Culture 02 March 2018
To everything turn…turn…turn.
This month is all about contrast. There will be highs. There will be lows. It is a call to the spiritual practice of detaching from judgment. Most especially, the judgment of events as good or bad or right or wrong. There is a season for everything and a perfect timing that does not always make sense to our souls that have chosen to immerse ourselves in the human experience. There is no better sign than Pisces to usher in this energy lesson. With the sun and three planets in the fishy mutable 12th sign this month, emotions will be high and imagination will be abundant. March 23rd is the first day of a new Mercury in retrograde in the sign of Aries. All of the normal retrograde advice applies here, but add a lack of initiative and general tiredness to the equation. The gift in this Aries Mercury retrograde is a chance for cease fires, conflict resolution and the healing of old grudges. Peace on Earth, anyone? Yes, please.
(February 19- March 20)
“Rub a dub dub…”
Happy birthday, Pisces! This really is your month, except for a few speedbumps which I’ll get to in a second. March 1-6 especially shines for you. Communication, work, life routines and romance are all easy peasy. Jupiter is still in Scorpio so you are in a period of emotional and relational growth and expansion. You are floating in a sea of emotion- do like the men in the tub and take a bath…don’t freak out. This also can contribute to emotional overreaction and combined with a Mars in Sagittarius this month, I suggest you think about what you say before you say it. March 25-26: family time and your own personal Mother’s Day.
(March 21 -April 19)
“And they’re off!”
Because of a stellium in Pisces the first week of March, most of the Aries tribe (and fire signs in general) will be feeling like there is a raincloud over their parade at the first of the month. This shifts March 6th as Aries takes over Venus and Mercury. You know what that means…you can finally put the pedal to the metal and floor it! Relationships could get back their spark. You also may finally feel that you get to have the microphone and can speak your mind. Just watch what you say and be careful about starting new ventures compulsively on and after March 23rd when Mercury goes retrograde in your sign of Aries. Slow down. Take your time with contracts, big purchases and especially new businesses. March 27-28: love is in the air.
(April 20- May 20)
“The harder you work, the luckier you get.”
This is a good month for the bulls. The Piscean first week of March suits you just fine. Good love, good culture, and good conversation are always welcome for a Taurus. When Mars moves into Capricorn on March 18, your work life could get more focused and a promotion or accolade could finally materialize. Capricorn rewards those who have committed to a vision. Taurus is the poster child for consistency and commitment. You deserve it. March 6-7: watch the temper!
(May 21- June 20)
“Here comes the sun…”
It’s like a thick emotional and energetic fog settles in over your life March 1-6. Things just aren’t clear and it’s hard to make a decision or feel right about anything. Finally, the clouds part and some Aries sunshine comes out March 7th for the rest of the month. You can see! Clarity and vision are yours, especially regarding money, aesthetics, and love. You also can communicate more clearly. Just don’t speak unless spoken to when that Mercury retrograde happens at the end of the month. March 13-14: new adventure!
(June 21- July 22)
“A pinch of this and a pinch of that…”
Most astrologers would be doom and gloom about this month for you with all of the Aries and Capricorn planets squaring your sun this month. At times it could feel like you are running uphill and you can’t get a break from the everyday challenges that continually are being put in your path. I suggest you lean into the higher energy influences that are on your team right now. Jupiter and Neptune, the planets of expansion and divine inspiration, are both singing you a lullaby right now. Stay in your proverbial kitchen and keep “cooking.” Build things, make things, add creative spice to your life. This drudgery too shall pass. March 16-17: have a St. Patrick’s Day romance.
(July 23- August 22)
“Up came the sun and dried up all the rain”
Yep…you are the “Itsy Bitsy Spider” in this scenario. You just feel washed out at the first of March. Keep trying, keep climbing. The sun is coming out for you by March 7th. By March 18th you are full speed ahead and ready for Spring. Change is all around you. Time for a makeover, new workout program, or a new haircut. Transform and take your place on the stage! You are playing a new character…embrace it. March 8-9: you’ll win the argument.
(August 23- September 22)
“Katie bar the door…”
This month comes in with a roar for you with the full moon in Virgo on the 1st. Straight up I’m not gonna lie….stay out of everyone’s way in March. Keep out of trouble and conflict. You’ve got heightened emotions and several people around you trying to stir your pot at every turn. Just avoid the craziness this month, keep your head down and stay focused. Your productivity and authority over your work and projects are the best thing that you have going for you right now. Swim in your own lane and avoid contact sports right now. Let the fire signs be on the field. March 20-21: Spring love.
(September 23- October 22)
“Hot house flower”
Libras are known for being a bit on the sensitive side. They can be picky, moody and let’s face it…dramatic and whiney. Those close to a Libra can get annoyed by this at times but they know that on the inside Libras are tough and steadfast. This month dear Libra friends you actually have a reason to complain. Watch out for colleagues or contacts being a little more aggressive. Also, your workload may seem to be larger than usual. You may feel tired and beaten down. Permission granted to employ one of your greatest talents; self-care. Get rest and pamper yourself. March 23-24: play hooky.
(October 23- November 21)
“Fire and Water”
There will be lots of work. And then there will be more work. You may admonish yourself for being so darn paranoid (typical Scorpio) that people are aiming for you. You’re not paranoid. You are right. Watch your back. The good news is that you have enormous energy and an ocean of water to douse any arson attempts. March 16-17: Make some art.
(November 22- December 21)
“Fire in your belly”
March starts out slow for you with the full moon in Virgo. You may lose something or someone somehow. This is all a part of a healing process. After March 7th it is full steam ahead. Your ambition, drive and competitive spirit are at full throttle. Don’t look back and keep running. You are my favorite to win. March 27-28: Get married in Vegas perhaps?!
(December 22- January 19)
“Call your Sherpa”
It’s a big release for you with the full moon on March 1st. You could start a new health regimen or finally get a proverbial cast off. It’s good that you are eliminating baggage because this month is for climbing. It’s lots of work to get to the top as all good Capricorns know. You will see others (fire signs) run ahead of you at times but remember your mantra: “slow and steady wins the race”. You are better than anyone else at keeping your head down and staying on task, so you’ve got this. March 1-2: You did it!
(January 20-February 18)
“Whistle while you work”
Like everyone else this month, you are feeling the heaviness of the workload brought about by all of these Capricorn transits. Luckily for you, you have a lot of gas in your engine and your wit is as sharp as ever. Humor is your best medicine this month. Don’t take things too seriously. Also, watch the temper. March 23-24: play a prank.
For decades, women have been unknowingly suffering from PSD and intergenerational trauma, but now Dr. Valerie Rein wants women to reclaim their power through mind, body and healing tools.
As women, no matter how many accomplishments we have or how successful we look on the outside, we all occasionally hear that nagging internal voice telling us to do more. We criticize ourselves more than anyone else and then throw ourselves into the never-ending cycle of self-care, all in effort to save ourselves from crashing into this invisible internal wall. According to psychologist, entrepreneur and author, Dr. Valerie Rein, these feelings are not your fault and there is nothing wrong with you— but chances are you definitely suffering from Patriarchy Stress Disorder.
Patriarchy Stress Disorder (PSD) is defined as the collective inherited trauma of oppression that forms an invisible inner barrier to women's happiness and fulfillment. The term was coined by Rein who discovered a missing link between trauma and the effects that patriarchal power structures have had on certain groups of people all throughout history up until the present day. Her life experience, in addition to research, have led Rein to develop a deeper understanding of the ways in which men and women are experiencing symptoms of trauma and stress that have been genetically passed down from previously oppressed generations.
What makes the discovery of this disorder significant is that it provides women with an answer to the stresses and trauma we feel but cannot explain or overcome. After being admitted to the ER with stroke-like symptoms one afternoon, when Rein noticed the left side of her body and face going numb, she was baffled to learn from her doctors that the results of her tests revealed that her stroke-like symptoms were caused by stress. Rein was then left to figure out what exactly she did for her clients in order for them to be able to step into the fullness of themselves that she was unable to do for herself. "What started seeping through the tears was the realization that I checked all the boxes that society told me I needed to feel happy and fulfilled, but I didn't feel happy or fulfilled and I didn't feel unhappy either. I didn't feel much of anything at all, not even stress," she stated.
Photo Courtesy of Dr. Valerie Rein
This raised the question for Rein as to what sort of hidden traumas women are suppressing without having any awareness of its presence. In her evaluation of her healing methodology, Rein realized that she was using mind, body and trauma healing tools with her clients because, while they had never experienced a traumatic event, they were showing the tell-tale symptoms of trauma which are described as a disconnect from parts of ourselves, body and emotions. In addition to her personal evaluation, research at the time had revealed that traumatic experiences are, in fact, passed down genetically throughout generations. This was Rein's lightbulb moment. The answer to a very real problem that she, and all women, have been experiencing is intergenerational trauma as a result of oppression formed under the patriarchy.
Although Rein's discovery would undoubtably change the way women experience and understand stress, it was crucial that she first broaden the definition of trauma not with the intention of catering to PSD, but to better identify the ways in which trauma presents itself in the current generation. When studying psychology from the books and diagnostic manuals written exclusively by white men, trauma was narrowly defined as a life-threatening experience. By that definition, not many people fit the bill despite showing trauma-like symptoms such as disconnections from parts of their body, emotions and self-expression. However, as the field of psychology has expanded, more voices have been joining the conversations and expanding the definition of trauma based on their lived experience. "I have broadened the definition to say that any experience that makes us feel unsafe psychically or emotionally can be traumatic," stated Rein. By redefining trauma, people across the gender spectrum are able to find validation in their experiences and begin their journey to healing these traumas not just for ourselves, but for future generations.
While PSD is not experienced by one particular gender, as women who have been one of the most historically disadvantaged and oppressed groups, we have inherited survival instructions that express themselves differently for different women. For some women, this means their nervous systems freeze when faced with something that has been historically dangerous for women such as stepping into their power, speaking out, being visible or making a lot of money. Then there are women who go into fight or flight mode. Although they are able to stand in the spotlight, they pay a high price for it when their nervous system begins to work in a constant state of hyper vigilance in order to keep them safe. These women often find themselves having trouble with anxiety, intimacy, sleeping or relaxing without a glass of wine or a pill. Because of this, adrenaline fatigue has become an epidemic among high achieving women that is resulting in heightened levels of stress and anxiety.
"For the first time, it makes sense that we are not broken or making this up, and we have gained this understanding by looking through the lens of a shared trauma. All of these things have been either forbidden or impossible for women. A woman's power has always been a punishable offense throughout history," stated Rein.
Although the idea of having a disorder may be scary to some and even potentially contribute to a victim mentality, Rein wants people to be empowered by PSD and to see it as a diagnosis meant to validate your experience by giving it a name, making it real and giving you a means to heal yourself. "There are still experiences in our lives that are triggering PSD and the more layers we heal, the more power we claim, the more resilience we have and more ability we have in staying plugged into our power and happiness. These triggers affect us less and less the more we heal," emphasized Rein. While the task of breaking intergenerational transmission of trauma seems intimidating, the author has flipped the negative approach to the healing journey from a game of survival to the game of how good can it get.
In her new book, Patriarchy Stress Disorder: The Invisible Barrier to Women's Happiness and Fulfillment, Rein details an easy system for healing that includes the necessary tools she has sourced over 20 years on her healing exploration with the pioneers of mind, body and trauma resolution. Her 5-step system serves to help "Jailbreakers" escape the inner prison of PSD and other hidden trauma through the process of Waking Up in Prison, Meeting the Prison Guards, Turning the Prison Guards into Body Guards, Digging the Tunnel to Freedom and Savoring Freedom. Readers can also find free tools on Rein's website to help aid in their healing journey and exploration.
"I think of the book coming out as the birth of a movement. Healing is not women against men– it's women, men and people across the gender spectrum, coming together in a shared understanding that we all have trauma and we can all heal."