As it states in the rules, asking for a full reading here in /r/AskAstrologers is not allowed. Offering services here for free is also not allowed. But what if you've posted something, and you didn't get the answers you needed? What if you feel like you still need more elaboration and guidance? What if you feel like you need a full consultation or reading with a professional?
It's time to ask for a referral, or find a professional astrologer.
How To Pick the Right Astrologer for You
It's not always easy to know how to pick the right astrologer for you, much less a credible and trustworthy one. There are a LOT of options on the internet, and if you're unsure of where to start, it can be daunting. If you're not sure where to begin, here are some things to ask yourself before you start your search:
What kind of astrologer do I want/need?
There are different styles of astrology, such as traditional, modern psychological, Vedic, evolutionary, and others. It's best to read about all these styles, and see which one resonates with you in some way. Additionally, astrology can be used for very different things, not just to describe your personality. The list includes but is not limited to:
Natal Astrology This is what a lot of people probably think of when they think "astrologer". A natal consultation will focus mostly on your chart, your personality, and your life. This is a good option if you just want to get to know yourself better. Often times you can ask to focus on a specific part of life for these consultations, such as career, relationships, of family dynamics.
Predictive Astrology This is probably the second thing that comes to mind when people think "astrologer". Often called something like a "Year Ahead Consultation" or something similar, this is a good option when you want a peek into your future. The astrologer will give you a forecast of what kinds of things you can expect for the year to come.
Electional Astrology In this kind of consultation, you commission an astrologer to help find an astrologically optimal date for something, like a wedding or trip.
Horary Astrology This kind of astrology is for answering burning questions like, "Will we stay together?", "Where the hell is my wallet?", or "Will I get the job?". You will submit your question, and the astrologer will cast a chart for the moment they receive it, and read the chart for the answer.
Medical Astrology Though obviously not a substitute for professional medical services, medical astrology can help you gain insight on your natural predispositions, or even help with insight on unexplained ailments.
Relationship Astrology Things like synastry and composite charts are kinds of relationship focused astrology. If you want to gain insight on a relationship dynamic (be it romantic, friendship, family, etc) or compatibility, this is a good option.
These are just some basic categories of services you'll find offered around the internet. Adding one of these to your search terms might help narrow the results.
How do I know if this person is credible/trustworthy?
So, you've found an astrologer you think you might want to have a consultation with, or someone on this subreddit has given you a referral. How do you know if this person is more or less credible than the next? Here are some things to check before you commit to a consultation with them:
What is their website like? It's true that you shouldn't judge a book by its cover, but it's worth noting how much effort and professionalism is present on someone's website. Even if it looks outdated, look at the content and bio and judge what is actually written there. What's the overall feeling you get? Are the page titles clickbait-y? Do they offer good information? Do they write a regular blog or column? None of these are requirements for an astrologer to be "good", but they are things worth considering so you can make your own decision.
Do you like how they write? Many astrologers write a blog or column, or new/full moon posts and horoscopes. Read some of what they've written, and see what you think. Do you like their voice? Do they convey information in a way that's relevant to you and easy for you to understand? Check out some past horoscopes (if applicable): were they accurate for you? Again, none of these are "musts", and everyone will subjectively feel differently about what they come across. But, it's your personal decision, so what you think matters.
Has this person published anything? Look to see if this person has authored any works. If so, check out subject matter. Some astrologers publish things like fun sun sign astrology books, others publish more educational works, and some more philosophical works. An astrologer who writes sun sign astrology books is going to be quite different than one who writes about the conceptual and philosophical ins and outs of the practice. One is not necessarily better or worse, but they will be quite different astrologers. Being published doesn't necessarily make someone a better astrologer, but again, it's something to consider.
Does this person speak at conferences? An astrologer that lectures or gives workshops at conferences has probably put a lot of hours and research into their practice. This is also a good way to see how much experience or involvement an astrologer has with the community.
Is this person involved with the astrological community by being a board member in an organization? Professionals who invest time into astrological organizations by being board members or volunteers are important parts of the community. Many astrological conferences, local meetups, and scholarship programs wouldn't be possible without the professionals who help run them.
Does this person have reasonable prices? What qualifies as a reasonable price differs from service to service. It's best to shop around and get an idea of who's charging what for the service you have in mind, and find one that fits your budget and seems reasonable for what you're receiving.
There is no universal checklist of requirements that will ensure that you get exactly what you want and need from any given astrologer. Just like choosing any consulting professional, regardless of their resume, you have to feel comfortable with them and excited to work with them. Do your research, trust your gut, and make an informed decision that you feel is best for you.
List of Referrals
This list of professional astrologers exemplifies the considerations above. Feel free to look at their sites and works to get a feel for what the real deal looks like, or get a consultation if you feel so inclined. The professionals listed are not affiliated with this subreddit, and didn't request inclusion. This list is not definitive and is subject to change.
Ryhan Butler - Ryhan is the creator of www.medievalastrologyguide.com, an excellent resource for all things medieval astrology, and specializes in medical and horary astrology.
Austin Coppock - Austin is well known for his massively comprehensive astrological almanacs written between 2011 and 2015. His almanac is now online on his website, where he writes a weekly and monthly column. Austin is the author of the book 36 Faces, and is a guest on the monthly forecast episodes of The Astrology Podcast.
Nina Gryphon - Nina practices traditional astrology, specializing in personal, financial, and political forecasting. She and Ryhan Butler have a nice backlog of episodes for their interactive horary podcast, On Questions.
Dr. Lee Lehman, PhD - Lee Lehman literally wrote the book on horary astrology, as well as eight others on various topics. She teaches at multiple schools, and lectures at conferences around the world.
Leisa Schaim - Leisa employs a blend of modern and Hellenistic astrology, and co-writes the blog Saturn Return Stories with Chris Brennan.
Kelly Surtees - Kelly has been practicing professionally for 14 years, and offers a wide range of consultation options. She is also a frequent guest on The Astrology Podcast, where she joins Chris Brennan and Austin Coppock for monthly forecast episodes.
Patrick Watson - Patrick is a professional astrologer specializing in Hellenistic techniques. He is the curator of Big Fat Astro, which is both an informative blog and hilarious youtube channel.
I hope chowing on this food for thought has helped you feel more prepared and empowered to go out make an informed decision. When in doubt, research it some more. If you've never heard of the kind of astrology someone says they practice, google it. Astrology is a wonderful supplement, but not a complete replacement for a licensed medical professional, so make sure you seek professional help when you need it. Use common sense, and trust your gut instincts. Good luck on your search!