Mars, the Planet of Energy and Sex, Is Retrograde Till 2023, So Hibernate Away

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With Scorpio season urging transformation and back-to-back eclipses spurring massive change, this fall could already feel like a heavy one. Contending with deeply emotional shifts can be exhausting in and of itself, so if you’ve been feeling like hitting pause on work to take a nap every chance you get, know that you’re simply in tune with the cosmos. And you’re likely already feeling the next major planetary event: Mars – the planet of action, energy, sex, and aggression – is kicking off its first retrograde since late 2020.

In astrology, Mars’s purpose is to light your inner fire and help you get after your desires in every part of your life. The go-getter planet influences your sex drive, how you experience and express anger, your passions and ambitions, and your energy level.

And every year, for about two to two and a half months, the solar system’s fiercest warrior appears to move backward through our sky in what’s known in astrology as a retrograde. Mars will move retrograde in the communicative mutable air sign of Gemini from Sunday, October 30, 2022 to Thursday, January 12, 2023. Read on for the meaning of Mars retrograde as well as details on what to expect, based on your sign, as the planet of action moves backward in 2022.

What Do Mars Retrogrades Mean in Astrology?

In order to understand what happens when Mars is retrograde, it can help to consider how the planet affects us when it’s moving forward. As Mars moves through the 12 signs and hits key points on your birth chart, it can influence how you take action and move toward your goals. Its purpose is to fuel your motivation and support your ability to build momentum toward your ultimate vision. Mars’s effect when it’s moving forward can be mostly felt in an external way. Those action steps it inspires might involve asking a potential new flame out on a date or networking with old colleagues in pursuit of an exciting professional opportunity.

But when it’s moving backward, Mars tends to encourage more inner work related to the areas of life it oversees. For example, it’ll spur you to consider how you process and work through anger and require that you reassess how you’ve been caring for your health and well-being, since Mars rules energy. Think of Mars retrograde as a chance to prioritize your mental and emotional wellness in order to make even more successful strides toward your vision.

It bears noting that the slower a planet moves, the less in-your-face its retrogrades may feel. So while Mercury, which is the speediest planet, can’t help but set off headache-inducing, super-apparent misunderstandings and technology glitches when it goes retrograde, Mars’s backspins may feel slightly more insidious.

How the 2022 Mars Retrograde Will Affect the Zodiac Signs

When it comes to Mars’s retrograde from Oct. 30, 2022 to Jan. 12, 2023, people who have their sun or other astrological placements in the mutable signs – Gemini, Virgo, Sagittarius, Pisces – will feel it more than others. (Fixed signs who’ve been pummelled by the eclipses this year, you can finally breathe a sigh of relief!) If you want to get even more specific, see if any of your birth chart placements fall around 08 to 25 degrees of a mutable sign; if so, you’ll feel this one more than most.

Gemini (May 21-June 21)

With Mars going retrograde in your sign, and first house of self, it could be more challenging to show up in the world expressing the full extent of your typical lively energy. Anticipate delays curbing passion projects and potentially a tougher time expressing anger, as it could come out in a more passive-aggressive way now. If that sounds like a complete bummer, take heart that this is actually an opportunity to get super clear on what you most want to exert your energy on. You usually spread yourself pretty thin, Gemini, so getting more conscious and intentional with your time and bandwidth can be empowering.

Virgo (Aug. 23-Sept. 22)

Mars will be retrograde in your 10th house of career and public image, which could actually serve to make you more competitive than usual. You’re itching for recognition for all the hard work you’ve been putting in on the job, and yet, it might prove more difficult to get the results you know you deserve, thanks to Mars’s slowdown. Consider doing meditation or focusing therapy sessions on what’s at the root of your thirst for the spotlight, and you could make serious strides that help shape an even more successful game plan.

Sagittarius (Nov. 22-Dec. 21)

The planet of action moves backward through your seventh house of partnership, so you could feel like it’s tougher to build momentum on one-on-one endeavors, whether professional, romantic, or platonic. You also tend to be super direct in your self-expression, but with Mars retrograde in curious Gemini, communication could get a bit scattered, which might prove to be aggravating as well. See this as a chance to tap into your Jupiterian jovial, optimistic nature, remembering that these minor annoyances will be short-lived, and what really matters is the big picture.

Pisces (Feb. 19-March 20)

Mars will be retrograde in your fourth house of home life, which might stir up underlying tensions with loved ones. You’re not the biggest fan of conflict in general, but this transit could make you more apt to lean into a passive-aggressive expression of grievances with family members. Simply being aware of this can make it easier for you to strive for clear, constructive communication whenever conflict is brewing beneath the surface. And you may need to take on a redecoration project or move slower than anticipated, but know that come the new year, you’ll be even more prepared to hit the ground running.

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