Hitch Your Process to a Powerful Opportunity
If the thought of Mercury retrograde makes you want to stay in bed with the covers over your head, you’re likely to miss some amazing opportunities for healing and transformation this year.
What’s most important to remember about Mercury retrograde is that it’s almost always about everyday matters, so in most cases it merely causes annoyance and inconvenience when it’s not working to your advantage. Granted, Mercury’s March retrograde involves three encounters with the radical influence of Uranus in Aries, but while it is definitely entwined with the story arc of the Uranus-Pluto transformational effect, it’s most likely to further the process with frustrating but manageable glitches or surprisingly favorable developments.
An excellent way to avoid Mercury retrograde snags is to pay far more attention to details and nuances of plans and communications than you usually do. It helps to be particularly aware of:
• Communications. Misunderstandings, delays and blocks are common, so double check appointments and agreements (a biggie!), and triple check wording. Technology support, like phone, cable and power lines can be unreliable.
• Contracts. If you must sign anything during Mercury retrograde, expect to renegotiate later, after discovering some uncomfortable or unexpected element you originally missed or misunderstood.
• Travel. Delays, car trouble, and disappearing reservations are common, so do yourself a favor and build cushions in your schedule and bring along your (backed up!) laptop or iPad and plenty of reading material.
• Technology. BACK UP your computer files! I do it every day for about a month, and alternate the external hard drives with each backup.
Okay, now you can relax and use the retrograde as it’s meant to be used—for exploring inner space with therapy and meditation, for re-evaluating plans and dreams, for re-examining and resolving the past, and for repairing and reorganizing at home and work.
To refresh your memory, Mercury appears to move backwards relative to the earth for a three-week period, three times a year. To add to the excitement, many astrologers also recommend caution during what are known as “shadow” periods of 5 to 14 days which immediately precede and follow the actual retrograde, when Mercury is moving over the same degrees it will travel (or has traveled) during the actual retrograde.
Retrograde 1 – 7 degrees Aries to 24 degrees Pisces, March 12 to April 4 – Moving from fire (Aries, Leo, Sagittarius) to water (Pisces, Cancer, Scorpio) signs and back is often a jolt, and the shift from a close encounter with revolutionary Uranus in purposeful Aries to dreamy Pisces and back could be especially disorienting.
Opportunity – Step through the Piscean portal to a larger reality and re-examine the changes you were in such a hurry to make from a more compassionate and cosmic perspective.
Challenge – When you realize that your Aries-induced, Uranus-fired energy and purpose are now swamped in a Piscean sea of mental fuzziness, relax and drift with the tide until Mercury reaches Aries again on April 17.
Retrograde 2 – 13 degrees Leo to 2 degrees Leo, July 14 to August 7-8. The most important days during this retrograde are July 18 and July 24-25. On the 18th a testy clash (opposition) between Mars (ego) and Uranus (change) in Libra and Aries will likely cause aftershocks on the relationship front. On the other hand, there’s real magic afoot on July 24-25, but don’t expect it to just drop in your lap. Be alert and go for the gold.
Opportunity – Remember what any artist will tell you—that their best work most often emerges from errors and unexpected developments. Set ego aside and be ready to play!
Challenge – Don’t let your ego keep you from having fun.
Retrograde 3 – 5 Sagittarius to 19 Scorpio, November 6 to 26. The only astrological influence which might strongly affect this retrograde is the very intense Solar Eclipse/New Moon in Scorpio on November 13. While it’s not a close encounter, the power of this very positive eclipse will likely cause ripples to reach the retrograde Mercury.
Opportunity and Challenge – To undertake the deep healing and transformational work possible during this time with an open, joyful and positive heart, especially during global and personal family gatherings. Also, you can avoid escalating apocalyptic fears by re-examining sensationalist media hype using Scorpio’s laser insight.
Remember, you can make the most of these retrogrades by doing things beginning with “re” – re-evaluate, refresh, repair, retrench, resolve, repair, reorganize and renew, for a start.
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