Home is where your Bullish heart is this month. Whether you're traveling to your favorite childhood vacation spot or hunkering down at Chateau Taurus, August puts you in nostalgic and sensitive spirits. The Sun is making its annual visit to Leo until August 22, spotlighting your fourth house of home, family and emotional foundations. Focus on your personal life instead of toiling away under the canned A/C. Nurturing your closest bonds, especially with women and children, will soothe your soul.
But don't set your lens to soft-focus just yet. With energizing Mars also in the sign of the Lion until September 5, this year's Leo season won't be a pastoral scene of iced sun tea on the veranda, or hours spent buried in the pages of summer's best beach fiction. Driven Mars could bring a flurry of activity to your home life—as well as a few moments of friction. A cacophony of kids, house guests or home renovation noise could make your base camp feel like summer camp—with you as head counselor. Your best bet: Embrace it or bust! Just be crystal-clear about carving your own personal space so you don't resent those chatty relatives or visiting couchsurfers. Set house rules, and remind folks, if necessary, that just because you're offering bed and board doesn't oblige you to cook, supply groceries or provide 24/7 entertainment. With the Sun and Mars in this touchy-feely zone, your emotions could get raw, and you'll need solitude to decompress. If it means putting a lock on your bedroom door or cranking up the air-con for makeshift white noise, so be it!
The stars supply plenty of reasons to be vigilant about your time-outs, Taurus. August is one heck of an active month in the heavens: There are two game-changing eclipses, two planetary retrogrades and the final installment of three Jupiter-Pluto squares that have been shaking things up since last November. It may feel like the only constant is change. While eclipses push us to make big moves, retrogrades prompt us to slow down—a weird pacing issue that could throw your energy off. Give yourself the proper time and space to integrate.
So, how to deal with all this cosmic calamity? Let's start with the eclipses, which fall on the Leo/Aquarius axis, part of a new series that will renegotiate your work-life balance from 2017 to 2019. Eclipses bring surprising changes and unexpected events and clear away what no longer serves us and push us to align with our true purpose. As a steady Taurus, too much change can make you queasy, but with eclipses, there's simply no way of planning ahead. Adopt an attitude of curious anticipation as much as you possibly can.
The first, a lunar eclipse, arrives at the August 7 Aquarius full moon, delivering a giant booster shot to your tenth house of career and long-term goals. You could rocket a few rungs up the professional ladder or receive a major opportunity for leadership and recognition. Lunar eclipses can turn things on their head quickly, bringing swift transitions and endings. A major executive might suddenly exit the company, or you may part ways with a longtime client. You could get news of a corporate restructuring, possibly one that makes your position obsolete or reshuffles your entire job description. While it could be shocking or upsetting, don't hit the panic button. Trust that lunar eclipses are sweeping away the old to make room for the new. Just as quickly, you could hear word of an exciting new gig that's much better suited to your talents. Be proactive. This eclipse is a powerful day to make any grand public debuts. Your father or an important man could figure into events.
The second eclipse is getting major media buzz because it's a total solar eclipse, the first one visible in the U.S. in decades. It falls at the August 21 Leo new moon, which is even more supercharged because it's the second rare, consecutive new moon in Leo this year (the first was on July 23). Big changes could arrive in your home and personal life: perhaps a move, a pregnancy or changes with a relative. A powerful woman could open doors for you. Reflect on events from a month ago, and also page back to February 10, the inaugural Leo eclipse (a lunar one) in this series. What insights did you have about your living situation? Did you have any emotional awakenings? In our opinion, solar eclipses can be a little easier to take than lunar ones, since they fall on new moons and bring beginnings rather than endings. This one could open a new chapter of your personal life that unfolds over the coming six months.
August 4 brings the third installment in a trio of intense squares that have formed between big-picture Jupiter and controlling Pluto over the past eight months. Jupiter is in your detail-driven sixth house of health and organization, while Pluto is in your ninth house of expansion and risk. One part of you wants to rush ahead with a grand (if hastily constructed) plan, but your visionary venture could be stopped cold by essential details like logistics, budget and timing. Or your own micromanaging tendencies could interfere with the need to take an important risk. Which voice do you listen to: the angel on your shoulder urging you to play it safe and stick with the status quo—or the devil egging you on to live a little, already?
The last two Jupiter-Pluto squares were on November 24, 2016, and March 30, 2017, so reflect back to these willful cosmic battles for themes that could resurface. Have you taken on more than you can humanly handle, or miscalculated an investment? Instead of gripping the wheel tighter, swallow your pride and correct course. The desire to "save face" will be your downfall, and it will only give your problems more power over you. Watch for stress-related health breakdowns, as the mind-body-soul connection is especially strong.
Lastly, we get a doubleheader of retrograde (backward) planets this month, as unpredictable Uranus and communicator Mercury do an about-face. Uranus, the planet of radical change and progress-at-any-cost, makes its annual five-month retrograde from August 2 until January 2. Uranus is in your twelfth house of closure, healing and the subconscious from 2011 to 2018, pushing you to evolve into new levels of self-awareness and depth.
Do you have a codependent tie to break or an emotional knot to unravel? Old baggage could come up for review, prompting you to use the rest of 2017 for reflection and change. Taurus, you're a creature of habit, and some of your vices can veer into addiction, affecting your mental and physical health. Uranus retrograde is a powerful time to take inventory and break any self-destructive cycles, perhaps with the support of a therapist, recovery group or naturopath. This retrograde could inspire a deep dive into the spiritual realm, exploring energy work, shamanic healing or whatever your preferred path to the divine may be. Art, music and dance can be powerful outlets for pent-up pain. Just lean in to the twelfth-house themes of surrender and support (two concepts you tend to resist). Let go of the things you can't control and ask for help when you need it! No matter what you're going through, Bull, you don't have to weather it alone.
Old friends and lovers could resurface while Mercury, the planet of communication, technology and travel, is retrograde from August 12 until September 5. Mercury will back through Virgo and your passionate, expressive fifth house. Take all the standard Mercury-retrograde precautions: backup your data and devices, triple-confirm appointments, and spring for that travel insurance. Have you abandoned a creative project? Dust off your drum kit or set up your old easel and paint set. Watch for drama, as misunderstandings can get heated, and your temper could shoot up fast.
Are you pining for the one that got away? Seek closure instead of holding a torch for someone. Retrogrades can bring back people from our past, and with Mercury moonwalking through your romantic fifth house, an ex could ping you out of the blue. Could the second time be the charm? If resuming contact is a bad idea, write a letter (the kind you never send) and release all the sadness, anger and regret you're holding inside. Then burn it ceremonially and ask the universe to help remove the painful feelings. You might also try reciting the Hawaiian Ho'oponopono prayer: I'm sorry/Please forgive me/Thank you/I love you.
The Sun will join Mercury on August 22, entering Virgo for its annual monthlong visit to your lusty, live-out-loud fifth house. If you've been a bit of a shut-in lately, shake off those homebody vibes and make hay while the summer sun still shines. A late-season romance could heat up—and hey, there are still a couple more weeks to enjoy some long walks on the beach. Have fun playing with your appearance, adding bold or glamorous touches. Who cares if you're late to the turquoise hair party? Throw in some Manic Panic and let your alter ego out to play. Dabble with the "sunset eye" or another Instagram-worthy beauty trend.
How deep is your love? On August 25, structured Saturn ends a five-month retrograde in Sagittarius and your eighth house of intimacy, joint ventures and long-term finances. If your mojo has been in slo-mo since the ringed planet reversed its commute April 5, your seductive side makes a comeback. Complications with money, real estate and legal entanglements could start to iron themselves out. Saturn retrograde offered a sobering look at how you merge with others—financially, emotionally, sexually. You may have been forced to make foundational changes, scaling back your cost of living or being more discerning about whom you trust. While it wasn't easy, your money and your relationships can now move forward on much firmer footing.