Mercury's Retrograde! What Does it Mean?
The office computer network crashes. The car won’t start. Your phone erases your entire address book. Misunderstandings rage. What the heck is in the air?
Chances are, you’re in the midst of Mercury retrograde.
Three or four times a year, Mercury — planet of communication, technology and transportation — passes the Earth in its orbit. This creates the illusion of Mercury spinning in reverse, and thus, everything it rules goes “backward” for three to four weeks. Gadgets, electronic equipment, conversations, plans, schedules, all modes of transportation … any of these can go haywire. You may also hear from old friends, exes and people from your past.
How to ride out a Mercury retrograde cycle without going nuts? Focus on the prefix “re-” which means “again” or “backward.” Turn to the past instead of initiating anything new. Hold off on signing contracts (or read the fine print before you do). Plan a reunion. Finish projects that are lingering, rather than starting anything new. Take deep breaths when people lash out or things break down, and prepare to repeat yourself often in conversation. If you’re traveling, pack a spare tire for the road or a juicy novel if you’re flying (planes are likely to be delayed).
A little advance planning goes a long way. A week or so before Mercury goes retrograde, back up your computer and phone data. Confirm tickets, reservations and plans. As Benjamin Franklin said, “An ounce of prevention is worth a pound of cure.”
Dates Mercury is retrograde:
2010: August 20-September 12, December 10-30
2011: March 30-April 23, August 2-26, November 24-December 13