Mercury retrograde has happened several times a year to every human being since the dawn of time. So why do we get so upset about it?
According to astrologer and Full Circle Yoga School Alumna Stella Nagel (RYT 200), Mercury retrograde is responsible for minor annoyances (think an email malfunction or an unexpected phone call).
What has a bigger impact on personal growth and development, Stella warns, is the positioning of planets like Jupiter and Saturn — both of which are in retrograde. These heavy hitter planets have a major impact on how we feel about ourselves and our place in the world.
Here’s what you should know about retrogrades Mercury, Jupiter and Saturn — and how you can tune into these critical messages to nurture yourself and your future.
What is a Retrograde?
When we talk about a planet being in retrograde, it helps to understand what the term means.
“A retrograde doesn’t actually mean the planet moves backwards in the sky. By the way that the planets move, it appears to move backwards in the sky,” Stella says.
Planets never actually stop moving — just as we can’t press pause in any given moment of our lives. And despite the fact that many people view Mercury retrograde as a negative, it’s actually an amazing opportunity to stop, retreat inwards, and engage in self-reflection.
“The nature of a retrograde is just to pull back for a second, to check in and make sure your actions are aligned with your higher good.”
Retrogrades affect people in different ways depending on their natal chart. However, taking a look at the energetic themes spanning these planets — and combining them with your personal information — can give you a better understanding of what current planetary retrogrades mean for you.
While many people tend to blame Mercury for major upsets in life, this pesky retrograde is only responsible for minor technology and communication irritations, like printer troubles or a wifi outage.
Plus, Mercury retrograde doesn’t last nearly as long as its counterparts, with the average Mercury retrograde spanning only about six weeks. If you’re experiencing major life crises, dramas and questions — Mercury may not be to blame.
So what’s really preventing you from leading the life you want?