The planet of action, ambition and desire is moving to a new spot in the sky on August 20, where it'll usher us into 2023. Mars usually stays in each zodiac sign for around two months, but because the planet will retrograde on October 30, it'll be in the extroverted and clever sign of Gemini all the way until March 25, 2023. This rambunctious, tell-me-what-you're-really-thinking energy is here for the long haul.
Narayana Montúfar, senior astrologer for Astrology.com and author of Moon Signs: Unlock Your Inner Luminary Power, calls this transit one of the most crucial to pay attention to as we head into the rest of 2022. (No pressure, though.) "Mars is the planet of drive, ambition, anger, and sexual hunger; it is the planet that gets us out of bed every morning and gives us energy," she says. "In Gemini, Mars expresses itself through the intellect, as well as spoken and written words. Under this planet-sign combination, the mind becomes incredibly active and hungry for stimulation, and our words have incredible power." This energy can be both positive and negative — words can be weaponized, but they can also be wielded for good. Just be sure to choose your battles wisely.
We'll feel a pull to speak our minds, and psychic astrologer Leslie Hale says that "our communication with others will be on fire for the next seven months and be our greatest asset as well as our biggest problem if we are not aware of the pitfalls." But, again, it's not all negativity. "With some understanding of how the sign works, it can be a time of excitement, bright ideas, and an invigorating if not fun period of time," Hale says. "Witty and clever ideas will attract you at this time, as will eclectic people and places. You will be more interested in making contacts and connections, and trying new ways of approaching things, even new and different people." The theme of this transit is freedom — with your words and ideas, of course, but also with how you'll want to feel.
Mark your calendars for September 16, when Venus in Virgo forms a tense square with Mars in Gemini. "We may be forced to confront our values and who or what we pursue," says astrologer Stephanie Campos. "Do they align? Are our relationships rooted in reality and are they helping us cultivate the life of our dreams? Or are they holding us back in some way?" Take this day to reflect on everything you're working towards, whether it's in life, love, work, or even money. Is your hard work worth it? Or is it just making your time here on Earth all the more difficult?
Mars will begin its retrograde in Gemini on October 30 and end on January 12, 2023, causing things to get a bit bumpy. "Hidden anger that’s been building up within will come to the surface and result in a harsh tongue lashing," says Lisa Stardust, astrologer and author of The Love Deck. "The results can lead to major issues and arguments that won’t be easy to repair. Therefore, it’s best to think before asserting yourself during this transit and keep a journal of what you wish you could say — then evaluate your findings to decide on the right way to let your feelings be known."
Iva Naskova, astrologer at the Nebula app, agrees, saying that it's especially important to pay attention to our communication around this time, as there could be misinterpreted messages and mixed signals. "Also, the temptation to gossip about other people tends to increase during this time, and as we all know, spreading fake pieces of information about people can end up hurting yours or someone else's feelings," she says. While harmless gossip is a way we often connect with others (and entertain ourselves, let's face it), there does come a point where it can be malicious, and this retrograde will only amplify the repercussions of it. Be respectful, be open-minded, and be aware of the weight your words carry.
There are three planets Mars will be connecting with while it is in Gemini, according to Montúfar: Venus in Virgo, Jupiter in Aries, and Neptune in Pisces. "The connection with Jupiter in Aries is positive and occurs while Mars is still direct on September 1, and will instigate us to grow and expand with confidence and ambition," Montúfar says. Then, when Mars in Gemini clashes with Venus in Virgo on September 16, "it will bring relationship drama and put our relationships under the microscope," while "the square with Neptune will be quite confusing and will occur as Mars stations retrograde" on October 30. Intimidating, yes, but something we can't get through? Of course not.
Although we have a long journey with this astrological transit ahead, it's nothing we haven't survived before. Our actions will be driven by our ideas and information, so be sure to harness your creative energy and stimulate your mind — you never know what you'll end up creating.