With schedules, personal lives, and unexpected life curveballs (we're looking at you, global pandemic,) it's critical to maintain wellness practices that are good for your mind, body, and soul. If you've ever tried to maintain a wellness routine, like weekly yoga classes, meditation, or weekly DIY manicures, sticking to them is easier said than done. However, you can support your wellness practices by turning to the cosmos.
According to astrology, the cosmos affects us, humans, on Earth in different ways, partly explaining why some days getting to the gym feels easy and other days the struggle is real. Instead of working against the cosmos, we can work with them to create more ease and flow in our lives, and in this case, our wellness practice.
There are many ways to harness the power of astrology, but one of the easiest ways, according to astrologers, is by working with the moon cycles. "The moon moves through eight phases per month," says Emily Ridout, a yoga and astrology teacher. "As the moon waxes and wanes, the circumstances in your inner world are constantly in flux. You may notice emotional shifts that correspond to the moon."
Astrologer and editor Narayana Montúfar says that this is a good thing. "Since the moon is cyclical, it's also predictable," she explains. "The more we attune to it, the easier it will become to attune our wellness practice to the ebb and flow of nature."
Ahead, learn about the different energies of each of the moon's phases and tips on how you can adjust your wellness practice to create more ease. Pro tip: To find out what phase the moon is currently in, Montúfar recommends a quick Google search for "current moon phase."
New Moon Phase
According to Montúfar, new moons mark new beginnings and are the points we begin thinking of changes we want to implement. "This is the time of the month to formulate our intentions and plant the seed for anything that we would like to grow in the month ahead," she explains. The new moon phase is the ideal time to set your wellness goals and put them in motion. So, if you're gearing up to start a new workout routine, Montúfar says this is the ideal time to sign up for the gym, do your research, and create a plan.
Waxing Crescent Moon Phase
This next moon phase is when new habits start to form. Ridout recommends taking this time to create healthy situations that will set you up for success. That may look like doing more things that bring you joy, practicing a healthy morning routine, or setting boundaries, so you have the time and energy to follow through with your wellness goals.
First Quarter Moon Phase
Sticking to new healthy habits and routines takes time, and growing pains are inevitable. According to Ridout, those growing pains may pop up in this phase. It may even feel like it requires extra effort to do things. The fix? "Find balance and get your body moving to experience a state of greater flow during this time," Ridout says.
Waxing Gibbous Moon Phase
Once you've ridden the first quarter hump, the moon moves into the final stage before achieving fullness, and the cosmos bless us with more energy. Montúfar advises taking advantage of the energy boost and continuing on the wellness intentions you set during the new moon. Go all in.
Full Moon Phase
During this stage, the moon is now shining in all its glory. Montúfar says this time is about completions and endings, which can feel a bit intense. "The lunar energy is at its peak, illuminating situations by helping us see the big picture," Montúfar says. "Since full moons can bring friction and polarity, they might bring encountered feelings about people and situations in our lives." This is a good time to check in with your wellness routine and note what's working and what you can improve. The full moon, Ridout adds, is also about appreciating how far you've come with your wellness goals. Celebrate all the progress, big and small.
Waning Gibbous Moon Phase
"The gibbous moon brings a desire to understand and to connect your experiences with a larger circle," Ridout says. "Use this time to reach beyond yourself and into your community as you remember that true wellness extends beyond any single person." As the moon begins moving away from fullness during this phase, Ridout recommends hanging out with a friend, volunteering, and walking your dog. Any activity that connects you with others will work well in this phase.
Last Quarter Moon Phase
The moon's last quarter creates a container of time and space for us to dive into wellness practices that aren't the most comfortable but serve us greatly. "Allow yourself to look at complex feelings with a degree of humor and compassion at this time," Ridout says, adding that laughing will help ease the energy during this phase, so pencil in some time to re-watch your fave movie or sitcom.
Waning Crescent Moon
Wellness is just as much about what you don't do as it is about what you do. That's why the theme of this final stage is about fully letting go of things that don't serve us before entering into a new lunar cycle. "Since this is a time of purification, the waning energy of the moon helps us eliminate energy to make room for something new," Montúfar says. That can mean releasing old habits that don't align with your wellness goals, getting rid of clutter, or ending relationships that aren't supportive. It's a time to shed old skin and embrace new, healthier energy.