On June 26th Mars moved into retrograde, bringing a powerful energy that would have a profound impact on our lives. At a time when Mars is closer to the Earth than it has been at any point in the last 15 years, this energy is only more intense – Are you ready for it?

Known as the ‘Planet of Passion,’ Mars reigns over our determination, energy and drive to succeed in this world. As it moves through the zodiac signs, it redirects this energy, encouraging us to face life’s challenges and move ourselves forward. By understanding where this influence lies, we can leverage its power to help propel us forward towards our goals and dreams. For example, if Mars is moving through Gemini, the highly social and people driven side, then we are likely to see this boost in our relationships, encouraging us to take them to the next level.

Much like the mythological God that shares its name, Mars has the potential for both positive and negative, good and evil. It is all in how you choose to use this energy in your own life. If you allow it to drive your passions in a positive way, Mars can elevate you to new levels of success. If, however, you choose to focus on destruction and violence, this planet can drive that too. This energy is why the Roman God Mars is the God of War!

Mars retrograde refers to the point in time when the planet appears to move backward through the sky to those of us here on Earth. This movement is an illusion, created by the movement of Mars in relation to the movement of Earth. However, the shift in energy caused by planetary retrograde is anything but an illusion!

During Mars retrograde, from June 26th to August 27th, this shift in movement is going to leave us incredibly short in patience. Determined and passionate about our efforts in life, even the smallest of annoyances can set us off, leaving us feeling frustrated, annoyed and even hostile. If you notice yourself starting to become irritated, take a step back and take a deep breath. Look at the situation and consider whether this is normally something that would get under your skin, or whether your annoyance with it has been heightened by the retrograde. This will help you to avoid lashing out unnecessarily.

This is a time of conflict in our lives. The path to success is going to be a rocky one, which may be incredibly discouraged. Even situations that once appeared to be easy and problem free are going to test you, revealing just how badly you want this. It is at this point that the power for either positive or negative is in your hands. You can either harness this passion, propelling your forward against the odds, giving you the determination to overcome even the biggest barriers that you will come up against, or you can allow it to discourage you and tear you down. Just remember that settling at this stage of the game will continue to negatively impact your life long after Mars retrograde has passed.

Those who will succeed most during this period of time are the individuals who see this conflict as an opportunity for personal growth and development. This will reveal your true inner strength, as well as the weaknesses that you need to overcome in order to move forward. Pay careful attention to the areas that require growth and development, as working through these aspects of your personality will make you stronger and more capable than ever before.

Image via Lisa Salvatore

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