Mercury Retrograde: Some Advice

Warning! Warning! Mercury Retrograde Imminent!!!

Nervous? Yeah, most people are when the dreaded Mercury Retrograde event happens. The message as to how to deal with it is usually something like: don’t talk to anyone; never sign a contract or make a deal; never EVER buy anything electronic; hide in a cave!!!!

Let me start with a bit about what Mercury in Retrograde even is. Mercury retrograde is what we call the event of the planet Mercury passing between the Earth and the Sun and in doing so appears to be spinning backwards. Mercury’s orbit is about 84 days, so this ‘going backwards’ effect happens about three times a year. Some (many) astrologers believe that while the retrograde itself typically last about 22 days, there is a “entering” time frame on either side of two to three weeks. In other words the influences can be felt about a week before and after the actually planetary positioning. (Personally, I don’t think this is correct, but I’m a small voice in a sea of agreement.)

I’m also a person for whom Mercury Retrograde is particularly difficult, astrologically speaking: I am a Virgo, which is ruled by Mercury. More importantly I also my ascendant and four other planets (of eight) are in Virgo. When my ruler goes backwards, my whole life can be affected.

So here is what I say about this retrograde period (which runs through August 2nd): be prepared for hiccups. Things will go wrong, especially with the areas governed by Mercury: travel, commerce, and communication. It’s best if you can slow down and make extra time for things to be re-done.

  • Try not to make major purchases or decisions. If you have to, then be prepared for new information to be uncovered that changes what you thought you knew about the situation.
  • Make lots of backups. More than you think is necessary.
  • Be prepared, at least theoretically, for things to be revealed that were hidden before. Mercury Retrograde is a crucible of sorts, the idea where if you combine elements in a confined space, put them under pressure and heat; the elements transform. Whether for better or worse, the universe will be handing you the truth of each situation. Though at times it may seem intense, with the right perspectives these could be the long awaited missing puzzle pieces you have been waiting to solve the issue that just wouldn’t go away.
  • Saying ‘Hail Mercury’ frequently isn’t a bad idea.
  • Communication will go awry, don’t assume people are ignoring you. Just be prepared to ask again, or reach out again. Always give the situation the benefit of the doubt. If you find yourself having a difficult conversation out of the blue, thank Mercury and do your best to move along.
  • Try to use this time frame for extra rest and RE-newal. It’s a great time to RE-view priorities and projects, as well as to do more RE-search. I always use these periods to work on my writing.
  • Don’t take it personally.
  • This is a great time to finish up all those projects you started but haven’t completed.

(Image: “Stellar Porridge” by Remedios Vara)

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