During the Venus retrograde we have an opportunity to reflect on our relationships. On 25 July Venus stations retrograde at 0 degrees Virgo, reentering Leo on 31 July, and remaining in retrograde motion until 8 September. Retrograde motion occurs when a planet appears to move backwards in the sky. Venus retrogrades for about 40 days every eighteen months or so.
We can expect this Venus retrograde period to be a focal point for the energetic work that needs to take place in our relationships. Whether this work involves a few subtle nudges here and there or a complete overhaul depends on how consciously we have been relating up to this point. Relationships that are already under stress will certainly come under scrutiny.
Many astrological phenomenon have a tendency to manifest as external events and Venus retrograde is no exception. Don’t be surprised if you find yourself encountering people and situations that reflect your inner state. Psychologists call this projection; it’s when we’re so focused on the faults and issues of others that we fail to see how we ourselves are behaving. In fact we often accuse others of the exact behaviour we ourselves are exhibiting.
Venus retrograde may bring difficult people into your life, or create challenging situations in existing relationships. But the opportunity here is to focus on our own behaviour rather than on that of the other. For example it’s easy to say, ‘Aha! I finally realise after all these years that you’re not meeting my needs’ but much harder to examine ourselves closely and find out why we feel that person must meet our needs in the first place.
As Venus rules values, we may come to the realisation during Venus retrograde that we’ve failed to truly value a person in our lives, that we’ve taken someone for granted. On the other hand we might see clearly that we ourselves are not valued highly enough. Venus retrograde will also open our eyes to how we fail to value ourselves, placing ourselves in destructive and soul destroying situations for the sake of others or for financial or emotional security.
With Venus retrograde in Leo we can expect to encounter our own pride and ego during this process of self inquiry. And of course this usually means that the pride and ego of others will also come to the fore! Focus on manifesting the positive qualities of Leo, including loyalty, self-confidence, will power and creativity.
Traditional astrology cautions against beginning new relationships during Venus retrograde and this makes sense when we consider that this is a time for resolving issues in existing relationships. This often means tying up loose ends and sometimes a relationship will come to an end during Venus in retrograde.
Bear in mind that the true purpose of relationships is to help both parties grow and evolve and ask yourself whether your current relationships serve this purpose. But don’t give up too easily! Often when there is anger and resentment present there is still work to do!
Remember I’m talking about all forms of relationship here. Venus retrograde can bring deep change to friendships, family and work relationships; it’s not just about love and partnership.
A brief outline of the Venus retrograde process
Venus retrograde will form a number of aspects with other planets as she undergoes her inward journey. These aspects work together and in sequence to catalyse change in our relationships. Their influence can be felt for a few days either side of the exact date.
- 4 August Venus retrograde conjunct Jupiter – 28 degrees Leo
- 5 August Venus retrograde squares Saturn – 28 degrees Leo
- 6 August Venus retrograde conjuncts Mercury – 28 degrees Leo
Over this three-day period the tension between personal freedom and expansion and our responsibility and commitment to others will be emphasised. Saturn will also be retrograde and placed in Scorpio he may bring some harsh realisations. Fortunately the conjunctions to Jupiter and Mercury will facilitate open communication and generosity.
- 14 August Venus retrograde conjuncts the New Moon – 21 degrees Leo
- 15 August Venus retrograde conjunct the Sun – 22 Leo
This New Moon is a good time to set intentions, based on the realisations that have come from the Venus-Saturn square and focusing on shifting our way of relating to others.
- 19 August Venus retrograde trines Uranus – 20 degrees Leo
New ways of relating are supported during this time as we come to see where traditional ideas and expectations no longer serve us. We can take our relationships to a new level now.
- 1 September Venus retrograde conjuncts Mars – 14 degrees Leo
The male and female energies are in alignment and with the passionate energy of Leo we can expect excellent sex, productive creative collaborations and general good times with others.
How will Venus retrograde affect you
Some people will be more affected by this Venus retrograde than others. Those will Taurus or Libra strongly emphasised in their birth chart will certainly feel it, as will anyone with planets between 15 and 30 degrees of the Fixed signs (Leo, Aquarius and Taurus). For example my natal Saturn is at 29 degrees Leo which means that the aspects of 4-6 August will have a particularly strong impact on me.
Also look at your birth chart to see through which house(s) Venus retrograde will pass. For me this will be the 3rd House, suggesting that the way in which I communicate with others will be called into question. If you don’t already have one you can generate a free birth chart here. For help understanding how to read your chart check out my free mini lessons.
Venus retrograde may shake up any relationship where there has been an imbalance of power, unrealistic expectations, inadequate communication or a failure to appreciate one another. Please share your thoughts on this.
Faith is founder and principal of Insight Astrology and has been teaching and giving readings for over twenty years. She is fascinated by astrology as a tool for personal growth and passionate about empowering others to read its language.