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Every month, the Universe gives us a little present—one so small it may be easily missed. (Some may even go as far as to call this gift “hidden,” as it’s mostly invisible from the Earth for a few hours.) This lovely present is, of course, the new moon, and it happens every 28 to 30 days.

In astrological terms, the new moon is one of the moon’s many phases—specifically, the one where the moon and sun align. The sun shines behind the moon, blocking us from its view. The new moon marks the beginning of a new lunar cycle and often brings with it an array of new beginnings. This leaves new moons feeling like a particularly ideal time for self-reflection, course correction and goal-setting.

Interestingly enough, most people are unconsciously aligned with this energy, tending to create new habits, start new projects and initiate life changes around the same time as the new moon. That’s cool. What’s even cooler is that consciously embracing the new moon’s fresh energy can allow you to propel those transitions even further.

Ahead, seven things to try (and four things to not try) during the new moon. Consider this a field guide to new moons in all their energetic glory—a resource you can revisit every 28 to 30 days from here on out.

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