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Your 2017 Guide to Surviving Mercury Retrograde

December 05,2017 00:14

'Tis the season to be…proof-reading your emails. On December 3, Mercury — the planet of communication — went reverse in fiery Sagittarius, entering its fourth and final retrograde of 2017. When the swift-moving planet cruises backwards, we can ...

‘Tis the season to be…proof-reading your emails. On December 3, Mercury — the planet of communication — went reverse in fiery Sagittarius, entering its fourth and final retrograde of 2017. When the swift-moving planet cruises backwards, we can expect frustrating miscommunications, technology meltdowns, and travel mishaps. From now until December 22, Mercury moonwalks through the Sagittarius constellation, traversing the outspoken astrological sign associated with philosophy and exploration. Sagittarius’ “no bullshit” attitude is refreshingly honest, but during Mercury retrograde, it can be the source of lots of misunderstandings. For the next three weeks, be sure to follow the golden rule, cosmic warriors: If you can’t say something nice, don’t say anything at all (or wait until Mercury goes direct on December 22).
So what’s the deal with Mercury retrograde, after all? And what are the best ways to combat Mercury’s calamity-plagued about-face? Read on for my answers to some of the most crucial questions about Mercury Rx, including how to survive this three-week-long facepalm.

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Okay, so what exactly is Mercury retrograde?
Mercury — named after the Roman deity who served as a messenger to the gods — is the quick-moving planet that governs communication, travel, and technology. Mercury helps us transmit messages, and controls expression’s input (what we say) and output (how we process). Three or four times per year, Mercury appears to go backwards in the sky. This retrograde has the potential to screw up all things related to communication and transmission (travel and technology, for example).
During Mercury retrograde, we need to be extremely careful with our language. Triple-check every text, email, and DM, and take the time to carefully explain your intentions. Mercury retrogrades also muddle our decision-making, so avoid signing any major contracts during this period (though if you must, be sure to thoroughly read the fine print). And, when it comes to technology, Mercury retrograde is to blame for massive electronic meltdowns, so it’s advisable not to buy any new gadgets for the next three weeks (but if you do, make sure they come with a warranty!). Travel can be extra frustrating during Mercury retrograde, so prepare for delays, cancellations, and lots of headaches this holiday season. Oh joy.
Last (but certainly not least), we can always expect people from the past — including old flames — to reemerge during Mercury retrograde. In many cases, it’s best to kindly decline unexpected coffee invites and “innocent” happy hour hangs. When in doubt, you can always use my favorite retrograde expression: “It’s not you, it’s Mercury.”
Is there anything different about the 2017 Mercury retrograde from December 3 to 22?
Since November 5, Mercury has been cruising across the Sagittarius sky. The messenger planet is quick to adopt the characteristics of whichever constellation it tours, so for the past four weeks, Mercury has been in a particularly chatty mood. Sagittarius is a fire sign known for its notorious “tell it like it is” attitude. Mercury in Sagittarius is playful, curious, and extremely blunt — but when the planet goes reverse, suddenly that outspoken honesty isn’t as well-received. The central theme surrounding this season’s Mercury retrograde is miscommunication. Fueled by Sagittarius’ sharp tongue, we must be extra careful with our words to avoid accidentally hurt feelings — especially as social gatherings and family get-togethers ramp up.
This season’s Mercury retrograde will affect holiday travel, adding even more stress to what can already be a hellish experience. That’s right, darlings, it’s the most wonderful time of the year…for serious inconveniences. Be sure to pad your itineraries with lots of extra time for delays, cancellations, or other mishaps (car breakdowns, lost luggage, and overbooked flights are some of the worst). From now until December 22, don’t expect anything to be on schedule. When you find yourself rerouted several times or stuck at an airport in some unfamiliar city, just be grateful that Mercury isn’t always in retrograde. This too shall pass.
How can I survive Mercury retrograde? Is there anything good about Mercury retrograde?
Surviving Mercury retrograde is easy: Remember to proofread everything, choose your words carefully, avoid signing contracts (or review them extra carefully), back up your data, and plan for travel mishaps. The truth is, cosmic warrior, Mercury retrograde isn’t all bad — in fact, it can serve as your quarterly self-assessment. How prepared are you for inconveniences? How zen are you feeling these days? Although Mercury retrograde isn’t a great time to make huge changes, is is ideal for reflection.
When Mercury spins backwards, we may become nostalgic and sentimental. From now until December 22, allow yourself to revisit old journals, yearbooks, and photo albums. How has your life changed over the years, cosmic warrior? Are you happy with your current direction, or do you need to switch gears? Find inspiration from past lessons and experiences, darling stargazer, and use the next three weeks to strategize on how to best achieve your goals moving forward.
As the final Mercury retrograde of 2017 occurs just before the New Year, it is an excellent time to ponder resolutions. While Mercury cruises across optimistic Sagittarius, it encourages us to dream big as we plan for the future. Use the next three weeks to revisit your favorite hobbies, and consider new ways to explore your passions in 2018. Mercury retrograde periods evoke self-awareness, so take advantage of the moment of reflection that precedes renewal.
Communication is a huge part of our daily lives, and so when the messenger planet goes reverse, major issues are to be expected. But it’s important to remember that while retrogrades are extremely annoying, they’re not the end of the world. Swift-moving Mercury goes retrograde three or four times per year: You’ve been through this before, and you’ve got this one too! Relax, take deep breaths, and remember, if shit does hit the fan over the next few weeks, you can always blame Mercury.
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