Most of us are familiar with the frustration of Mercury retrograde, when the world seems to go "haywire," because of miscommunications and breakdowns. Now it's time to pay attention to our "actions" because Mars will be retrograde on April 17th.
Once every 2 years the planet Mars goes retrograde, as it will from April 17 through June 29, 2016. During this time span we may want to think "twice" about initiating certain actions because the retrograde can lower our energy level and bring frustration and obstacles to our major efforts.
Of course, regardless of this unusual planetary influence, life must go on during the 11-week period of Mars retrograde. Undoubtedly, we all have to make necessary decisions, even if it isn't the optimum time. For example, if you're unemployed, you'll probably want to accept a new job anyway. When it comes to your social life, it's not the best time to enter a sexual relationship. But no one expects a person to be celibate.
However, there are important events we may be planning that are elective. In other words: we don't have to start them during Mars retrograde, because we can pick another more favorable time when planetary influences work to our advantage.
Never forget - a person can work hard and be well prepared to accomplish any task; but if their timing is wrong, they won't succeed. That's why - if possible, it's best to wait until Mars goes direct on June 30th to initiate any important action. Here's how this planet exerts an influence in our lives:
How Does the Influence of Mars Affect You?
In astrology, Mars represents the principle of independence and action. This planet's influence gives us the urge to initiate or begin something new. Unlike the energies of Mercury, which are mental, Mars is physical in its nature, and often associated with aggressive or impulsive behavior. In fact, in its most negative manifestation, which often occurs during this retrograde, martian (as in Mars) behavior can be selfish, combative and argumentative.
In one's horoscope, the planet Mars rules action, energy, drive and determination. When Mars works positively in our lives, it gives us the ability to be assertive and act with courage and conviction.
How Mars functions in our birth chart says a lot about how we stand up and assert ourselves, get noticed and get things done. Its energies can bring us power and confidence in the way we express ourselves as individuals. It also affects our ambition and our sense of competition whether at work, play or in our personal relationships. Mars also rules our desire nature and sexuality; and the kind of person we'll find sexually attractive.
What Happens When Mars Goes Retrograde?
When Mars is retrograde, one's normal energy and vitality are depleted. Therefore, if we initiate an activity at this time, we find that all the energy and momentum that began with our actions seem to stop or even reverse. We begin to have doubts or regrets about any effort that we start - to the point where we'll wish you could start all over again.
Here's a good illustration of how the Mars retrograde can affect you: Imagine drinking and partying all night and then having to run a 10-mile marathon the next morning. You start out your run with the confidence you've got the stamina you need; and that you'll be fine. But after running a few miles, you start realizing you don't have as much energy as you normally have. You're sorry you ran this race, wishing you could have done it on another day.
During the Mars retrograde, you'll operate with this same lack of energy and vitality in any enterprise you undertake. For this reason it's not the best time to start anything new, whether it's job, a relationship or even an argument. If you've already started something, the Mars retrograde is a time to slow down and reassess what you want and desire before you take further action. It may be necessary to adjust your expectations and calmly work though any frustrations that get in the way of what you want to accomplish.
If you have activities you want to engage in: STOP and re-consider them. Read these "Don'ts & DOs before you take action.
The Five DON'Ts
1. Don't Argue, Fight or Start a War - Mars rules War. During Mars retrograde it's a bad time to initiate a fight or dispute, because the aggressor usually backs off or loses. It's a horrible time to pick a fight with someone, start a war or begin a military action against another country because there isn't a strong will or desire to complete the action. If you're initiating an argument, (or invading a country) you're likely to be the loser. Since this is a Presidential election year, you can expect even more vicious battles between the candidates. Watch who starts a fight and who eventually wins it.
2. Don't Have a Surgery - Mars rules surgery and is associated with surgeons. It also rules anything made of iron, including "cutting things." If possible, avoid surgical procedures. Mars is a physical planet and during the retrograde, injuries and accidents related to carelessness (e.g. cutting) can occur more frequently. For that reason it's considered a poor time for elective surgery. It's not even a good time to find a new barber, hairstylist or any professional who works with a knife or scissors.
3. Don't Start New Activities - If you do begin a new enterprise during Mars retrograde, your efforts to produce results will meet with greater frustration than usual. Projects are likely to stall or not develop as expected. You'll find your energy level is lower than normal, making it harder to produce the success you had intended. If you've already started something, slow down and reassess your plans, adjust expectations and work through obstacles that are getting in the way of results.
It's not a favorable time to start a new business with co-workers and partners. You'll find that people will be unusually argumentative, and easily irritated when projects or activities do not run smoothly. Often the discord is so great, that even people, who normally get a long well, become angry and disruptive. The results are often poor decision-making based out of frustration, instead of patience and open dialogue.
4. Don't Begin a Law Suit or Divorce - A lawsuit or divorce can be a fierce battle. Since Mars rules wars and battles, it's not a good time for initiating a legal action. A lawsuit that's initiated has no punch, with a high likelihood that the plaintiff will back off or end up the loser. If you're trying to mediate a dispute, you're likely to find yourself in heavy disagreement and not able to find common ground with the opposing party. When you present your side of the argument, there's a lack of energy and passion in what you say that doesn't compel the mediator to your point of view. To obtain better results in a lawsuit or mediation, wait until Mars goes direct on June 29th. (Note: Often during this retrograde you'll hear about many high-profiled, celebrity separations and acrimonious divorces.)
5. Don't Buy Mechanical Things - Mars rules anything made of iron such as engines and cutting tools. This is not a reliable time to purchase an automobile or any mechanical equipment. Just in the same way that Mercury retrograde can play havoc with the operation of cars and other machinery, you'll find that computers and other equipment break down break more during Mars retrograde. In fact, if you have any mechanical equipment in need of repair, use this period to get it done quickly.
Here some specific ways that you can use the Mars retrograde to your advantage.
The Five DOs
1. Great Time to Find Out What You Want - In your birth chart, Mars rules what you want or desire. The Mars retrograde is not a great time to get what you want in the external world. But on an internal basis it's a great time to become aware of the "martian" things you want - such as a fast new car, the latest computer gadget, or even an exciting sexual experience. This doesn't mean that you should impulsively act on your desires because you may not really want these things once Mars goes direct. It's best to wait until then, to be sure you still want what you want.
2. Be Careful of Accidents and Violence - The potential for accidents or violence is especially strong during Mars retrograde because people are more likely to act out the negative energies of Mars. They tend to be more frustrated and impatient; and even worse they're likely to be careless, act rashly, or have a fit of anger or outrage. Do not take any unnecessary risks now. Put your dream of skydiving or bungee cord jumping - on hold until Mars goes direct. Be very careful of anyone in your work or personal life that has a history of violence.
3. Resolve Conflict By Compromising - The Mars retrograde period is a time when a simple disagreement can turn into a major upset. Passions can run high and so can frustration and anger. Try to find common ground with the other person instead of stubbornly pushing your own agenda.
Be assertive and diplomatic in your communication - not aggressive and humiliating. Even if others can't control their temper, remember to control yours. Heed the advice of an old Zen Master, "He who angers you, defeats you." Be willing to genuinely compromise to reach an agreement.
4. Re-assess Your Behavior and Sexual Attitudes - Since Mars rules your desire nature and sexuality, the retrograde is an excellent time to make adjustments in your behavior, actions and sexual conduct. For example, if you're prone to being aggressive when communicating with co-workers, you may not be receiving their full cooperation. This is the perfect time to take an anger management class to learn new strategies for expressing yourself without getting upset. In your love life, if you're not getting second dates, is it because the other person finds you focusing on sex too soon? Perhaps, they'd prefer you get to know each other better before becoming intimate. Consider exploring your behavior with a therapist.
5. Review Your Goals - The Mars Retrograde is an excellent time to take stock of your life and what you want to accomplish in such areas as: your relationships, career, money, health, spirituality and sexuality. What changes would make you happier and more fulfilled? Use this period to plan actions that you'll take after the retrograde ends. For example, if you're in a dead-end job, research other careers you want to explore. If you're single, find new places to meet a partner for a committed relationship. If you're in an abusive relationship make plans to break free from it.
In conclusion: what does this all mean? Use the Mars retrograde period, to slow down and reassess what you want and desire - before you take further action. Then, when Mars goes direct on June 30th go full steam ahead with your plans. By doing so you'll more assuredly reach your goal with less frustration and effort. You'll have the advantage of "good timing," that will aid your success.
If you want to know the sign and House your Mars is in - in your birth chart; or if you want to know where your personal transits are -- to see if they are affecting you, go to the Free Transit Calculator and enter your birth date. And, if you're curious to learn what your Horoscope says will be happening in your future - this year in such areas as your love relationships, and marriage prospects, as well as career, investments and health in 2016: Order your customized Report: Your Horoscope & Future in 2016.
If you want to learn about your unique personality, strengths, weaknesses and talents you were born with, order your: Personal Horoscope Report. It includes a copy of your birth chart.
If you're in love and want to find out if you're really compatible for marriage (or partnership) with another person, go to the FREE Love Compatibility Calculator and enter your birth date and theirs. And, if you want a customized report on your compatibility together, order Your Love Compatibility Report.
Larry Schwimmer is an astrologer in private practice. For private consultations, contact him at: Larry@astrodecision.com or go to www.AstroDecision.com
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Larry Schwimmer is president of Astrodecision.com, a San Francisco-based consulting company. The firm uses planetary cycles analysis to counsel individual and corporate clients on picking the "best dates" to make successful decisions of all types: personal, marketing, financial, and political. Schwimmer is an internationally known business consultant, life coach and astrologer (with a Fortune 500 M&A background). Visit his website: AstroDecision.com