Updated: Sep 29, 2020
What is it? What can you do during the retrograde? How long will it last for? What kind of retrograde is it?
Retrogrades in astrology are a regular part of most major planets' cycle around the sun, but Mars takes a backspin least frequently of any other planet — only appearing to move backward once every two years. Retrograde motion is an APPARENT change in the movement of the planet through the sky. It is not REAL in that the planet does not physically start moving backwards in its orbit. It just appears to do so because of the relative positions of the planet and Earth and how they are moving around the Sun. During Mars retrograde, we tend to feel more sluggish, unmotivated, and might struggle to take tangible action on things. It's not an ideal time to charge forward on major professional endeavors, physical work, or sexual pursuits.
It's also a time that repressed rage and anger can come bubbling to the surface in less-than-healthy ways, so look out for old wounds getting reactivated. Finding productive outlets for aggressive energy during Mars retrograde is good. Embracing gentler ways of dealing with anger could prevent you from exploding on someone unexpectedly and also help you heal the pain of past losses or wrongs.
This year's Mars retrograde occurs in Aries from Wednesday, September 9, to Friday, November 13. During this time, our libidos can be affected, along with our ambition. The next few months may feel as if things are at a standstill. Because this retrograde in Mars is in Aries, a sign ruled by Mars, expect it to be extra challenging. If you have any Aries placements, may feel especially affected by the retrograde.
Venus rules "feminine" traits such as emotion, beauty, and love whilst Mars rules "masculine" traits such as aggression, sex, action, and desire. When Mars goes retrograde, we are more low-energy, our sex drives may dwindle, you may feel stagnant at work, and feelings of frustrations surface.