Three or four times a year, Mercury passes the earth in its orbit. During this time, Mercury slows down and appears to spin backward, hence the retro in Mercury retrograde. In astrology, Mercury rules communication, travel and technology – which means all of these areas can be affected (AKA: go haywire) for about three weeks each retrograde period. Lovely, huh? This year, messenger planet Mercury is traveling retrograde from July 26 until August 19, and again come November 17 to December 6. You may have noticed its influence personally with things like air travel delays, fine print flubs, cringe-worthy miscommunications and texting mix-ups. And that’s where it gets its dreaded hot-mess of a reputation! But Mercury retrograde doesn’t fully deserve it’s bad rap, especially if you know how to work with it and not against it. Instead of starting something new, this is a period of time ideal for focusing on everything “re” – reviewing, reflecting, renewing, reevaluating, reconnecting and reuniting. Let that take shape with your personal commitments, friendships, career goals and everything in-between. And with a little extra caution, you can easily avoid any annoying accidents and messy mistakes. Keep the below top of mind to help guard your sanity until Mercury stations direct in late-August.
Protect your tech
Sorry coffee and tea, but you can’t sit with us. Keep liquids far away from your computer – if there’s ever a time to accidentally knock over a cup onto your keyboard, it’s now. Same goes for your phone. Tuck that precious iPhone away from post meal-prep soapy sinks and store it somewhere safe during pool parties and high-tide beach runs. If you’re in the market for a new vehicle or electronic device, either hold off or ensure it comes with a good repair and return policy, and save the receipt.
Back up everything
Mercury rules the transfer of information, and during this signal-jamming cycle it’s especially worthwhile to protect your passwords and back up all important files and treasured vacay photos.
Review with a close eye
If you can avoid signing any contracts during this phase, then hold out until Mercury moves out of retrograde! Otherwise, review that new job offer or renter’s contract closely – especially the fine print. Don’t be afraid to ask questions and ensure that everyone is on the same page.
If you don’t have something kind to say, don’t say it! Your chances of hitting “Reply All” or sending to the wrong person are peaking this period. If you really must vent, try calling or schedule in a coffee date. Likewise, avoid spreading unconfirmed information and steer clear of social media rants.
Tie up loose ends
Does your car need an oil change? Get on it. What about that stalled closet-cleanout? Kondo it. Unfinished business with your ex? Old flames are known to pop out of the woodwork at this time, but be sure to tread carefully. Tie up any loose ends and finish up any lingering projects to file them out of your precious brain space for good.
Finally, be flexible
Car troubles, train delays and unforeseen detours might be unavoidable, but your mindset is up to you. Leave early for important events to ease a potentially stressful situation, and just be mentally prepared to take a deep breath and go with the flow.