By: Janette Dalgliesh – Confluence Daily is your daily news source for women in the know.
If you’re hanging out in social media over the next month or so, you’ll probably see people losing their shit about Mercury Retrograde.
This planetary phenomenon has an undeserved reputation for being Trouble with a capital T, but that’s because it’s often wildly misunderstood.
Why all the fuss?
Retrograde describes the motion of a planet as seen from the perspective of Earth, where it appears to turn around and go backward in the sky for a time. Of course, it’s not really going backward around the Sun, it just seems that way to us.
Astrologically, any retrograde offers us an opportunity to reflect on, reassess, rethink, review anything to do with that planet’s area of expertise.
With Mercury, we’re looking at the messenger of the gods, the ruler of all forms of communication. Think systems and structures, including technology, procedural matters, protocols. Think conversations, emails, letters. Think brain function, our thoughts and our self-talk, our self-awareness.
And Mercury is the embodiment of the trickster energy, so when it moves retrograde, it enables us to shake loose old ideas, old beliefs, old systematic ways of doing things, old conversations. Shaking things loose is not always comfortable, but it’s hugely beneficial in terms of making space for the new, and it’s nothing to fear.
So why do people get so fraught about a Mercury Retrograde?
Because that out-with-the-old-and-in-with-
It’s certainly not an ideal time for rushing into buying new tech of any kind; or for signing contracts or launching a new product or business. Much smarter to wait if you can, and use the time to do your research. And of course, the stars don’t dictate your life – so if you absolutely have to sign something, launch something or buy something, just make sure to do your due diligence, check that fine print, and go for it boldly.
But Mercury Retrograde can be the conscious creator’s best alignment buddy, because it’s blisteringly powerful for helping us shift old, stuck thoughts and beliefs.
Mercury is closely linked to brain function, and a little neuroscience might be helpful here.
Your brain delivers all of your conscious experience of reality. Brains are super efficient, so they reduce around 11 billion bits of information per second to something like 40 bits. How does your brain decide which 40 bits to show you in any given moment? It uses a mix of memory, belief and context. It relies on its own opinion of who you are, and what is possible for you – aka your identity – to deliver your very own special customized version of reality. (And my brain does the same for me.)
More than perhaps any other astrological dynamic, Mercury Retrograde invites us to shake loose old brain habits, and make way for the new. This is known as neuroplasticity, and we can do it at any age.
Because you are not your brain. You are the user of your brain, and you can rewire it.
For example, if my old brain narrative is ‘there are never any parking spots in the CBD’, I can notice that, and change it to ‘I always get a fantastic parking spot’. It might not be ‘true’ at first, but as I practice that story, my brain will rewire until it begins to show me the fantastic parking spots. As a result, my reality matches the story I have been practicing.
Sound familiar? Of course, it does – because that’s exactly how Law of Attraction and conscious creation work, too. It’s no coincidence that the metaphysical and the biological work in tandem. And working a little magic in both places is super effective!
Research shows that rewiring a brain begins to have an effect within the first 72 hours, though it can take a few weeks to fully embed. The key is repetition (so we do it daily) and juice (in other words, some emotional or sensory engagement as we imagine that story made flesh).
And here’s the really fun bit – if the new story represents a change in identity, our brains can sometimes dig in their metaphorical heels, since they don’t love change.
Which means that Mercury Retrograde’s shake-it-loose trickster energy provides a fantastic support for this process, if we can just keep our heads and keep facing into the new stories and identities we are creating.
Where is this upcoming Mercury Retrograde happening in the sky, and how can we leverage that?
It begins at 8.33pm on 16 November 2018, Eastern US time, at 13 degrees of Sagittarius. That’s a wild and fiery energy, all about exploring beyond the known, playing out there in the realms of the impossible. It’s wide and optimistic and brings a dynamic of positivity and anything-is-possible.
Around the end of November, this fast-moving planet finds its way back to Scorpio, the edgiest of the water signs and a far cry from Sagittarius. Think deep, deep connection, an exploration of what’s hidden below in the darkest depths of the ocean, and some potential for strong feelings coming to the surface for consideration and review.
On 6 December, Mercury stops and turns around to move forward again, picking up momentum until eventually, just before Christmas Day, he makes up all the lost ground and gets back to 13 degrees Sagittarius again.
Note – the days of the actual turnarounds can be extra tricky as the energy shifts, so do flow a little more zen than usual when it comes to communications, both internal and external.
But as Mercury returns to that optimistic Sagittarius vibe, he’ll pick up momentum, giving a final burst of potential for shifting into a more positive and expanded outlook.
So perhaps this Mercury Retrograde, instead of getting caught up in anxiety about tech hiccups and travel delays, you could choose to keep calm and embrace the potential for positive change.
For specific-to-you insights into how the current Mercury Retrograde is interacting with and affecting your own natal chart, check out my special Mercury Retro Consults, available now.
Janette Dalgliesh has a simple mission in life – to help every person unlock their capacity for resonant joy, and live it. A keen student of astrology, brain science, chaos magic, law of attraction and positive psychology, she serves her people through astrology consults, coaching, teaching and writing. Her international clientele raves about her wildly accurate, individualized readings, but she doesn’t do general weekly predictions – for those, Janette recommends Kim Falconer (www.goodvibeastrology.com) and Mystic Medusa (www.mysticmedusa.com). Find Janette on Facebook [link to https://www.facebook.com/
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