rising sign

FEELING MYSELF | Radical Self-Love by sign with Gala Darling


Gala Darling was one of the first bloggers I followed with any regularity when I started The Midheaven years ago. I adored her relentlessly uplifting message - not to mention her fabulous style! At that point I only had a toe out of the spiritual closet, and Radical Self-Love was exactly what I needed.

More recently, Gala has been exploring astrology, tarot, and magic in her Radical Self-Love Almanac and forthcoming Radical Self-Love Coven. This got me thinking - if the first house (a.k.a. ascendant) rules the self, wouldn't you want to tailor your self-love practice to your rising sign? I contacted Gala, and she agrees!

It's an honor and pleasure to host her here today, along with my guide to Radical Self-Love by sign! We had a quick chat about her bestselling book, modern witchery, and how the sacred arts and self love work together. See for yourself!


Sun, moon and rising sign?

I'm a Virgo Sun and a Sagittarius Moon and Rising.


For those who are new to your work, can you tell us a little bit about who you are and what you do?

My name is Gala Darling and I've been teaching women about radical self love for a decade. It all started on my blog in 2006, and has since evolved to include a bestselling book with Hay House, speaking engagements all over the world, and an upcoming show on Hay House Radio! 


Your new book is called Radical Self-Love: A Guide To Loving Yourself And Living Your Dreams. What is radical self-love, and why does it matter?

Radical self love is different for everyone, but primarily it's about changing the conversations we have with ourselves, and treating ourselves like our own best friend. It's important because when you don't like who you are, it poisons everything around you. On the other hand, when you love yourself, you're less likely to stay in a mediocre relationship, more likely to start that business or ask for a promotion, and you won't want to surround yourself with negative people. It's about aiming higher and realising that it's okay to have everything we want. Life is beautiful and once you really grasp that, you can celebrate every day.


What message do you most hope Radical Self-Love conveys to your readers?

I hope that they realise how magnificent they are, and start to behave in a way that reflects that! I suffered from depression and an eating disorder from the age of 13 to 22, and so I understand how incredibly hard that is. I also know -- now that I'm on the other side -- that those issues do not have to be a life sentence. If I can escape their grasp, anyone can. All you need is a handful of tools and a willingness to change.


I love that you've been talking more about modern witchery on your blog! What inspired that transition, and what mystical practices and/or teachings have been inspiring you lately?

I've been practicing magic since I was in my early teens, and I was inspired to delve into it more seriously a few years ago, when my marriage started to unravel. I needed something in my life to make me feel good, and I needed to be reminded of my own power. Once I started paying more attention to it, I realised that my readers would benefit from hearing about it too. I've been so thrilled -- and frankly, amazed! -- by the response. There is a real hunger for this kind of information.

I'm also really excited because my Radical Self Love Coven -- an online school for magic -- is launching in May. Over the course of seven months, students will learn about tarot, astrology, numerology, charms and energy work, and feng shui. It's going to be so amazing, I can't wait!


Do the stars play a part in your spiritual practice? If so, how?

Yes, absolutely. In fact, I'm writing these answers from an airport terminal where I'm on my way to Tulum for the AstroTwins' annual astrology retreat! I always loved astrology but until I went on their retreat last year, I regarded it with a bit of skepticism. After a week learning about my chart, I am a confirmed believer! I'm really a fan of anything which helps people decode themselves and their natural inclinations, so anything that helps to inform people and encourages them to be the best version of themselves is a-okay in my book.


Sadly, self-love and spirituality don't always go hand in hand. There are still so many people can't be open about their practices or who feel guilty caring for themselves. What advice do you have for people who are struggling with loving themselves, body and soul?

That's one of the reasons why I've been talking about magic and spirituality on my blog. The more we talk about it, the less shame or embarrassment we feel. But you don't have to tell everyone what you're up to if you're not comfortable -- just do what feels good to you. As long as your practices are helping you, that's all that matters -- no matter how kooky they may be!


In what ways do you see sacred arts and radical self-love working together?

To me, they go hand-in-hand. Radical self love is a daily practice and it can be fun but it is definitely challenging at times! Spellwork and magic can give us the boost, confidence and power we need to move through the obstacles that face us. 


Are you ready to start feeling yourself?

Here's my guide to Radical Self-Love by sign.



As the first sign of the zodiac, you adore novelty. Being the first to do or experience anything turns you on, making you a formidable trendsetter. With Mars as your patron, you're also known for your warrior spirit. If you're feeling down, pour your emotions into exercise, dance, or some sort of competition for an energetic boost.

You love yourself by: fighting for your dreams.



With Venus as your ruler, you're driven by a desire for material pleasures. Beautiful sights, sounds, fragrances, foods and feelings awaken your inner love goddess. Surround yourself with little luxuries for best results. Taurus also thrives with a routine, so a daily self-love practice is perfect for you.

You love yourself by: living a sensual life.



As the sign of communication, you love to tell stories. Consider what story you're telling the world. What is your message? Having a clear idea to share with others will feel like a breath of fresh air. Ruled by fast-paced Mercury, you need new stimuli on a daily basis (like music, film, TV, or books), as well as someone to share it with.

You love yourself by: telling your story.



Nestled at the bottom of the horoscope, Cancer is the foundation upon which the rest of the zodiac rests. With Lady Luna as your ruler you're a natural caretaker, but don't forget to take care of yourself too! You appreciate all things cozy, so indulge in cashmere, thread count, an espresso machine, or whatever else makes you feel nurtured.

You love yourself by: taking care of you.



With the sun as your ruler, you're no stranger to letting your light shine! Performing is your spiritual practice, especially when you're in the leading role. No one knows how to mesmerize an audience like you do. No matter what your medium, honoring that creative spirit is your highest calling. 

You love yourself by: stepping into the spotlight.



Virgo is the zodiac's editor, constantly improving the details of their lives and the lives of those around them. Their superpowered focus is impressive, but sometimes this perfectionist quality has a negative side. When you feel like your work isn't up to par, zoom out and look at the bigger picture. You've done so much already. 

You love yourself by: tending to the details (Without judgment).



As the sign of partnerships, your innate sense of balance allows you to bring harmony to even the most hopeless of situations. You're ruled by Venus, so you have a strong eye for beauty. Make sure you turn that eye on yourself and see yourself and as you see others: exquisite.

You love yourself by: seeing the beauty in all things.



Scorpio is notorious for being the ruler of sexuality, so its no surprise that your self-love practice may be a bit more literal than others. You aren't afraid of the taboo; on the contrary, you're comfortable where others fear to tread. Enhance your vibe by embracing your shadow (e.g. intense feelings, intuition, and a little magick). 

You love yourself by: exploring life's mysteries.



Ruled by thrill-seeking Jupiter, you live for adventure. You're constantly traveling from one exotic locale to the next in search of knowledge, experience, and a good party. Philosophy is your strong suit, so consider writing a self-love manifesto to guide you through your healing journey.

You love yourself by: expanding your horizons.



Sitting pretty at the top of the zodiac, you've got the ambition you need to back up your lofty position. Saturn as your patron planet makes you hardworking - sometimes to a fault. It's okay to splurge on something special every now and then, especially since you enjoy traditional markers of success more than others. See you at Bergdorf!

You love yourself by: knowing your worth.



With Uranus as your planetary ruler, you're nothing if not avant-garde. You're at your best when you're swimming against the current and working on visionary plans that are far beyond the current zeitgeist. Channel your rebellious charm into projects that raise awareness for what you believe in and build a better future.

You love yourself by: breaking the rules.



Where other people see ordinary objects and situations, you see magic. Your warm presence and natural connection to all that is radiates a comforting aura; so comfortable, in fact, that personal boundaries might become blurry. Make sure you're clear about what you want in your relationships, because you have so much love to give!

You love yourself by: healing your connections.


Want more Radical Self-Love?
Read the suggestions for your sun and moon signs too!



You can find Gala Darling on:





Buy Radical Self Love on Amazon and B&N.



There's more where that came from.

Join the coven for more astrology, horoscopes, and things witches love!


How Your Rising Sign Can Help You Dress for Success

If you've found your way here, it's a safe bet that you already know your sun sign.

But how many of your know your rising sign?

When I started to explore astrology's deeper levels, this was one of my favorite discoveries. Your rising sign (also called the ascendant) is the constellation that was on the horizon at the time of your birth. If your sun sign is your soul's mission, then your rising sign is how your show up in the world to accomplish it. This is your natural state and proverbial happy place. When you're working your ascendant, you're in your element.

It's like this: the horoscope is divided up into 12 sections, called houses. Each house corresponds to a part of your external life: love, money, career, etc. The first house is all about identity, and tells you what impression you make on the others. It's typically the one people pick up on the most, and the first guess when people play “name your sign”.

For years, knowing my rising sign has been my secret weapon.

If you already know what image you project to others, then you can work it to your benefit. You tend to look your best when you incorporate aspects of your ascendant into your appearance, consciously or unconsciously. I swear it works wonders.

Want to find your rising sign? Enter your birth details into this handy calculator at astro.com.

Ready to give a try? Here are a few basic descriptions of each rising sign to get you started:

ARIES: You're always fired-up and ready-to-go, so travel and work-out ready outfits are a must. The sign of the warrior, you're passionate, driven, fiery, and confident. Your pioneering (and at times rebellious) attitude shows though in your personal style, making you a trendsetter among your circles. Bonus points for wearing red.

TAURUS: Ruled by love goddess Venus, your sign is well-known for it's sensual tastes. You're grounded and hardworking, but you're also not afraid to spend some of your hard-earned cash on something luxurious. Odds are good you've got more than a few investment pieces in your closet. Bonus points for pastels and florals (both prints and fragrances).

GEMINI: Your quick-witted sign is probably more focused on your next big idea than your wardrobe, but no matter: the ingenue look works for you. Your magpie tendencies draw you towards electric colors and kitschy accessories, but you pull them off with ease. Bonus points if you wear glasses.

CANCER: Ruled by the moon, you're highly sensitive to the world around you. You use your wardrobe as a means of comfort, reveling in soft fabrics and cozy knits. You want the things you adorn yourself with to feel nourishing. Wearing white, silver, and pearls gives you a beautiful moonlit glow. Bonus points if an infinity scarf is your go to accessory.

LEO: You're the zodiac's performer, and you feel most at home in the spotlight. Much like your personality, your wardrobe is flashy, brave, and at times extravagant: vibrant colors and gold jewelry are your favorites. You can work outfits with grace that would make other signs blush. Bonus points for leopard print.

VIRGO: Your sign is known for it's perfectionist tendencies, and your appearance is no exception. Prim-and-proper is your calling card, and your ensembles are always perfectly matched. Also, your self-care practice is next level. Bonus points for channeling your inner Parisienne every time you leave the house.

LIBRA: You're a paragon of elegance. Also ruled by Venus, your tastes are charming and refined. You steer clear of any radical trends that offend your innate senses of balance and harmony, preferring a classic movie siren look over a Lady Gaga wig any day. Bonus points for fabulous sunglasses.

SCORPIO: You're sultry, mysterious, and give off some serious witchy vibes.  You wear a strict color palette of blood red and black, and probably look like either a rock star or a vampire. But really, it's not so much the clothes you're wearing as your animal magnetism. Seriously, your very aura is magical. Bonus points for leather.

SAGITTARIUS: You're the zodiac's bohemian, favoring flowing dresses. silk scarves, and boots over... well... anything else. You look like you're ready to jet off to some fabulous location at a moment's notice, and your accessories are likely to consist exclusively of pieces you've picked up at and antique shops and on holiday. Bonus points for turquoise jewelry.

CAPRICORN: Your style motto? If it ain't broke, don't fix it. Classic slacks-and-button-down ensembles, a little black dress, and an amazing pair of jeans are all you need in your closet to survive. Whatever you choose, you're the empire-builder, and you exude power. You may even have your own sort of “uniform” so you don't have to make the petty decision of what to wear on a daily basis. Bonus points for nautical stripes.

AQUARIUS: You're a revolutionary at heart, and your style expresses your visionary outlook. Sleek, clean, and even futuristic, your style is an extension of your grand plan. Your wardrobe may be the most eclectic of all, housing everything from crisp all-white suits to music-festival regalia. Bonus points for crystal jewelry... or no jewelry at all.

PISCES: As the artist of the zodiac, your style is as dreamy as you are. Others identify you by your far-off expression, as if you're picking up some sort of divine message or inspiration directly from the muse at any given moment. Your look is, in a word, romantic: you seem to exude an otherwordly quality that people can't place. Bonus points for flowers in your hair.

* * *

Of course, rising signs are not “one size fits all”. If these descriptions don't resonate for you, try incorporating other parts of your birth chart into your look. Or, you can mix and match! Usually you'll get the best results by weaving together aspects of your ascendant, sun, moon, and Venus signs.

For example: how does my Sagittarius rising blend with a Scorpio sun and Venus in Virgo?

Wearing black is my religion, but I always add bohemian touches (scarves are my Achilles heel, especially ones I've acquired during travels) and most days I let my hair go wavy. Most importantly, I never leave the house without perfume because it makes me feel polished. I'm still working on incorporating my Gemini moon though! Maybe I should wear my glasses more often...

How will you channel your rising sign? If you want more astrological inspiration, check out my zodiac-inspired mood boards on Pinterest!


There's more where that came from.

Join the coven for more astrology, horoscopes, and things witches love!


Magical Miscellany: 4.6.14

Hello cosmic lovers , and welcome to my new feature!

Magical Miscellany is a best of the web for modern mystics, showcasing my favorite links from the past seven days. Expect an eclectic mix of  astrology & tarot, creativity & business, and an inside look at what I've been up to over the last week. C'est bon!



Holy wisteria! These flowers bloomed this week, and their beautiful aroma is not to be missed.  Now that the days are longer I've been spending the twilight hours out on the porch (like a true Southern belle), enjoying the intoxicating scent. I wish I could bottle it and keep it around all year long!



Want to spice up your workout routine? Mystic Medusa's got you covered! The thirty magical fitness tips from "Multiple Sagittarius World Champ Trail-bike Rider" Willow Rockwell are genius. If the rising sign rules our physical body, then why not tailor our wellness routine to suit it? It only makes sense!

Don't know your rising sign? Input your birth details into this chart calculator from Astrotheme to find out. Don't know what a rising sign is? It's also called the ascendant, and it's the constellation that was on the horizion at the time of your birth. It shows how we present ourselves to the world, so it's no surprise that we tend to look like our rising sign and that you may identify more with this than your sun sign.

In the spirit of spring and new beginnings, Bri Saussy added The Fool to her fabulous Shuffling the Deck feature, an in-depth look at the history and meaning of the Major Arcana tarot cards. Find out of how this card is a call to take a leap of faith and embrace the absurd.

The Tarot Lady's take on critics and how to deal with them is a must-read for metaphysical professionals, small business owners, or anyone who wants to know how to deal with criticism gracefully.

I only stumbled upon Braid Creative in the last two weeks, but I can't help but wondering where they've been all my life! Their recent post on putting your website to work is a great how-to on maximizing your site's ability to do... well... just about everything.

Finally, Flavorwire is my favorite guilty pleasure. Their conversations about why Kurt Cobain is the last rock star and modern television's startlingly contemporary moral compass (hello, Game of Thrones!) are brilliant and will make your day, I promise.

Cosmic love! XO