Mercury Retrograde
Times for Reflection

During Mercury Retrograde periods - take the time reflect and review where you are heading.  Mercury goes retrograde three times during the year. This retrograde period last for about three weeks. Additionally the three-week period either side of the actual retrograde commonly referred to as the shadow phase is also relevant.  Extending the retrograde period to a total of nine weeks.

The three week period prior to the retrograde period is called the "shadow" phase. During this period you may start to experience delays or miscommunication giving you a hint of what to expect when Mercury starts it three week retrograde period.

It is a good time to attend to anything with "Re" in front of it. For example: Redoing, Rewriting, Reviewing, Revisiting etc. This is the time to review what you may be considering. It's best not to sign contracts and commit to things unless you don't mind making changes. If you have to sign contracts or travel during this time just double check the fine print.  Recheck your travel itinerary to keep errors to a minimum.   Things may slow down and can effect things such as:-

  • communication
  • travel delays
  • computers problems
  • transport issues
  • strikes

After Mercury goes forward things slowly start to get back on track. This side of the shadow period is usually not as difficult and after three weeks Mercury moves to the degree it was before it started retrograding completing the nine week cycle.

The Mercury retrograde period usually focuses on one particular element each year eg Fire, Earth, Water or Air. Although it sometimes overlaps the sign either side as it moves retrogrades and moves forward.

Mercury Retrograde in the Four Elements


Taurus, Virgo and Capricorn: Security, Practical concerns and basic needs are important. You may find fault with your home, job, country etc. Do not move or quit your job or spend a lot of money in haste. It's a good time to reflect and look for new opportunities. This is a great time to focus on getting yourself organised. Dealing with the practical issues in life will be easier when your life is uncluttered.

Issues of self-esteem, money and health could be areas that need some attention now.  Consider if there are other ways you can improve in these areas?


Aries, Leo, Sagittarius: If you want to start something - do you have the determination to finish it? This is a great time to think about what you do in your life to develop your creative side. Do you allow time for play or is your energy blocked?  How is your fitness - do you live your life being too sedentary? These are all areas you can re-assessing during this phase. Find something to inspire your passion.


Pisces, Cancer and Scorpio: Is a good time to rethink about old habits and patterns?  The desire to retreat is stronger in the Water Signs. Dream analysis and journal writing are great ways to reap the full benefits of this cycle. Your emotional & spiritual needs may go through a re-vamp now. Meditation would be very beneficial.


Aquarius, Gemini and Libra: With Mercury retrograding through the Air Signs - put on our thinking caps - your mind is busy. By airing your thoughts you may find more understanding in your relationships. Minor irritations eg missing documents, not showing up for appointments etc. This would not be a good time to buy machinery, such as cars, computers or anything involving communication. Simplifying your life from too many complications. Think about your long term goals and see what comes up for you after Mercury goes forward again.

Mercury Retrograde back to Homepage

Enjoy this page? Please pay it forward. Here's how...

Would you prefer to share this page with others by linking to it?

  1. Click on the HTML link code below.
  2. Copy and paste it, adding a note of your own, into your blog, a Web page, forums, a blog comment, your Facebook account, or anywhere that someone would find this page valuable.