On July 9, 2017, those of us in the northern hemisphere experienced a rather powerful full moon known as the Thunder Moon.
A quick lesson: A full moon happens in the middle of the lunar cycle, which happens when the moon is on the direct opposite side of the earth from the sun.
Ever since you were a kid, I bet you gazed up at the moon and watched it go through its different phases on various occasions. The full moon is more than just one phase, though. This stage of a moon has the potential for great power; just as the moon controls the tides, the moon's energy can also be used in your own life. So, exactly how long does a full moon last and how can you make the most of it?
Elite Daily spoke with Christa Westaway, House of Intuition’s reader and practicing astrologer to dive deeper into this topic. “Full moon cycles last about two weeks and are in between the new moon cycles. As energy builds, the moon becomes more and more full. The full moon is a culmination of lessons learned since the previous full moon,” she says.
A full moon can bring about the end of a stage and symbolize a new beginning. “The full moon is a great time to release any people, places, or things that are no longer serving our best, healthiest selves and our highest growth, and they speak to ending cycles, patterns or habits that we don’t want to take with us into another month,” Westaway tells Elite Daily.
You can look at full moons as a time to hit the reset button. At the start of a full moon, the time may be right to welcome change or a new opportunity in your life. A full moon can be the prime time to jump on a new job opportunity, try out that new haircut, start a new relationship, or say goodbye to one that's just not working. Think of it as cleansing yourself of the old — whether it be a frame of mind or state of being — and stepping into the new.
“We don’t need to wait for a new year to end and begin new habits; we’re continually given the energy and opportunity to shed and manifest every month for stable, progressive soul-level development,” says Westaway. There are a variety of full moon activities Westaway suggests you can do to celebrate your spirit, too. Take a relaxing bath with a moonlight mineral and herbal bath blend, go on a full moon hike with your SO, find a calming spot outside and set intentions with your friends, or make a vision board of what’s most important to you during this full moon cycle.
Use this cycle to reevaluate your goals and opportunities. Are you happy with the people and things in your life? What's holding you back? What's stopping you from accessing your inner joy? Westaway suggests breaking out your journal. “Journal about what you commit to leaving behind you and make a plan for supporting yourself step-by-step until the next full moon. Ask yourself what you’d like to create, develop within you, or draw into your life and what you’re willing to let go of in order to allow it to happen,” she says.
Reflecting on these things, you can use the power of the full moon to achieve balance and strength in your life. Happy full moon.
This post was originally published on July 12, 2017. It was updated on Sept. 6, 2019. Additional reporting by Alexa Mellardo.