Winter Solstice: Empowerment

If you feel a mysterious prompting now to review your aspirations, it’s the influence of the Winter Solstice, which occurs when the Sun enters Capricorn on December 21, 2008 (Northern Hemisphere). Since Capricorn is the sign of discipline and long-term goals, it’s no coincidence that now is the time when we start thinking about the year to come.

As the longest night of the year, the solstice will encourage us to slow down, take a breath and do some soul searching about our direction. So why not take some time out from the seasonal mania to envision what you want your life to look like in the coming year – and make a pact with yourself to make it happen?

Each element of the zodiac has a unique way of capitalizing on this seasonal shift, so read your element below for some suggestions on how to access the goal-setting power of the Winter Solstice.

Fire Element: Aries, Leo, Sagittarius
As a Fire sign, slowing down for some introspection isn’t usually your forte – you’re enthusiastic, passionate and prefer taking action over standing still. However, if you can channel your considerable energy and creativity into your inner life, you’ll attune yourself to the goals you need to set. And introspection doesn’t have to be boring! To tame your restlessness, try taking a series of walking meditations, preferably in serene, natural surroundings where you can focus on your connection to a higher power and the guidance you receive about your direction. A solitary creative project can also be a meditation. Or try talking about your goals with your partner or a good friend in front of a roaring fire for inspiration. Then you’ll be ready for action come January.

Air Element: Gemini, Libra, Aquarius
As the social butterflies of the zodiac, you like plenty of people around you. During the Winter Solstice, however, you’ll need to keep mentally grounded and watch that those close to you don’t distract you from your inward focus. Still, you don’t have to go it completely alone during this time. Try a couple’s meditation, where you sit back-to-back with your partner and focus on receiving insights about a single topic, like your relationship goals or personal aspirations. Getting together with friends in a quiet place to discuss your goals is another way to gain insights. Just be sure those people are as committed to gaining insights as you are. If you can quiet your mind and focus on your inner world, you’ll come from a deeper place when making choices about your life.

Water Element: Cancer, Scorpio, Pisces
Because feelings are your focus, the Winter Solstice is an excellent time to do some emotional cleansing and healing, which will increase clarity about your direction. It will also give you additional emotional and physical energy to draw upon. Solitary meditation is an excellent way to get centered so you can set better goals. A watery environment can assist in your focus, so try meditating in a bath, hot tub or while strolling around a lake. Journaling and dream analysis are also valuable tools for gaining insights and healing old emotional wounds. If you resolve emotional issues and negativity, you’ll empower the intuitive promptings that guide your direction.

Earth Element: Taurus, Virgo, Capricorn
Earth signs are naturally in tune with the Winter Solstice and its slower, earthly rhythms. However, you’re a physical creature and not usually introspective. To combine your physicality and spirituality, spend some time out in nature, which will awaken your intuition about what’s ahead for you. It will also help you get clear about where you need to be in life. Meditating in a garden or having a heart-to-heart talk with your partner or a friend while hiking are ways to get in touch with your inner world. Just be careful not to overindulge in food, drink (or sex!) during this time, which can create major distractions. If you let your inner awareness guide your practical decisions, you’ll achieve more things than you could ever have imagined.

So during the hectic month of December, take a few moments to let the energy of the Winter Solstice guide and inspire your goals for 2009 and beyond.

Cortney Litwin is the co-host of the Cosmic Sutra on KarmaSolRadio, an online talk show featuring astrology and dream interpretation.

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