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From Horror to Horoscope

My morning begins – as it does for many – by reaching for the cell phone. But before checking overnight texts or emails, I read my horoscope. Okay, I can hear your judgment seeping through the Internet, but hear me out. While I read about what the day has in store for Cancers, I do so with the belief that it contains about as much truth as a politician’s promise. But at least when it comes to your horoscope, there’

s a silver lining.

Whether horoscopes are hogwash or not, isn’t it better to start your day with an encouraging message? In many cases, before we’ve even had that first sip of our Nutri Bullet smoothie, we’ve got bad news coming at us from the television, newspapers or those “Breaking News” alerts on our cellphones about the latest shooting spree, child-kidnapping, weather disaster or Washington scandal; there’s rarely a feel good story to be found. Do these negative messages have any impact on our days? Our lives? Our overall outlook on everything? Possibly.

By coating my brain first with a positive thought, such as, “Do whatever it takes to decompress, to maintain your sense of humor, and to stay centered and calm” or “Let go of an old grudge now, and you will find it much easier to stay inspired and to find new opportunities,” it may shield my brain from the negative messages that come later. Does it work? Some days I’ve forgotten what I’ve read by the time I hop into the shower, but other times I do remember.

Perfect example: the other morning this was my horoscope:

“If you make a conscious effort to not take it all too seriously, you will be fine…A Cancer leans toward solitary projects, jogging, reading…. Famous Cancers include … Henry David Thoreau. Who else but a Cancer would go out into the woods, live by themselves and write a book about their feelings?”

Then later that day my agent forwarded a rejection email from a publisher regarding my new book on organizing and living in 90 square feet. Having been “armed” that morning and knowing that “Chicken Soup For the Soul” was rejected 140 times before it went on to sell 80 million copies, I shrugged it off and continued writing.

The next time you’re reading the newspaper and “bad” news has you feeling low, skip ahead to the horoscope. It might not come true, but it may just turn that frown upside down.

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