Are you a butterfly or a moth?

Moth quilt blocks

Although I’m a diehard cynic, I read my horoscope religiously. However, I will admit that it’s Free Will Astrology I pay attention to. Rob Brezsny – the dude behind FWA – has a real talent for weaving some outrageous stories and imagery into his weekly predictions. Recently, my horoscope went something like this:

Moth quilt blocksIn many cultures, the butterfly is a symbol of transformation and rebirth… After its resurrection… it becomes a lithe and lovely creature capable of flight. The mythic meaning of the moth is quite different… Enchanted by the flame, it’s driven so strongly toward the light that it risks burning its wings. So it’s a symbol of intense longing that may go too far. In the coming weeks… your life could turn either way.


I can definitely be moth-like. I am very enchanted by “the flame” at times (and many other shiny objects, for that matter). Ironically, I’ve been working on a moth-related quilting project for a few weeks. Should I just start calling them butterflies?!

Moth quilt blocks

I started thinking how perfect this metaphor is for goal-setting and productivity. All too often we get distracted from our goals. We’re drawn to things that sidetrack us and impede our magnificent flight.

What would we be capable of, if we blocked our moth-like inclinations?

A question I’ve been asking myself, anytime I’m drawn to a distraction (mindless TV watching, an extra helping of dessert, falling down an internet rabbit hole, buying items I don’t need, starting new projects when I haven’t finished the last one…) is this: what is this helping me accomplish?

Most of the time, the answer is: NOTHING.

Of course, sometimes the answer is: I just need some distraction, or downtime, or some comfort, or some inspiration. And that’s ok. There are times when we just need to be distracted, to rest, to be comforted, or to be inspired. But most of the time, we feel so much better when we are soaring, right?

It’s a perfect metaphor for greater goal-setting as well.

When I’m writing my daily To-Do List, or deciding what activities to pursue for my business, it’s a super helpful image. Does each activity help me fly a little closer to what I’ve defined as success? Or will I be metaphorically flying around a flame, potentially burning my wings?

So what do you think?

Will you be a butterfly today? Or a moth?

Butterfly quilt block

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