Batten down the hatches! Mercury goes retrograde on Monday the 19th, not to resume direct motion until January 8th. As I’ve mentioned in previous blog posts, I’m not from the school of astrology that predicts doom and gloom when the messenger planet starts a backward slide. All the planets go retrograde and these periods can be quite beneficial, including when Mercury backstrokes. However, you do need to keep an eye on things as certain topics or issues may require more scrutiny, diplomacy and planning.
Mercury retrogrades at least three times every year, but what makes the current situation so different from others is the activity of the Sun at the same time. The Sun represents you, the individual. It rules your ego, motivation level, your self image and how others see you. When the Sun changes signs every four weeks, it brings a new area of your life into focus. For example, this month it could be your health and pets, the next month your serious relationships, the following one your finances.
As the week begins metamorphic Pluto and intelligent Mercury are both stationed in Capricorn, an industrious and active house. Capricorn represents different things to different signs. For example, for an Aries, Capricorn is the career sector. For Virgos it’s the house of romantic love, and for Scorpios it’s the house of communication and self expression. Mercury starts to back slide on Monday the 19th, slowing your roll in a major part of your life.
But then two days later on Wednesday the Sun enters Capricorn for four weeks, ready to light a fire under you to get moving in the same sector where Mercury is dragging its heels. See the problem here? It’s a tug of war, and as the Sun is bigger and more powerful it will win out. However, if you want to use this crazy situation to your advantage, you won’t go plunging boldly into new activities without some careful research and strategizing. The next three weeks are super for reflecting, analyzing and considering your options, but not necessarily launching them.
To make matters even more interesting is that high octane Mars barrels into Pisces on Monday just as little Mercury retros. Pisces is the place of doing things quietly behind closed doors. Confidentiality is the buzzword as you keep things under wraps until the right time. Pisces is the place where we need to carefully review what we may be doing wrong so that we can make adjustments and move forward. Bad habits like substance abuse and procrastination need to be addressed, along with negative thought patterns or associating with people who aren’t the best for us.
To have all of this cosmic activity happening at year’s end is really a blessing in disguise, as it will give us the time and desire to slow down, get quiet within ourselves and really think about what we’d like to manifest in 2017. In this respect Mercury retrograde is our ally, as it can help us identify the overall passions and goals that we’d like to pursue in the new year ahead. Once it resumes direct motion on January 8th and picks up speed by the 12th, all systems are go. The moral of this story is that you don’t have to kick off all of your resolutions on January 1st!
Here’s a breakdown as to how the Sun-Mercury clash will affect all the signs of the zodiac:
Aries: Mercury and the Sun will be in your house of ambition and success, which includes any goal of your choosing—losing weight, for example, or finding new love. Naturally your career is a biggie, and rams will be on the lookout over the next four weeks for more responsibility, higher pay, or if you’re self-employed, to take your company to a higher level. With Mercury retrograde you should first finish projects that are incomplete, connect with people whom you need to speak with and carefully research your next step. Try to delay making major decisions, such as a accepting a job offer, until after January 12th. However, if that’s not possible, a new moon in your ambition sector on December 29th is a good time to accept. Just make sure you have all the facts before you sign on.
Taurus: With energetic Mars entering your house of friends, networking and team projects, anything from planning your wedding to creating an industry think tank is a smart idea. Tech ventures can also do very well, such as launching an online store or orchestrating a social media blitz or internet ad campaign. Online dating is also highly favored. But with the messenger planet in a back spin, you need to be careful as to just how loudly you voice your opinion—on a first date, at the office, at the PTO, to your pals or in any kind of group setting. There is no “I” in “team” and you may have to suck it up a bit, even if your opinions and ideas are spot on. Mercury retrogrades in your house of long distance travel, so of all the signs, you need to be the most vigilant about confirming reservations and making sure that holiday travel plans don’t get messed up.
Gemini: Slow down when it comes to investing money and making big financial decisions, such as applying for a mortgage or filing a lawsuit. Mercury retrogrades through the fiscal responsibility part of your chart, so examine your bank, credit card and retirement account statements with a magnifying glass. There could be arguments with a romantic partner over how money is being saved or spent, or where to invest it. With the Sun entering this part of the sky your options for making some serious coin increase dramatically (Merry Christmas) but you must perform due diligence first. If someone wants to partner with you in a business venture, for example, hammer out the projections and go over them carefully. Make sure your partner is liquid. This is actually a good time to pursue legal action if there is a court award attached but review all the documents before your lawyer files them.
Cancer: You have quite a mixed bag with assertive Mars entering your house of being footloose and fancy free, just as the Sun enters your house of serious commitment. What’s a crab to do? With Mercury retrograding, attached Cancers may find that issues from the past crop up again in your union that need to be discussed and put to rest. The problem is that Mars may make you so feisty that if things don’t go your way, you may be ready to head for the door, screaming that you need more space. Another possibility is that an ex crawls back into your life; whether you want them or not is a completely different matter. Singles, this is a fabulous time to date someone new or to get together with someone you had your eyes on in the past. But you won’t be in a mood to settle down quickly, so if someone says “where is this relationship heading?” too soon, you’ll be quick to scamper in the other direction.
Leo: Everyone knows that lions like to pounce but only when they’re damn good and ready. You have an awesome lineup for making progress with your job in 2017, but you’re not ready to jump on anything that looks like a hot smokin’ deal just yet, not with Mercury in a back spin. This little planet is retrograding through your house of routines, habits and work flow, which means it’s time to streamline. Big time. Both at the office and at home, your life should be running like a Swiss clock. Obviously this requires a lot of grunt work, such as emptying your e-mail account, clearing off your desk, finishing projects and cleaning out the garage. It’s not sexy but if you buckle down and get it done, you’ll be purring like a kitten. That’s because dynamic Mars enters your house of big money on Monday. The message? If you want to earn some serious coin, you need to have your act together and a strong strategy in place.
Virgo: There are two houses that govern romance and commitment and you have planets in both. To start, I-want-it-now Mars goes into your commitment sector on Monday making you more than ready to settle down, whatever that means to you: finding a serious contender for your heart, starting a family, or getting married, as examples. Trouble is, Mercury retros in the romance house, indicating that the two of you (if you’re attached) have some baggage to work though first. Singles, you may be overanxious to find The One, so much so that you rush into a union that may not be the best for you. Old flames could reappear for all Virgos, a blessing or a curse depending upon how you look at it. That being said this could be quite a passionate time, especially if you can let bygones be bygones and turn a new page.
Libra: No one can push your buttons like family, and with Mercury retrograding in your domestic zone, you may need to put some people in their places. This includes roommates, landlords, building contractors, real estate agents—anyone who is associated with your abode and its comfort level. Hate to say it, but with the holidays coming your relatives may want to bring up past issues, and if you’re smart you’ll lay these problems to rest before the week is out. When the Sun enters this part of your chart on Wednesday you may be highly motivated to move or redecorate, but make sure that documents and contracts are absolutely perfect before you sign them. Mars has just entered your streamlining sector, so even if you’re not planning to move the next four weeks are perfect for organizing your house, car, boat or trailer.
Scorpio: Ouch! Mercury retrogrades in your communications sector, so all of the signs, you run the greatest risk of Ye Old Foot-in-Mouth Syndrome. Which means: no ranting or trolling on social media. Gossiping is also dicey, especially if you put it in writing via text or e-mail. With the mighty Sun entering this house on Wednesday, you may be quite anxious to “share” but tread warily. This can be highly social time when you can have a lot of fun and meet new people; just keep the conversations light. You especially need to watch your words with kids and lovers as aggressive Mars enters the part of the sky that deals with them. Don’t push someone to ask you out, get engaged, have a baby or take the next step: it could backfire under these aspects.
Sagittarius: Hold on to your wallet! Mercury retrogrades in your house of spending, so don’t go overboard with holiday spending. It just so happens that red hot Mars enters your domestic sector the same day, so it’s possible that home-related expenses could crop up. Make sure that you have emergency funds for repairs or a sudden move if you’re considering relocating. With the Sun entering this sector, you could score a new job with higher pay over the next four weeks, so don’t assume that everyone will be out of the office after Christmas and no business will be conducted. On the contrary, the cosmos actually has a number of stellar work -related aspects every day from the 16th through the 30th, so if your goal is to earn more, then start hustling now.
Capricorn: It’s all about you, Capricorn! The Sun and Mercury will both be in your sign, shining their light on anything that is of importance to you: your friendships, health, love life, financial picture, family, home, travel, you name it. So while El Sol will be pushing you to go after your closest dreams and desires, Mercury retrograde says to perform research first, talk to mentors, and consider all of your options. The new moon in Capricorn on the 29th will be the perfect time to launch some of your endeavors. How you view yourself and how others view you is a big area of focus now, so if you need an attitude adjustment or a personal makeover, go for it. With Mars entering your house of socializing the contacts you make in the seven weeks ahead can be a big help when it comes to achieving your passions.
Aquarius: Sshhh! Mercury retrogrades in your twelfth house of confidentiality, so if you have secrets—your own or someone else’s—don’t spill. It’s critical to keep things below the radar over the next few weeks, especially if you’re considering changing jobs or making big adjustments to your company. Mars enters your income sector, a terrific place for it to be, but it’s not wise to go public with your plans for a few weeks. The twelfth house also governs the subconscious mind, so if you have habits or thought patterns that you’d like to release, now’s an excellent time to do so. Find help if you need it through a counselor, priest, healer or self-help book. Starting a meditation or mindfulness practice can be a wonderful new habit to bring with you into the new year.
Pisces: OK, Pisces, it’s your turn to be the center of attention now that lusty, assertive Mars is in your sign for the first time in two years. Your image, brand, desires and goals should be front and center. Hope you’re ready to go it alone, though, because Mercury retrogrades in your house of team efforts and friendship. This means that pals or co-workers could slack, flake out, be uncooperative or just plain confused. Technology is also governed by this house so expect snafus and delays with website launches and Internet marketing campaigns. The issue is that you’ll be so motivated to get things done that you won’t take kindly to foot dragging on the part of others. Remember that your excitement isn’t necessarily their’s and plan to sally forth without them if need be.
And that’s a wrap! Keep an eye open later this week for my holiday week survival guide on the blog. After Christmas I’ll be posting a “2017: The Year Ahead “ piece that will provide an overview as to what the cosmos has in store for us in the new year. If you’d like to receive sneak peeks and news flashes, sign up for my free newsletter at the top of the page.