astrology books to read

I’ve always been interested in astrology. It’s not just one’s sun sign and your daily horoscope you find on google. More people are starting to understand the birth chart, and how that influences you, but there’s still so much more to it that I’m fascinated about. Whether or not you “believe” it, it’s interesting, and is a lot more methodical than you think.

I’ve been diving deeper into my study on astrology lately and have been looking into books I can read on the subject. For reference– I know the general sign archetypes, meanings of each planet, and the houses. I also know how to read the birth chart in a general sense! So here’s a list of the books I want to read.

1. Aspects in Astrology by Sue Tompkins

I actually just started reading this book. I have a very beginner idea of what planetary aspects mean, and think it’s such an important part of astrology that I can’t skip over it!

2. Planets in Transit by Robert Hand

This book is about the relationship between transiting planets and the natal chart. This I think will allow me to learn more about each planet and their relationships as a whole.

3. The Twelve Houses by Howard Sasportas

This book I think will be great to dive deeper into the understanding of astrological houses. I am aware of the general meanings of them, but I think that this will help me understand more.

4. Llewellyn’s Complete Book of Astrology by Kris Brandt Riske

I feel like this book will be good to have on hand when doing research, since it covers the basics of astrology. I already have one book by Riske, called Predictive Astrology. I like how simple the book is and I think it will help me gain more understanding and refresh my knowledge at the same time.

These four books are what I’ll be reading and learning from for the time being. If there are any suggestions please let me know! I think this will help me gain a more solid foundation of knowledge and understanding.

social media break

I think social media can be a great tool in modern day society; however, it also can be harmful to mental health (there are tons of articles and studies on this!) Nowadays, young people will spend hours upon hours on social media a day… myself included.

During these times, especially, I think it’s good to take a break from social media. The first thing many people do when they wake up is check Instagram, Snapchat, Twitter, or TikTok. With all the turmoil going on, I think it’s good to take a break. I know it’s a privilege to disconnect and not worry about the current state of the country, and I appreciate that so much; however, constantly reading and seeing charged posts on a screen changes your headspace. I’m constantly contemplating the issues in my head and it distracts me from what is right in front of me.

Even the posts about people just living their lives can affect you. You see people doing regular things, and thing their life is so amazing and while you can get inspired by this, it also allows you to wonder why you’re not as happy as them. There’s also a huge issue with unrealistic body standards– which speaks for itself. We see people post at their best while we’re slouched on our phones. It’s not healthy.

I’m not sure where I was going with this entirely, but I decided I’m going to take a break from social media. I’m going to start by limiting my time scrolling, and then maybe take a couple days to a week off to see how I feel. I’m pretty good at limiting my Instagram, Twitter, and Snapchat time… but TikTok will definitely be the most difficult. I’ll update on what I’ve learned or just thoughts that I’ve had. I’m still going to post blogs, since I don’t think this counts as social media.

minimalism

Minimalism is something that I’ve been interested in for a while. I used to hate going through and giving away my old clothes (especially since some of them will end up in a landfill even if I take them to the thrift store), and recently I kind of decided I wanted to keep my clothes for good in case I want to wear something again in the future and so my future kids can go through them… is that weird?

Even so, I’ve also been one to wear the same 10 pieces over and over until they fell apart… and even then if I loved the piece enough I’d just get it repaired. With my want to minimize my… participation in fast fashion, I think that shopping less often comes with it, even if it’s with sustainable brands.

My dad has always been sort of a minimalist. Growing up, he never absolutely needed things except the bare minimum. He also had encouraged me to be the same. Of course, I still wanted things and developed a bit of a shopping problem… kind of ironic, but that’s okay.

The last few years I feel like my mindset has been leaning more towards my father’s. Anything above the bare minimum is just, “nice to have.” As long as my day to day life is able to persist without any detrimental stress towards food, shelter, water, and my general health… all is well. As long as I am not cold during the winter and overheating in the summer, all is well.

While my life isn’t “minimal” per se, the minimalist mindset really allows you to appreciate what you have, and focus on things that are not material. I kind of want to just get rid of everything in my space that I don’t actually need. Besides my extra clothes… at least for now. I’ve become attached to items that do nothing for me, and it’s time I clear my space.

fast fashion and human rights

The fashion industry has a lot of issues, and while some parts are being changed, there’s still a long way to go.

Two issues that have been on my mind a lot recently are the sweatshops and the level of waste the industry produces. This post is going to be about the use of sweatshops.

The global supply chain of the fashion industry is poorly regulated, leading to the exploitation of workers. Sweatshops violate labor laws in many developed countries, so many of them either operate illegally, or are in developing countries, where the labor laws are not enforced. These workers are not paid a living wage, forced to work extreme hours, and often in dangerous conditions. There are also many of these places that use child labor– this issue is self explanatory.

The factories tend to try to cut costs wherever and whenever they can, so these places have poor lighting, which can harm the worker’s eyes, and have other issues that are dangerous. For example, in 2013 the Rana Plaza building in Bangladesh collapsed, killing 1,134 people and injuring about 2,500. The workers tried to tell the managers that they saw cracks in the building, and they were even given an evacuation order that was just ignored. This incident was preventable had the managers listened to their workers. I think the reason they didn’t do anything about it is because they didn’t want to stop production and have their buyers wait or find a new factory.

Many of these garment workers are essentially forced to work 12+ hours in order to satisfy the high demand of fast fashion… they can’t just quit and find a better job since the market for better pay is small, and they have families to feed.

Most fashion brands are not transparent about who makes your clothes and many of them are using these factories that completely violate human rights. Some brands have made a pledge to be more transparent in the future and stop using sweatshops; however, the problem still persists.

I will say, I have been more conscious about where I shop but sometimes I do still shop at questionable brands. It’s difficult because they’re everywhere. It’s important to just be mindful and support brands that pay their workers a living wage, and allow these brands to grow so more of these garment workers can be employed at places that actually pay them. It also would be beneficial to pressure big brands to ensure their workers at all levels get paid a living wage.

Fast fashion just isn’t it.

getting into a routine

I have struggled to get into a routine, and this has been an issue especially when it comes to productivity. Morning routines to get yourself into the right mindset during the day is so important… especially if you have ADHD (like me) and your mind kind of is all over the place. Even if you don’t have a set schedule, I find that having a routine really helps get you in the mood to do what you need to do.

I think that a lot of people have gotten into the habit of daily routines this year due to the pandemic and working from home, but I recently graduated and moved back home… so it’s been difficult for me. I will say, however, that my daily routine in college was not exactly consistent either.

Here are some things I would like to incorporate/reintroduce into my daily routine:

  1. meditation
  2. journaling
  3. making my bed

I know it sounds simple, but these things are often overlooked despite how powerful they are. Meditation in the morning can help set the tone for your day and keep mindfulness by your side throughout. People who meditate have found they are less stressed and more focused throughout the day, among other things. Journaling definitely helps you sort your thoughts and get your ideas down. I used to journal a lot in college, and in the morning I would write about what I had planned to do that day, what I’m thankful for, and anything else on my mind. It’s great for self-reflection, setting goals, and creativity. Last but not least, making your bed. Making your bed in the morning allows you to check something off of your to do list and give you a sense of physical productivity. Checking things off of your to do list, no matter how small, triggers a dopamine response and makes your brain feel a sense of accomplishment. This usually ends up in your brain wanting to do more!

Currently, I just wake up, brush my teeth, wash my face, take my dog out, and then eat breakfast. I have started meditating, but definitely have had days where I skipped it altogether. I don’t think adding all these things to your routine all at once will be sustainable– at least for me it won’t. Knowing myself, I will be really into it for about a week and then just stop doing almost all of it after. Trust me, I’ve tried. I’ve gotten more comfortable and consistent with my meditation practice lately, so I’ll add another thing from the list!

I know I’ve just really focused on morning routines in this post, but I think the key to a good morning routine starts the night before. Make sure all your things are ready and in order for the next day, so you’re not wasting energy on finding and organizing them. Here are some things I think are important to do at night:

  1. journaling
  2. planning
  3. cleaning

I know I have journaling in the morning and evening, but sometimes it’s necessary! In the morning, I feel like writing about what I’m thankful for and affirmations helped put me in the right headspace for the rest of the day. In the evening I would sort of reflect on the day and write about how anything that I liked or was bothering me– I’d be a little more introspective and write about things that were a little bit deeper than what I wanted to have on my mind in the morning. Planning for the next day is also really important so you don’t spend time in the morning trying to figure out what to do the rest of the day. Having a rough outline really helps. I also like to plan my outfits for the next day so I don’t spend mental energy on what to wear. As for cleaning, I don’t mean deep clean your entire place, but I do think that picking up and clearing what you didn’t get to during the day allows you to wake up to a fresh place in the morning… if that makes sense.

Anyway, these are the things that I want to do consistently every day. I have done them in the past and some I’m doing right now… either way, it’ll be helpful!

the future.

I believe that the 2020s will be amazing. I know that with a world pandemic, political unrest, and all the other messed up sh*t that’s been happening, people tend to think the worst of what’s going on.

If you read tarot, you could probably agree that the US (and the world, for that matter) is going through a major “tower moment,” and if you know anything about astrology, you have known that 2020 was going to be a difficult year… but with every difficult time, good comes after. With the tower, then comes the star, and the stars in the sky always change. I have felt in my heart that this decade will be beautiful. I believe there will be major change– to me personally and to the entire world.

I have definitely had moments where I was upset about my current situation, having just graduated college and failing to secure a stable job (even amid a pandemic), but this year has taught me a lot about myself. I realized I do not want to take the traditional route to doing things.

That being said, this “non-traditional” way of thinking and being has never really scared me until recently. How do I plan on supporting myself going this way? What if I don’t succeed, ever? While I know in my heart that things are going to work out, and I will live the life I plan to live, being in the moment without any institution sort of guiding me, scares me.

I think I have a lack of direction. I have all these ideas and all these goals and dreams, that I have a hard time picking one and just running with it. That’s kind of what I want this blog to be about. My journey, what I’m interested in, and whatever else.

This blog is probably going to be all over the place and I’m okay with that, even if the only person reading is my future self.