Save yourself from the agony of communication breakdowns, silly errors, and potential danger...
Traffic is at a standstill, you lock your keys in the car, your iPod and/or phone is missing, your date doesn't show up and, when you call to complain, you find out you went to the wrong place.
It can only mean one thing: Mercury is retrograde.
In astrology, Mercury rules communications, mail, business, traffic flow, contracts, and negotiations of all kinds. Mercury goes retrograde about three times a year, for approximately three weeks at a time (planets are said to be retrograde when they appear to move backward in the sky from one day to the next).
In mythology, Mercury was a god who loved a good joke at mortals' expense. When planet Mercury goes retrograde, people get their wires crossed. Misunderstandings are more likely than at other times. These glitches can be small annoyances that eventually get worked out, or they can cause permanent breakdowns in relationships.
In general, here are six failsafe tips for surviving Mercury retrograde periods:
Don't sign contracts or any other important papers while Mercury is retrograde.
Back up your computer files well before Mercury goes retrograde, and back up regularly while the Messenger is in reverse.
It's best not to travel while Mercury is retrograde. But if you can't avoid it, confirm your airline and hotel reservations, and get to the airport in plenty of time to clear security. And don't even think about making a smart-aleck remark to law enforcement authorities, no matter how silly and stupid they're behaving.
Be extra mindful of how you're using your words. You can be hurtful without realizing it. Be as clear in your communications as possible. Be explicit about what you want and need.
Don't automatically take offense by something you think you heard. There's a good possibility you misunderstood, either the actual words or their intent. And don't blame others if they misunderstand you. You might think you were perfectly clear, and yet the other person might have rightfully understood something entirely different.
Even if a mistake technically was someone else's fault, forgive and forget. Otherwise intelligent people say and do stupid things while Mercury is retrograde.
Keep in mind that certain activities are favored under Mercury's retrograde influence. Editing, rewriting, revising, reviewing, research - just about anything that starts with "re." In some cases, you'll be forced to redo work, but you can plan it that way, too, with very satisfactory results.
Catching up on correspondence and paperwork is also more efficient while Mercury is retrograde, provided you don't commit to anything in writing.
Above all, maintain a sense of humor. Looked at with the right attitude, some of the misunderstandings that occur while Mercury is retrograde can be downright hilarious. It's the stuff comedies are made of.