Venus in Retrograde: Healing Our Relationship with Money
I've had this song from, eh-hem, Snoop Lion (aka, Snoop Dogg) in my head for the past few days. It seems appropriate considering on Saturday July 25th, Venus began her 40-day retrograde journey which is inviting us to turn inward and reflect upon the Venusian themes of love, money, values, beauty, and relationships.
With the recent increased awareness and notoriety of Mercury retrograde within the mainstream culture, many people have come to fear and dread retrograde periods - especially since Mercury retrograde happens so frequently and has been duped as a troubling time that induces communication blunders, technology mishaps, delays, and frustrations.
With a cultural addiction to negative press, many people miss out on the inherent benefit of the retrograde period and the not-so-obvious blessings in disguise available during these times.
Retrograde periods are actually pretty awesome as they offer us the opportunity to review, reflect, reorganize, and reassess the themes associated with the planet in retrograde motion. Retrogrades are like a magic wand that allow us to (almost) pause time and go back to make necessary revisions so we can integrate lessons and co-create our future.
So when Venus, the planet of love, creativity, art, values, beauty and money goes retrograde, what can we expect?
I've read a lot of wonderful articles about love and relationships in terms of this Venus Retrograde - here's a great one from Adam Sommer and another sweet one from Sarah Varcas. What I haven't seen much of is how this 40-day period can invite us into a new relationship with our values and how we engage with money. I'm here to address this because this is how this retrograde is showing up in my consciousness. Maybe for you too?
In astrology, Venus is considered a receptive and feminine planet; where it's expressed in our chart describes how we receive love, money, and other resources. It also rules the signs of Taurus and Libra, as well as the 2nd house (the house of self-worth and finances) and the 7th house (the house of marriage and partnerships).
Venus represents not only the intangible feelings of love (7th house), but also reflects how we interact with the tangible realm of money, resources, and possessions (all 2nd house themes). Essentially, Venus defines everything we value and hold dear to our hearts.
For those of you that are not feeling this Venus Retrograde in terms of her impact on your love life, you may wonder how to navigate it from another perspective.
Perhaps you feel more inclined to review your relationship to your finances, debts, self-worth, earning potential, possessions, and values during this time. If so, you may be onto something.
The reason why I'm particularly drawn to explore the financial aspect of this Venus retrograde is due to Venus' upcoming journey through the earth sign of Virgo once Venus goes direct on September 6th. This piece points me directly to the tangible and earthly realm of none other than humankind's best (and most problematic) invention of all time: money!
Now, some astrologers believe that the earthy sign of Virgo is ruled by Mercury, while others feel it is more appropriately ruled by the asteroid Chiron (the wounded healer archetype). I take a neutral stance and consider both planets as applicable rulers of this sign.
With these rulerships in mind, my interpretation of this is:
Mercury represents our thinking mind and the meticulous way we organize and categorize our thoughts, while Chiron represents our wounds and how we heal them.
With Venus approaching its visit in Virgo, we are preparing ourselves and reviewing our wounded (Chiron) thoughts and beliefs (Mercury) about money (Venus).
We may also feel compelled to act with more integrity in terms of how we handle our money while we seek to understand our values and the motives behind our purchases.
Keep in mind that before Venus catapults into Virgo, it is going to spend time soaking up the sunshine of Leo where we'll get a chance to see how our heart or ego drives our relationship with money. Leo has the potential to be grandiose and showy with money, loving luxury items and throwing lavish parties. This celebratory attitude is all fun and great until we wake up the next day with a major financial hangover as Leo can also go overboard and overspend.
So while Venus takes a dip back into Leo, pay attention to the "why" behind your spending.
That said, this is a great time to fine-tooth comb your financial life and pay off debts - or at least try and get yourself on a path toward financial freedom. This means paying more attention to the details (Virgo) of your relationship to money by enhancing your awareness about the appropriation and practical allocation of our money and resources (Venus).
You may also discover that in revising and healing your behaviors and attitudes towards money, you gain a new sense of security, self-worth, and stability that may extend beyond your pocketbook and spill into your relationships and other areas of your life.
Helpful tips to best use this time
- Track your spending. This fascinating psychological activity will take a few extra moments of your precious time but it is definitely worth it and will be a huge eye opener. Remember, Mercury is the planet of the mind and it is one of the rulers of Virgo, and since the mind is the center for pretty much everything we do (including activating our emotions), it's a great awareness practice to pay attention to your emotions around money. Just like eating can be connected to your emotions, your spending habits can be emotional too - so, notice how you're feeling when you spend money: are you tense? Excited? Fearful? Track your body for cues as to what triggers certain emotions. Note: fear often shows up as a contraction, whereas trust and freedom are often experienced as a feeling expansiveness and ease. Which do you prefer? If you don't like how you feel, how can you change that?
- Budget! Review your budget to see how you can rework and revise it to bring more of what you value into your life. Don't have a budget? This is the perfect time to start one!
- Take stock of your investments. (Like the pun there?). If you have your money invested somewhere, this is a good time to reconsider moving your money into alternative investments. Do your current investments align with your highest values? Or is their sole purpose to put money in your pocket? Take this time to do some research but it's best to wait until after the retrograde period to make decisions on where you might move your dough.
- Do something different. Are you super generous? Try holding back and seeing what it's like to receive instead of give. Are you a diligent saver? See what it feels like to donate some of your savings to a cause that touches your heart. Step outside of your comfort zone and see what it feels like to embrace a new way of being. We often stick to what's familiar because it's known, but that behavior just keeps us in a illusion of safety. When we take risks and do something different, we may discover new strengths we didn't know we had.
- Track patterns + energy leaks. Plain and simple, money is energy. You've heard the phrase, "time is money", well this is pretty accurate considering we live in the world of business (busy-ness) and distraction and many people are running a 'time' deficit. During this Venus retrograde, you may consider looking at how you spend your time in the same way you would track how you spend money. Be mindful of your time-spending patterns and again, see if how what you do with your time aligns with your values. As Roy Disney said, "when values are clear, decisions are easy". You may learn that where you spend your time is actually draining your energy reserves.
- Work smarter, not harder. Venus in Virgo is definitely detail-oriented, but also super clean and efficient. One of my favorite concepts from the book, Rich Dad, Poor Dad, is how we stop the flow of abundance into our lives whenever we say things like, "I can't afford it". Our brains instantly give up and cannot think of solutions whenever we start something with the simple phrase of, "I can't". Notice when you say or think these things and try replacing old patterns with new ones such as, "I wonder how I'll afford this", or "How will I afford this?" Give it a try and see if a sense of spaciousness accompanies those questions. The space you create is where you'll access the creativity of Venus to come up with new ways of thinking about money. Remember, the void is exactly what created all of which we're living right now. In time, answers and new ideas will present themselves.
- Talk about money with your friends + family. Money is one of the most taboo subjects in life. We don't learn much about it at school, and mostly absorb information about money from our families. It seems so many of us don't know what to do with this stuff! A lot of people also carry shame around their financial situation (whether it's good or bad), and a lot of people are downright confused as to how money works, while some people are afraid to talk about it because they think money is 'bad' or 'evil'. Because of these facts, people avoid the subject altogether. With Pluto in Capricorn however, all the secrets we've been hiding and issues we've been ignoring are going to bubble up to the surface. It's not only possible but inevitable that our global economy is going to transform. Why not start consciously engaging with that process in your own life and start talking about it with other people? And I don't mean talk about money by complaining about it, I mean talking about it to find out how other people handle their money, and how you might be able to make more of it. You might be surprised to learn a few things you didn't know, or share some things you actually do know. Surprise yourself.
I am personally working on cleaning up my mental stories about money while I continue to educate myself about transforming my "make-money" mindset to a "make money work for me" mindset. I used to be so resistant to and fearful of talking about money but these days I'm all about it. Shine the light on that shit! It's time. Let's talk about the elephant in the room and get to know this bad boy and how to work with it. I've been examining this for the past two years or so, but I feel like this is really going to be the time in my life when I finally get my financial situation in order (and hey, Virgo loves to organize!).
It's also important to acknowledge the potential down-side of this retrograde period, which is the tendency to worry or even obsess and nit-pick about your finances. To help you with what other emotional pieces might arise during this time, I put together a solid reading list of books you may want to check out over the next 40 days - (btw, here is an interesting read about the significance of 40 day cycles).
Uranus also began its retrograde journey on July 26th and will be traveling backwards until Christmas time. This is especially helpful because with the planet of rebellion, eccentricity, and awakening moving us toward inward reflection and engagement with our inner genius, we may have more light-bulb revelations and "ah-ha" moments in terms of our Venus retrograde lessons. Pay attention when the mental lightning bolts strike!
Saturn is also moving direct on August 2nd which means we may be able to set up lasting structures to implement all financial and romantic changes we want to make once Venus goes direct on September 6th.
TOP 10 Books to Read During this retrograde Period
1. Sacred Success: Epic read and thorough guide that follows the model of the Hero's Journey. It's especially geared towards women who want to transform their relationship with money. This is like my financial bible.
2. The Soul of Money: Beautiful storytelling that points to a deeper inquiry into our patterns and beliefs about money.
3. Sacred Economics: Mind-bender, paradigm-shifter written by progressively minded genius Charles Eisenstein (love him!) Everything he writes is jaw-dropping inspiring and brilliantly believable. This book will forever change the way you think about money and economy.
4. Get Rich Lucky Bitch: Real deal, cut-the-bullshit writing that gets to the core of how women get in their own way and how to get over that, stat.
5. The Total Money Makeover: Despite it being a little preachy at times, it's a super practical guide that teaches you how to manage your finances and get out of debt.
6. The Trance of Scarcity: Shift your money mindset with this deep and insightful book about living in scarcity and how to shift into prosperity consciousness.
7. The Dynamic Laws of Prosperity: If you can look beyond the heavy biblical references, this book has powerful teachings that can help you shift your attitude and live a prosperous life.
8. Rich Dad, Poor Dad: Phenomenal storytelling that provides practical wisdom on how to become financially literate - the key to being rich.
9. The Power of Receiving: Actionable exercises to get you in touch with blocks around receiving. This is an ESSENTIAL book for women everywhere who are caught in the throws of giving, giving, giving.
10. The Prosperous Heart: I love Julia Cameron's approach to self-help. This is a gentle and effective guide for working through old patterns and beliefs about money.
(Click on the images below to buy these from Amazon - buy used books and save trees!)
Lastly, keep a journal and track your experience during this retrograde period. You may want to revisit it the next time Venus is in Virgo (in the next 8 years or so).
It might be pretty remarkable to see how things have changed for you in terms of money, finances, and self-worth. You may even want to think back to the summer of 2007 and see what was happening in your life during that Venus retro period to get a sense for how this one will be for you.