Time plays funny tricks with us—although we’re all aware that time involves the past, the present, and the future, we are constantly living in the present. We have no choice in the matter. There’s no way around it. We can remember the past, and we can speculate about the future, but we are stuck in the present whether we like it or not.
It’s good to learn from the past, and it’s helpful to plan for the future, but unless you keep your head firmly entrenched in the present, you risk getting hit by a delivery truck while you’re bicycling your way to work reminiscing about a high-school crush or worrying about how you’re going to pay next month’s bills.
To varying degrees, everyone has good and bad memories about the past. Some people had relatively happy and peaceful childhoods, while others grew up plagued by trauma and heartache.
The term “nostalgia” involves only pleasant memories of the past. No one gets “nostalgic” about being bullied in grade school or being abandoned by one of their parents. But nostalgia doesn’t have to be realistic—sometimes it can involve warm memories of the “good old days” that exaggerate how good things were. In this sense, nostalgia can be a coping mechanism. It can also be a way to avoid one’s current problems by escaping into an over-sentimentalized fantasy life where things didn’t seem nearly as bad as they are now.
Although everyone gets nostalgic from time to time, here are five zodiac signs more likely to be “susceptible” to nostalgia just like someone can be susceptible to a head cold. This means that they can often get stuck in the past as an avoidance tactic. It also means they should probably let go of the past and focus on improving their lives in the present and for the future.
You may notice that the top three are all water signs. This is because they are the most emotional members of the zodiac and the most likely to let the tears flow at the thought of happy memories that now seem so far out of reach.
Ruled by the moon, Cancer is prone to thinking about distant memories of when family life seemed much simpler and more satisfying. When you’re a kid, life seems much more hopeful and exciting and filled with unlimited potential. When you’re a kid, there are no such things as mortgage payments and health problems and work deadlines and broken romances and custody disputes and shattered dreams. Things seem much more silly and secure and happy and innocent when you’re a kid. But you’re no longer a kid, so it’s time to grow up and start acting like an adult.
For Pisceans, the past is like a giant road map filled with “what ifs.” It seemed bold and brave to pursue a creative career, but what if I’d chosen a more practical college major? Would I be struggling nearly so hard to make ends meet in the present? What if I’d decided to marry my high-school sweetheart rather than fool around and put my personal pleasure above building a secure family? Would I be so lonely right now on dating apps seeking empty hookups? What if I’d apologized for betraying my best friend? Would we still be friends? We had such great times together, and I haven’t come close to connecting with anyone like I did with them. The question that Pisces should be asking themselves is, “What if I stopped living in the past and focused my energies on making myself happy in the present?”
Scorpios never quite get over lost loves. It’s almost as if their mind is one giant motel, and each of their exes occupies a different room. When they unlock the door to room 137, they remember that one time at a summer carnival when the Ferris wheel got stuck, they started kissing, and time stood still. When they visit room 138, they recall the time they frantically tried to catch a bus together in a torrential rainstorm and then fell down laughing soaking-wet in a puddle. They missed the bus, but they didn’t care. Room 139 reminds them of staring into their lost love’s eyes for what seemed like hours and the funny way they pronounced certain words. And although all these memories are wonderful, it’s only a way to avoid the fact that the room they’re in right now is achingly lonely.
As the alpha traditionalists of the zodiac, Capricorn finds solace in a past when things seemed far calmer and more stable. Life these days seems too fast-paced, attention spans seem too short, friendships seem too shallow, people seem too impatient, and lovers seem too fickle. Capricorn gets lost thinking about a time when we lived in a more high-trust society, when people actually left their doors unlocked, when citizens believed what the government and media told them, and you knew the first and last names of everyone on your block rather than the screen names of people you “talk” to online but will never meet in real life.
An earth sign symbolized by the Bull and represented by a fixed modality, Taurus is allergic to change. The most stubborn of all the star signs, Taurus liked things just the way they were. And as if the present isn’t bad enough, they have to brace themselves for a dystopian future where things will be even more radically different than they were in the past. One thing about the past is that it will never change. It’s etched in stone. But the present is filled with chaos, and no one is guaranteed that they will even wake up tomorrow morning. For the Bull, the future is by far the most uncertain and threatening of time’s three eternal stages.