My love for astrology began early on in my teen years. It started mainly because I was a hormonal 15 year-old desperate to know if I would get a boyfriend in the near future. As I’ve gotten older, I’ve started to gain a much deeper interest in the subject matter.
When I began getting into podcasts a few months ago, I freaked out when I saw that the girls of Lady Lovin had founder of Strong Eye Astrology, Sandy Sitron, on their show for a special astrology episode. I couldn’t start the episode fast enough.
Let me tell you guys, Sandy knows her stuff! I reached out to her and set up my own private remote session to learn about my sign and myself. We talked about career, relationships, personal obstacles, anxiety, etc. and the types of responses I naturally have to all of those things based on my sign. I learned so much about my personality and what types of successes I have a strong ability to achieve down the road. It was such a cool experience and I definitely plan on setting up another session within the next year or two. I HIGHLY suggest setting a session up with her if you have the opportunity – I’ll link her page at the bottom of the post.
We had so much fun chatting and and she provided me with so much knowledge that I HAD to share with you guys!
Check out my interview with the lovely, Sandy Sitron!
RR: Tell us a little bit about yourself! I know astrology was something that was part of your everyday life growing up. What made you decide to continue on with it as a profession?
SS: I’ve always been fascinated by mythology, symbols, art and science. I learned the basics of astrology from my step-mother when I was a kid. But it was a such a normal topic of conversation that I never thought anything of it. I continued to study throughout my teens and my twenties. Whenever I wanted to learn more about a friend, a lover, or myself, I would look up their chart. I learned a lot that way.
When I reached the time of my Saturn Return (around age 28) it became evident that my life was not working. I had not been making choices that were in line with who I am. It was a big learning curve. That’s when I really started to get serious about astrology. It proved to be invaluable for what I was going through. I deepened my studies, but it was completely for my own self-help at that point. I hadn’t considered using astrology as a tool to help other people.
Soon though, a dear friend began pressuring me to start doing people’s charts. Eventually, I made the leap simply by letting a few friends know that I wanted to do their charts for free. Within two weeks friends were sending me clients. And I realized that I love the work! It brings everything together that I love – helping others, counseling, mythology, symbolism, spirituality, science.
RR: How would someone like me become a “credible” astrologer? Did you study under anyone and/or read books on the subject?
SS: There are a few avenues to becoming a professional astrologer. It’s an unregulated field, yet certification courses do exist. So you can get certified through one of those. Many astrologers choose to apprentice. And many are self-taught. I’m mostly self-taught, although I learned my basics from my step-mother at a young age.
My self-schooling has involved probably thousands of hours of reading various astrologers. My favorite writers are Noel Tyl and Tracy Marks. I think that it’s good to know what kind of learning style you have and then plan your studies accordingly. If you are traditional, you may choose to do a certification course. If you seek autonomy, you may decide to teach yourself. If you like to work one-on-one, you may seek out an apprenticeship. We could look at your chart and talk about your learning style and what would work best for you!
RR: I would LOVE to have another reading on my learning style 🙂 So how long have you been practicing in astrology and hypnosis?
SS: I’ve been practicing astrology professionally for 3 years. I started learning about astrology when I was a kid, so I’ve been studying it now for about 25 years. Hypnosis is a new modality for me. I got certified because I was looking for a tool to help people make the changes that they want to make. In my astrology readings, it invariably comes up that people want movement in their lives! They want to get unstuck. I thought, “how can I help people actually make the changes they want to make?” I was looking for a tool that put the shift into motion. In perfect synchronicity, hypnosis came knocking on my door.
Hypnosis is an amazing tool that helps you make the changes you want to make through simple relaxation and focus. I became a certified Consulting Hypnotist in March of 2016, through the National Guild of Hypnotists. I use the tool of hypnosis on it’s own and I have also developed an incredible session that melds hypnosis with astrology. During this session we start by talking about the astrology the client is working with, what’s coming up for them. Then we co-create intentions, powerful suggestions for change. We use hypnosis to incorporate the positive intentions on a deeper level. It’s a very empowering process.
RR: Now, I listened to your explanation in the Lady Lovin podcast, but can you briefly explain what Mercury Retrograde really means?
SS: Mercury Retrograde is an optical illusion that occurs about three times a year. From our vantage point on Earth, Mercury looks like it is moving backwards. It’s not actually moving backwards, but appears to be because of the speed with which it passes us. Mercury rules technology and communication. So when Mercury looks like it is going backwards, these subjects seem to “go backwards” too. Technology doesn’t always work the way it should. Communication can easily become confused.
These negative outcomes of Mercury retrograde get a lot of buzz in the media cycle, but I think it’s important to remember that retrogrades are part of a normal cycle. There is a deeper purpose inherent in the retrograde. Here’s a simile for you– if your life is like a blog post, a retrograde is kind of like your cosmic editor. It helps you go back over your work and see what steps you missed, what could be made more clear, what isn’t working. Sometimes it can feel like you’re getting a lot of red ink on your paper, but what is life without the edit? We do need to slow down sometimes and check in with where we’re at. The Mercury retrograde helps us reflect on our lives, catch up with old friends, and notice what steps we are trying to skip.
The best way to operate during a Mercury retrograde cycle is to slow way down. Spend a lot of time journaling. Check and recheck your emails, text messages, and even spoken communications for mistakes or potential misunderstandings. Notice what experiences from the past are still driving your thoughts and actions.
It’s hard to do this stuff if you’re operating at top speed, so take yourself out of the game a little bit. It’s not great to go around buying new stuff (buying antiques is okay!) Definitely avoid buying electronics or updating operating systems. Signing contracts is also not recommended, because it’s highly likely that something important has not been communicated.
In general though, you’ve got to keep living your life and thinking positively about these very normal cycles. The best thing to do is to look ahead to the next retrograde and plan to lighten up your schedule. Do more of the things that you do to reflect and unwind.
BTW: The next Mercury Retrograde December 19th, 2016 – January 8th, 2017. This is definitely a good year to get all of your holiday gift shipping and ordering finished in the first two weeks of December. Make things really easy on yourself by doing a little bit less and planning ahead. Amp up your ritual game for the holidays this year, (i.e. do special things like writing down what you are ready to let go of and burning the paper, or creating an altar in your home with objects that you feel connected to.) Carve out lots of space for reflection, intention-setting and bubble baths.
RR: I am LOVING the simile. And also loving the advice for getting ready for the next Mercury Retrograde – I am all about some self-pampering. In your readings, it’s very important for the person to provide their birth date, place of birth, and time of birth before the session. What’s the significance of this information for doing an accurate reading?
SS: In an astrology session we draft a birth chart. The birth chart is a map of the sky at the exact moment of birth. It maps out the planets and zodiac signs as it would look if viewed from the birth location. Astrological symbolism is based on astronomical data that describes the positions of the planets and the stars. In astrological interpretation, every planet has meaning and every area of the sky has a meaning.
The astrologer’s job is to synthesize the symbolism of each of these different meanings and apply it to your life. We astrologers get very specific, even 10 minutes can make a big difference in the synthesis of the symbols of the birth chart.
RR: So how accurate are the basic daily horoscope that we read online?
SS: There are many different types of charts that can be obtained to interpret your birth data. The most commonly used application of astrology, the Sun sign horoscope that you are talking about, has it’s basis in the Solar Chart. The chart that we looked at for your session, Rebecca, is your Birth Chart (aka Natal Chart.) The Birth Chart is more specific, but the Solar Chart is a fine tool.
Have you ever read a horoscope and it says, “read for your Sun sign or your Rising sign?” If you read for your Sun sign, you are reading for your Solar Chart. If you read for your Rising sign, you are reading for your Birth Chart. Now that more and more people have access to their Birth Charts, thanks to increasingly better data about birth times and computer programs that quickly draft the chart, more people can read their horoscope for their Rising sign. (Readers- if you don’t know your Rising Sign you can obtain it here.)
So, in answer to your question, if the author of the horoscope is good, then the basic daily horoscope should be accurate. You may have more accuracy by reading for your Rising Sign. I read for both my Rising Sign and my Sun Sign. The writers that I like manage to make both feel accurate.
RR: Once someone has had an astrology reading, is it something that can/should be continued? Will they “get more out of it” if they continue to have readings a few times a year?
SS: Yes! I check in with my chart every 3 months. I have clients who come every 3 months, 6 months or every year. It’s just like anything else, if it works for you as a modality, the more you do it, the more you will learn. Another thing that clients like to do is take custom tutoring with me and learn how to read their birth charts for themselves. That’s the gift that keeps on giving. The symbols of Astrology can be constantly unfolded. I find myself looking at my chart (which I have been looking at for over 25 years!) and finding new meaning all the time. It’s fascinating.
RR: I can’t wait to set up another session. So fun! Switching gears a bit – I love hearing different people’s beauty routines. What is one beauty secret or product that you swear by? It can be anything from makeup to skincare to eating/drinking the right thing!
SS: As a Sagittarius Rising, I keep things really simple (I am always on-the-go and I can’t be bothered much.) But the top thing that I swear by is inherently simple- oil! I use oil all the time, for everything. I clean off my eye makeup with it, I put it on my skin before I moisturize, I do oil-pulling to keep my teeth and gums healthy, I put it on my hair. I use various types of oil, right now I’m using grapeseed. Sometimes it’s almond, jojoba, or coconut.
RR: I LOVE good oil. Especially this one. Lastly I’ve GOT to know what the 13th sign, Ophiucus, is. WTF does this mean?!
SS: The short answer to this is that the zodiac is the same, your sign is the same. There’s no need to worry that you are a different sign. The long answer starts with a quick description of what the zodiac is— it is the apparent path that the Sun takes around the Earth annually (from a geocentric perspective.)
The zodiac is the ring of 12 signs that we know and love well, Aries through Pisces. The zodiac is made up of signs (areas of the sky.) These signs include constellations that have the same names. But the signs include a handful of other constellations too.
The zodiac sign is an elegant astrological tool communicates information. It’s an area of the sky, not an astronomical measurement. The zodiac signs are not visible and are not meant to make a close astronomical alignment with the constellations whose names they share.
To say that another way: A zodiac sign and a constellation are different. A constellation can be visibly seen, it is a grouping of stars. A zodiac sign is an area of the sky that includes a constellation of the same name, as well as other stars and sometimes even constellations.
When the zodiac was delineated, astrologers knew about Ophiucus (the recently alleged 13th sign of the zodiac). They just didn’t name a sign after it. So your sign is still the same. Don’t fret! If you want a longer explanation, check out this great article.
There is so much knowledge that she provided and I still feel like we didn’t even scratch the surface! Astrology is so interesting to me. It’s definitely something I want to dig deeper into on the blog.
Leave some love in the comments on your favorite part of the interview with Sandy Sitron! Go set up your session with her here! You will NOT regret it I swear!
Photography courtesy of Sandy Sitron.