To understand the Leo type’s nature, you need look no further than the closest feline—the cat (whether great or small) is a very apt symbol for Leo. In honor of the fabled 9 lives of cats, here are 9 ways Leo is like them.
1. Cats love attention. They love to place themselves in the human visual field. Have you ever seen a cat get into the middle of a project you have spread out on a table, or crawl into your lap at the most inconvenient time or curl up on top of the television? Have you ever seen a Leo who is getting the attention she wants and a Leo who is . . . not? Getting the right amount of attention (not too much, not too little) and in the right area (not, God forbid, the wrong area!) is a central pursuit of Leonine existence.
2. A Leo, like a house cat, is self-possessed and autonomous. This feline trait can be off-putting to dog people, who are used to their pets licking them enthusiastically in greeting. Cats are more subtle and hard to read and more comfortable on their own. Leos too, are subtle in their enthusiasm. A Leo would never think of embarrassing herself with puppyish behavior. Self-consciousness and dignity prevent it.
3. A Leo is easily embarrassed. Every Leo has behaviors that mask their embarrassment—as do cats. There’s a novel about the inner life of cats, called The Abandoned (by Paul Gallico) that shows a boy who was recently turned into a cat learning how to behave like one. His feline mentor says, “When in doubt, wash!” and if you watch cats, you’ll see this is exactly what they do.
4. Leos love being petted. Cats (and Leos) are very sensual creatures and capable of great enjoyment. Anyone who lives with a cat learns from that cat how to relax, receive affection and simply enjoy being in a body. Leos share this trait and love to luxuriate in sensory experience. And praising is merely verbal petting which Leos are also pleased to receive.
5. Leos radiate confidence. Does your cat remind you of a lion or panther? Your cat is a domestic version of its greater-sized relatives, carrying all the arrogance and self-possession of that species. As the arrogance of a domestic cat outsizes itself in ways reminiscent of their great cat relatives, so also can a Leo sometimes appear confident beyond the social footprint they actually occupy. Deep in the heart of every Leo type (and with some it’s right on the surface!) there’s a longing to be famous. Your friendly neighborhood Leo likes to indulge his tendency toward fame by dressing for attention, eliciting preferred treatment or obtaining rock star parking.
6. Like a cat, a Leo type looks like a loner but is in fact social. There may be much of hierarchy in Leo social behavior, but Leos are profoundly social and care deeply about how others respond to them. Cats form colonies—given the chance, they do not prefer to live isolated from their own kind. Like cats, Leos are territorial and will defend their turf fiercely.
7. Leos, like cats, prefer high places. Cats put themselves where they can have a lofty view of their surroundings; similarly, Leos like to place themselves high up also, but in a more metaphorical sense. Every Leo knows she belongs at the top in at least one area of life, and he won’t stop till she gets there and garners the recognition she deserves. A Leo, like the Sun, (Leo’s planetary ruler) is a gravitational force and will eventually end up at the center of things.
8. The love of a cat is marked by choice, not compulsion. A dog cannot help but love you (and this is exactly what dog-lovers appreciate about them) while a cat seems to have the choice whether to love you or not. For this reason, cat-lovers find the love of a cat special. Like a cat, Leos love by choice and where they choose, they love thoroughly, proudly and in a large way. When a Leo (or a cat) loves you, you cannot help but know it and find it special.
9. Obviously, a Leo is king of the jungle. Somehow, felis domesticus seems to maintain this attitude despite their small size. Deep down, a Leo senses his own royal nature and understands noblesse oblige, i.e. his “nobility obligates” him to be kind and generous with all that he has and is. And a generous Leo is a gift to the world.
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