This Is Your Biggest Fear, According to Your Zodiac Sign

Photo: Getty Images/ Justin Case
A powerful emotion, fear develops as a result of perceived threats, helping us recognize potential danger. But, not everyone perceives the same things as threats or sees particular things as bearing the same level of risk. Indeed, our fears are often shaped by any number of our unique personality traits, many of which are informed by astrology. Using that framework, it's likely that people born under the same zodiac sign may also share the same biggest fear or deep-seated concern in life.

How the traits of your zodiac sign can inform your biggest fear

The key characteristics underscoring your sun sign—aka the zodiac sign for which you'd read a horoscope—including its element (Earth, fire, water, or air) and modality (cardinal, mutable, or fixed) play a role in shaping your outlook on life. And it's that unique outlook that can help determine what really scares you more than anything else, aka your biggest fear.

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For example, Taurus is a fixed Earth sign, which means that Taureans love the grounded security that comes with planning and predictability; it makes sense, then, that the exact opposite of all that, spontaneity, could be something they fear deeply. By a similar token, Aries is a cardinal fire sign, which means that Aries is an intense self-starter that leads with gusto; in turn, being trapped in any scenario that inhibits their forward momentum may be one of their biggest fears.

"'[The twelfth house] includes the unconscious realms that deal with dreams, nightmares, and anxieties."—Maria Sofia Marmanides, astrologer

To understand just how the biggest fear of your zodiac sign may manifest, it's also helpful to note the sign that rules its 12th astrological house (which is also the one that comes right before it in the zodiac calendar). This house is all about what's hidden underneath the self we present to the world, says astrologer Maria Sofia Marmanides. “It includes the unconscious realms that deal with dreams, nightmares, and anxieties.” In turn, the sign that rules over it can inform your deepest fears and concerns.

To return to the Taurus example, Taureans fear spontaneity in part because they value planning so deeply and in part because brash, impulsive Aries is the ruler of their 12th house—and in turn, Aries traits inform their fears. Similarly, Aries's fear of being slowed down comes not only from Aries's fiery nature, but also the presence of Pisces in their 12th house. An empathic water sign, Pisces is all about dreaming, letting go, and submitting to the collective unconsciousness (rather than taking control)—and it's precisely these things that Aries most fears.

An important caveat: There's plenty more that goes into the formation of our fears beyond astrology alone. In addition to personality, your genetics, upbringing, life history, and current life experiences can shape your fears, says clinical psychologist Carla Marie Manly, PhD, author of Joy from Fear.

Though learning what is typically the biggest fear for your zodiac sign can help you better identify this fear in action (or notice when you might be succumbing to it), you're also not necessarily doomed to feel this fear, either right now or in the future. “Given our capacity for free will, we are able to shift aspects of ourselves that we might fear,” says Dr. Manly. That said, if you're finding that a fear of yours is disrupting your daily life, it's worth seeking the care of a mental-health professional, who can help dismantle it or make it more tolerable.

With this in mind, read on for insights into what your biggest fear may be, as determined by the traits of your zodiac sign, as well as star-sanctioned advice for facing and overcoming it.

Your biggest fear, based on your zodiac sign

Aries: fear of being stuck

The symbol for the aries zodiac sign, which resembles a ram.

The perception of not being able to gain forward momentum is your biggest fear, Aries, especially as it relates to accomplishing goals, says astrologer Celeste Brooks. Bold and dynamic, yours is a sign with serious self-starter energy, so it only makes sense that not being able to work toward something or be a trailblazer would be scary to you.

As noted above, this fear is also rooted in the fact that water-sign Pisces falls in your 12th house. "Pisces is fluid and dreamy, and not really prone to taking charge," says Marmanides. "Pisces energy invites us to surrender control, which is likely very uncomfortable and scary for an Aries."

To work past this, it's important to remember that you don't need to do everything yourself, says Brooks. If you're struggling with making progress on a personal project, you can—and should—ask for support.

Taurus: fear of unpredictability and spontaneity

Material security is very important to you, Taurus, as the ruler of the second house of resources. Any threat against that may be terrifying to you, says Brooks. "No matter how many resources you have, you could still harbor this feeling of concern about having enough," she says.

Your deep-seated appreciation of security could also stoke in you a fear of spontaneity, says Marmanides. And as noted above, you can thank impulsive Aries in your 12th house for this. "Aries energy is like jumping off the cliff and dealing with the consequences later, whereas Taurus would never do that because they always like to think things through," she says.

Even so, it's helpful to get comfortable with leaving some things up to chance; after all, you can't control everything in life. That's why Brooks suggests figuring out ways to take more (low-level) risks as a means to put your fear of spontaneity aside.

Gemini: fear of boredom

Above anything else, you're bound to fear boredom, curious Gemini. In large part, that's because you're a mutable (aka change-loving) air sign that takes a cerebral approach to the world. Chances are, you feel this "constant need to be intellectually stimulated or to find any number of distractions to stave off boredom," says Brooks.

Also fueling that fear is the presence of grounded Taurus in your 12th house. Taurus is all about a steady, well-plotted climb with no surprises—which is not how you prefer to operate at all. "You have a ton of ideas and are a social chatterbox, which makes the idea of stagnation something you can't easily tolerate," says Marmanides.

To get more comfortable without constant entertainment or stimulation, try spending more time sitting still and keeping your own company with a meditation practice, suggests Brooks.

Cancer: fear of not being needed

Nurturing loved ones and making them feel safe is one of the key ways you derive meaning in life, Cancer. So, not being needed and loved in return is likely a major fear of yours. "Cancer is a very sentimental, nostalgic sign full of emotions and feelings," says Marmanides. In turn, you really value strong bonds among your loved ones and may be deeply afraid of anything less.

Gemini, which resides in your 12th house of the unconscious, is basically the polar opposite of all that. While Gemini is social, it's also a fun and frivolous sign and doesn't hold onto anything too tightly. These loose bonds are precisely what you're bound to fear. "If something doesn't feel like it lasts or like it's meaningful, that'll be tough for you to handle," says Marmanides.

To lessen this fear of not being deeply connected to or needed by your loved ones, practice an exercise of self-love or self-compassion (like positive mirror talk), and let your family know how they might reassure you of their love.

Leo: fear of not being noticed and admired

Your greatest fear is being perceived as ordinary and not worthy of admiration, Leo. One of your strongest traits is confidence, and your fire-sign energy is what gives you the drive to go after what you want—but you also may feel like it doesn't really matter if nobody notices. (After all, you're the zodiac's performer, and you require an adoring audience to feel good.)

Part of that fear is informed by the presence of caring Cancer in your 12th house. "Deep inside and underneath the layers of outward performance, there's this inner Cancerian need to be loved," says Marmanides. In other words, you can't be the true-Leo center of attention unless there are people on the sidelines willing to give that attention to you.

To manage the fear that your presence will go unappreciated, Brooks suggests taking up a new hobby that involves a key strength of yours. The process of embracing something new—and being good at it—will help you create some self-recognition.

Virgo: fear of making mistakes

Given your meticulous and detail-oriented nature, it may come as no surprise to you that your biggest fear is that of making mistakes, Virgo.

Part of the reason for that fear comes from performer Leo in your 12th house. Because Leo is all about being seen, you especially fear having your mistakes be perceived by others, says Marmanides. More broadly, "any scenario in which you're being put into the spotlight" may be a scary one for you, she says. (But that's especially the case if the spotlight reveals to others a rare mistake or lapse in judgment on your end.)

To lessen your fear of imperfection, Brooks actually suggests trying to embrace small mistakes as evidence of your humanness and reminding yourself of how inconsequential many of these mistakes really are.

Libra: fear of being alone

As a deeply social being, your biggest fear is likely that of being totally alone, Libra. Yours is a relationship-focused sign, and you derive serious value from both existing among other people and creating balance within those relationships. In turn, the concept of not being able to connect with others or find social harmony is likely a very scary one.

The presence of meticulous Virgo in your 12th house only fuels that fear of imbalance with or disconnection from others. "How things appear is very important to Libra, so when things get out of whack, it's going to be triggering and destabilizing for you," says Marmanides. Indeed, the desire for perfect balance in relationships—and the fear of anything less—is where Virgo in your 12th house shows up.

To lessen the hold of that fear, it's important to get comfortable with being alone, says Brooks. Rather than an indication of relationship problems, try reframing aloneness as a purposeful choice you're making for yourself, perhaps by planning solo outings (aka self-dates).

Scorpio: fear of vulnerability

Complete vulnerability is your biggest fear, Scorpio. Of all the zodiac signs, you are perhaps the most emotionally deep, which is also why you tend to be the most secretive, says Brooks. The idea of not having any method of concealment—having to put all those emotions and thoughts out into the open—likely terrifies you. (After all, this kind of vulnerability requires ceding some control to others, and that's something you're not typically willingly to do.)

Part of the reason why stems from the presence of social Libra in your 12th house. It's the very need among Libras to be in the company of others that fuels your fear of being fully perceived, says Marmanides. "Libra's modus operandi is, 'How can I find my other half, or balance my scale?' which is precisely what you are so afraid of doing, for the fear of losing yourself in another person."

To get more comfortable laying your cards on the table, practice being emotionally open with the people whom you know you can trust, says Brooks. Actually vocalizing how you feel can help chip away at your internal wall and allow you to realize that enacting total control over your life is an illusion, anyway.

Sagittarius: fear of restricted freedom

As the zodiac's resident explorer, you really relish the freedom to see the world and do as you please, Sagittarius. Which is why, a lack of freedom and flexibility to act as you wish is likely your biggest fear, according to Brooks.

Intense Scorpio in your 12th house can stoke that fear, often making you feel as if something internal is holding you back from the adventures you're looking to take. "Sagittarius is the philosopher of the zodiac, meaning you can get a little bit trapped in your thoughts, and especially with Scorpio in the 12th," says Marmanides. The resulting insecurities and self-doubt could keep you from exercising your freedom, thus bringing to fruition your deepest fear.

To work through this, Brooks recommends frequently making new commitments—and sticking to them—just to prove to yourself that you do have the ability to act on your own devices and pivot accordingly.

Capricorn: fear of failure

As the zodiac's signature high-achiever, your biggest fear is failure, Capricorn. "You have real concern about status, reputation, and achievement," says Brooks.

In that way, you're just the opposite of Sagittarius, which resides in your 12th house. While Sagittarius is sometimes affectionately called the "vacation sign," you really struggle to let loose and deeply fear falling short at work. In turn, everything that Sagittarius stands for—adventure for adventure's sake—is really what you fear most, says Marmanides. "You are afraid of things being frivolous and aimless, and you want what you do to matter."

Mitigating this deep-seated fear of failure isn't about trying to care less, but instead, re-contextualizing any mess-ups that you do make as stumbles, rather than major failures, says Brooks. In the same realm, it's important to recognize when you're engaging in toxic productivity, and take steps to disentangle some of your self-worth from your achievements.

Aquarius: fear of being seen as unoriginal

Your value is deeply tied to your intellect and creativity as the zodiac's renegade. For this reason, your greatest fear is not being seen as original, Aquarius.

That fear also springs from the presence of Capricorn in your 12th house. Whereas Capricorn respects and admires the status quo, Aquarius loathes it. It's Capricorn's strict adherence to existing norms that impedes your ability to think outside of the box, fueling your fear of being ordinary, says Marmanides.

To address that fear, it's important to focus on how, exactly, you're working to bust the status quo—rather than just being original for originality's sake, says Brooks. These kinds of "rebel without a cause" actions won't actually help you feel like you're making any real difference, which can just allow your fear of being ordinary to creep in.

Pisces: fear of not being loved

You are the sensitive empath of the zodiac, Pisces. In turn, you want nothing more than to love and be loved by someone else—and your biggest fear is not finding that love.

This fear is only deepened by the emotionally closed-off sign of Aquarius in your 12th house, says Marmanides. The independent, go-it-alone vibe of Aquarius in this part of your chart may feel deeply troubling to you. "Aquarius cares about facts and not feelings and often approaches the world with indifference, all of which reflects your deepest fears of being unloved or uncared for," says Marmanides.

To counteract these fears, it's important to build your self-esteem and sense of personal value, says Brooks. This way, you can become less deeply reliant on the affection of others. "Consider how you can meet your own needs for care," says Brooks, "because in order for others to love you, it's important to love yourself, too."

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