"Astrology can tell you many things. It can tell you what energy is available to an individual and how it’s likely to affect them. It cannot, however, tell you precisely how they will express it. Given the fact that each person has free will a person can express that energy on a continuum of lower to higher." Satori, on ElsaElsa.com, very succinctly expressed what astrology is all about: http://www.elsaelsa.com/astrology/2012/02/08/making-astrology-personal/
The best way to learn astrology is by studying your own transits. The current Mars retrograde is definitely putting a damper on my motivational energy. However, since Mars in Virgo is ruled by Mercury, with my natal Mercury is in Aries 8th house, I have found that I'm less impulsive with voicing my thoughts (especially when I'm angry). Transiting Mars is moving in my 2nd house and will conjunct my natal North Node by the end of this month and my natal Saturn by next month, since both are oppose my natal Sun, I'm sure issues of my beliefs and self-esteem are more likely to be the focus, judging by my recent events.
How's transiting Mars expressing itself in your life at the moment?