Early 2013's Relational Resolutions


Our first few weeks of 2013 feature Venus in Capricorn slipping into alignment with the endlessly-squaring Uranus and Pluto… and escorting its edgy transformational vibe into the relationship realm.

Venus enters Capricorn on Tuesday (Jan 8), a zodiac-zone in which she's markedly goal-oriented in her approach to interpersonal relations. Venus is not at her most relationally idealistic in Capricorn, where she assumes a more deliberate stance in her exchanges. She's less likely to forgive a trespass purely for love's sake, for example, unless it directly benefits her in some tangible fashion. Venus in Capricorn is more interested in the practical (rather than touchy-feely) consequences of a coupling; if she's going to invest her time and energy in someone, there better be a nice payoff.

The upshot of Venus's travels through Capricorn (which continue through Feb 1) is a renewed utilitarianism in how we interact with others. Though our sappy lovesick selves are conditioned to bristle at the idea of 'using' another person to a particular end, the reality is that we all do use our relationships to bring us certain benefits: companionship, emotional intimacy, sexual connection, someone to share responsibility with. The Capricorn imprint merely accentuates our awareness of this pragmatic angle… and hopefully helps us discern whether our involvement with any given individual is either helping or hurting our ability to achieve our other lifestyle aims.

Coupling this Venus-in-Capricorn influence with the general New-Year'sy attitude of resolutions and reexaminations, then, it makes a lot of sense to now direct our critical gazes at all our interpersonal dealings—not strictly the romantic ones, but also friendships or business relationships, and especially any in which you hold a financial stake—and to correct any lapses where we've drifted too far from our strategic longer-term interests. This is an excellent boundary-(re)establishment moment: Frame the discussion in terms of a result you want to achieve within the relationship, which would require certain structures to remain in place, rather than as an explicit criticism of what the other person's doing wrong. (And if your desired result seems an impossibility with this person, it's also time to quietly consider your other options.)

Those who are on the hunt for a new pal, main squeeze and/or professional collaborator? Over the coming few weeks, try being more of an unapologetic task-master: Landing your best match might require a series of steps, including looking in places appropriate to your specified type and carefully assessing candidates based on your few most-important criteria. Venus in Capricorn often evaluates relationship prospects like one would interview contractors, plumbers or electricians (though preferably with some degree of sly subtlety). Can they get the designated job done effectively? Perhaps multiple bids should be considered, if one hasn't proven to be the obvious pick.

Because of the Uranus-Pluto factor, these latest relational (re)configurings hold a deeper relevance for the ongoing personal revolutions we're each faced with actualizing during this turbulent decade. Venus conjoins Pluto on Wed Jan 16, a clear statement on how willfully we might goad the key figure(s) in our lives to join us in our goal-driven pursuits, encouraging them to serve those certain role(s) we've constructed for them. Any Venus-Pluto conjunction provides us potent powers of attraction, as we can more astutely play to our target's psychological profile, appealing to their unique triggers and charges… and, therefore, joining us to them with an added intensity or complexity. In Capricorn, this conjunction carries an economic or logistical edge, uniting folks of common practical purpose in profitable alliance. Even in purely personal partnerings, there's still a businesslike undertone… which has the benefit of helping ensure the important shit gets handled, but simultaneously holds the potential to rub the less enterprising types (or, should I say, the less successfully enterprising types) very wrong.

Of course not everybody will respond graciously to the willful persuasions of Venus/Pluto in Capricorn… particularly if their life-goals run counter to the propositions being made, or if they resist being so plainly 'used' to further someone else's interests. Underlying any relationship looms the dynamic of each participant's relative power-position aligning—or colliding—with the other's. We naturally seek to further our own needs agenda, and will behave interpersonally in a manner that perpetuates our successes in this arena and/or attempts to overturn the less successful elements. (Sometimes, due to self-limiting or masochistic beliefs, we may choose to perpetuate our passivity or victimhood… though this is often a 'success' in providing ourselves what we sadly expect to deserve.)

If we're caught in a dynamic where we're structurally disempowered in meeting our needs (or, frankly, are just bored of giving in to their noisy demands), our only choices for adjusting this imbalance toward greater self-empowerment may necessitate a sharp turn or shocking revolt. Here's where rebel Uranus comes in, squaring Venus (exact Sat Jan 12) at the same time she conjoins Pluto. The Venus-square-Uranus theme: asserting an abrupt and/or individuating distance in relationships that have become claustrophobic, controlling, or lifeless. That Uranus is currently in Aries only amps up the freedom-oriented impulsivity in this aspect, encouraging rash self-directed forward thrusts to break any stifling interpersonal patterns.

In combination with the Pluto conjunction, Uranus's impact on Venus urges us not to sit back and let an exciting opportunity for some self-satisfying shakeup pass us by, just because we're afraid of the interpersonal consequences. Likewise, neither should we remain in the same dreary relational purgatory, in fear of 'rocking the boat' with someone who might make great girl-/boyfriend material or an excellent business partner. The unexpressed not-knowing that lingers between you may be a worse impediment to your advancing than any imagined 'worst-case' rejection.

All the while, Mars will be traveling through Aquarius, sign of the coolly eccentric intellectual… an indication that any assertive thrusts or conflict-ready responses are best made with an emotionally tempered attitude of what's best for everyone (even if it's ultimately just what you believe is 'best for everyone'). Mars in Aquarius (Dec 25-Feb 1) fights with grand progressive ideas and an egalitarian logic, easily dismissing adversaries who have not sufficiently thought through their opinions and/or rely too heavily on personal feelings or preferences over supposed fairness. Once he passes his square to Saturn in Scorpio today (Mon Jan 7), which has essentially prevented him from 'transcending' emotional concerns quite as he'd like, he'll no longer be constrained by other planets for the duration of the month. Mars in Aquarius, then, assists us in carrying out Venus-in-Capricorn's relational strategies by fostering a certain detachment that eases our process of making emotionally challenging clean-breaks, to ultimately support us in living by our chosen ideological principles.