As the moon shifts through its phases, we can likewise feel energetic shifts, and when harnessed correctly, the effect can be powerful and productive. That’s where moon mapping can come in. As founder of Mama Glow and Well+Good council member Latham Thomas pointed out in her 2021 Renew Year plan for increased self care, moon mapping uses the energy of lunar phases to guide your self care and personal growth. It’s also a way of using the moon to manifest your dreams and goals.
“The moon is the ruler of our emotions, internal world, and how we respond to our outer environment,” says astrologer Adama Sesay. “It’s important to connect with mother moon because through this connection, you can heal your inner child or resolve old wounds and challenging emotions that could be blocking you from progressing in your goals. Understanding your own moon in your chart also can give information on what you resonate with so you can have clarity as to what intentions you would like to set.”
Tools for moon mapping
1. An app that tells you the phase the moon is in
“Paying attention to the sign and phases and recording how you feel will help to identify patterns and bring awareness to your emotional body,” says transformational astrologer Corina Crysler.
2. A moon journal
A journal can help you track your progress, and some options do the work of listing the moon phases for you. Try: 2021 Moon Journal: A Daily Journal Through the Moon Phases ($15), The Moon Journal: A Journey of Self-Reflection Through the Astrological Year ($16), or Magic of I 2021 Astrological Planner ($45).
A plain notebook will also do. Use it daily (or in each moon phase, at least) to keep track of your emotions. Prompts can include:
- How do I feel today?
- Do I have anxiety or worries? What about?
- What emotions are coming up? Am I sad, happy, lonely, excited, motivated, etc.?
How to use moon mapping to manifest and reach your wellness goals
The first step for using the moon to manifest by way of moon mapping is to identify your intention. Then, look for the best moon phase for working toward your intention. Below, learn which moon phases best connect to certain intentions and energies for manifesting.
When the moon is waning, it’s essentially disappearing, asking us to look inward and seek out our needs. During this phase, you can ask yourself where you are being malnourished spiritually and emotionally. From there, consider how you can practice tenderness with yourself. By the time the the moon is all but disappeared, you’ll feel ready to let go of what drains you.
“As we move towards the third quarter moon of the waning phase, our deep work begins to take place,” says Crysler. “The moon is only illuminated 25 percent and to honor its cyclical energy, this is the time to release, forgive, and readjust.”
“This is a time to rest, meditate, journal, and try to reveal aspects of the subconscious mind.” —Corina Crysler, astrologer
It’s also time to retreat and hibernate. Listen to your intuition and honor whatever feelings come up…even if they’re messy. “Be in your body and find the wisdom in your emotions,” says Crysler. “This is a time to rest, meditate, journal, and try to reveal aspects of the subconscious mind.”
The new moon is the time to plant the seed for your intention in the weeks ahead. This can be as existential, direct, vague, or specific as you want. Quick examples: “Health and happiness for my friends and family.” “Save up enough money to clear my credit card debt.” “Move out of my apartment.” “Find a new career path that doesn’t make me feel like I’m on a hamster wheel.” “Date someone who loves Thai food and Community as much as I do.”
Write down these intentions, and solidify them with a new moon ritual. “Creating a new moon ritual is about creating a place where you dedicate yourself to your own healing work, a shrine to all that you have created and are creating, and an affirmation of all that you are dedicating yourself to,” astrologer Chani Nicholas previously told Well+Good.
“The waxing moon begins after the new moon and goes until the full moon,” says Crysler. “This is where we build light. It’s the opposite from the waning phase of the moon.”
Let’s use the example of saving money to get out of credit card debt as an example. In the waning phase, you might look inward and think, “Okay, I’m struggling right now because I’m anxious about affording the life I want.” The new moon phase is about putting out the intention for change into the universe. The waxing phase, then, is about putting action behind it. Action points might include finding a financial accountability buddy or making a fun and BS allowance or creating a budget.
The full moon is when the moon in its brightest illumination and fullest power, so it’s the time to call in what you want. Using the full moon’s power, focus on abundance and gratitude—this idea of being, well, full.
“Write down what you’re grateful for, and also what you are manifesting,” says Crysler. “Write a mantra or affirmation that honors what you desire or are creating. Be wild, get outside, howl at the moon and practice pleasure.” You can also charge up some moon water and drink in your blessings, if that’s more your speed.
Ultimately, moon mapping urges you to look to the sky for guidance in how you prepare yourself to do the work to make your goals and dreams come true.
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