How to Survive Astrology's Most Intense Day of 2020

The planets haven’t conspired to mess up your life this bad since 1982—here’s how to get through this Sunday’s Saturn-Pluto conjunction!
Collage by Hunter French | Images via Shutterstock

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As if eclipses weren’t enough to handle, it’s time to get ready for an even rarer, foundation-shaking cosmic event—one that hasn’t happened since 1982.

On Sunday January 12, there will be a conjunction between Saturn, the strict rule-enforcer, and Pluto, the lord of the underworld. This means the two planets will be in the same position in the zodiac, marking the beginning of a new cycle, VICE senior astrologer Annabel Gat explains. The Saturn-Pluto conjunction only comes around every few decades, and this one coincides with a meeting between Mercury, the planet of communication and the mind, and the sun, our source of vitality.


“Saturn and Pluto are both very slow-moving planets, so whenever they align it’s a big deal,” Annabel said. “Saturn is the planet of structure, time, limitations, and responsibility. It’s very solid and rigid. Pluto is the planet of death and rebirth—it’s basically the bulldozer of the zodiac. When the two meet, we know that important structures in our lives are going to be torn down and rebuilt.”

“This is the most high-pressure day of this year. You have to be responsible and mature, hard as nails, and tough,” she said. “You have to be willing to make sacrifices, and to accept failure, or else you’re going to be dominated by the energy.”

Additionally, the conjunction will be taking place in Capricorn, an earth sign that’s “very industrious and concerned with building for the future,” Annabel said. This is a time when we can witness great structures coming down, regardless of how strong their foundations are.


This month’s Saturn-Pluto conjunction is all about your career for you, Aries! You never asked to be a role model, yet here you are…now it’s time to be responsible and stand in the spotlight. It’s important at this time to respect your elders and authority, and understand that you’re now becoming an authority yourself. Take responsibility for any of your past mistakes and partner with people you are proud to share the spotlight with—professionally and otherwise! Don’t settle for relationships with people who aren’t as responsible as you. This is also a powerful time to learn about budgeting and a good opportunity to ask others how they achieved financial success.



There are things you believed in for a long time that simply don’t hold up anymore, and your faith is being tested. If you’re in school or traveling abroad, there may be some difficult lessons coming your way—a message you’ve wanted to share with the world, or something you’ve been working to publish could reach a critical turning point at this time. In your relationships, you and your partners are hammering out your values and beliefs and how you communicate them. Your optimism in general is being tested—it’s time to be realistic. It’s not ideal to invest your time or money in things that feel like they have potential—it would be better to invest in what has already been proven true.


This is a very intense time for you, Gemini, as you face fears of the unknown concerning everything from intimacy to death. This is also a critical time to repay debts and handle issues concerning taxes or inheritances. If you owe someone an apology, now is the time to do it. You’re experiencing deep, personal transformation and growth, sorting through your emotional baggage and burning what you don’t need anymore. You’re also learning how generous or transparent your partners are about their finances and feelings.


You’re experiencing earthquakes in your relationships, dear Cancer, and you will learn just how responsible your partners really are. Some of your partners may be going through life changes or desperate situations, and you have to decide who you’ll be in the face of that. Relationships require responsibility and maturity and this is a testing time—partnerships that weren’t built on a strong foundation will be wiped out, and even ones that were built on a strong foundation may be coming to their natural end. You deserve to be with someone who supports you—keep that in mind as you move through the important decisions you’re making now. Be smart about who you’re partnering with in business, too, because these shifts affect all your relationships.



Massive changes are taking place in your schedule and daily routines, and an important new cycle is beginning in your day job. This is a powerful time to break bad habits, step up, and take responsibility for your health and wellness. In relationships, you’re figuring out whether your partners can be responsible and may be figuring out your daily routine with your partner or trying new expressions of commitment. This is also an important time to assess whether you’re being compensated fairly for your work.


You’re experiencing earth-shattering shifts in love and creativity. Everything you thought you knew about romance is undergoing an upheaval. You may decide to ditch your party animal friends because you feel ready to have fun with people who won’t trash your apartment. Things that usually feel light and flirty are so much more intense now and this is a powerful time to fall deeply in love. A commitment to someone you can sincerely have a blast with could take place, and this also bodes well for your creative endeavors. This planetary alignment also serves as a reminder that the best things in life are free!


Major shake-ups are taking place at home, and it’s very important that you set new boundaries. Issues from your past or early childhood are coming up to be healed, and it’s a heavy and difficult time to face the truth about a situation. Issues about buying, selling, or investing in a home come up, or money will come up as a topic of conversation for your family. Your living situation might change with a move or renovation, and your emotional patterns are also experiencing a shift. Romantically, this time is a big test of whether you and your partners can live together or if they’re someone you can invite into your private space.


This month’s Saturn-Pluto conjunction will bring a major breakthrough in communication—the way you express yourself and your thinking patterns will be altered forever. You’ll have to approach things with a much more mature, detached, and logical way while maintaining your authenticity to your emotions. A big shift may also take place in your neighborhood, and financially you’re having to learn to talk about difficult money matters.



You’re experiencing major shake-ups in your finances, and something you’ve invested a lot of time and energy into will come to a head. You’re also beginning a new cycle of earning, budgeting, and manifesting abundance. You’re an optimistic person who’s very generous, dear Sa g, but it’s time to get realistic about how you spend money. In your relationships, you and your partners have to find a fair give-and-take so you’re not the one who’s constantly picking up the tab! This is all about self-esteem, dear centaur—it’s time to examine what “worth” really means to you.


This Saturn-Pluto conjunction is a powerful new beginning in who you are in a relationship, dear Capricorn. You’re known for being mature and responsible, but now you’re leveling up in terms of boundaries and authenticity in your relationships. It will be very intense, and honestly, not everyone can rock with that. It’s time to accept that not everyone is on your level—don’t look down on them for it; be a leader, instead. In love, you’ll be discussing some major commitments and financially, you’re presenting yourself as more of a boss than ever. Get in touch with people you work with and learn how you can be a better teammate because you may be giving off some intimidating vibes at this time.


You’re experiencing a major psychic awakening, dear Aquarius, and repressed emotions are bubbling to the surface. This is a powerful time to go to therapy because the architecture of your psyche is being completely remodeled as hidden and secret things are being explored. In relationships, you want to ask yourself if you’re turned on when there’s a secret affair or there’s a rebellious or unavailable energy to the person you’re seeing. It’s OK to enjoy mystery, but ask yourself whether this has been healthy for you and if it’s time to end things.


You’re experiencing major shifts in your social circle, and this is the beginning of an amazing new journey when it comes to the groups, communities, and associations you’re active in. You might be joining a union or an activist group, and cutting ties with friends who no longer share your values. At this time, you really want to be around people who are mature and responsible. This is also true in your romantic relationships, as you place special value on the intellectual connections you share with people. When it comes to money, a really big payoff is coming your way after all your hard work! You’ve been in the spotlight this past year and it’s paying off now. After that, it’s just about being mature about how you spend your money!

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