All work and no play makes Jack a dull boy. This is the message that some of us can get from our 6th House, which follows the fun-loving, spirited 5th House. After the entertainment and creativity and romance of the 5th, we’re brought back down-to-earth in the 6th. But, depending on the sign on your 6th House cusp and the planets in there, maybe you’re not so grounded in this house. Maybe you’re more grounded in your 5th House fun zone and the 6th is where things get sort of crazy or chaotic, like if you had a Capricorn 5th House and an Aquarius 6th House.
I think we need to stop associating work so much with the 6th House. Work is such a go-to keyword for the 6th House. But, it doesn’t just mean forms of employment. It’s anything that requires labor and effort and discipline. The 10th House is where our actual job will be found, while the 6th describes how we’re going to discipline ourselves to accomplish and achieve things in our career. It supports the 10th in that way but it’s a more mundane house. Your 6th House work could be that deadline you’re trying to meet or the bathroom you need to clean or the groceries you have to buy.
Now, this cannot be stressed enough: empty houses are as important as occupied ones. So, not having planets in the 6th doesn’t mean that daily work and chores are not important to you. It doesn’t make you lazy and undisciplined. It just means that a bit more of your energy is focused on your occupied houses. We have to work on empty houses more consciously because they demand less of our attention. And we do this by cultivating the style of the sign on that house cusp. As time goes on, I’m learning just how important all 12 of the house cusps are.
The 6th House is your daily grind. It’s the routine and the practical rhythm that you would like to unfold, from day to day. It’s how you plan and schedule (or don’t). So, what’s the sign on your 6th House cusp? Do you have the 6th House in Aries? Then, you’re so impulsive that you often don’t have much time for scheduling. You make plans very much in the moment and burn through each day. Someone with a Capricorn 6th House cusp, however, is going to be more regimented and controlled in their day-to-day hustle. Schedules are very important to you and you always have your little goals each day that you set your mind on conquering.
Yet, no matter how messy or organized you are, we all have our routines. In fact, some people’s routine is to regularly not have one. And when they’re forced to be more orderly, they freak out. On the flip side, when some people are forced to be more spontaneous, they flip out. Either way, we’re operating on a compulsiveness that comes from the 6th House’s yearning for control. It’s not the psychological mind control of the 8th House. It’s the clear-headed sensibility of Virgo, the sign that rules the 6th. Virgo is a sign that has a sharp skill and a pragmatic love of knowing where everything is. It can find a needle in a haystack. Therefore, the 6th is how we find order within our daily chaos. We live in a highly unpredictable world and the 6th is where we yearn for predictability.
Planets in the 6th, therefore, are quite obsessive-compulsive. They follow a series of steps every day in order to feel satisfied and fulfilled. Because of this, they’re also capable of working their ass off in whatever area they specialize in. With Mars in the 6th, you’re amazingly efficient when it comes to getting things done because you know how to do everything in sequence, whether you realize it or not. Venus in the 6th allows you to consistently work on your relationships due to a perfect picture in your head on how they should be operating from day-to-day. But, 6th House planets can also be really stressed out because of their inner checklists. The tasks they need to do can sometimes feel unnerving, especially if it’s a 6th House Saturn or Pluto, and worries about things going right and being able to measure up can become consuming.
It’s no coincidence that Mercury is the ruler of the 6th. Mercury also rules the 3rd, which represents mental intelligence. 6th House intelligence is practical and physical. It’s having the good sense to exercise, to eat well and consistently, and to treat your body like a temple. Sometimes, those with an emphasized 6th House still love to smoke and eat junk food and not really work out. But, they’ll actually feel quite foolish for doing so, which causes them to carry around a lot of guilt or anxiety. The 6th House can bring us all worry and anxiety, which will inevitably make us sick. So, we have to heal our mind through this house in order to heal our bodies.
Still, the way to bring comfort to your 6th House is to have those rituals. We all have our little stuff we’re finicky about and that’s our 6th House talking. Again, you might have a looser, more unpredictable sign or planet in your 6th. But, there’s still a method to its madness! When it comes to the 6th, things will either be very predictable or predictably unpredictable. As much as my 6th House cusp in Gemini wants to shake things up each day, some things just never change. I still drink my coffee from the same mug every day and I still check my e-mail right when I wake up. In this hectic world, we all need those recurring little things.