ICYMI: Mercury is retrograde. Here’s what you need to know to handle the next 2 weeks like a pro.
Mercury will be backspinning through Leo and Cancer all month (July 7 – 31st), shaking up our schedules and bringing some friction into our communications. So if you’ve been wondering why things feel a little off, this very notorious event could be to blame.
In the interest of dispelling some myths and putting your mind at ease, know that Mercury retrograde is no reason to be worried – at all. What it is is an opportunity to be more mindful in how we move around our day to day lives and bring our awareness to important issues from the past. We can totally work with Mercury retrograde so it works in our favour. To understand how to work it, lets talk about how it works.
A basic primer: Mercury is the planet that rules communication, thought, and travel (so, all transfers of information: email, social media, face to face conversations, contracts) hence, it’s sometimes called the ‘messenger planet.’ When it turns retrograde, which it does about 3 – 4 times per year, it means the planet slows down in its orbit around the sun and creates the optical illusion that it’s actually moving backward. When this happens, everything that falls under its realm of governance – message exchange, talking, travel, etc. tends to fall off track here on earth.
Think about it like this: If Mercury’s job is to make sure all communication and travel is all working properly, its retrograde period is when it gets to take a vacation. We’re left unsupervised and we can expect the unexpected for the duration of the retrograde period – 3 weeks or so, and the ‘shadow period’ on either side of it which can last up to 3 weeks.
While these periods are not the best time to enter into contractual agreements or start new partnerships, they are great times to slow our pace and become a little more reflective. The inner work we do during this time can be really positive and powerful. If you’ve been delaying using the meditation app you’ve been paying for, or cracking into your new journal you were inspired about once, now is a great time to start.
Also, looking back to the past and fine-tuning what you’ve built (with work, relationships, home), is definitely wise right now. Anything with the prefix ‘re’ in it – revise, reimagine, revisit, reassess, redesign, recommit is a go. You might feel called to redesign your apartment. Things you lost might turn up. You might feel inspired to resurrect projects that were forgotten, relationships or conversations that took a wrong turn could get redirected around now. See? Our past can reveal some beautiful gifts, if we look back to it. And it can also reveal tests.
Mercury retrograde basically wants to give us another chance to go back and make sure we did everything right the first time. So, an ex might slide into your phone again and it’s up to you to really create the closure you neglected to create all those months ago. Or, you might decide there really is some potential there you were overlooking. It’s going to be key to check in with your intuition when it comes to tests like these – while our thoughts may not be the most spry right now, our intuition is. Stay connected to it this month.
Tests can come in all shapes and sizes this month – Mercury will be throwing wrenches in plans, delaying trains, causing communication breakdowns, and more. Pay attention to what’s not working – these things could be showing you it’s time to reassess the direction you’re moving.
We can look to the sign Mercury is moving through for a little more insight into what we can expect. This summer, Mercury is backspinning through Leo until July 19th, when it enters Cancer for the remainder of its retrograde period, until July 31st. When Mercury moves through Leo, we can expect others to communicate with a bit more boldness or fire than before. Some people might be in the mood to overpromise when they can’t deliver, or blurt something they shouldn’t to get someone’s attention. Leo rules the heart, so use the energy of this time to communicate from the heart.
When Mercury retrograde moves into Cancer, our conversations could beocome more emotionally-charged. We’ll be able to say a lot more with a lot less words around this time, because intuition will be higher. Be cautious of taking things overly personally around now. And, since Cancer is super caring, be careful that you don’t stretch your energy too thin around now, wanting to help.
Here’s how to stay thriving during this next month:
Back up your tech. Your phone, your laptop, your hard drive. Get all your passwords together. Mercury retrograde is notorious when it comes to tech breakdowns. Use this opportunity to prepare for the worst. Being prepared is never a bad thing.
Keep your schedule flexible. People could be bailing or needing to reschedule more than usual around now, so don’t assume everything will go as planned this month. Don’t take it personally. Avoid setting important dates until later in August if you can.
Give yourself ample time when travelling. Just like schedules are shifting all over the place, travel can be extra unpredictable at this time. Give yourself a buffer when going to the airport, catching buses and trains, etc. If you’re due for a bike or car tune up, now is a wise time to do it.
Reconnect with the past. This is our time to reignite any relationships from our past that we feel called to. Maybe that ex sliding into your DMs doesn’t have to be a bad thing!
Check in with yourself. Energy might feel low around this time, so carve out time for self-care – especially if it means doing a low key digital detox (you might find just how draining your IG feed is right now!) For another, your intuition is your best support right now. Whatever way you tap into it, make it a priority.
Don’t resist what comes up. Be fully present to all your responses and be conscious of how you’re drawn to act and communicate. There’s no need to rush. It’s all feedback, especially during this time. Take it as it comes.