you wait to gather more information?
Meditation - the use of vocal chords.
Assignment - Song birds use their voices for a purpose, and part of the purpose is pleasure of other birds. Because pleasure is productive! It's a design of nature! Practice using your voice in places you might not typically speak up. What pleasure can this offer? What productivity? 


PISCES (February 19 to March 20)

Question - What inertia of the past are you confronting right now?
Meditation - Inertia as a law.
Assignment - Make a list of the inertias in your life. What has a history, a habit, and therefore a lot of power behind it? What has not yet been made a habit or a history that you would like to gain more inertia? How could you cultivate this inertia? What creates inertia?