One power suit, pressed and tailored, please. Your big ambitions are poised for flight ever since lucky Jupiter began its yearlong visit to Cancer, your success-and-career house, on June 25. This transit happens once every 12 years (Jupiter was last here from July 2001-August 2002), and you've got between now and July 2014 to reap the incredible benefits it could bring to your loftiest goals. With the Sun also in Cancer until July 22, you've got some extra solar power beaming down on you. Hello, corner office!
Don't rush, though (not that deliberate Libras ever do). Communicator Mercury is retrograde (backward) in Cancer until July 20. So while opportunities bubble up, you might want to review your plans and launch later in the month, after thoughtful Mercury resumes forward motion. Use the first three weeks to field your options, review your strategies, or assess all the potential approaches you could take before you strike. If you work for a company, it might be a good time for a performance or salary review. However, watch for miscommunications and be mindful what you put in writing now, since Mercury retrograde is not a great time to sign paperwork. No need to be haunted by a paper trail down the line.
Financial matters improve after July 7, when restrictive Saturn ends a five-month retrograde in Scorpio, your money and work sector. Since February 18, your finances may have been tied up tighter than usual. Job demands may have reached critical mass, and even Libras doing meaningful work had moments where it all felt like too much. Old issues of self-worth may have cropped up, as sober Saturn made you second-guess yourself—even in the areas where you normally shine. Your go-to gifts of charm, persuasion and sartorial flair may not have been enough to save the day. Libra Kim Kardashian, ridiculed by the press for her pregnancy fashion, epitomized the effects of having Saturn retrograde in your sign's posh second house. Hopefully, facing down the naysayers and critics only made your resolve that much stronger.
Mid-July and the very end of the month could get dicey, as disruptive Uranus and heavy-hitting Pluto get locked into a T-square (three-way battle) first with clever Mercury, then with warrior Mars. You could be torn between competing demands with work, family and a relationship. Friction could arise with a key partner or a close person in your life. Libras hate conflict to begin with, and now it seems to be coming at you from all directions—your love life, your home life, and your job. Perhaps this is the universe jostling you to get clear about what YOU want and to set clearer boundaries. With all these people you're trying to please, where you fit into the equation? Or, if you've been playing the chameleon, you might have abandoned your own precious values. Not so fast, Libra. Instead of placating people by telling them what they want to hear (then pissing them off when you don't follow through), try the old "let me get back to you on that one" line. Buy yourself time to think, center and tune back into your priorities.
Another reason to focus on number one? Erratic Uranus goes retrograde (backward) in Aries, your partnership sign, from July 17-December 17. A significant other, business partner or go-to sounding board might not be as available as usual. While it might be stressful to shoulder so much your own, this could be yet another blessing in disguise. Skim through your fellow Libra Ralph Waldo Emerson's famous "Self-Reliance" essay for a little encouragement.
Your inner social butterfly gets a chance to spread its wings after July 22, when the Sun moves into Leo, your eleventh house of group activity. No matter what you're dealing with, spend time among friends or flitting about out on the town. As much you as you love a soul-stirring conversation, you also love to buzz about, trading air kisses or just having a deep belly laugh with people who haven't seen you without your makeup on or at your most freaked-out moments. Get back on the schmoozing circuit and work it! That same day, an Aquarius full moon beams into your fifth house of passion and play. Do you need a better excuse for a night on the town? Just avoid the drama-rama, as some intense feelings could emerge. Hold off on that extra Bellini—or at least pause for some passed hors d'oeuvres between sips. You want to be back on the scene…but you don't want to MAKE a scene!
Mark your calendar for horoscope history: Monday, July 29 features an incredibly rare aspect known as a Grand Sextile. It's essentially a six-pointed star, or hexagram, comprised of seven planets that form harmonious angles (trines and sextiles) to each other. This synergistic seven are all in "feminine" (earth or water) signs. Many astrologers view this as the moment our culture will take a step toward embracing feminine principles.
The effect on your sign can be a lovely dose of that elusive balance that Libras are always seeking. You tend to get pulled into people pleasing, avoiding conflict by trying to make everyone happy. This can be a recipe for burnout—or it can give you a reputation for running late or being flaky. You know what they say: the road to hell is paved with good intentions. After the Grand Sextile, your road to heaven (on earth) will be paved with loving honesty. You can be direct about your needs without coming across as aggressive. Remember that "no" is a complete sentence, too, so you don't have to explain yourself. The Grand Sextile helps you balance between your own needs and other people's. You might not make everyone happy all of the time, but who said that was your job anyway?
LOVE & ROMANCE
Frisky and friendly! With hot-to-trot Venus in Leo, your eleventh house of platonic and electric connections, you've got enough wattage to light up New York City and the surrounding metro area. The first three weeks of the month, the love planet in this zone of your chart boosts your drive for all-out spontaneous fun with pals…and maybe a little blurring of the lines with one person in particular, as you might start to feel some thrilling sparks with a friend. Single Libras might add some TLC to their online profiles, since the eleventh house also rules technology. Or, you may want to merge the friend-and-dating scene with an innovative app that connects you to friends-of-friends (sans the awkward intros!) at http://hinge.co/.
On July 22, Venus moves into Virgo, your twelfth house of sweet escapes. Coupled Libras might amp up the fantasy element in the boudoir, while single Libras end up lost in reveries, remembering when…and then some. If you're pining for a lost love, tweak the sentimentality a bit. Feel your feelings, yes. But also remember that the cosmos is giving you a great opportunity to a) remember the best of the best, pointing the way to what you really want; and b) heal, once and for all, the unhealed parts that union might have caused. So pull out the journal and your tissues…and let the release commence.
Romance on the road, anyone? Until July 13, spicy Mars is in Gemini, your ninth house of wanderlust—emphasis on the "lust." You could have a vacation fling while hanging out with that cutie you met on the beach or a scintillating hook up with someone from another country/culture, who will sate your desires for all things "different." If you find yourself in an exotic vacation spot—like, say, the Maldives—saddle up to the poolside bar with water view, order your favorite cocktail (or mock-tail) and, whether solo or with your one and only—let the good times roll.
The second half of the month "Where are we going?" takes on a different tone…because all of a sudden you're not talking about fancy parties or a weeklong Martha's Vineyard stay. On July 13, Mars moves into Cancer, your tenth house of long-term plans, driving you to be future-focused, rather than skipping through those Dutch tulips. Instead of going into need-to-know-now overdrive, remember the wise words of Libra John Lennon, "Life is what happens to you when you're busy making other plans." Breathe. Center. Come back to the present.
Besides, all that mental planning of your wedding date or choosing your kid-to-be's college might not save you from some temporary relationship discord, when rollicking Uranus turns retrograde (backward) in Aries, your seventh house of committed partnerships from July 17-December 17. This can be a rocky time in Coupleville, as one of you starts itching for a little more freedom (and perhaps the other doesn't understand why you can't just stay home and watch Mad Men for the rest of your lives). Someone from the past could come along to stir up trouble or reel you in, only to flake out just before you take that long-awaited leap. Or, perhaps unpredictable forces in your lives could arise, making it hard to find consistent time for love and togetherness. These disruptions don't please your twosome-loving sign. Yet, they reflect some much-needed growth, so embrace the lightning-bolt changes with aplomb.
All this time, you thought a relationship was between TWO people, but in the second half of July, progressive Uranus forms a tricky square to controlling Pluto in Capricorn, your fourth house of blood relatives, potentially causing a meddling family member or a key female to interfere in your relationship. (Repeat after us: "I am an adult. I can make my own decisions about what and who makes my heart sing.") Or, you could be shedding outmoded family dynamics and standing up for yourself, changing the role you play in a certain relationship. Perhaps it was once fun to play the damsel in distress—or Superwoman—but if things have gotten out of balance and you're always dialing up your S.O. for help on things as minor as what to do when your bank overcharges you (or swooping in to the rescue), you may need to let the scales recalibrate. Or, one of the issues could be the hectic demands of your career after ambitious Mars goes into Cancer, your tenth house of accolades, on July 13, firing up your will to succeed…and eating up all your free time, as you rush to meet deadlines and get consumed with your role as star player. This career focus will heighten at the close of the month, when stressful Mars forms a tense square to unpredictable Uranus. If you've gone completely MIA, skipping family barbecues and precious date nights due to work obligations, your loved ones likely won't be having any of that.
The dramatics could hit an all-time high on July 22, when a full moon in Aquarius illuminates your fifth house of romance, passion and creativity. That's right, Libra: these are the kind of performance-worthy hijinks you might not have such an issue with…especially if they lead you straight to the bedroom. Though your refined sign is a big fan of diplomacy, you might find that your feelings come spilling out, in a potentially theatrical outburst. Don't be shy about shedding a few tears or even letting your fiery side take command. At least it shows that you care!
MONEY & CAREER
Show me the money! On July 7, regimented Saturn finally moves direct (forward) in Scorpio, your second house of work and money, after a challenging five-month stretch. Perhaps your finances came up short this year. You thought you were fine, only to realize that bills were creeping up and you simply weren't making enough to pad your account. Maybe you overspent, rationalizing that you could just work some extra hours or pick up a freelance gig…but those familiar income streams went dry. Now, expect the cash to flow more smoothly As a preventive measure, you might want to check out Barbara Stanny's Overcoming Underearning, to help you identify limiting beliefs about your self-worth and see how this is tied to your net worth.
With lucky Jupiter firmly in Cancer, your tenth house of success, you're poised for your most expansive career year in more than a decade. If you've been plotting your ascent, this is the year to make the big moves and put your name on the map. Between now and July 2014, dream big. Why shouldn't you do your own TED Talk? Why shouldn't you expand your business from six-figure revenue to a multi-million dollar household brand? Who ELSE is going to spearhead a groundbreaking art exhibit or design campaign? Or, this could be a time to restructure your trajectory. Perhaps you need to rebuild a fading arm of your business, revamping it to be the next huge industry hit. Or you may decide to plot a new course altogether. While starting from scratch may be less glamorous than your current job (especially one with fancy perks or an expense account), in the long-run this new direction could offer you an incredible amount of security, since it's built on a more solid foundation—and a more solid you.
Whatever new scenarios pop up, hold steady—especially with communicator Mercury retrograde (backward) in Cancer until July 20. You might have a dustup with a boss or someone else to whom you are expected to defer, as you feel potentially stymied, or stuck between a rock and a hard place. There could be some technology breakdowns at work…and meltdowns as staff deal with a downed system and the inability to function effectively. On your end, do what you can to prevent a digital disaster: be sure to back up files, and plan extra carefully if you're traveling for business. If you're heading to an important meeting in another city, don't think you can schedule the flight too close to your appointment. Sailing off the runway straight to your meeting (without having broken a sweat) is not the most likely scenario now.
Late July feels a bit like a pressure cooker, as stressful Mars in your tenth house of ambition opposes crisis-laden Pluto in your fourth house of domestic tranquility. The demands of your work life pile up, right alongside growing tugs from your family. A relative may try to subtly control you by putting you down or expressing cynicism about your lofty plans. Don't let demeaning comments (e.g., "I heard that you got a little promotion…") get under your skin. This is just crabs in a barrel syndrome, where it's easier for an unhappy person to pull you down into their self-imposed misery. You may have an old "who do you think you are?" moment when that self-doubting voice in your head makes you feel more Norma Jean than Marilyn, dahling. Don't lose touch with your fabulosity, even if your cousin wants to dredge up every social misstep you made back in high school. To counteract the potentially negative vibes, plug some uplifting, positive thinking podcasts or videos into your phone and listen to them 24-7.
HEALTH: MIND, BODY & SOUL
Forge ahead, Libra! With a cluster of planets in Cancer, your tenth house of structure, you're taking a no nonsense approach to your wellness. Simplify routines. Don't try to corral your peeps for a group volleyball sesh if it only brings you a headache, attempting to get everyone to agree to the same night. If you need a workout, schedule a workout. It's that simple. You might be in the mood for a hard-edged approach, so perhaps sign up for a boot camp or work with a tough love trainer, especially when go-getter Mars goes into Cancer, dialing up your energy.
Exercise will help counteract some of the family stress that kicks in at the end of the month, when Pluto retrograde (backward) in your domestic fourth house and aggro Mars in your career zone. You may need to be extra assertive with family members around key boundary issues. Or, your exponential career growth could also be tugging you away from your family, leaving you short on self-care time. Perhaps you feel uprooted as a work opportunity appears that requires a move, a commute or just impedes with your instincts to nest. Roll with it, Libra…some exciting transformation is eventually in store, even if you don't know exactly what that looks like.