Mercury, the Cosmic Messenger, goes retrograde three times a year for a brief period of about three weeks each time. During this phase, hiccups are likely to occur with communication, travel, and transport; misunderstandings, lack of information, phone problems, breakdowns with certain appliances, machinery and component failure are all indicated. These issues can occur because of inattention to detail, messages being unclear, or overlooking the fine print in documents. Fine tune areas that need your attention; other people may be holding back on information that you are after, or it has simply been misplaced even lost in the mail.
Ideas and plans that begin at the onset of a retrograde period often get delayed or put on the backburner for another time. While Mercury is retrograde, a process of review can effectively resolve problems, more so when Mercury goes back into direct motion through the zodiac. Not everyone is badly affected by a retrograde phase, due to Mercury’s condition in the natal chart; for instance, should the Messenger be retrograde at the time of birth, a retro phase in the heavens can give you the flow of tidying up loose ends, clearing paperwork, or looking at areas that need your attention.
It’s important to double-check all arrangements for possible mistakes. Listen to what others have to say and make yourself clearly understood. If possible, hold off on major decisions, major purchases, verbal and written agreement and the signing of crucial documents. The year’s Mercury retrograde phases are outlined below, giving an insight into the year ahead:
December 19, 2016 – January 8th, 2017, Mercury Retrograde in Capricorn, 7th house.
This is the remainder of the Mercury retrograde phase that began last year on December 19th, in your 7th house of significant commitments.
Mercury is retrograde in Capricorn at the start of January, and briefly re-enters Sagittarius your 6th house of work and health on January 4th. You’ll be in touch with issues at the start of December 2016. During this time and given the holiday break, work routine will be slower than usual; at least it will give you a chance to sort through any backlogs of paperwork. Don’t neglect any dental and doctor’s appointments; give them a call, particularly if you have any health issues that need attention. The Cosmic Messenger then turns direct on January 8th, and back into Capricorn on January 12th. This is when you will resume talks that have been left in abeyance within relationship agreements, legal issues, and other business partnership deals. Make sure you read all the fine print, and understand any commitments so there is no room for error or misgivings. After January 28th, you’ll be to work out any misunderstandings, come to an agreement and finalise decisions.
April 9th – 20th, Mercury Retrograde in Taurus, 11th house
On April 9th, Mercury turns retrograde in Taurus, your 11th house of friends, hopes and wishes. You may have to smooth over differences of opinion with friends, love relationships, groups and social clubs that you belong to. Perhaps you have departed the scene on bad terms, or said the wrong things. Apart from that, re-examine your relationship with friends, other people’s children, your ideals, goals and future dreams.
The Cosmic Trickster then re-enters Aries, your 10th house of career and ambitions, on April 20th.
The pace with your career will need modifying, particularly after Venus’ retrograde motion. You may regret saying things out of anger or on the spur of the moment during March 23rd to the 28th, with further deliberations from April 27th to the 30th. Discuss any career moves, present ideas or even resubmit a resume. Mercury turns direct on May 3rd in Aries, then moves forward to re-enter Taurus, your 11th house on May 16th, sigh! But Mercury remains in a shadow phase until May 21st.
August 13th – 31st, Mercury Retrograde in Virgo, 3rd house
On August 13th, the Cosmic Prankster turns retrograde in your 3rd house of communication. During August not only do we have a Solar and Lunar Eclipse, but Mercury throws a spanner into the works. If there are going to be hiccups with transport and all sorts of telecommunications problems, they will happen now. If there is something you want to say, make sure it is clearly understood. There are bound to be delays, which will upset your daily tasks, children’s education and mail disruption. Keep a diary handy and jot down information correctly, leaving no room for errors. Likewise, ensure messages you receive are fully detailed to alleviate any misunderstandings. On the 31st, Mercury re-enters Leo, your 2nd house briefly. On September 5th, Mercury turns direct in Leo before re-entering Virgo on the 10th. Mercury will be out of the shadow phase on September 20th, giving you a clearer picture on ideas and decisions.
December 3rd – 23rd, 2017, Mercury Retrograde in Sagittarius, 6th house
This will mark the last Mercury retrograde phase for the year, beginning on December 3rd in your 6th house of work and health. Mercury retrograde conjuncts stern Saturn from December 1st to the 8th. If there’s work to be done, you will do it with greater concentration. Negative thinking could get the better of you, so don’t let yourself get too bogged down with details (which you are likely to do!). Work could be demanding, with deadlines to meet, correspondence and paperwork to get through. Given that it is year-end, it’ll be important to get mail out on time. You will be faced with certain issues that arose from November 25th to the 30th. Apart from work, attend to your health, follow through with dental and doctor’s appointments but be aware these could be postponed or you will somehow encounter delays. Mercury returns to direct motion on December 23rd, but will remain in a shadow phase until January 11th, 2018.
Lunar Life with Lady Moon
Your personal New Moon occurs on June 24th in Cancer, your 1st house of personality. As the Sun beams into your sign at the start, you’ll have quite a bit to say about yourself. This will be your new personal Moon for the next 12th months. What plans have you in place to satisfy your personal needs? Work on ideas and ways to define your personality. This may be in the way you present yourself to the outside world, with a new image giving you self-confidence and emotional vitality. Greater physical energy is available to deal with family matters and issues on the domestic scene, but don’t overtax yourself with too much enthusiasm. This could be the time that you decide to move house, expand or renovate. You may gain intuitive insights, and want to expand your spirituality and higher principles.
Your Full Moon occurs on January 12th, representing a culmination of actions that began last July. The Cosmic Messenger slips back into your 7th house of significant commitments, although in a shadow phase until January 28th. It will be an important time to reflect and discuss agreements within relationships, family members and issues on the home front. Adjustments, changes and making compromises could see you touchier than usual, but keep your self-importance under control. Past discussions could resurface, with emotional topics appearing worse than they really are. It’s a good time to make decisions on career moves, and attend to work and health matters.