When office equipment breaks down and people fumble with their keys, you'll often hear the blame put on Mercury retrograde. It's become such a cliche that people don't even realize-- Mercury is not the only planet that retrogrades.

Granted, it has the shortest path around the sun, so it retrogrades more frequently; but it's neighbor, Venus, also goes into retro mode every 18 months or so. When Venus retrogrades, it's a whole different energy.

Venus Direct

As Venus moves forward in prograde, it lives up to its namesake: the Roman goddess of love and beauty. Venus governs much ado about love. Venus is all about romance, friendship, family, passion, and basically how you feel about the people in your life. Emotions and feelings are Venus' realm, with it's feminine energies, and you feel these strongly in how you relate to other people.

Venus makes you stop and appreciate the breathtaking view, the stunning artwork and the budding bloom.

Being so feminine, Venus’ energies are very nurturing and intuitive. This bright and shining planet is also concerned with aesthetics, whether it be your own concern for your own looks, or the beauty with which you like to surround yourself. Venus makes you stop and appreciate the breathtaking view, the stunning artwork and the budding bloom.

Venus in Retrograde

When a planet is in retrograde, it means that, from our vantage point on earth, it appears to be moving backwards in the sky. By the time we receive the energy it puts out, it’s changed. Usually, when a planet retrogrades, it’s influences are reversed, or lean more toward the negative aspects than the positive. Venus is no exception.

While Venus still has very feminine energies in retrograde, they are the different type of feminine energies. They turn toward what most people associate with the worst of feminine associations-- being overly-emotional, overly-sensitive, frail and needy. This can particularly manifest in your relationships. What you thought was water under the bridge may be churned up again; issues and thoughts that are usually hidden and unspoken are suddenly dragged out into the light and put on display. Pent-up feelings are set free.

Further, Venus retrograde is largely associated with pettiness, being catty or vindictive. You may find your emotions and behaviors more erratic.

Working with Venus Retrograde

As Venus has a tendency to stir the pot and open old wounds when it goes retro, you can actually take this as a blessing. It allows you to really examine situations that are not as resolved as you thought they were.

Perhaps you put certain things on the back burner and forgot them there; perhaps you buried feelings you didn’t want to consciously deal with or you’ve ignored warning signs. Venus retrograde brings it all to the forefront again for you to re-asses and re-examine situations and relationships.

The key thing to remember is not to act at this time-- only reflect. It’s not a good time to make decisions regarding these things because you’re more likely to let emotions rule you and cloud your judgment. It is a good time to make a list of your concerns and give yourself time to plan your best solutions.

You have to be particularly careful when dealing with people during Venus retrograde; emotions tend to run high. You also want to avoid giving in too much to your emotional needs-- tend to yourself. Have a good cry. Pamper yourself a bit, but don’t indulge too much in self-pity or allow your self-esteem to slip down a few notches. Don’t over-indulge to console yourself or compensate.

When Venus is in retrograde, it may feel a lot like everyone is PMSing. Keep that in mind, trying to keep emotions in check and give yourself some small comforts to help you get through it.