While there are obviously many factors at play when it comes to how to be more emotionally available, your zodiac sign — and all its inherent traits — might have more to do with it than you think. "Some signs are wired to be more independent, detached from emotions, or free-spirited," professional astrologer Rachel Lang tells Bustle. In other words, the personality traits common for your sign may play a part in why you struggle to open up. Or, at the very least, why it might feel like you have different priorities.
If your zodiac sign is one that leans more towards being independent, for example, it may not be in your nature to put emotional connections first. But that doesn't mean you can't, if it's something you'd like to do. "All signs are capable of attracting and maintaining wonderful, healthy relationships," says Lang. "With conscious awareness, anything is possible, and they can learn communication techniques to help their partners feel seen and heard."
So, if this is something you'd like to work on, or something that seems to have been holding you back in life, know that it is possible to make a change. If you happen to be one of the five signs below, and have been feeling disconnected or misunderstood, there are plenty of things you can do to open up, connect, and make your feelings known in your romantic relationships, and beyond.
1. Aries (March 21 - April 19)
Aries is often hyper-focused on all the things they want in life. And that's obviously great. But when it comes to being emotionally available in relationships, this mentality may be difficult for a partner to understand. And they may view Aries as emotionally unavailable, as a result.
"It can make Aries seem uncaring or unavailable," Lang says. But, in reality, nothing could be further from the truth. Aries do care. And all Aries has to do to show it is be aware and try to find a better balance between doing things for themselves, and occasionally doing things for others.
"Aries can benefit from realizing that compromise is essential in healthy, loving relationships," Lang says. "They can learn to adopt a 'we' approach rather than a 'me' approach, recognizing that the best decisions in relationships are a win-win for both."
2. Gemini (May 21 - June 20)
When it comes to having a fear of commitment, nobody beats a Gemini. The moment things get intense between A Gemini and their partner, they tend to freeze up. And if Gemini's partner starts relying on them a little too much too fast? Forget about it.
"As an air sign, Gemini’s comfort zone is the mind, not the heart," Lang says. "This doesn’t mean they can’t have amazing, loving relationships, though." While Gemini's instinct may be to run away at the first sign of love, Gemini should try doing the opposite — just to see how it feels.
"The best way to become more emotionally available is to stay put when things get tough," Lang says. Gemini might consider asking themselves, "Why do I want to leave?" or "What am I being triggered in this moment?" And sitting with those thoughts for a while.
As Lang says, "When a Gemini can turn a challenging emotional situation into an opportunity for growth and learning, they can become a healthier and more conscious partner. Gemini is the sign of communication, and learning to communicate their emotions as they arise, rather than letting things build up, keeps them from having a major fight or conflict."
3. Sagittarius (November 22 - December 21)
Since Sagittarius can be such free-spirited and adventurous sign, it might mean they'd rather be off hiking in the woods than having a heart-to-heart. And that's totally OK. "They see through a wide-angle lens and don’t always like to get bogged down in the details," Lang says. "While relationships are important to a Sagittarius, freedom is often their top priority. When they feel as if someone’s emotional needs could compromise their independence or keep them stuck, they withdraw or check out."
This mentality can send Sagittarius running for the hills. But if Sagittarius would like to connect with someone emotionally, and better handle their fear of being held back, they certainly can. All it takes its a little shift in perspective.
"For Sagittarius to become more emotionally connected, they can benefit from trying to see through their partner’s eyes, rather than allowing their own fears to keep them fixed on their opinion or closed off," Lang says. "Techniques like compassionate witnessing can help in times of emotional upset. They could benefit from taking deep breaths and staying put when times get hard or they get triggered to want to run."
4. Capricorn (December 22 - January 19)
Capricorn tends to be the very definition of a "workaholic." If you were born under this sign, you might find yourself staying at the office 'til all hours, picking up extra work shifts on the weekend, or bringing projects home with you. And while that's ambitious AF, this habit doesn't leave much room for the more emotional side of life.
As a Capricorn, you also have a tendency to protect your emotional side, by building a proverbial wall around your heart. And that can put a damper on things, too. "I have seen more consciously single Capricorns than any other sign," Lang says. "If Capricorn loses hope in love, they can swear off it and focus on their career success." (Often forgetting that it's totally possible to have a healthy balance of both, if they want to.)
The remedy here is to work on changing knee-jerk thoughts when it comes to love. "Capricorn could benefit from reframing their ideas about love and relationships, focusing less on the regrets or disappointments from the past, and more on the possibilities for the future," Lang says. "Practicing positive affirmations can definitely help."
5. Aquarius (January 20 - February 18)
As an Aquarius, your brain is always running a mile a minute. You've having ideas, and coming up with new goals, seemingly on the hour. This is an excellent trait, and one that can make you an innovative thinker. But your tendency to get stuck in your head can make you seem emotionally unavailable to some.
"Sometimes, Aquarius can seem detached from their emotions or closed off," Lang says. "This does not mean they don’t care, though. Quite the contrary. They care very much! However, Aquarius tends toward logic and thinking rather than feeling."
If you'd like to be open, and find a balance between your thinking side and your feeling side it's completely possible to do so. One way is by going to therapy, where you can learn how to better handle your emotions, as well as your partner's emotions (which Aquarius often finds kind of scary). "It’s something that actually takes practice for Aquarius," Lang says. But the results may be well worth your time.
And the same is true for all of these signs, as well as any person who feels like they're struggling to open up or connect. If something seems to be holding your back in life, there's always a way to make a few changes and balance things out.