Shovel Ready Projects for Houses 1-6

©2009 by Donna Cunningham and CJ Wright

The economic stimulus bill Congress passed in February 2009 placed a priority on shovel-ready projects to rebuild our infrastructures. We have a stimulus plan too, though we don’t have funds to back it.

Each of you can undertake projects during the coming year to rebuild infrastructures in your own life. In this version, priorities will be set by planetary events that we’re collectively experiencing.

The blueprint you’ll use is the houses of your astrology chart. This article is part 1 of 2 on shovel-ready projects to undertake while a planet tours the houses in your chart. We’ll make suggestions for all 12, but they’re are only a guide. You alone know where priorities lie. Here’s a downloadable blank chart form, complete with house meanings, for you to work with: Blank chart with house meanings.

In all, three cycles that affect houses in your chart are kicking off within the next month—Mars’ 3-month retrograde in Leo from 12/20/09-3/10/10, Mercury retrograde in Capricorn from 12/26/09-1/15/10, and the annual cycle of New Moons that starts with the January 15th New Moon at 10° Capricorn. The example we’ll use to illustrate is Mars’ 2-year journey through your 12 houses.

Shovel-Ready Projects for Mars

In December, 2009, Mars turns retrograde and will remain in one or two neighboring houses through June, 2010. That area is likely to be a hot spot, and your priorities depend on which houses of your chart hold the sign Leo.

For the best use of that highly concentrated energy burst, find where transiting Mars is in your chart. The illustration shows how to find it in a sample chart. Scan the signs and degrees on house cusps, locate the house that contains 0° of Leo and then determine which house contains 29° Leo. Those are areas to focus on while Mars is in Leo. (Note: you probably won’t find 0° or 29° Leo on your own cusps—we’re just showing where they fit in the particular example.) If you’re lost altogether, start by reading Mars Retrograde 101—Answering your Questions.

However, this isn’t the end of Mars’ effects on you. Once it moves forward, it tours the other 11 houses for two months each. That’s long enough to complete a shorter-term project for each house. Apply elbow grease to each in turn, capitalizing on Mars’ boundless energy. In two years, you’ll go a long way toward putting crucial infrastructures into better shape. The process is similar for any planet’s cycle through the houses—for instance, a Mercury retrograde period begins on December 26th as well.

Ideas for Houses 1-6

The first six houses make up the Northern Hemisphere of your chart. This sector represents the moment we were born—our personal sunrise—and the subconscious motivations and values we’ll use as tools when we enter public life. It lays the foundation for the adult we’ll become. These houses give us lessons on how we’ll eventually interact with the world at large—the focus of houses 7-12.

Below are areas of life represented by houses 1-6, followed by suggestions to enhance each one.

First house: First impressions and first approach to situations, appearance, image, self-presentation, the basic physical vehicle. The first house is your personal sunrise—the way you meet the world—and creates a sense memory of you for everyone you meet.

  • Write a story about yourself that begins with “I AM…”
  • Pull together a photographic retrospective of yourself over the years to see how your style has changed
  • Adapt your appearance to accurately reflect the real you in the here and now
  • Be an authentic representative of your Sun
  • Do a full body scan for health-related issues
  • Tone up—your carriage and your muscles
  • Train yourself to walk into a room with confidence
  • Make direct eye contact when interacting with others

Second: Money and ways of earning it, money management and attitudes toward finance, things valued more than money. A valuable long-term project would be to create an updated spending plan that works, through the following steps:

  • Keep track of everything you spend for one month
  • Discover where wasted money goes
  • List small luxuries that make you feel rich
  • List economies that would make you feel poor
  • Based on the collected information, draft a spending plan
  • Repeat the list from step one on and keep revising the plan realistically
  • Set up a small monthly automatic transfer from checking to savings
  • Budget your time to include things you value more than money
  • Know that your self-worth is more important than your net worth

Third: Communication, thinking and learning style, siblings and near relatives, neighbors, basic coursework, commuting.

  • Get in touch with people you’ve lost track of, including yourself
  • Think about what you’re NOT communicating—starting at home
  • Write an actual hard-copy letter to someone you’ve missed
  • Phone a long-lost relative or neighbor to catch up on the news
  • Go to a bookstore for coffee rather than Starbucks. Browse
  • Subscribe to a blog or newsgroup on a topic you want to know more about
  • Stretch by putting the Word or Quote of the Day on your startup page
  • Cancel or transfer subscriptions to magazines you don’t read any more
  • Buy a blank book and keep a journal of 2010—we live in interesting times

Fourth: Home and home life, roots, family ties, heredity, family influence, the nurturing parent, senior years.

  • Get to know your family tree even if it’s your adoptive family
  • Plant yourself in a nurturing environment, become self-watering
  • Create a sacred space that travels with you
  • Make peace with your past
  • Feed yourself what you need most
  • Become a caregiver to yourself as well as others
  • Identify your tribe
  • Develop sensitivity for what each person needs to thrive
  • Create a recipe for emotional growth—a little more of this, a little less of that

Fifth: Children, romance, creativity, self-expression, performing, leisure activities, gambling and other forms of risk-taking.

  • Put on your clown shoes and have some fun
  • Be a lover not a fighter
  • Develop generosity of spirit
  • Praise someone who needs it
  • Applaud those who deserve it
  • Be fearless in an adverse situation
  • Tell yourself and others that you love them
  • Send someone flowers who won’t expect them
  • Give someone or something a chance
  • Look for joy everywhere

Sixth: Work and its meaning, work habits, types of jobs, coworkers and employees, health and health habits.

  • Look at each work task and consider how to do it more effectively
  • Read David Allen’s Getting Things Done or his Free Articles
  • Listen to coworkers’ or employees’ suggestions and priorities
  • Spend quality time offsite with coworkers—a non-working lunch
  • Devise time-effective ways of getting regular exercise
  • Have an annual physical and actually listen to the recommendations
  • Read up on your medications on the web
  • Research vitamins, supplements, herbs and natural treatments you need
  • Evaluate your diet and make it more nutritious
  • Stop gritting your teeth—it’s the Virgo house of your chart!

The Cycle Continues….Moving on to Houses 7-12

The passage of any planet through the first six houses prepares you for your world premier. You’ve been discovering and developing the inner you. You’ve become sentient and recognize yourself in a mirror. You’ve learned which things you own that cannot be taken from you, how to communicate with others, discovered your roots, the key to your heart, and how to serve and work with others.

Part 2 of this article—appearing tomorrow—puts you in the world arena, starting with the seventh house. The spotlight will now focus on how you interact with everyone else and how you blend your motivations, talents and skills with theirs. It will give you ideas on how to interact with the world at large and then bring it all back home again. We’ll concentrate more specifically on the retrograde phases of planetary cycles and on the current Mars retrograde period in particular.

For more information on the 12 houses and on how to use Mars retrograde and other astrological cycles, here are some links to related articles on Donna’s Blog, Sky Writer and CJ’s Blog, Auntie Moon.

Oh, and those shovel-ready projects Congress’ stimulus plan was meant to finance. How have they worked out? See: Stimulus Watch: Keeping an Eye on Economic Recovery Spending. Here’s hoping your own stimulus plan works out way better!

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Art credits: All the shovel images were copyright free at WikiMedia Commons.


7 thoughts on “Shovel Ready Projects for Houses 1-6

  1. Great opening of the 2-part article, Ladies. Mars will be transiting 5 of my Leo planets as conjunctions, plus others in oppositions and trines.
    I’m taking all this to heart.
    ~Thanks so much for the lessons.

  2. Oh thank you for this. It made lots of sense for me and my husband. For my son (Leo in 5th house) I just don’t get it.

    1. These short lists are just a few of the many, many activities associated with the the houses. Sports isn’t on the list, specifically, but it makes up a huge portion of leisure activities which includes things like puzzles, slot machines, board games, and even reading. Creativitiy in any form is always the biggie for the 5th to me and gives us a world of possibilities.

  3. These projects are such timely ones for me and my husband. With Mars working through my 7th and 8th houses the ideas you sight are such good guidance. I especially like “choose your battles” and “see yourself through the eyes of others” for 7th house projects. Thanks so much for the insight and inspiration.

    1. The 7th is also my focal point, Mokihana, so those two are at the top of my list, too. I’ll be using them as reins and muzzle for my sometimes too big mouth and, hopefully, develop some empathy and understanding along the way.

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