Most of us know that Mercury retrograde can signal frustrating delays, mistakes and u-turns, but if we adjust our expectations, it is possible to be productive during this period. I have a 6th house natal Mercury placement; being ‘productive’ keeps me sane.

Bee on a flower

Mercury retrograde may not be good for starting new projects, but as I’ve mentioned before, it can be a pretty effective time to revise, resume or reinvigorate old ones. In the past week, I have been averaging 300-500 words a day on a writing project I began quite a while ago but could never find the time to finish. The general slowdown of other activity is giving me the space to do so.

Here’s a tip: if you don’t have old projects to clear up, but still want to use the energy of Mercury retrograde, it is possible to plan ahead. What I sometimes do is I look in my calendar to see when the next retrograde period is coming up, and I start a project several weeks ahead of time, well before the storm, and then leave it aside until which time I can then complete or revise it during the retrograde period. If you can catch the energy of a new moon when you make this start, all the better. I don’t always get to time things so well, but when I do, it’s worth the effort.

At the moment, besides Mercury retrograde, Mars has moved into Cancer, activating the cardinal cross with big-hitters Saturn, Uranus and Pluto. This has been with us a for a few years and has sometime yet to play out. It is an understatement to say that these are stressful times, but rather than crumple under its intensity, it might be possible to mobilize the energy towards self-awareness, consciousness and change for the future. What are the stories of our conditioning we continue to hang on to? (Mine have a lot to do with self-worth and financial security.) Mercury retrograde may allow us a time for reflection in our search for new clarity.