Tap into the wisdom of the Moon phases
If there’s one constant in the night sky, it’s the changing face of the Moon. Certainly, the most obvious one is the brilliant orb of the Full Moon, but there are actually eight distinct phases of the Moon and each one represents a different theme or energy tap into for your life and relationships.
Whether you’re an ardent moon-lover, or just happen to notice the lunar phase on any given night, there’s no denying that the Moon has a powerful influence on our outer world in so many ways. Just look at the effect the Moon has on the tides. Is it any wonder that, with our bodies made up of ~60% water (80% at birth), we humans are inexorably tied to her rhythms as well?
But as many sensitive souls will tell you, our inner world is deeply affected by the moon as well.
Yes, I’m one of those sensitive souls, a Moon baby, born under the sign of Cancer which in astrology is ruled by the Moon. But I promise, it’s not just us Cancers who feel Her gentle (and sometimes not so gentle!) pull.
The powerful impact of the Moon phases has been highlighted since ancient times. Both Greek philosopher Aristotle and Roman historian Pliny the Elder proposed that the brain was the “moistest” organ and therefore humans were particularly susceptible to the changes in the Moon.
So, how can you take all this lunar wisdom and use it to enhance your love life?
Let’s take a look at what each Moon phase represents and then play with some ideas for deepening your relationships:
1) New Moon – also known as the “dark of the moon”.
This is when the Sun and Moon dance their closest in the sky, with the Earth wiggling in between them, and the Moon seems to disappear into the Earth’s shadow. This phase corresponds to growth and new beginnings.
It’s a time for reflection, for alone time to re-build your energy and not to be influenced by others.
If you’re single, that might mean chilling out by yourself on a Saturday night and thinking about what your non-negotiable traits are for your ideal life partner.
Likewise, if you’re in a relationship already, both of you can take some time for solitary reflection about what you each need more or less of from each other. Jot some ideas down so that when you come together in the next phase, you can start sharing.
2) Waxing Crescent Moon (from 3 1/2 days after the new moon through the 7th day).
The moon looks like a fingernail at this point, facing to the left in the sky. Gardeners know that this is a good time to plant seeds and you can do that figuratively, too!
Start to get more concrete about setting intentions based on your New Moon ruminating. Whether on your own or with your partner, create a vision board or make a wish list of those qualities or ideas you want to bring into your love life.
3) First Quarter Waxing Moon (from 7 to 10 days after the new moon).
The Moon continues to grow from a crescent toward her full glory. This phase corresponds to the development and growth of life, as well as the expression and expansion of new ideas and direction; a “crisis of action”, according to astrologer Dane Rudyard.
Action is the keyword here. If you’re single, that means putting some wheels on your relationship quest – get yourself on Match.com or start to read some of the great books that are out there: Calling in the One by Katherine Woodward Thomas or Are You the One for Me by Barbara DeAngelis are good ones to start.
And for you married or partnered folks, now is the time to dive into the meaty relationship issues, ideas, or requests you shared with each other in the Crescent Moon phase. There may be some dicey conversations to be had – the First Quarter Moon is when you can encounter your first challenges to the intentions you’ve set.
Definitely read John Gottman’s modern classic, Seven Principles for Making Marriage Work, if you haven’t already. Then consider registering for one of his weekend couples courses.
4) Gibbous Moon (from 10 to 13 days after the new moon).
At this point, the Moon looks like a pregnant belly, which is a great metaphor for the energy of this phase! The last months of pregnancy require flexibility and patience, just like you’ll need to practice as you get deeper into the relationship intentions you’ve set for yourself.
You’ll find there are changes you’ll need to make as you face reality. How will you adjust and refine your expectations both for yourself and/or for your partner?
That can mean literally tweaking your online dating profile after you’ve attracted a few duds, or maybe seeking out a couples’ coach if the two of you have reached a particularly sticky place in your relationship.
5) Full Moon – this is the moon phase that’s most easily identifiable and, coincidentally, the one that’s most commonly associated with love and romance. So go for it!
If the Gibbous Moon represented the last stages of pregnancy, the Full Moon is about giving birth – to plans made and projects started since the New Moon. It’s a time when we can feel most vibrant and creative and want to celebrate all we’ve accomplished so far.
In the relationship arena, that means a night out on the town! Go to a fun singles event and be prepared to use some of those dating skills and techniques you’ve been studying. New opportunities can show up as a result of your hard work.
Likewise, for couples – plan a night out just to enjoy each other, doing things you love most. Dinner and a movie? A moonlit cruise? Club-hopping with lots of dancing and great music? Take a look at what zodiac sign the Full Moon falls in and use that as a guide, too.
6) Disseminating (Waning Gibbous) Moon (3 to 7 days after the full moon).
Just as the name implies, this is the time to share your adventures and what you’ve learned with others — disseminating means to “spread something widely” and this Moon phase is associated with the “teacher” archetype.
Continue to celebrate the fruits of your labors, but now expand it into your circle of friends and family. This phase of the moon prompts you to feel grateful and to show your gratitude in loving, generous ways.
For singles, you might take a special friend out to dinner or find a little gift to show your appreciation for their support and presence in your life.
If you’re in a relationship, how about inviting a few of your favorite couples to dinner? If you’re comfortable, let them know what you and your partner have discovered (or re-discovered ) about yourselves. Maybe even invite your guests to go around and share what they most love and appreciate about their own partners.
7) Last Quarter Waning Moon (7-10 days after the Full Moon).
When the Moon is in this “half-full” phase, we feel a growing urge to turn our energies inward for reflection; Rudhyard calls it a “crisis of consciousness”. You begin to “clean the slates” and finish up old business, to regroup and prepare for the energy of the next lunation cycle.
In your relationship work, this is a powerful time to forgive yourself or others for past mistakes, and to let go of self-limiting beliefs that may be holding you back. Are you still holding out for a toxic ex-boyfriend to come back? Do you feel like you’re not pretty/young/smart enough to attract or keep a terrific partner? Are you stuck in a pattern of criticism or judgement with your sweetheart and want to banish it once and for all?
Write down whatever that old baggage is and create a simple releasing ritual – burn it, bury it, or flush it down the toilet!
8) Waning Crescent (Balsamic) Moon (10-13 days after the Full Moon).
Everything is now ending and the energy has been spent. This is the time for reflection and introspection as you get ready to go deep into the New Moon phase.
Whether you’re single or in a long-term relationship, it’s important to withdraw from the world periodically and recharge your batteries. You might even consider a retreat to a nearby spiritual center or monastery. The idea is to relax and surrender into whatever inklings bubble up from your deep unconscious.
Your intuition is thought to be at its height during the darkest phases of the moon. Do some divination with Tarot or the I Ching for some guidance into what you want to focus on for the next lunar cycle.
You may not be able to religiously follow the energy of the eight phases of the Moon every month, but knowing what each one signifies can help you move through life more powerfully. Feeling anti-social? Oh, it’s the Balsamic Moon… it’s OK to tell your partner you need to hibernate for a few days. Want to launch a fabulous new project? Use the Waxing Moon phases to plan it all, then put it out into the world on the next Full Moon.
Whether you’re a moon-maven or not, it’s a good idea to get comfortable with her considerable powers and use them to your advantage in both life and love!
Hi, I’m Deborah Roth, a Life and Relationship Coach, and also a Counseling Astrologer and Interfaith Minister. I lead women’s New Moon Circles and Full Moon TeleMeditations every month and love supporting individuals and couples to re-energize mind, body and spirit, and enhance their relationships. You can learn more about my work HERE or email me at Deborah@SpiritedLiving.com to schedule an introductory coaching session.