March comes in more like a lamb than a lion this year. The month begins with a new moon in compassionate Pisces on March 1, awakening a spiritual and nurturing energy. After what was an arduous winter for most of us, this is the perfect day to indulge in escapist Piscean pampering: beauty and spa treatments, a hot-stone massage, even a boozy brunch that stretches into the twilight hours.
Two planets — Mars and Saturn — turn retrograde (backward) at the top of the month. Retrograde occurs when a celestial body passes the earth in its orbit and appears to move in reverse for a few weeks (or months, in some cases). Then, everything under that planet's jurisdiction gets stalled or simply goes haywire. This is a good cosmic review period; a time to handle unfinished business and tweak your plans. (For more on retrogrades, read this.)
We've already endured love-planet Venus doing backspins in January, and Mercury for most of February. And, it seems we're not getting a break just yet. From March 1-May 19, energizer Mars goes retrograde in Libra, the sign of relationships and harmony. Watch your temper and impatience with those closest to you. Couples and colleagues are more prone to bickering. Use this cycle to get your relationships back in balance.
From March 2-July 20, heavyweight Saturn goes retrograde in Scorpio, the sign of sex, intimacy, wealth, and shared resources. Although you might be ready for a thousand spring flings (especially if you endured the winter of discontent and endless snow), cautious Saturn pushes for discretion. It's an important time to consolidate your finances, pay off any debt, and take it easy on the credit cards, too. Look for ways you can pool resources and reduce your carbon footprint, especially if it's nearing Sasquatch proportions. Bike or carpool to work, share childcare, host communal dinners where everyone brings an ingredient or a dish.
In better news, expansive Jupiter ends a four-month retrograde in Cancer, the sign of home and family. If you've been hoping to move, start a family, or reconnect with a relative, lucky Jupiter is here until July 16. The March 16 Virgo full moon is a great day to sign any contracts, pitch an idea, or have an important conversation — we should all be alert and prepared to discuss anything in detail.
If you've felt an overall tension in the air since mid-February, you're not imagining it. All the way through the end of April, three "cardinal sign" (leadership-driven) planets are locked in a T-square — a three-way standoff — which can ramp up pressure and make anyone act like, well, a selfish prick. This T-square is between Jupiter in family-oriented Cancer, volatile Uranus in me-first Aries, and controlling Pluto in careerist Capricorn. Trying to juggle home, work, and your personal interests is a special challenge now. It doesn't help that everyone wants it all his/her way. The missing fourth cardinal sign here is Libra, which we look to for answers. Libra is about compromise, fairness, and cooperation. So, let's all try to work together this month, people!
And, if you need some "me time" — which you probably do — grab it again at the end of March. This month is bookended by new moons (which also happened in January). March 30 hosts a new moon in Aries, the sign of the self, personal identity, and solo ventures. If we see you eating brunch alone, buying a single round-trip flight, or perusing studio apartment listings "for fun," we won't judge.