Get New Year’s Resolutions Achieved with a Strong Saturn Attack

We had a little problem with fleas at our house one summer, so I asked the county extension agent about the best way to get rid of them. His immediate response was, “First and foremost–diligence.” Fleas are nasty little pests that lay eggs which are programmed to hatch and attack the moment they sense movement. That’s why they can survive in an empty house for years unhatched and hungry. You move in, your movement awakens the sleeping beasts, and you’re a hot nutritious lunch. Treatment can vary, but the absolute requirement is, indeed, diligence. We beat the little B<*&#^!ds and they haven’t been back.

That’s a Saturn attack! It was chock full of diligence, dedication, and determination.

New Year’s resolutions come during Capricorn, the perfect time to set up a lofty goal. Capricorn isn’t a goal setter. It’s a goal meeter, willing to site lofty heights with great aspirations and full-follow through. Many of us get a little taste of goal setting at this time of year through our resolutions. The problem is, most of us give in to the Aquarian rebel that follows close on Cap’s heels. We find boredom, another project, or a good revolutionary excuse to drop the diligence. As in, “You can’t make me do that!”

Diligence is the solution that has to be applied to any pest you want to fully eradicate, whether they’re vermin or personal poisons. As we near the New Year, lots of us start making resolutions. Here are some of the top resolutions people make:

  • Lose weight/get in shape
  • Save money/budget
  • Eat right/more healthily
  • Quit smoking/drinking
  • Spend more time with family/friends
  • Decrease stress
  • Learn something new/better education
  • Volunteer/help others

Most of us give it full steam in the beginning and then fall short of the goal. All Saturn’s restrictions start to wear us down. A Weight Watchers leader once mentioned that they get a huge influx of new members right after the New Year. Health clubs do, too. It’s a result of those lofty New Year resolutions. If everybody had the diligence to meet their goals, we’d have a healtier country and lots of fit people walking around. Unfortunately, people stop going to meetings and don’t make it to the club. So here’s what you need to accomplish anything, not just a New Year’s resolution, and you can find it in your chart:

  • Dedication: complete and wholehearted fidelity
  • Determination: Direction or tendency to a certain end; impulsion
  • Diligence: conscientiousness in paying proper attention to a task; giving the degree of care required in a given situation

Here are some questions to help analyze and understand dedication, determination, and diligence via Saturn:

  • What are you already dedicated to that’s healthy in some way?
  • Can you identify how Saturn in your chart represents that dedication?
  • What is Saturn’s placement by sign and house in your chart?
  • How can you use those Saturn/sign/house qualities to your advantage?
  • What chart aspects strengthen or weaken your “complete and wholehearted fidelity” to something? In other words, who are the team players and who are the opponents in your chart?

You might even consider what unhealthy things you’re dedicated to ~ your bad habits. Can you align them with the negative characteristics of a planet or planet’s placement, by any chance?

Map Out Your Saturn

Suggestion ~ map out your Saturn on a blank chart form. Note only Saturn and planets or angles in aspect. Having less to look at might help you more clearly understand your Saturn’s strengths and what undermines you. For example, when I map my Saturn the only major planetary aspect it receives is a square from Uranus. That really helps me understand Saturn’s opponent in my chart since squares are considered difficult aspects. It’s also a generational aspect, so I can look at the generational struggles of my peer group for more help in understanding how this aspect works. Saturn also trines my Aquarian Ascendant and it’s a ruler of Aquarius, so it’s a team player in that regard. As a child, I appeared older, more serious and mature than many of my classmates. As I got older, it helped my serious side shine through. Get beyond surface appearances, though, and the stronger Uranian characteristics in my chart appear.

When mapping my Saturn, I have to consider how it functions in Libra (where it’s exalted) and in the 8th house. Since the 8th house includes other people’s money, taxes, and insurance, I might expect difficulties with a New Year’s resolution that included setting up and sticking to a budget ~ IF I let myself get sabatoged by the square from Uranus. That’s one thing I have to be on the lookout for. I need to put some reins on my sudden urges to spend. Enlist Saturn, control Uranus. 

I’ve been accused of being a quitter ~ dropping something for a new interest and not sticking to it over time. Isolating Saturn in this way helps me to understand how I sabotage myself with my Uranian urges. They are oh so much more appealing to me. Their diversity is amazing. Mapping my Uranus tells me more than I need to know about how Mercury, Pluto, the Moon, and Jupiter add to that attraction for something new. It’s so much stronger than my Saturn. By mapping my Uranus, I can understand why I flitter too often and learn how I can strengthen my resolve.

Isolating a planet in this way is only a tool and planets’ aspects should never be viewed as stand-alone characteristics. There are all the other chart factors to consider, of course. This exercise is meant to be a first step in understanding how Saturn’s influence works in your chart, and how it can help you reach any goal you set. With enough diligence, determination and dedication, an understanding of how your Saturn operates optimally, and where Saturn’s opponents are setting an ambush for you, you can lay out a plan for success. If you want more detail, add in transiting Saturn or your progressed Saturn.

If you’d like to map your Saturn (or any other planet), you can download a blank chart form with house meanings here.

I sure would like to hear your thoughts on this. I can always use support for my diligence projects and you probably have help to offer lots of other folks, as well. Use the comments section if you have a question or need support of your own. We’re all in this together.

Related Posts:
Seeing is Knowing
Better Than New Year’s Resolutions ~ A Ritual That Works
More Ammo for Your Saturn Attack from the Future You

18 thoughts on “Get New Year’s Resolutions Achieved with a Strong Saturn Attack

  1. This is extremely helpful! I have Saturn in Aries in 6th house with an opposition to Mercury. I’m anxious to hear more about how I can use this influence positively to overcome a couple of bad health habits. Being a Virgo, I expect perfection of myself and the couple of things that I do wrong, I constantly beat myself up for. Every New Year, I attempt to finally “overcome” only to be sidetracked (like many of the WW Attendees!) I love these “tools” that empower us and this reminds me of some of Donna Cunningham’s work… thank you for sharing it with us!!

    1. I think the first thing that a Virgo has to overcome is exactly what you mentioned, Jennifer–the idea of perfection. Instead of allowing that quality of Virgo to point out all the negatives and what you’re doing wrong, use your fair-minded Libra Mercury to override those criticisms and find smaller, step-by-step ways you’ve accomplished parts of your goal. But don’t give in to the urge to say, “It’s okay, go ahead and slack off today, and ok, tomorrow too.” Don’t set the bar too high, either, or you’ll doom yourself. And stop judging yourself! Even a small accomplishment is a step in the right direction, and we can’t get to tomorrow without working through today. Be present, imagine your self-criticism as coming from someone whose advice you might overlook if it was someone who was always putting you down. Take a look at this post about Virgo and the Pain of Rejection.

      There are other things we have to remember when setting a goal for ourselves. First–and this is very important–we have to want it more than we want anything else. If you aren’t dead-set determined, completely dedicated, and absolutely diligent, something will sneak in and sabotage you. Be on the lookout for those fleas I mentioned in the beginning of the post. Use them metaphorically. Once you get slack, the little beasts breed while you’re not looking and before you know it you’ve got an infestation again. Second, it’s important to be specific. We can say, “I want to lose weight.” That’s kind of vague, though. A better goal is “I want to lose 15 pounds.” Even better is “I want to lose 15 pounds by June 1st.” Even better, “I want to lose 15 pounds so I can wear those pants I look so great in.” Now Mercury in Libra can break that down into even better steps, with rewards along the way, and really appreciate the blossoming of the beauty it’s creating. In that way, it should start to work well with your Saturn in Aries. It doesn’t mean it won’t be still hard. It means it will be different than before. If you get these two discordant energies to work together, you’ve changed your opponents into your friends.

      And thank you so much for the compliment about Donna. She has been a major influence on me since I started studying astrology back in the early 90’s. This technique is covered in greater depth in her book, Counseling Principles for Astrologers: Becoming an Effective Change Agent, available at It’s not just for counseling astrologers, though. You’ll learn so much about reading your own chart from it. I encourage everyone to get a copy.

      1. Thanks for the wonderful insight! What I found especially helpful was “be present, imagine your self-criticism as coming from someone whose advice you might overlook if it was someone who was always putting you down”. WOW – that could change everything for me if I can continually remind myself of that — THANK YOU!!

  2. Just checked my chart how it looks like Saturn-wise. You wrote squares are difficult aspects. Well… I have six in connection with Saturn in Cancer (Sun, Mars, Uranus in Libra, Moon, Chiron, MC in Aries, And one trine with my Jupiter in Pisces tries to make it smoother.
    With resolutions I start as dedicated just as one can be, but after about two weeks it wears off, then after a week my interest reawakens in the project. The bad side of this, that I’m angry with myself about not holding resolutions until the wanted things is achieved.
    Another difficulty for me is that I tend to start more projects at the same time, or ‘gathering’ them during a few days time, and want to do everyting at the same time. In the end none of them is finished, or only the one, I feel most successful in.
    Dear CJ, I’d be thankful, if you could give me a little insight to my Saturnian squares, if those are related my resolution project handling.
    Thank you in advance.

    1. Maybe you’ve already come up with the first part of the solution, Kitty. There’s an urgency to do a whole lot of different things at once, and you have a lot of cardinal energy to work with (Cancer, Libra, Aries). The cardinal signs are all starters. They’re all vying for your attention at once. As hard as it might be, pick one thing–only one thing–and give your full attention to that. It takes a lot of dedication to get even one thing accomplished masterfully. Your Aries moon just might be getting a lot of satisfaction from all that activity, but it doesn’t pay off in the long run. It’s fleeting. And you mention that you get angry with yourself–that’s Mars. The frustration–that’s Saturn. Think how much happier you’d be by giving your Aries Moon one thing to throw itself into with backup steadfast action from Saturn. You lose the anger and the frustration. It might not be as initially satisfying as having so many irons in the fire, but accomplishing one task is very satisfying.

      With the two week wearing off period and resurgence, it sounds like maybe–maybe because I can’t see your chart–you’re getting some fluctuations with the Moon that hit your cardinal angles simultaneously. Again, I can’t see your chart, so the signs on the angles of your chart might not even be cardinal. Have you tried tracking your energy levels with the daily moon sign? That might be a good start to goal setting. Take the Mars and Merc retrograde periods to do some self-study on that. See how your energy and emotins respond to the different signs and plan activities that will support Saturn at various times of the month.

      If you’re working with two-week periods, try setting two-week goals. That takes the emphasis off doing it all at once, which no one can do well. Tracking the moon really can help you figure out how you respond over time and help you plan what type of activity to focus on.

      Squares are considered difficult because they take effort. It’s not that they aren’t doable, they just require a different type of attention and functioning.

      I do hope this helps in some way.

      1. Dear cjwright,

        Thank you for your answer. I absolutely agree with focusing on one thing can give more and longer lasting satisfaction in every way. I rarely manage to do that, but then I’m surprised how good the outcome is, much better than I’ve ever dreamed about.

        Your idea with following the moon and trying to get my cycles is a very good one, I’ve never thought about tracking them on a deeper level, though subconsciously I’m aware of them.

        I’ve tried to attach my chart here so you can check it, if you have time, for my angles:

        1. Your rising sign is fixed Leo, so all the angles aren’t cardinal. You do have 7 planets in cardinal signs and that’s a lot of let’s-get-going energy. Here’s the important thing, Kitty: “I’m surprised how good the outcome is, much better than I’ve ever dreamed about.” You’re on to it. You might want to post that somewhere so you can see it often. It’s a great reminder.

        2. Thank you for the analysis and the advice CJ, it’s a huge help 🙂
          Have a wonderful New Year’s Eve!

  3. oh this is a most excellent tool ! Does one include the Asc and Nodes ?
    My Scorpio Saturn Trines my Cancer Asc, and my Pisces MC (Wide orb) and my South Node (on the Asc), while Sextiling my North.

    So am I just stuck in the mud of a lazy Grand Trine Water — do those Nodes make me stucker ? Or, am I excused from this lesson by virtue of my Neptunian MH ? I had a teacher once who excused me from all vocational assignments based on my chart ! (I also have Neptune on my Sun).

    If I look to the house of Saturn and it’s Natural ruler (5th, so Sun) I get nowhere there either or maybe everywhere, as it is tied up in many Tsquares ? Confused, May I be excused ? 🙂

    1. Hi, Belle.

      No, you’re not excused–you’re not working that trine here! 🙂 Maybe you can give us some tips on how you’ve used those trines and sextiles advantageously. A little inspiration maybe?

      Sure you can include the Ascendant, and why not the nodes?

  4. My Saturn in Virgo is in the 4th with a Square to my Sag/Moon in the 6th and a Sextile to my Cancer/Sun in the 1st.

    I am definetly in control of my home base, but not so much in control of my emotions. Something I vow to get a handle on, each and every year.

    Saturn is also in opposition to my MH. Not sure if this is why there has always been a pull to stay home more than go out and get a career Something I still regret.

    Not sure how the Sextile with Saturn and the Sun plays out for me. Maybe it makes it easy for me to put restrictions on myself.

    I have not been studying in so long that this exercise is hard for me.

  5. lol, I woke up this AM and realized I had forgotten I have Mercury close to my Scorpio Saturn too. So from this I arrive at an Intense desire to get to the bottom of anything, except the toilet bowl. And I can out-ADD anyone I know !
    From old Grade School Evaluations: “Does not complete tasks” (Cancer rising, you know I keep everything).

    The things that I have done with the greatest determination/success is help my Children navigate their education through to high school. One Son (and Mr. B) shares that Saturn with me. So I take this as Mercury operating at the Gemini level. And I did use astrology to guide me in some advocacy. Not so successful ? This year I dropped out of a Pagan Chaplaincy Masters Program.

    I have found one online tool that does work for me (when I remember it) and it is this site:

    I won’t give you my ID… but I am sort of in there on a similar name. ;0

    Happy New Year..
    Off to tweak my lists !


    1. Now, that is a very cool site, Belle! I love it, could get lost in it for hours, and will be adding a few things to that list. I encourage all goal and resolution makers to check it out.

      Thanks so much for sharing the site and your Saturn insights with us.

  6. This is a really interesting topic! I like the idea of looking at cycles, especially shorter cycles like 2 weeks at a time. But I can’t get my head around the urgency thing, and I have 5 cardinal planets, too.

    I wonder if/how my Saturn would function optimally! Like Jennifer, I have Saturn in Aries in the 6th- mine squares Sun/Venus in Cancer in the 9th. It’s taken years to build up enough life experience to look the Saturn sq in the eye, so to speak. It’s been challenging. I wonder if the goal-setting process would’ve been helpful?

    I feel Saturn’s weight distinctly in my watery chart~ Cancer stellium, Pisces moon, Neptune in the 1st, Scorpio rising. On top of it, that square neatly turns my mother’s cardinal t-square into a cross. Which has really felt… disapproving? Maybe it’s just her own dischord that has bled over into my energy. Maybe the dischord IS the cross energy, motivating new action.

    (After I turned 40 last year it occurred to me that issues with which I’d grappled for years aren’t even mine~ they’re hers!)

    Trial & error is a slow, painful way to learn-often you do everything “right,” and still have a negative result. My first response in reading these comments was that no one had yet brought up spirituality. It’s only after you’ve worked through every possible option and found failure that you turn to something bigger than your own small self. Perhaps the point IS working through the frustration to the deep spiritual underpinnings?

    Thanks for a thought-provoking post! Have a wonderful new year~

    1. Yes, that is the point for me, too. Spirituality wasn’t mentioned in this series until today with Dana Nourie’s guest blogger post, Seeing is Knowing. I saved her post for last because it deals with the spiritual quest. The search for the spiritual underpinnings of everything is, for me at least, the ultimate quest. Finding our own answers, discovering our own illusions and the key to previously locked-up truths, and learning that some issues are ours to be dealt with and others we can only accept as they are, is, ultimately, the goal. The Grail, if you will.

      Thank you, for sharing your process, Kerrie, and a wonderful New Year to you, too.

Comments are closed.