Starting on December 19 and lasting until January 29, Venus will station retrograde in the practical and ambitious sign of Capricorn. The last time Venus went retrograde, the world looked a little different. It was May of 2020 and we were in the thick of the COVID-19 pandemic, trying to figure out how to navigate a new world filled with mask-wearing, social distancing, and quarantining. A year and a half later, we're still figuring things out as they continue to change — but if there's one thing we know for sure, astrology remains constant.
Venus is one of the closest planets to Earth, meaning that its retrogrades are more powerful and intense than other planets. It has us rethinking and reassessing all this Venusian: relationships, affection, money, pleasure, and art.
Coupled with Capricorn's energy, this particular retrograde will have us reassessing our relationships, value systems, and financial situations. "This may mean that we will be asked to own where we need to be more accountable, whether that's with a toxic ex or with our earnings, and see where we need to go back and revise so we can level up," says Madi Murphy, the co-founder of The Cosmic RX and The Cosmic Revolution.
Murphy points out that this is a serious position for the Planet of Love — specifically when it comes to our relationships. "You may be getting honest with yourself about what you want and viewing your idea of what love and relationships mean based on what you've learned about yourself over the past year," she says. "Where have you matured? What is the new commitment you are making to yourself or to your significant other, if you have one, or to your goals?" The past year was a challenging one — take stock in where you've grown and pay attention to what needs to be reassessed.
Pluto, the Planet of Power and Transformation, is one of the main characters of the 2021/2022 Venus retrograde, due to its conjunction with Venus for the next two weeks, according to Murphy. "Typically, Venus conjunct Pluto is a one-day event, but this time it hangs around for nearly two weeks," she says. This energy is pretty potent, and the conjunction could mean breakups and shakeups.
Leslie Hale, psychic astrologer for Keen.com, says that at times during this retrograde, "new information about a partner or potential partner may come to the surface that can seal the relationship or end it depending on the strength of the bond between two people and their status with each other." This is real make-it-or-break-it energy, so be prepared to face some chaos as the month goes on.
It's not just romantic energy, though. Pluto's connection with Venus may reveal some hard truths within other kinds of relationships. "A power dynamic within a business or romantic relationship may have become toxic, and Pluto is uncovering it so we can begin to transform it and heal it," says Narayana Montúfar, senior astrologer for Astrology.com and author of Moon Signs: Unlock Your Luminary Power. Any previously repressed emotions will be brought up and dealt with once and for all — and it's gonna hurt.
When it comes to this year's Venus retrograde, the best thing to do is take things as they come and confront them head on. In particular, Montúfar says to be on the lookout for jealousies, manipulations, and power-plays, not only in our personal relationships but our professional ones as well. "Venus retrograde in Capricorn could mean a cutthroat fight or long negotiation over a title or a powerful position within a company," Montúfar warns. "Ultimately, this retrograde is an opportunity to rethink and rewrite what success really means to us, and how we use our power and social status as we climb the ladder of success."
And, thanks to the involvement of Pluto, Montúfar says that this month could expose those who have been misusing their power in the work and corporate space, describing what's to come as "a huge reality check and an epic fall from grace." She says that Pluto’s main job is to "expose the dark side of people, governments, and corporations, so expect a lot of dirty laundry being aired out during this transit." The tea is piping!
There is a positive aspect to look out for on January 8, when the sun and Venus connect. This brings us to the first of two Venus Star Points of 2022, which is what happens when Venus moves through our solar system in the shape of a five-pointed star, and at the very top it meets with the sun. Lisa Stardust, the author of Saturn Return Survival Guide and The Astrology Deck, says this is an optimal time to manifest love and money. "Although Venus will be retrograde, it’s still a pivotal time in putting all the pieces together for the upcoming months in terms of what we want to bring to life," she says.
Murphy says that this Venus retrograde is the bridge between the lessons of 2021 and the blessings of 2022. It will be bumpy at times, but ultimately we will come out on the other side of this transit — and the new year — stronger than ever. Retrogrades aren't always doom and gloom, and Venus's in particular is all about reflecting on what we want in love, relationships, work, and finances. If we don't look back, how ever will we move forward?