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8 Tips for Surviving and Thriving During Mercury Retrograde

by Lisa Levine

A few times a year, the planet Mercury, which rules communications, goes retrograde. It’s not actually going backward but it appears to as it rotates the sun faster than we do on earth. And whether or not you believe in astrology, most people will ask what is going on when we are in these periods as Mercury rules electronics (i.e. computers and phones act funny, slow down or sometimes break altogether) and communications can be challenging, misunderstandings are more likely to happen and unfinished business from the past is likely to show all of its pretty faces.

I’m not an astrologer (Hi! My name is Lisa Levine and I own Maha Rose, a center for holistic healing sessions, workshops, and training) but I happened to have been born during a Mercury retrograde period and rather than fight it, I’ve come up with some ways to embrace the challenges and opportunities it presents. See below for all the ways you can thrive during the last few days of and after Mercury in retrograde.

Surrender to the Slowdowns

Don’t fight them but instead, try to take a moment of gratitude for anything that slows us down a little. We live in a high-paced society; it’s good to take a moment. In the developed world, we spend very little time waiting for anything. You can give some gratitude for the high-speed internet that usually works perfectly during this time. 

Clean Out Your Closets

This is my all-time favorite Mercury retrograde project. It’s a great time to deal with unfinished business, this can be on the physical level: the piles of clothes that need to go the Goodwill or the stacks of papers on your desk that need to be filed—take this time to clean up and get organized. Mercury rules Virgo, the great organizer of the zodiac, so doing a “pre-fall cleaning” is a perfect way to get things in order before the season actually begins.

Finish Projects

This time period is not great for starting projects but rather for completing them. Projects you started but got placed on the back burner—now is the time to tie them up. 

Reach Out to People You Haven’t Seen But Are Thinking of

This may happen on its own. I always notice my inbox filled with emails from people I haven’t heard from in some time. If people come into your consciousness, reach out. Just like those projects you need to finish, this is the time to rekindle those relationships you might’ve lost touch with that you care for. 

Don’t Sign Contracts or Break Up With Your Partner

It’s a more traditional superstition that it’s not a good time to sign contracts or buy electronics as they are more likely to break. If you break up with your beloved, you may find yourself back together again. Things that happen during Mercury retrograde just don’t always stick. On the other hand you may find yourself back together with an ex in this period… unfinished business!

Triple-Check All of Your Emails and Text Messages

The typos will triple, and what is being said can be misconstrued. If you notice communications getting a little wonky via text or email, it might be better to call and discuss things rather than have misunderstandings.

Be Extra Gentle With Yourself and Your Loved Ones—Basically Everyone

Not only is it Mercury retrograde right now but eclipse season as well, so we are being pushed in many ways. Be gentle, up your self-care and know that everyone around you is in the pressure cooker, too, so be gentle with them also. We’re being asked to grow and forced out of our comfort zones so breathe, surrender and make graceful steps forward.

Shadow Work

We are officially out of Mercury retrograde the 18th of August. But don’t rest too easy just yet! There is something called a shadow period that happens after Mercury goes direct. The shadow period following Mercury retrograde is the result of Mercury realigning itself to go direct. During this time things are still a little bit wonky due to the readjustment. Think of the shadow period as readjusting from the weekend on a Monday. The same issues come up during this time as it does during Mercury Retrograde. However, depending on your astrological chart, it can be more or less intense.

The same recommendations hold true for this shadow period, so we aren’t out of the woods yet! Continue to take it slow and move gently. This retrograde shadow period will end September 2nd. After that, we can full charge ahead! So take August for that much-needed break that you deserve. Go with the flow and the flow is going slow.

Feature image via Vanessa Granda 

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