Mercury goes retrograde approximately three times a year and in 2023 is in Retrograde from:

  • April 21st-May 15th from 15-5 degrees Taurus
  • August 24th-September 16th from 21-8 Virgo
  • December 13th-January 2nd 2024 from 8 Capricorn-22 Sagittarius

Firstly what is a retrograde? 

A retrograde is when a planet appears to turn backward in the sky. This happens due to an optical illusion caused by differences in orbit. 

All the major planets (excluding the luminaries – the sun and the moon) go retrograde from time to time.

When planets go retrograde the impact of the planet changes and the type of activities that are recommended change too.

What is Mercury Retrograde all about?

Mercury is the planet of communications, contracts, local travel, legal affairs, and technology and is at home in Virgo and the 3rd house of Communications.

Mercury represents the way that we communicate, think, learn and process information.

Mercury can be thought of as the Messenger.

It is considered to be a fairly harmonious planet but whilst in retrograde, however, it tends to bring disruption, technological difficulties, and problems with agreements and contracts.

So when Mercury goes retrograde this heralds a time for taking a step back, slowing down, and waiting it out.

During a Mercury Retrograde, we may feel slightly disoriented, stagnant, stuck, or like nothing is moving forward easily.

A Mercury retrograde will ask us to double-check everything, put off what can be delayed, and, for what can’t, make sure we are checking the fine print!

It is not recommended to launch a new product, set up technology, sign contracts, travel or make major purchases during this period.

But with Mercury retrograding so frequently sometimes this can’t be helped and we can’t always avoid it so instead plan ahead, be prepared for potential issues, have backup plans, and don’t be surprised if there are miscommunications. 

how to work with mercury retrograde

This is the time to be flexible, double-check all communications and travel arrangements, and avoid signing contracts. 

By the time Mercury turns direct if we have taken the time to reflect and review we will be ready to make headway with our goals.

It is worth noting that if you were born during a Mercury retrograde you might actually find that the impact is reversed for you and that this period is super productive for you!

Where is Mercury retrograding in your chart?

Mercury retrogrades in different zodiac signs and each retrograde will be subtly influenced by the characteristics of the sign Mercury is in. The current retrograde from August 23rd – September 15th moves Mercury from 21-8 degrees Virgo.

So this current Mercury retrograde is in Virgo and Mercury will retrograde from 21-8 degrees Virgo so take a look at your natal chart to see which house this is in for you and take note of any other planets around this area.

If you are not sure what the different houses represent then check out my FREE astrology basics course.

Virgo rules health and work routines and being of service so whilst Mercury retrogrades here it is a good time to reflect and review our work and health routine and structures in general – are we taking care of ourselves? Do our work routines support us or are they burning us out? Do we need to implement some healthier routines or rituals into our lives?

Mercury retrograde is typically a time when we have issues with things such as communication, technology, and contracts so this Mercury Retrograde is likely to cause difficulties with the way your life is currently structured. You may find yourself feeling called to make some big changes around how you structure your work to support your life and not the other way round.

What might the position of Mercury’s August 2023 Retrograde mean for you?

In which part of your life do you need to reflect and review?

For me, it is my 12th House (rest and retreat), I’ve just come back from running my first astrology retreat in Tulum, Mexico as well as giving myself a needed break from day-to-day responsibilities and obligations. It gave me the space to make some decisions and get clearer on the path forward but I think that will continue to percolate until Mercury turns direct.

I’m also currently working on my book proposal but I am clear that I don’t want to formally submit it until Mercury turns direct and ideally once it moves over my Ascendant – but it is an ideal time to refine it.

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