How to prepare for Mercury retrograde…

Mercury, as we know, does this a few times a year. For dates and degrees, check out this page.

Dealing with it requires common sense, flexibility, clarity and patience. I often tell people to act as if they don’t have a smart phone, or are overseas with the data roaming turned off.

What do I mean by that?

Remember back to when you made appointments with people and you called them up and agreed a time and a place. You never knew if there’d be a pay phone handy, so you mapped out your route before you left, and made sure that you caught the train before the last train you could catch in order to ensure you got there on time. Remember then?

You didn’t squeeze in an extra coffee meeting knowing you could punch out a text to the person you were going to be keeping waiting. You didn’t turn up for meetings late knowing that you could dial in on the way.

And before you travelled you made sure you had enough time to get to the airport, had books in case of delays, and records you kept separately of your ticket and passport details, plus copies of your itinerary, hotels and car hires?

You would never think of signing a contract without reading the fine print at least twice, and if you needed a map, you’d print out the directions, or at least make a note of the details in the notebook you always carried.

Remember then?

Sure, it was slower. You weren’t available 24/7 so had to fit in meetings as you could.

Our lives these days are ruled by Mercury things. There’s no avoiding it, and it’s great. Mercury retrograde though, is like the Universe telling us that every so often we need to slow it down – listen to our own thoughts, revisit those things, issues, ideas, people, plans that need revisiting, and then move on again. It’s a little like the detox we all go on after eating millions of lunches over the last few weeks as I say goodbye to people…

I’m not advocating that we do away with our little helpers – perish the thought, I’d be lost without my smart phone and social media and google maps and… – but Mercury retrogrades are like a push in the e-tox direction.

Despite what some will tell you, life doesn’t stop just because Mercury has decided to pass between the Sun and the Earth and look like he’s going backwards. I can suggest that you delay signing contracts and making major purchases, but the reality is, there’ll be times where it can’t be delayed.

Here’s what you do.

If it’s a purchase and it can’t be helped, ask yourself these questions:

  • Do I need it?
  • Do I really need it?
  • Do I really need it now?
  • Have I shopped around?
  • What’s my back up plan?
  • Can I afford it?
  • What happens if I don’t buy it?
  • Do I really need it?
  • Does it fit?
  • Am I buying it with a view to changing or renovating it?

If it’s a contract and absolutely needs to be signed during the retrograde, ask yourself these questions:

  • Do I need to sign?
  • Do I need to sign now?
  • What happens if I don’t sign now?
  • Have I read the contract?
  • Have I read the contract properly?
  • Have I read the fine print? Twice?

Get the idea?

Personally, I love Mercury retrograde periods…now.

I used to dread it – at least until I began to do the following… as far as I possibly could:

  • I booked fewer appointments per day
  • I left greater contingency before and after appointments
  • I scheduled additional testing for changes
  • I scheduled additional change communication and issued additional FAQs for changes
  • My meeting minutes were more thorough
  • I followed every conversation up with a brief confirming email
  • I took carry-on for business trips
  • I allowed extra time for travel time for interstate meetings
  • I backed up everything

Why do I love it now?

It can be inspirational…and as a writer, that’s a good thing.

Ideas that have been lost in the whirl of busyness, pop back into my head, the words flow freely onto the manuscript, unrelated and random concepts can somehow make sense.

Doing the above doesn’t mean things are perfect – heaven forbid. But as I keep my plans flexible and don’t get too hung up on frustrations, it’s all quite ok.

I dare you to give it a try…

Mercury stations retrograde at 4 Taurus 50’ on 10 April…