Getting prepared for Mercury Retrograde
The next Mercury Retrograde will be from August 12th to September 5th 2017. Here’s what you need to know:
Including the influence of pre and post-shadow periods, the complete cycle extends from July 24th until September 19th; it’s important to note that we can feel the influences of Mercury Retrograde during this ENTIRE period! This Mercury retrograde for July-September will occur in the signs of Virgo and Leo.
WHAT TO EXPECT
On July 24th, we’ll begin to feel the influence of Mercury retrograde first in Virgo and then slipping back into Leo from September 1st-11th. Virgo energy represents our day-to-day routine, organization and planning, management of tasks or people, health and any kind of service involving healing. Leo energy represents creativity and the arts, creative projects, romantic love and children.
Here are some themes that can come up during this retrograde cycle:
- Getting more clear on what YOU want now out of life
- Seeing a more clear path to achieving your goals
- Realizing which relationships are truly important, who sees you for your authentic self and who you can trust
- Catching up where you might have fallen out of your normal routine
- Finishing projects that have been on the go, especially home improvements
- Finishing any creative projects or following through on personal goals
- Going back to the simple joys in life
- Addressing any outstanding health matters
- Reviewing your daily health routine and turning your focus back to diet or exercise resolutions you’ve made in the past
- ‘Rediscovering’ an old pastime or hobby you once loved
- Resolving conflicts between parents and children
MEANING OF RETROGRADE
The word ‘retrograde’ literally means ‘to step backwards’ and this term is used in astrology to describe the times when, from our perspective here on earth, a planetary body is observed to be moving counter to its normal direction of orbit.
During a retrograde cycle, the energies which are expressed by that planetary body have a more ‘introspective’ focus. The usual ‘forward’ momentum shifts, encouraging us to ‘look backwards’. The best way to describe the energy of retrograde is that it is the energy of looking inward and looking to the past.
Mercury retrograde influences communication, short-distance travel, plans and decisions.
A retrograde cycle has 3 phases:
(1) Pre-shadow phase – the influence of the retrograde energy starts to be felt and grows stronger with each day. The planetary body which is about to go retrograde will be passing back over the path which it is currently transiting when the planet is in the retrograde phase. During the pre-shadow phase, the orbit slows down until it eventually reaches the point where it will switch directions.
(2) Retrograde phase – the orbit is counter to the normal direction and the planetary body appears to be ‘moving backwards’
(3) Post-shadow phase – the influence of the retrograde is still felt but starts to slowly diminish with each day. The planetary body is moving forward again, retracing its steps for the third time over the same path. It’s moving slowly at first (it is said to be ‘sleepy’ during this time) but with each day it picks up speed until it fully resumes its normal pace.
‘FLOWING’ WITH ASTROLOGICAL TIMING
When we learn to flow with astrological vibes and rhythms, we maximize energetic support for our actions and minimize ‘resistance’ by avoiding actions that are not supported by retrograde energies.
Activities to avoid during retrograde!
- Making financial commitments – making big purchases, signing contracts, or locking yourself into plans that you cannot back out of without a financial penalty are all very risky during retrograde. This is a time when unexpected events are more likely, causing you to be thrown off course.
- Starting ‘New’ Projects – The outcomes of starting a new project, a new job, or launching a new product or service through your business during Mercury retrograde are typically only short-term. So, if you want to ‘launch’ a new endeavor that is intended to last, plan to do it before or after retrograde.
- Signing contracts – When you sign a contract, you do so with the assumption that all of the relevant facts and details are known – however during Mercury retrograde, remember that the chances are much higher that we do not have yet all of the relevant information!!!
7 TIPS FOR ‘FLOWING’ WITH MERCURY RETROGRADE ENERGY
Here are some helpful tips to keep in mind over the coming retrograde period that can help you maintain balance in your life, minimize the resistance and ‘flow’ with this energy.
Remember the natural rhythm of the universe brings cycles of ‘ebb and flow’, like inhale and exhale, masculine and feminine, plant and harvest. Enjoy!
- Embrace the need for balance. Retrogrades represent a necessary universal balance in life. Think of the need for retrograde cycles in the same way that you think of your body’s need for sleep: in order to have the energy that we need during each day, we need to rest and allow other systems in our bodies to take over – cell regeneration, healing, digestion, and detoxification. These are natural cycles, and when choose to roll with them instead of against them, we exert less effort and can find it easier to maintain balance in our own lives.
- Be Easy-Going. Mercury retrograde reminds us that sometimes the best place to be is just where we are. This is a time to let go of ‘forcing’ any particular outcome; when we try to push or force something to happen is exactly when we seem to feel the ‘slingshot’ effect that whips us back.
- Take care of ‘unfinished business’. Mercury retrograde signals that it’s time to take care of ‘loose ends’ and to finish projects which have been underway for some time. Retrograde cycles are very supportive of finishing up any work in progress in order to make space for new beginnings to come once we are clear of the retrograde influence.
- Take an objective look at the recent past. Use this time to review what’s taken place over the past several months and reflect on what ideas or opinions have evolved as this can be a time for gaining a fresh perspective. This is also a great time to pick up on an idea that you had in the past, but never followed through with. You can also let go of feeling held back by the past, to realize what you can learn from recent experiences, and then let go in order to renew.
- Relish in the present moment – This is a time to be grateful for all of your blessings and to simply let yourself take pleasure. Press the snooze button on ambition for the next few weeks and on feeling like you need something more to be happy.
- Take care of yourself. Leave some extra space in your calendar for personal time, or to just give yourself a day to ‘put things in order’ in your life. Slow down and give yourself extra time for activities that you normally rush through; have a relaxing epsom salt bath, finish that book you started weeks ago, spend an afternoon cooking your favorite comfort meal. Let yourself lose track of time.
- Let go of inflated expectations. This is a time to be kind to yourself and let go of rigid thinking or expectations. Delightful miracles will come onto your path when you release attachment to the outcome.
- Avoid major spending. Mercury retrograde is more of a time for living in the present moment and tying off lose ends from the past, so it isn’t necessarily the best time for making major purchases and investments for the future. Mercury retrograde is also not a good time to make major decisions, financial commitments or to sign contracts because it is typically a time when relevant facts are temporarily ‘hidden’.
2017 PERSONAL PLANET RETROGRADE CALENDAR
Here is a calendar for 2017 showing the retrograde periods and pre/post shadows for the personal planets (Mercury, Venus and Mars).
We’re through ‘the worst’ for this year now (whew!), with Venus retrograde having turned our love lives and sense of self esteem ‘upside down’ already from February-May. We have two more Mercury retrogrades this year.
Having said that, the time window from September 20th – November 15th is going to be another great time this year for new projects, business endeavors or major life changes.