What is Mercury Retrograde?

mercury retrograde

What is Mercury Retrograde all about?

The concept of Mercury Retrograde has been around for centuries however now, it seems to be gaining more awareness and has even become somewhat of a pop culture trend.

The term “retrograde” was coined to describe the backwards movement of a planet. Of course, the planet is not actually moving backwards but from earth it appears to be moving further away. When it does this, astrologers call it a retrograde, a time where the planet is almost “resting” or not in full action.

When a planet is in retrograde it cannot fully express its energy, its like it has shut down or gone to sleep and when we try to ride against this energy, we may feel like we are going against the grain of the Universe.

All planets retrograde, however Mercury retrograde is often the one that is given most attention because Mercury controls communication, technology and contracts- in many ways, Mercury is the messenger.

When Mercury is in retrograde we can often experience technical difficulties, not just with our technology but also with how we communicate. Because Mercury also rules contracts, when you sign or instigate something in a retrograde cycle, often the contract is not communicated clearly or there is some miscommunication, there could also be delays, things may not go as expected or the contract could be terminated all of a sudden.

These contracts don’t just apply to business but to everything that we may “energetically” make a contract with such as starting a relationship, getting married, taking out a loan, signing a new lease, starting a new job etc. All of these conducted on a mercury retrograde can often be fraught with delays, confusions and miscommunications.

Mercury also rules moving parts so its never advisable to renovate, buy watches, cars, clocks, electronics or airline tickets in a retrograde.

So, what can you do when mercury is retrograde?

Mercury retrograde is not all bad, in fact the purpose of mercury retrograde is to go back and re-visit what is already on your plate rather than starting anything new.

Mercury retrograde is also the perfect time to connect with old friends, lovers or business partners. Its the perfect time to go back to something such as old projects or dreams that were perhaps left by the wayside, or to reach out to those who perhaps you have worked with before to re-establish new connections.

Having this “communication downtime” also allows us breathing space to focus on looking within and reflecting on certain situations or events that may become clearer as mercury moves direct again.

How to deal with things that come up on a retrograde?

Sometimes things happen that many force us to sign or execute things on a mercury retrograde. Remember, astrology is about energy so knowledge here is definitely power. There is no need to fear. If you do need to sign things on a retrograde, make sure you read the contract extremely carefully. Make sure that your interests are safe and protected and be open to where the energy may take you.

If you have to travel, make sure that you confirm the flights or any bookings and label all your luggage. Also keep a watchful eye over your gadgets and other personal items.

Upcoming Dates for Mercury Retrograde:

You can use these dates to help plan events in your life, just remember that the effects of a retrograde are stronger towards the beginning and the end that is why its recommended to place a 4 day grace period on either side.


October 4th-25th


January 21st- February 11th

May 18th- June 11th

September 17th- October 9th

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About the author


Tanaaz is the creator of Forever Conscious. She is an intuitive astrologer and aims to use her writing to heal and inspire. She is also the author of several books including the Power of Positive Energy, Messages for the Soul, and My Pocket Mantras. She also runs online courses and in-person retreats.