Mars Retrograde Energies and Lessons; June 26th – August 27th, 2018

Retrograde seasons are periods for reflection, growth and learning by embracing a new perspective and letting go of something you have been holding onto.






Find more detail on the meaning of ‘retrograde’, with an explanation of what’s happening in the sky, at the end of this article. 

File Jul 19, 5 44 30 PM
Photo Credit: NASA. Mars Retrograde, 2003


Mars will officially be ‘retrograde’ from June 26th – August 27th, 2018, although when you include the pre and post-retrograde shadow periods, the complete cycle extends almost 5 months, from May 12th until October 3rd, 2018.  After this fall, Mars will not be retrograde again until September 2020.

Although most people look to understand what’s happening only during the time when Mars is actually going to be ‘retrograde’, it’s SO helpful to understand how we are influenced by retrograde ‘vibes’ during this ENTIRE period. 


When we learn to flow with astrological rhythms, we maximize energetic support for our actions and minimize ‘resistance’.  We can do this by avoiding actions which aren’t supported by retrograde energies. 


Mars rules;

  • The ego
  • Your motivation
  • Your sense of confidence and courage
  • The will and willpower
  • Impulses
  • Aggression
  • How you express your fundamental needs and desires
  • Your ability to arrive at conclusions
  • Your physical body and ability to tune into your physical needs

In the Zodiac, Mars rules Aries and Scorpio.  Mars Retrograde calls us on an evolutionary journey that encourages us to grow through a shift in perspective.

During Mars Retrograde, fated events and repeating themes will reinforce where you need to evolve related to one or more of the above expressions ruled by Mars.

‘Symptoms’ of Mars Retrograde Include;

Fatigue, Illness, Clumsiness

> Indicates where you need to bring more attention to self care.  The body is ‘weakened’ during Mars Retrograde and is more likely to show symptoms of prolonged physical and mental strain.  You are being called now to assess how you are spending your energy and decide which routines and commitments need to shift.  Otherwise, the strain of being stretched too thin will perpetually be a source of frustration and ailment during this time.

Lack of Confidence, Resistance to Change, a Sense of Despair

> Brings the opportunity to confront the sources of self-doubt and negative self-talk within you.   It’s time to look inside and explore the beliefs you hold about yourself (the projection of yourself TO yourself) in order to discover the ‘blind spots’ that are limiting you.  You likely need to give yourself more credit and allow your sense of confidence to flow from within.  This enables you to become more resilient when moving into new situations.  On the other hand, those who have an inflated sense of confidence are more likely to be met with experiences that teach humility.

Rediscovering Old Passions, Hobbies or Creative Outlets

> Since Mars rules motivation, during retrograde you are more likely to assess (or tune into) what truly drives you from within and reconnect with things that have inspired you in the past.  You may find you are distracted from your normal routine and commitments during Mars retrograde – and it’s a great time to notice exactly what’s distracting you because it can lead to new discoveries about what truly fulfills you.  It’s a time when many people make changes in their job or start taking courses.  It’s also a time when you are reminded of old hobbies and other ‘passion projects’ – make time for these and see what arises!  This is when the best outcomes (the unexpected miracles) are derived from pursuing your ‘distractions’.

Delays, Rework or Other Difficulties getting New Projects off the Ground

> Mars Retrograde is not a good time to jump into new endeavors such as major investments, new jobs, new relationships or strategic expansions to your business.  This is because the energy of Mars is stagnated during retrograde and lacks ‘follow through’.  Flowing with retrograde vibes generally means waiting until they clear (where you can) to make these important moves forward.

The best ways to roll with Mars Retrograde energy are to ease up on your ambitions, and especially to slow down your pace so you can think and act more strategically. Focus on maintaining existing routines and look at where you can tie up loose ends from the past by finishing existing projects or revisiting what has inspired you in the past.  There is an opportunity to bring new life into a pursuit that has fallen by the way side.

Ideally you want to be patient and wait to launch new (long-term) ventures until you have better support from astrological energies to carry your new project as far into the future as possible.  Otherwise, your endeavor is more likely to lose steam or you’ll need to repeat aspects over again.

Shortened Temper, Frustration, Overreacting

> The Mars Retrograde season calls us to focus on how we express our fundamental needs and desires.  Those who tend to bully or express their will with aggression are more likely to be met with frustration as their ‘power’ to influence others is weakened.  At the outset these individuals may react by showing even more aggression in an attempt to force their desired outcome, until they realize the solution actually lies in taking a more respectful approach.  They are learning to live with others more peacefully and this involves being more open to compromise.

On the other hand, those who tend to be passive will feel the effects of their unexpressed will (the effects of their internalized anger and resentment) more vividly.  These individuals are being called to live with themselves more peacefully by speaking up about their needs without guilt or shame.  Someone who is suppressing their desires is also more likely to experience physical illness or have accidents during this time as the body more readily reflects the symptoms of inner conflict during this time.


There is so much more to say about Mars Retrograde.  Understanding how a specific transit will influence you personally depends on your unique birth chart.  Until October 8th, I am offering a ‘mini’ Mars Retrograde reading that allows you to ask a question and receive specific insights about how Mars Retrograde is influencing YOU personally. Click here to find out more.

Daily ‘Astrovibe’ Tips and Insights from Namastrology on Instagram 🙂 



The word ‘retrograde’ literally means ‘to step backwards’ and this term is used in astrology to describe the times when, from our perspective here on earth, a planetary body is observed to be moving counter to its normal direction of orbit.

During a retrograde cycle, the energies which are expressed by that planetary body have a more ‘introspective’ focus. The usual ‘forward’ momentum shifts, encouraging us to ‘look backwards’.

A retrograde cycle has 3 phases:

(1) Pre-shadow phase – the influence of the retrograde energy starts to be felt and grows stronger with each day. The planetary body which is about to go retrograde will be passing back over the path which it is currently transiting when the planet is in the retrograde phase. During the pre-shadow phase, the orbit slows down until it eventually reaches the point where it will switch directions.  

(2) Retrograde phase – the orbit is counter to the normal direction and the planetary body appears to be ‘moving backwards’

(3) Post-shadow phase – the influence of the retrograde is still felt but starts to slowly diminish with each day. The planetary body is moving forward again, retracing its steps for the third time over the same path. It’s moving slowly at first (it is said to be ‘sleepy’ during this time) but with each day it picks up speed until it fully resumes its normal pace.  


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