Zodiac, Self

Mercury In Retrograde Starts This Week — Here's What You Need To Know In Order To Survive!

Photo: Unsplash: averie woodard
When Is Mercury In Retrograde? How To Survive These 2018 Dates

Learning the dates of Mercury in retrograde during 2018 is one of the best ways to be sure all aspects of your life — including your love life, your work, your physical and mental health, etc. — stay on as positive a path as possible all year long, and lo and behold, the first date on the Mercury retrograde calendar this year begins on March 22, 2018.

"Well," you may reasonably ask, "When is Mercury retrograde? And what does Mercury retrograde mean? Is that astronomy? Astrology? Superstition?"


RELATED: How Mercury In Retrograde Affects Each Zodiac Sign (Because Yes, It's Baaaaack!)


We all go through certain times during the year when it feels like nothing can go right for absolutely no reason at all. As you share the stories about your bad luck, problems making decisions and general frustrations with friends, you're likely to hear at least a few of them say something like, "Of course that's happening! Mercury is in retrograde now."

When Mercury goes retrograde, it often means that chaos, disorder, and disasters plague our lives every single day. It can be enough to make you break out into a cold sweat just thinking about it!

You wake up to discover that you fell out of bed in the middle of the night. You ignore a phone call, only to find out it was a friend offering you a ticket to a show you were dying to see, and which she has since given to someone who, you know, cared enough to answer her call. Your boss gets furious with you out of nowhere, no matter how much of an effort you make. Your boyfriend suddenly wants to have "a talk." And even though you've been on a serious paleo diet, you've somehow managed to GAIN 5 brand new pounds.

What is going on?! 

Try not to panic, dear heart. What's going on one of the most annoying astrological events of the year, and thankfully, there are ways to plan and prepare in advance for the survival of your job, your friendships, your relationships, and your general well-being.


RELATED: How Mercury In Retrograde Will Affect Your Relationship This Month, According To Your Zodiac Sign


To begin with, it's important to know that Mercury retrogrades between three and four times each year for about three weeks at a time.

The Mercury retrograde calendar for 2018 is as follows:

  • March 22 – April 15, 2018: In fire-sign of Aries
  • July 25 - August 18, 2018: In fire-sign of Leo
  • November 16 - December 06, 2018: In fire-sign Sagittarius, ends in water-sign Scorpio

According to astrologers, when Mercury goes retrograde, it appears to move backward in its own orbit. Astronomers explain that this is actually the effect of an optical illusion.

Scientists explain the phenomenon as follows:

"Finding the facts about Mercury's retrograde motion is complicated because it's both a real and imagined phenomenon... [If] a person were able to trace Mercury's position during retrograde — which is a challenge, because the sun blocks our view — they'd end up with a line that changes direction. This is because Mercury retrograde is an optical illusion resulting from our position (on Earth) relative to Mercury... The term 'retrograde' in this instance refers to a perceived reversal in the standard west-to-east movement of Mercury through the stars... Its orbit is smaller and faster than Earth's. When its orbit catches up to and passes Earth, it creates the illusion that Mercury is backtracking."

Regardless, experience shows that the zodiac's antics seem to have a rather serious impact on all of us down here on planet Earth. In particular, this event impacts each of the zodiac signs' ability to communicate, which is only natural given that Mercury was the messenger of the gods.

To help you make it through the awkward period of Mercury retrograde dates starting with March 2018, here are five things NOT to do during Mercury in retrograde.

(Mark your calendar now!)

1. Get married ... or divorced.

When Mercury pulls back, the last thing you want to do is try to seriously alter an important relationship in your life.

It's bound not to go the way you planned. So if you're engaged and thinking of choosing a wedding date, avoid choosing one that falls during one of the 3-week periods noted above.

By the same token, you probably shouldn't decide to end your marriage or a serious relationship during this time either. While you might be feeling stuck when it comes to how the two of your are communicating, hold off on making any major changes in your relationship dynamic until this period of time has passed.


2. Get a haircut.

Don't decide to chop off your waist length hair or pierce your septum or get that new full-sleeve of tattoos that you've been dreaming of until Mercury is back in its regular orbit. 

While making a change in your appearance is a great way to get a fresh start, very often these dramatic changes involves the help of a professional. In order to get the look that you crave, you're going to have to be able to clearly and thoughtfully explain what you want to this professional. That's hard enough under the best of circumstances. With Mercury in Retrograde it's harder now than ever to communicate what you really want.

Don't worry, you can do whatever you want to yourself once the reign of chaos has ended.


3. Quit your job ... or start a new one.

Your main goal during these phases should be to weather the storm. Take this time as an ideal opportunity to look inward. Journal. Meditate. Exercise. Spend time with yourself.

But do not decide that the only way to change the chaos in your life is to get yourself a new gig, even if you've been thinking about quitting the job forever. Starting a new job means presenting the best possible version of yourself, and that's something you just can't do during this season.

Quitting during this time is also ill-advised because you don't want to accidentally say the wrong thing and burn all of your bridges. Sit on that impulse. You can still trust your gut, just put a waiting period on following through. 


4. Spend a lot of money. 

One of the best things about being an adult in this world is having your own income. Of course, that can also be one of the biggest headaches.

If you're anything like, uh, everyone I know, when you're stressed out or unhappy it's easy to try and treat yourself with a little bit of retail therapy.

Buying a nice bath bomb or ordering pizza for dinner one night is all fine and well, but avoid making major purchases. I'm talking, houses, cars, boats, etc. Seriously don't buy a boat. In addition to impacting your communication, Mercury can also have an impact on electronic devices. I would hate for your fancy new car or flat screen TV to end up being a major bust.


5. Make ANY major decisions.

If you're considering making any other major decisions, that's awesome. Daydream about them. Journal about them. Make a vision board. Do everything you do to help you brainstorm and sort out big ideas for your life. But hold off on making any final decisions.

But remember that when Mercury is retrograde, little is going to go in your favor. It's better to simply focus on maintaining the status quo rather than reaching for the stars during this time. Your big dreams can come to fruition once this is all over.

Now is the time for introspection, as taking action could be disastrous. 


RELATED: How Mercury In Retrograde Will Affect Your Friendships This Month, According To Your Zodiac Sign


Rebecca Jane Stokes is a sex, humor and lifestyle writer living in Brooklyn, New York with her cat, Batman. She hosts the sex, love, and dating advice show, Becca After Dark on YourTango's Facebook Page every Tuesday and Thursday at 10:15 pm Eastern. For more of her work, check out her Tumblr