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You may be in a rather serious frame of mind this week and while there is nothing wrong with that you must be careful that "serious" does not become "depressed". That applies double if you have money worries - keep telling yourself that it's not important, that it's only bits of paper. At least an affair of the heart will give you something to smile about. Passions will run high on Wednesday and Thursday.

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You will find yourself in unknown territory - which is probably the last place you want to be. But you are not as stuck in your ways as some appear to believe, and if you rise to the challenge over the next few days, what is unknown territory now will become familiar territory in the near future. Someone in a position of authority will be mightily impressed and may make you an interesting offer.

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Take a few risks this week; do the kind of things you have often fantasised about but never quite had the guts to attempt. You may fall flat on your face and make a fool of yourself but more likely you will discover how easy it is to do something you always thought was too difficult. You may also come to the conclusion that those who kept telling you it was difficult were simply trying to keep a good thing to themselves.

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Don't tie yourself in knots over something you don't understand. It may annoy you that other people seem to get it while you don't have the faintest idea, but is it really that important? Probably not. It's quite possible that partners and colleagues are every bit as confused as you but do a better job of hiding it. Ask them to explain it to you - and watch how they squirm.

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You will find it easy enough to get people to do your bidding this week - Leo is, after all, the sign of leadership - but don't abuse the power you have over them because it is sure to rebound on you in the long term. You may not be too concerned about your reputation now but you will miss it later when it's gone. You also need to be a bit more open emotionally this week - why do you find it so difficult to say "I love you"?

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What happens over the next few days will take a lot of people by surprise but you have been expecting it and could profit handsomely if you act while rivals are still getting over their shock. Sudden changes may be unsettling but the planets promise that they will work in your favour if you go with the flow and don't stick stubbornly with methods that belong in a museum.

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There may be a reluctance to part with something you feel is yours by right but your determination to hang on to it puts you at a disadvantage by focusing your attention on something that isn't worth much, while more lucrative opportunities go begging. You should know that everything balances out in the end. Give something up and you will soon find something to replace it.

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Your views on controversial topics may change completely over the next seven days, although no one but you will be aware of this fact - maybe not for months, maybe not for years. It's not true that you never change the way you think; you just like others to believe that you never change. If nothing else it gives you a built-in excuse to be bloody minded. After all, if everyone expects it of you why disappoint them?

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New developments on the work front may throw you out of your stride this week but don't make a meal of it because changes will be good for you in the long term. They might be good for you in the short term too if you learned to adapt without so much fuss. Sagittarius is supposed to be the sign of optimism and reckless abandon. What happened? Did you get relegated back to Scorpio?

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You are not much of one for surprises, especially where your emotional and financial security are concerned, but this week's surprises will benefit you, so don't reject them out of hand. Methods which worked well for you in the past may not work so well in the future and this is the ideal time to look around and find new ways to reach your goals. Don't be afraid to learn from other people.

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Strive hard to stay friends with someone whose personality you like but whose opinions you detest. Your differences may seem important now but by this time next week you will see them for what they really are: trivial and not worth the effort. The world is a big enough place for all kinds of beliefs and all shades of opinion. And you should be big enough to accept that not everyone thinks like you.

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As Mercury, planet of communication, links with both the Sun and Mars this week you won't find it hard to get your message across. Your words will be short and to the point and anyone who doesn't get it must be very dumb. But don't waste time on those of limited intelligence - you should be using this period to learn more about a subject that intrigues you and one day could earn you money.

Phone forecast: 0906 4700993