There are good times to begin things and there are bad times to begin things. An astrologer could tell you very specifically when such periods occur, but in the absence of an astrologer, there is a simple method for determining beneficial and adverse times of the year. Some may argue whether this is truly divination, but if we accept as one of the definitions of divination ‘discerning the will of the Divine’ then this fits.

This method was developed by Paul Guercio, one of the co-founders of The Merlin Project, a computer program that can forecast, with considerable accuracy, important times in a person’s life. The website he runs along with George Hart is well worth a visit. A mentor of Guercio’s, by the name of Lionel Day, told him there were both beneficial and adverse periods of time each year. Guercio did a year of statistical research on his mentor’s premise and found that Day was right. There did appear to be beneficial and adverse times of the year. Guercio further discovered these beneficial and adverse periods can be simply mapped-out.

For this divination, you need a whole-year calendar, a red marker pen and a green marker pen. We’ll start with the red marker pen.
1. Find your birthday (I’m using the fictional birthdate of February 15 in the illustration above), and with the red marker pen, and put a big red ‘X’ on that date on the calendar. I like to circle the date as well.
2. Find the date on the calendar which fall exactly two weeks before your birthday, and the date which falls exactly two weeks after your birthday, and put a big red ‘X’ on these two dates. Then, fill in the days between these two outer dates with red X’s.
3. Next, find the date which falls exactly six months after your birthday. Put a big red letter ‘X’ on this date. As with the birthday, I like to circle this date as well.
4. Find the date which falls two weeks before this date, and the date which falls exactly two weeks after this date and put a big red letter ‘X’ on both days. As before, fill in the intervening days between these two outer dates and the six-month-mark date with red letter ‘X’s on them.
5. Find the two dates which fall exactly three months before your birthday and exactly three months after your birthday, and put a big red letter ‘X’ on those two dates. Mark the ten days before and the ten days after each of these two dates with big red letter ‘X’s, marking off two entire three-week periods.

Look at your calendar. What you have done with all of this red-pen marking is identify your adverse time periods of the year. These are days when you’re likely to feel stressed, troubled and unhappy with your life in some way, and more aware of your mortality. You’re more aware of health problems, aches and pains. You’re more likely to see things in your life that need to change. The problem is your perceptions during these periods may not accurately reflect your actual situation, but because you’re feeling dissatisfied and unhappy, you make changes based on your perception at the time, and decisions made at these stressful times of the year often produce unsatisfactory results.

But we’re not done. Next, take up the green marker pen:
1. Find the date on the calendar which falls exactly sixty days, or two months, after your birthday, and put a big green ‘X’ through that date. Mark off the ten days before and after that two-month date with big green ‘X’s.
2. Find the date which falls exactly 120 days, or four months after your birthday, and put a big green ‘X’ through that date. Mark off the ten days before and after the four-month date with big green ‘X’s.
3. Find the date which falls exactly sixty days, or two months before your birthday, and mark that date with a big green ‘X’. Mark the ten days before and after that pre-birthday, two-month mark, with big green ‘X’s.
4. Find the date which falls exactly four months, or 120 days before your birthday, and mark that date with a big green ‘X’. Mark the ten days before and after that pre-birthday, four-month mark with big green ‘X’s.

Now take another look at your calendar. What you have done with the green marker pen is identified your beneficial time periods of the year. During these periods, you are relaxed and happy. Your self-esteem and sense of what’s possible are on the upward swing. In fact, during these periods, your life is so easy, you’re very likely not feeling motivated to accomplish things or make changes. In fact, these green periods are the very times when you should make changes in your life, because the outcome of decisions made or projects begun during these beneficial periods is likely to be much more successful or fortunate than whatever is normal for you.

Here is an easy way to make sure you’ve marked the right dates with the right colors. Take a sheet of paper, and write the numbers one through twelve in a single column. Write down the months of the year, starting with January at number one all the way through to December at number twelve. Then write down your day of birth next to each month written on the calendar. Though Guercio doesn’t specify it, I like to then take up both red and green marker pens and, consulting the calendar I just marked up, put either a red or a green X next to the dates that fall in either a red or green period. Using the example February 15 birthdate, the list would look like this:
1. January 15
2. February 15 X
3. March 15
4. April 15 X
5. May 15 X
6. June 15 X
7. July 15
8. August 15 X
9. September 15
10. October 15 X
11. November 15 X
12. December 15 X
If you marked your calendar correctly, then for a February 15 birthday, lines 2, 5, 8, and 11 should be red dates. Lines 4, 6, 10, and 12 should be green dates. Observe that six of your good and bad periods of the year will form a ‘sandwich’ pattern, with a red period flanked by two green periods. If you can delay making important changes during the ‘filling’ periods and take action during the ‘bread’ periods, you’ll be better off. Both your birthday and six-month red periods are stand-alone bad periods, flanked by neutral periods. These red and green-date periods will stay the same from year-to-year, so you’ll eventually know without consulting a calendar when you’re in a good or bad period.

Of course, there are going to be times when a decision must be made, or an action taken during one of your red-date periods, and it can’t be delayed until your next green-date period. In these cases, try to find the New Moon date in or near your red-date period, and plan your activity to coincide with this New Moon date as closely as possible. New Moons happen every month, and are similar in effect to green-date periods, so timing your activities to coincide with a New Moon in a red-date period can reduce some of the effects of this otherwise-adverse period.

Full Moons also occur every month, and they are similar in effect to your red-date periods. Since New Moons are like miniature green-date periods, and Full-Moons are like miniature red-date periods, you may want to identify these dates with the aid of an almanac, and circle the New Moon and Full Moon dates with a black marker pen. Some calendars even identify these dates for you. It stands to reason that implementing a change on a New Moon during one of your green-date periods will be particularly lucky, whereas Full Moons during your red-date periods will be particularly unlucky periods, and you should plan as little important activity on a Full-Moon-red-date as possible.

What Guercio found in his research is that people were notably much more likely to fall ill, get into accidents, or even die during their red-date periods, than they were during their green-date or neutral periods of the year. As your red-date periods are likely to be busy or troublesome periods, marked by increased stress, remember stress reduces your resistance to illness. Take extra-care of your health during your red-date periods. Also don’t schedule elective surgery during your red-date periods, as there are more likely to be complications resulting from surgery at that time, than at any other time of the year.

I had a younger sister, whose birthday falls exactly one month after mine, try this calendar-marking exercise, and discover December was one of her ‘red’ times of the year. She then admitted she had never felt particularly happy during the Christmas season, and that she enjoyed Thanksgiving in November more, so the calendar exercise confirmed what she had already sensed. November and December were two of her ‘sandwich’ months.

If you feel dissatisfaction with your life during your red-date periods, note what those dissatisfactions are, then wait until your next green-date period and re-visit your ‘dissatisfaction notes.’ If you’re still feeling dissatisfied with what first bothered you during your red-date period, then take action, secure in the knowledge you’re doing it from a position of strength. “There is a tide, which, taken at the flood, leads on to fortune” wrote Shakespeare. Finding your cautionary red-dates and your ‘go-for-it’ green dates helps you identify when your own personal ships to success and good fortune are sailing.


  1. Do your own good and bad days on a calendar. Do these periods coincide with what you know to be true of your life? How do you feel about life and yourself during these periods?
  2. Do the good and bad days calendar for someone you know. Observe their good and bad periods of the year. Do they coincide with any events in the life of the person which you know about? Do they coincide with anything you’ve observed about this person’s behavior, attitude toward things and general demeanor?