It's not uncommon for people to plan events in their life around astrology. For example, some people might avoid signing a contract or traveling out of town during a Mercury retrograde period, while others might intentionally plan a wedding or date night under a romantic full moon. But you can actually use astrology to plan out your day-to-day activities by the hour, if you want to align with the planets in an even deeper way — and it's easy to do once you familiarize yourself with the system of planetary hours in astrology.
"Planetary hours are a cool way of using astrology to make time work in our personal favor and manipulate the different times of day to our bidding," says astrologer Jade Sykes, who does readings for celebs like Kehlani and SZA. "What‘s unique about using planetary hours is that all you need is a basic understanding of the seven classical planets — the sun, moon, Mercury, Mars, Jupiter, and Saturn." Planetary hours exclude the three "modern" outer planets (which are Uranus, Neptune, and Pluto), as those were discovered more recently in history and thus aren't included in traditional astrology.
Aligning certain activities in your day to the most auspicious planetary hour can help you get in touch with the astrological forces all around you and bring more luck, success, and harmony to your life. Check out the scoop on using planetary hours to maximize your day.
Getting To Know The Planets
Before you dive into using planetary hours in your life, it helps to have a basic understanding of the traditional planets in astrology. Each of the planets represents a different part of our lives and is associated with unique qualities and characteristics. Each planet rules a different zodiac sign and a different day of the week — and these meanings translate directly into planetary hours, too.
You can read all about the meaning of the planets in astrology yourself and get in the know, but here's a quick cheat sheet: The sun represents self-expression and creativity; the moon represents our emotions and family; Mercury represents communicating and thinking; Venus represents love, luxury, and value; Mars represents action and physicality; Jupiter represents higher knowledge and growth; and Saturn represents rules and responsibilities. These meanings evolve even further once you start figuring out what activities should be done within each planet's hour, but starting with this basic understanding is helpful.
How To Calculate Planetary Hours
Keep in mind that planetary hours don't align with the 24-hour days and 60-minute hours that we're used to. In this practice, each day begins at sunrise (not midnight!), and hours are calculated by figuring out the number of minutes between sunrise and sunset and then dividing that by 12 (that's how many minutes each "hour" of that day will be). You'd then do the same for the sunset-to-sunrise hours. That means the length of each planetary hour will differ day by day, depending on the time of the sunrise and sunset.
In order to calculate planetary hours, you must also be familiar with the ruling planet for each day of the week. In astrology, the Moon rules Monday, Mars rules Tuesday, Mercury rules Wednesday, Jupiter rules Thursday, Venus rules Friday, Saturn rules Saturday, and the sun rules — you guessed it — Sunday. Whichever planet rules that day of the week will rule the "hour" beginning at sunrise that day, and then the rest of the planetary hours will cycle through in order until the following day's sunrise, when we begin again with the next day's ruling planet.
You can study up on the ins and outs of calculating planetary hours by hand — but it's pretty tedious, so feel free to skip the number-crunching and opt for a book on planetary hours or a helpful astrology app instead. Sykes recommends the Cosmic Insights app for handy information on planetary hours, but you can also browse other popular astrology apps that have similar features and find one that works for you.
Using Planetary Hours To Plan Your Day
Once you've gotten familiar with the meaning of each of the seven traditional planets and figured out your preferred method of calculating planetary hours, you can start taking advantage of the energy of each "hour" to maximize your productivity, harmony, and success. Let's go over things together.
The sun's hour is a great time for creative professional endeavors and making a good impression on others, while the moon's hour is best for taking care of emotional family matters or domestic activities around the house. Then there's Mercury: "Mercury is the planet of communication, writing, and reading, so this influence can keep you on task and help your thought process flow," Sykes says. However, Sykes suggests waiting to submit a project during the sun's hour, so it's received more favorably.
Let's move onto Venus and Mars. Venus' hour is ideal for love, beauty, and socializing, while Mars' hour is good for motivational boosts and physical energy. "You’ll be able to get a great boost of energy if you can head out the door during Mars’ hour," Sykes says. "And you can work through disagreements with your partner during Venus’ hour, when you’re more likely to see each other’s side and reach an amicable resolution."
Finally, we reach Jupiter and Saturn. Jupiter is the planet of good luck, wisdom, and fortune, so it's great for any activities where you're seeking success and growth. Saturn, on the other hand, is best for whipping yourself into shape with discipline and getting clear on your responsibilities. If you're looking for affection and softness, Saturn's hour isn't the best time — Sykes notes that we can take on "cold and unforgiving attitudes" during Saturn's daily reign.
Ready to start using planetary hours to your advantage? Download an app and start paying attention to the ways you can tweak your day to align with the cosmic flow. "Planetary hours are not a deciding factor in any situation, but they are very helpful in getting things to work out in your favor," Skyes says. Happy planning!