How To Cope with Drastic Change, According to Astrology

2020 has been one crazy year for everyone. From the ‘hunker downers’ huddled in their homes to the dismissive peps out and about with no fears at all, we have all experienced drastic lifestyle changes. And with any great change comes heartbreak. Yes, the old way of living and being has died, and we are moving into a new world.

But what does this new world look like? We don’t know. We don’t have a blueprint or a clear vision. Naturally, we may prefer to chill on ‘denial island’ where we can sip piña coladas and swim in the calm waters of illusion. But alas, a strong current comes to propel us into the deep blue.

While we may not know where the current leads, we can control how we respond to it — emotionally, that is. How? First, by understanding where we are in Kübler-Ross’s grief cycle. The same stages we go through after the death of a loved one apply anytime we experience a drastic change (the end of something as we’ve known it).


The 5 Phases of Change

According to Kübler-Ross’s grief cycle, there are five main phases — denial, anger, bargaining, depression and acceptance. Keep in mind that you may jump around the phases, skip some entirely or experience two phases at the same time! Everyone’s experience of change is unique. Self-awareness is key when navigating the cycle and astrology can help. Where are you in the cycle and what do you need to cope? Let’s find out.

01

Denial

After change rushes in like a tidal wave, the first phase is often denial. In this phase, we don’t want to accept the shocking truth, so we sugar-coat it. While hiding from reality, we might be in shock, disbelief or fear.

Neptune signs

Brrrrrr! Icy Neptune is the planet associated with denial. Neptune represents the imagination, subconscious and the part of us that doesn’t want to face reality. And so, it often manifests as confusion, escapism and isolation.

Find your Neptune sign here.

Neptune in…

Fire Signs (Sagittarius)

Somebody has been a busy bee! Fire signs express denial by doing things. They are simply too busy checking off their long to-do list to face reality.

If your Neptune is in a fire sign, try taking a break from ‘being busy’. Get out in nature, and connect to the present moment. Grounded in reality, accept that it takes time to get over the shock. During this transitional space, make sure you are nourishing your body with root vegetables and grains.

Earth Signs (Virgo, Capricorn)

Earth signs are honest and realistic, so they may have just skipped this phase. They research the facts, make a doable plan and execute with precision. However, it can be frustrating when the facts are not yet known. In that case, they can feel lost and insecure.

If your Neptune is in an earth sign, don’t put so much pressure on yourself. You don’t have to carry everyone. Ask for help. Your loved ones and friends would be more than happy to help carry the load.

Air Signs (Libra, Aquarius)

This is not your vision of an ideal world! Air signs process denial in the mind by overthinking and talking about it. Shock, disbelief and fear can all be expressed with words.

If your Neptune is in an air sign, stay connected with your loved ones. Talking helps you cope with emotional issues. And to ease your restless mind, try meditation or therapeutic activities, such as knitting, yoga and gardening.

Water Signs (Scorpio, Pisces)

Emotions run deep for water signs. Naturally, they may feel the pull to escape from life to numb the pain. Withdrawn from reality, they may turn to emotional eating/drinking/crafting/pick your pleasure.

If your Neptune is in a water sign, find an emotional outlet to express your deep emotions. Perhaps a family member, trustworthy friend or a spiritual community can provide just the emotional support you need. Also, make sure that you are nourishing your body with healing foods and self-care.

02

Anger

Do you feel frustrated, irritated or anxious? In the anger phase, our feelings are fiery and intense. But underneath it all, we feel vulnerable and afraid.

Mars signs

Mars is the planet of drive, passion, action and anger. This red hot planet reveals much about your fighting style. How do you express anger? And what do you need to move through it?

Find your Mars sign here.

Mars in…

Fire Signs (Aries, Leo, Sagittarius)

Mars in fire signs are passionate, impatient and brimming with energy. While society encourages us to suppress feelings of anger, fire signs have no problem expressing their fury anyways. Just stand back when these firecrackers flare up. It could be explosive.

If your Mars is in a fire sign, physical activity can help you express anger constructively. Even punching pillows will do the trick. The key is to release the anger without any causalities.

Earth Signs (Taurus, Virgo, Capricorn)

Mars in earth signs are patient, strategic and resourceful. Naturally, they wait for the opportune moment to express their anger. And when they finally do, it’s rarely a seismic blow-up like ahem, fire signs.

If your Mars is in an earth sign, blow off steam by gardening, cleaning, organizing or hiking. A mindfulness practice will get you back to a calmer state in no time.

Air Signs (Gemini, Libra, Aquarius)

Mars in air signs are clever and strategic. They express their anger with polished words and wit. No violent outbursts for our airy friends. They settle things on an intellectual level.

If your Mars is in an air sign, express your anger the way you know best — with words. Ask for what you need. And if you need someone to repeat something, ask to hear it again.

Water Signs (Cancer, Scorpio, Pisces)

Mars in water signs are highly emotional with spot on instincts. So, when the floodgates open, you’ll get more than anger. Water signs release the entire spectrum of emotions.

If your Mars is in a water sign, don’t shame or judge yourself for being angry. It’s okay to be REALLY mad. Cry or scream into a pillow as much as you need to release your emotions. And of course, hugs always help too.

03

Bargaining

Are you making a ‘deal with the devil’? In the bargaining phase, we cope with loss through negotiation. “Dear Higher Power, if I wear a mask all season, will you let me travel over the holidays?” Yes, we can come across as a tad desperate. It’s only normal when we feel out of control. And so, we promise to be or do better in exchange for something to ease the pain.

Venus signs

Venus is the planet associated with love, pleasure, style and yes, bargaining. Your Venus sign reveals your approach to restoring harmony, love and peace.

Find your Venus sign here.

Venus in…

Fire Signs (Aries, Leo, Sagittarius)

Venus in fire signs are passionate, upbeat and direct. These fiery gals decide on how this is going to play out before anyone makes it to the negotiation table. When bargaining, they feel in control of their future. But alas, the cycle is not yet over.

If your Venus is in a fire sign, your soul needs adventure, play and spontaneity. So, you may feel impatient during this transitional space. Try to make the best of it by finding creative ways to bring pleasure into your life. Perhaps a virtual dance party or music festival? Now is time to join a fun group where sharing is encouraged.

Earth Signs (Taurus, Virgo, Capricorn)

Venus in earth signs are cautious, practical, and a bit conservative. Naturally, their approach to bargaining is pragmatic and grounded in reality. No unrealistic demands. These practical gals have a tried and true plan to restore safety and security.

If your Venus is in an earth sign, you love to feel productive and proactive. To satisfy your inner Venus, volunteer for a cause on a mission to help the situation. And of course, practice self-love, especially when it comes to all the things you wish you’d done differently.

Air Signs (Gemini, Libra, Aquarius)

Venus in air signs are eloquent, charming and chatty. During the bargaining phase, they find themselves creating a lot of “what if” and “if only” statements. The back and forth dialogue helps them to regain control over the situation. Plus, they just love to connect with others through the exchange of ideas.

If your Venus is in an air sign, you feel nurtured when the communication channels are open and flowing. Talk with someone who understands the need to talk it out and be heard. An information exchange is exactly what you need to feel supported right now.

Water Signs (Cancer, Scorpio, Pisces)

Venus in water signs are nurturing, empathic and self-protective. Security is important to them — after all, water without a container dries up and poof! In the bargaining phase, there is no certainty, so this can be a challenging time. Nevertheless, their powerful dreams and psychic intuition give an accurate pulse on the emotional undercurrents.

If your Venus is in a water sign, you crave intimate connections. To receive the emotional support you need, join a spiritual group that feels safe and secure. Also, make sure you are being kind to yourself now more than ever.

04

Depression

Feelings of emptiness, exhaustion and hopelessness are all experienced during the depression phase. We have accepted the hard truth and it hurts. When battling depression, it can feel like the end, with no point in getting out of bed.

Saturn is associated with time, karma, limits, responsibility and depression. The earthy planet anchors us down into our flesh and bones, and pushes us to face the boundaries of the linear world, even when we don’t want to. Your Saturn placement reveals where you long for something you think you will never get. Still, ‘Father Karma’ inspires sweaty labor and steadfast commitment to transmute your struggles into strengths. 

Find your Saturn sign here.

Saturn in…

Fire Signs (Aries, Leo, Sagittarius)

Saturn in fire signs have limitless vitality, self-confidence and enthusiasm. These special souls have a larger-than-life quality that they just can’t hide. However, Saturn puts up a wall to prevent them from expressing their creative voice. And when life lacks spontaneous self-expression, fire signs feel a strong sense of despair.

If your Saturn is in a fire sign, acknowledge what’s happening and find the wisdom in it. What is Saturn teaching you? When you feel ready, get your body moving again with a little light yoga or a slow flow dance class.

Earth Signs (Taurus, Virgo, Capricorn)

Saturn in earth signs are grounded and practical. They have worked hard to obtain financial security, and naturally they are deathly afraid of losing it. And so, they may compulsively collect more and more. However, this fear also applies to skills. Saturn puts an inner critic in their ear that makes it difficult to develop professional skills. This inner struggle can lead to depression.

If your Saturn is in an earth sign, try to step back from your fears. A little perspective can help you find wisdom in the experience. Reflect on your values. Is gaining more wealth truly in alignment with your values? Also, don’t be afraid of asking for help. There is no shame in it.

Air Signs (Gemini, Libra, Aquarius)

Saturn in air signs have a clear and objective perspective. Of course, Saturn doesn’t make it easy to circulate ideas. Air signs may doubt their intellectual potential, leading to isolation, loneliness and depression.

If your Saturn is in an air sign, you are smart. Don’t punish yourself for acting clumsy or getting tongue-tied at social events. Those experiences are not a reflection of your brilliant mind. For your healing, practice meditation to help you detach from negative thoughts. Reflective writing to meditative music can also help.

Water Signs (Cancer, Scorpio, Pisces)

Saturn in water signs are sensitive and intuitive, yet they are often afraid of showing their true feelings. A soulful connection could lead to heartbreak. And so, they try to control their emotional reactions. But of course, emotional suppression is never a good thing. When they are deprived of true intimacy, they may suffer in silence which results in depression.

If your Saturn is in a water sign, surround yourself with a few trusted loved ones who are supportive. Reflective writing can also help you work on expressing your emotions in a constructive way.

05

Acceptance

After a long, bumpy road, we have finally landed on solid ground. During the acceptance phase, we are reorienting ourselves in this new world. There are plans to be made and new options to explore. Some days are still tough, but we now know that everything is going to be ok.

Pluto signs

Pluto is the planet associated with acceptance, transformation and rebirth. In the belly of our wildest demons, Pluto awaits with a ticket to total transformation. Of course, the ride won’t be for the faint of heart. Pluto eliminates anything in the way of growth so we can stand in our true power. In your chart, Pluto reveals your approach to transformation.

Find your Pluto sign here.

Pluto in…

Fire Signs (Leo, Sagittarius)

Pluto in fire signs are rebellious and eager for change NOW. And they aren’t afraid to fight for the change they seek. During the acceptance phase, self-expression comes naturally to them. And they transform in an impressive and creative way.

If your Pluto is in a fire sign, allow yourself to feel satisfied with where you are in the change. You can also create a vision board with ideas, dreams, and images of your new world.

Earth Signs (Virgo, Capricorn)

Pluto in earth signs are careful and prudent when embarking on a change. They realize that it takes time to create a more secure world. But they have the patience and perseverance to stay the course.

If your Pluto is in an earth sign, resist the urge to not change. Change is essential for everyone’s growth. Choose to grow, following the calling of your soul.

Air Signs (Libra)

Pluto in air signs bring reform through communication, intellect and diplomacy. They understand that improving the world starts with changing the ways we interact with one another. Motivated by improving society as a whole, they transform the world into a more fair and beautiful place for all.

If your Pluto is in an air sign, have compassion for yourself as you make tough choices. Faced with difficult Yes or No questions, resist the urge to postpone decision-making.

Water Signs (Scorpio)

Change is more than a superficial make-over for Pluto in water signs. Water signs transform on a deep, psychological level from the bottom up. These signs uncover any nasty truths, call them out and eventually transmute them.

If your Pluto is in a water sign, have a death ritual for whatever has fallen away, and honor it for bringing you to a new phase of life.


There is always something to learn in each step of any change cycle. As you transition from the old and into the new, have compassion and patience for where you are in the journey.

Where are you in the change cycle and how are you coping? Share in the comments!

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