By Molly HallAstrology Expert

It’s true that Astrology is a great tool for self-knowledge, but can it also be a limiting box?

It happens when you learn the language of astrology and start to speak it with others.  Depending on the circles you’re in, this can become the lingo of the clique.

I’ve experienced this astro-loop effect one time when everyone at my workplace was either a psychic, a Tarot reader, an astrologer or combo of these.

I started then to follow an instinct about Astrology that keeps it from becoming THE primary lens I see through.  As others have said before, the Birth Chart is the map, not the territory.

Here are some potential traps I’ve observed over the years:

1.  Me, Me, Me! 

When does the quest for self-knowledge turn into full blown narcissism?

Wikipedia defines narcissism as “the pursuit of gratification from vanity or egotistic admiration of one’s own attributes.”

A trap is elevating the chart or certain features of it, and from that, considering yourself super special.

As a wise counselor once told me, you’re not special, you’re unique.

Another way this manifests is over-identifying with one aspect in the Chart, and this can be negative or positive.  If you’ve got a hard aspect from your Sun to Saturn, for example, you might use that to play the special role of victim.

There are many sites out there where you can see this kind of astrological navel gazing.

2.  Excuses for Bad Behavior

One time I gave a reading for a double Aries, and was emphasizing the punch and edge of that sign, since she seemed to be struggling with inertia.

Years later, a friend of hers told me that she used that to justify being borderline rude and aggressive.  “I can’t help it.  I’m a double Aries!” she’d say.

In this case, knowing the traits of her Zodiac sign helped her claim the natural forcefulness of Aries.  But you can see how that’s potentially a trap, if it becomes license to Ram everyone.

Being too astrologically-obsessed becomes a way to judge others, too, for what they might do.  This leads to personal prejudices against certain signs, and snap judgements that block a potential friendship.

“He’s a Pisces, so no way am I going out with him.  I’ve known way too many cheating Pisces guys!”  Keep in mind that no sign is “bad,” and keep an open mind to being surprised at the infinite variety of expressions that is reflected in someone’s Zodiac sign or chart.

3.  Anticipating Doom!

So you are about to have Pluto square your Moon, and you’ve worked yourself into a state of distress over what’s to come.  Transits of Pluto and Saturn strike fear into peoples hearts, especially if they read something frightening about it.

I remember someone I know building up a lot of drama about her Saturn return, and what might happen.  If you’re already unbalanced, you might be vulnerable to some of the more dire forecasts out there.

This is something to watch out for, as I see a lot of people falling into this trap.  It’s important to take all interpretations you see on a transit as just an impression of how it can manifest.

And keep in mind that people who don’t know Astrology make it through, and so will you.  The advantage of knowing Astrology is that you have time to wonder what’s in store, and make the most of it.