Horoscopes to Maximize the Quiet Power of the Winter Solstice

December 20, 2018

In the northern Hemisphere, the Winter Solstice occurs on December 21, 2018. As we prepare for this, the shortest day – and longest night – of the year, what is it that we should be working on?

For centuries, the winter solstice (also known as midwinter) has marked a time of deep introspection and preparation for the return of warmer days. Long before Christianity put the mark of the christ child’s birth on this day, Pagans celebrated it as a time of rebirth for everyone.

Read this now: Vikings, Shamans, and Sun-kings: The Pagan Roots of Christmas

For those of us interested in how astrology influences this time of year, it is important to think about how each sign will experience this moment of introspection and rebirth. The sun moves into Capricorn on the same day as the solstice, and that goat energy brings a sense of seriousness and determination to the hard work that you are about to do. Meanwhile, Venus trines Neptune on the very same day, bringing with it a sense of harmony and an opportunity to harness the boundless love that exists within – and without.

No matter what is happening in the stars, the winter solstice is the perfect time for each of us to ask ourselves: What is it that we want to bring forth into the new year, and what is it that we want to leave behind?

These horoscopes aim to do just that. Be sure to read these for your sun, moon, and rising sign to get the most guidance from  your horoscopes for the winter solstice.

Don’t know your moon and rising sign? Find out here!



As the baby of the zodiac, Aries is all about new beginnings, fresh starts, and manifesting big changes. It only makes sense that you’re all about celebrating the solstice—it’s the mark of a brand new season, after all! It’s also the shortest day of the year—ideal for the abbreviated attention span of the ram.

This winter solstice will be a time of uncharacteristic quiet and contemplation for you. Aries generally love rushing into a challenge (the kind of sign that believes in asking for forgiveness instead of permission), but this season is about the kind of work that happens under the surface.

Aries is a fire sign, but it’s important to remember that a fire can burn as a smoldering ember, and not just an explosive flash. It’s time to ask yourself, what makes you feel grounded? What nourishes and sustains you when you need to stoke the flames of that big Aries energy? Symbolically honor the idea of this nourishment by brewing a pot of apple cider with clove (known for magical properties that include banishing negativity), cinnamon, and nutmeg.

As the ground freezes and nature goes into hibernation, it can be difficult to keep a sense of perspective. Persistent Aries however, weathers this change well. This solstice time is a wonderful opportunity to for you to take some of that joie de vivre you’re so well known for and share it with others who may be struggling during this winter season.

Volunteer work is a perfect way to give back and help your community (sometimes you may have a natural inclination to focus on yourself, and this is a great time to turn that around). You also love a season of parties, festivals, and fun, so get your holiday plans in order, and reach out to friends or family who could use a dose of your warmth and optimism.

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Taurus is perhaps the most sensual sign of the zodiac when it comes to material pleasures, so a season that is all about wrapping up in luxurious fabrics, imbibing in rich food and drinks, and being dazzled by all things bright and sparkly. Let’s just say if there is one sign you would want decorating your tree this season, it would be the earth sign Taurus. There are times of the year where that sense of decadence needs to be reigned in, but luckily…this isn’t that time.

As we prepare to go deeper into winter and the days get quiet and dark, this is a time to celebrate life and feast (literally and spiritually) before doing the hard work of conserving strength and digging deeper into ourselves as we wait for spring. You’re a natural host, so celebrate the solstice by going big. It’s time to eat, drink, and be merry. After all, the ancient Romans celebrated winter solstice with a feast of Saturnalia to honor the bounty of the previous harvest. In the spirit of the season, take some time to make a gratitude list as a reminder of everything you’re thankful for.

While all those material trappings are great, Taurus has another reason to shine this season. Known as the bull, this is a sign that is relentlessly stubborn. As we approach the time of the year when we set goals for the year ahead, Taurus is here to show us how to do the work and not give up. If you have a celebration, include a space where guests can light a candle to reflect on their hopes and dreams for the coming season. It’s a wonderful time to see how we can work together as a community to stay strong until Spring.

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Gemini is ruled by chatty Mercury, the planet of communication. This affects your life all year long, but partnerships of all kinds are especially important for you right now. In the spirit of the classic holiday card, why not take some time and write a note (if you want to get artsy, making handwritten letters or postcards is a great way to spend a day, but of course an e-mail will do as well). If there is someone you’ve lost contact with, or a conversation about making something more serious, this solstice is a good time to reconnect and strengthen your bonds.

Being ruled by Mercury also makes Gemini a highly analytical sign. This solstice is a chance for you to really dig deep into what you need for the coming season. Have you been feeling restless lately? Dissatisfied with work or relationships? The winter solstice is here to provide you with a sense of clarity and focus. You’re a highly versatile sign, Gemini, so it’s likely that once you’ve had a chance to reflect on your problems, you’ll find that you already have the tools to change them.

The solstice is a clean slate, and you’ll want to embrace that this year. Geminis aren’t typically people who like a routine, but you may find that carving out some kind of standard schedule that work for you is key to navigating this busy season. You may very well be dealing with a lot of excess energy-starting your solstice off with a brisk walk, jog, or even team sport (Gemini is no stranger to some healthy competition) will help clear your mind and put you in the best headspace to get your life in order. In fact, joining a league or a team is a great way of keeping regulating your energy throughout the winter.

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Calling all Cancer crabs-winter solstice is a big day for you! The solstice occurs in your opposite sign of Capricorn, meaning there’s a significant push and pull effect that you’ll be feeling. Capricorn, and its ruler Saturn, is all about structure, discipline, and keeping a cool head–not the most natural qualities for your emotional, mood-driven sign.

This is a great time to build on your skill set and learn to keep those emotions in check. A natural homebody, you love nothing more than curling up in your nest with a hot drink and warm blanket, so it’s easy for you to be quite content during the winter months. As a sign that does a lot of emotional heavy lifting for your friends and family, t’s important for you to take time to recharge. Cancer is a sign that teaches us the nature of home. A new season presents you with the opportunity to reconsider what that means to you, and how you can bring a sense of comfort and home to the areas which might seem less inviting to you (like the hard structures and cold professional realms Capricorn is associated with).

You’re ruled by the moon, which will be in your sign on the solstice, so prepare to be at the full extent of your power. Charge crystals like Moonstone, Rose Quartz, or Citrine under the moon to integrate them into your rituals throughout the season.

The solstice is a nice time to give yourself a little quiet time for restoration. To honor your water element, consider observing the occasion with a ritual bath infused with eucalyptus, jasmine, or lavender. Cancer is also a particularly nostalgic sign, so call in your ancestors to guide you into the new year.

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It’s solstice season, superstar—are you ready to shine? Of course you are, it’s a natural part of being a Leo! Getting ready to enter a season full of parties is your comfort zone. With that in mind, being the scene stealer of the zodiac all year round does take a lot of energy, and there are a couple of times a year that you need to sit back and recharge.

You’ll be well-served right now putting your focus on domestic matters, like making changes at home that will make you feel more comfortable all year round. You tend to do this with a ferocious intensity (you are the sign of the lion, after all), and this upcoming season you’ll be out in full force. Creative projects are about to find a home, and your passions will align with prosperity. Leos tend to be dramatic, talented, and most of all, busy, so this solstice reflect on what your priorities actually are. Create a mood board (Leos are visual people) and use it to manifest your greatest goals.

Fire rituals are a great tool to welcome the solstice, and since you’re a fire sign, a nice way to honor your element as well. Since the solstice is the day during which we receive the least sunlight, it’s important to take some time to acknowledge the power of your ruling planet. If you’re feeling social, gathering with friends around a bonfire is communal and festive.

Write down anything you feel that might be holding you back or that you’d like to release, and toss it to the flames-you don’t need anything holding you back this season! If you’d prefer to reflect on your own, light candles or lanterns around the house and salute the sun and all it provides.

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You’re no stranger to the ambitious, focused energy of your fellow earth sign Capricorn, so the go get ‘em vibes in the air right now are second nature to you by now. This year however, your mind is on more than just your work life.

The goal for you right now is balance, integrating your passions and type A energy throughout all areas of your life. Saturn is responsible for our patterns and routines, and you might be using this winter solstice to rethink yours. Virgos are traditionally extremely hard on themselves.

Perhaps as we stride into a new season it’s time for a little more ease, flexibility, and play. Honor your inner child, Virgo-they have a lot to teach you! Try and think about how to integrate more whimsy and play into your day to day routine. Revisit your favorite childhood game or activity-it might be just the spark you need. This season, you’ll be focusing on creating a more harmonious bond between your head and your heart, making for a more well rounded existence.

If you’ve felt unmoored or overcome by over thinking lately, hope in on the horizon. This winter is all about settling in, easing up, and getting grounded. As the days get shorter and the temperatures drop, you’ll be assessing the important relationships in your life and focusing on deepening your connections and your role in your community. The change of season always sparks a sense of needing to document and chart progress for an analytical Virgo, so dedicate some time to journaling. With Mercury as your ruler, you use language and communication to make sense of the world around you, and this holiday is an opportunity to do just that.

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Like Capricorn, Libra is also a Cardinal sign (one of several zodiac leaders that signal a change of season). You lead the charge in ushering in the fall, and now it’s time to sit back and let Capricorn’s workhorse energy take the reigns. You’ve likely spent the past couple of months charging forward and gathering information.

This season is about reflecting on that and integrating subtle changes into your routine. Libras generally prefer small steps to dramatic moves, so even minor changes have the potential to pay off in big ways. As an air sign, you ride the winds of change with ease, so big shifts in seasonal energy usually doesn’t rock your world too dramatically.

That being said, this is a transitional season for you, and your eternal quest for balance might be out of whack. You’re a people person, but this season is about learning to tell people what you need. Remember, being part of a community also involves taking care of yourself and respecting your own boundaries. Experiment with getting to know yourself better this solstice. Is there a new food you wanted to try, or music you’ve been curious about?

Physical healing modalities like acupuncture or reiki can also help add a dose of balance to an otherwise flimsy time for you. You would also be well served to celebrate the holiday by purifying your space and burning Sage or Palo Santo. Stock up on incense now to burn throughout the winter to maintain that sense of hearth and home.

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Who’s afraid of the dark? Not you Scorpio! With Pluto as your ruling planet (the celestial body which governs the underworld) a trip into the mysterious is your comfort zone. Pluto rules over death, transformation, and rebirth, exactly what winter symbolizes. You have an innate understanding of the need to let things go in order to be reborn stronger.

This is a time of year for you to experiment, try on different hats, and see what sticks. Scorpios do much of their work in the shadows—think of them as your cosmic dressing room to prepare your next incarnation. You may find yourself busier than usual this season, and that’s a good thing. Just make sure your energy is going to pursuits that deserve it.

This is an important time of year for all signs to work on their shadow selves, and Scorpio just happens to be better at that than most. Honoring the symbolic death of winter allows you to honor and let go of the parts of yourself that are no longer serving you. Who do you want to be as we prepare to welcome a new year? Can you envision the parts of yourself that are holding you back?

Once you identify them, a cord-cutting ritual can help sever those ties (of course, this can apply to any external elements, patterns, or relationships in your life you’re ready to cast away). Meditate on these parts you’re ready to release, let your body tell you where you’re feeling them the strongest, and then visualize a pair of scissors cutting that cord. Light a candle (or several!) afterwords to honor your past and help usher in something new.

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Your season has just come to a close Sagittarius, putting you in a great position to use this solstice to manifest some major change. Since you just had a birthday, this solstice is less about determining what you want, and more about harnessing that bold Capricorn energy to move the needle in a big way. Get outside and do some stargazing to ring in the start of winter. If you live in a warm place (or you have the equipment), you might even want to camp outside for the night. You’re a natural philosopher, and the winter is a great chance to spend some time thinking deeply and asking big questions about the world at large. You may just come up with a game changing app or side hustle, and this Capricorn season is the time to make it real. Even though it’s winter, the recent arrival of Jupiter in your sign is making all the seeds you’ve been planing lately start to bloom.

Sagittarians are all about taking risks and embracing adventure, so if you’re not traveling already, celebrate by booking your next great escape. If you’re at home, take some time to gather souvenirs from your favorite travels and incorporate them into an altar for inspiration as the season charges ahead. Travel and excitement is one of the main ways you understand the world and feel connected, so make sure this is still a priority for you this winter. Even if hopping on an airplane and going somewhere far away isn’t totally feasible, you can still appeal to your love of the exotic by watching foreign films, listening to new music, or trying an unfamiliar cuisine. Anything to keep that internal fire burning.  

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Capricorn is the cardinal sign of winter (that is, the sign that kicks off the season), so this winter solstice is an important time for you. As the sign of hard work, ambition, and success, Capricorn energy carries us into the new year to dream big and set resolutions. This is an especially potent time, as Saturn is in your sign until 2020. Saturn is the disciplinarian of the zodiac, responsible for structure, schedules, and routine. If you’ve been thinking about a career change, gunning for a promotion, or thinking about starting a new business venture,  this is the time to make it happen. Saturn is a planet of action, so write a business proposal or set up meetings—anything that gets the ball rolling on your goals for the next year.

This is a great time for you to work with some prosperity rituals that will help manifest abundance in the new year. Anoint a green candle with oils like frankincense (seasonally appropriate!), clove, and bergamot, and let it burn while you write out your plans. Crystals like jade, green aventurine, and pyrite are also useful tools for this time of year.

Remember, Saturn is like a slow cooker for your ambition–it’s about building that success slowly, over time. Take this opportunity to break down your schedule and rework your routine. Remember, you’re in this for the long haul, so don’t forget to make space for your own personal needs and desires. If your routine doesn’t allow space for some fun and self care, you’re likely to lose sight of the finish line. Starting (or strengthening) a yoga practice will help you maintain that sense of discipline and grounded-ness that will carry you through the season.

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As the humanitarian of the zodiac, you’re probably spending this solstice thinking about how you can give back. Aquarians are known for thinking outside the box–if you’re looking to mentor someone, this time of year will make that a productive option for the both of you.

You’re a true innovator, Aquarius, so this solstice is a great time to commit to a new class or cultivating a new skill (anything technical or scientific is right up you’re alley, so perhaps start there). You’re all about being disruptive, so this energetic time is an amazing opportunity to found a startup, or maybe invest in one.

Aquarians are as creative and unconventional as it gets, which is why some sigil magic is a nice way for you to work on manifesting the changes you’d like to see in yourself and in the world at large. Simple graphic drawings, either on paper you can place on your altar, or carved into a candle you can burn during the solstice, will solidify your goals. You love big ideas and “out there” thinking, so expand your mind and nod to your inner visionary by reading philosophy or science fiction. Ideas are going to keep you warm this winter.

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Pisces is a deeply intuitive, mystical, and sensitive sign. You are highly attuned to your dreams, especially in this state, making the winter solstice a great time to engage in some deep dream work. Herbs like mugwort and valerian root can help encourage intense (sometimes even lucid) dreams, which are going to give you not only a dose of inspiration in your creative pursuits, but are primed to give you some insight into problems you’ve been working through over the past few months. Start a dream journal to track the recurring themes and thoughts that pop up over the next few cold winter months—when you look back at the start of Spring, it will help you understand what you want to blossom. It’s easy for ethereal Pisces to get carried away in the magic and whimsy of the holiday season, so make sure you take enough time to reflect and get grounded when you need to.

Everyone is going to feel the need for structure and sense of success that Capricorn provides, and even a dreamer like you will feel the urge to make some waves in your career. With Mars in your sign, there’s no doubt you’ll have the drive and energy to meet any challenge head on. If you’re gearing up to make some professional moves however, it’s important to take this time to recharge and do some soul satisfying work. A day spent journaling, painting, or taking photographs is a great way to honor your inner creative and allow you to feel connected to the world at large. You’re often the visionary of the zodiac, and you can use these creative gifts to inspire others through the dark months of winter.

Image by Genessa Panainte via Unsplash