Halloween is known for skeletons, ghosts, zombies, and more, but the real terror is in the following weeks. Beginning on October 31st and until November 21st, Mercury is in retrograde. You may have heard others blaming bad fortune on this astrological event, but do you really know what it means? Mercury in retrograde is not the end of the world, but it is certainly something you should be aware of. 

What does it mean to be “in retrograde”?

When an astrologist tells you that a planet is in retrograde, it means the planet is in retrograde motion. Planets have a standard path they follow when crossing the sky. At certain times, though, this path reverses direction for a short period. This is an optical illusion created when another planet’s orbit passes Earth. The other planet begins to orbit away and curve back around the sun. This creates an illusion on Earth, as if the other planet is moving backwards. It is a rare occurrence for some planets, but for Mercury it happens three to four times a year.  

The cause for Mercury frequently being in retrograde is because of its short, 88 day orbit. This means that Mercury passes Earth at least three times every year, resulting in the three retrograde periods. This event can only be seen right before or shortly after sunrise due to Mercury’s proximity to the sun. Mercury and Venus will always be between Earth and the Sun, meaning they can only be seen during the day.

Why is it bad for Mercury to be in retrograde?

While retrograde motion just describes how a planet is moving, this movement has astrological associations. When a planet’s path across the sky is disrupted, the effect that planet has on our lives is also disrupted.

Mercury is named after the Roman deity of the same name. He had wings on his feet and was known most prominently as the messenger of the gods. Due to this, Mercury is most strongly associated with communications in all its forms. During the Mercurial retrograde, it is common to experience issues with communication. This can be troublesome when the miscommunication happens with co-workers and loved ones. Greater issues arise when miscommunication happens with your technology – yes, Mercury being in retrograde can affect technology as well

Mercury can be the most detrimental to us when our smartphones run into issues. Smartphones are centered around the ability to communicate and even a small issue can significantly affect your day. Studies show that the average consumer checks their smartphone 52 times a day. Text messages, emails, phone calls, and social media are all methods of communication and can be affected during this period. Double check your messages before you post them, and double check to make sure they actually post. 

How can I communicate safely during this time?

It is important to remember that communication is not dangerous while Mercury is in retrograde. Rather, communication is challenged, or more prone to running into misunderstandings. Any form of communication can only go wrong if proper care and attention is not used. When communicating during this time, take your time and think about everything being said. An important conversation should be given ample time during your day, and words should be carefully selected. 

Mercury’s influence even extends into the world of contracts. Written communication and information can encompass some of the most important decisions we make. Any contract, including new smartphones, cars, or homes, should be read carefully before being signed. A great deal of preparation should be given to any contract that cannot be postponed until later in the year. 

A relationship is a form of contract as well. This retrograde falls directly within cuffing season, when people tend to begin relationships. If you’re thinking of starting a relationship, make sure to check out how your natal charts line up. You can read up about this in our Synastry – How Does Your Relationship Match Up? blog.

Is Mercury associated with anything else?

While Mercury is most closely associated with communication, travel of all kinds lands within the Mercurial realm. When Mercury is in retrograde, travel plans or methods of travel are prone to running into obstacles. During the next three weeks, it will help to double check that your car or bike is running properly. It is also important to review alternative routes in case your normal commute is affected in some way. 

Travelling to vacation destinations can also be affected by Mercury’s retrograde state. Tropical getaway flights risk running into delays or cancellations if planned during this three week period. If planning to travel during this time, ensure that plans have plenty of room to adapt. Plan with room for unexpected layovers, rental car mix-ups, or issues with your accommodations. 

What is safe to do while Mercury is in retrograde?

Just because communication and travel are affected by Mercury does not mean you have nothing to do all month. Mercury is a prime time for self reflection and assessing the choices you have made in previous years. You may find more clarity during this time when thinking about how constructively your time is spent. Consider how much time you are putting in to certain tasks or relationships in your life. You may find that simple changes to your daily routine have exponential results. 

Mercury being in retrograde also means that you are safe to review previous stages in your life. Since the planet of communication is retracing its steps, then you would find a benefit from doing the same. Reconnecting with old friends or exes is beneficial during this three week period. Clarity and closure from the past is readily available during this time. 

This is also a perfect time to prepare for the future. While the next few weeks may be influenced by Mercury, any plans for the future will be unaffected. These three weeks give ample time to make sure that any Mercury influenced problems only happen during the retrograde. 

How will Mercury in retrograde affect me personally?

While communications and travel are blanket concerns for everyone during Mercury’s time in retrograde, everyone is unique. Your individual star sign can change how this time will affect you personally. If you have big plans, or are especially concerned about something, you can schedule a personal reading. Astrological readings and tarot card readings are a great way to prepare for the future. 

If you’re interested in getting a reading, you can contact Andari at andari@the-prosperitytree.com to set up a consultation. There are a variety of readings available, including numerical and symbological readings. All readings are done over the phone, so you can prepare for the retrograde from the comfort of your home. You can also follow The Prosperity Tree on Facebook and Instagram to get interesting facts and astrological updates.

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