Real People Share How To Make This Mercury Retrograde Less Of A Nightmare

produced by Julie Borowsky; photographed by Tayler Smith.
Mercury retrograde is like a box of chocolates: You never know what you're going to get. Actually, on second thought, you probably have a good idea of what you're going to discover. The box of chocolates will likely contain chocolate, and the Mercury retrograde will likely feature confusion, miscommunications, and honest (albeit highly frustrating) mistakes. We've all lived through enough retrograde periods to know that much — but only the nimblest among us have learned how to dodge Mercury's swerviest curveballs.
As we continue to weather the storm that is the current Mercury retrograde in Leo, we thought we'd turn to the R29 readership for their personal survival tricks. Of course, Mercury retrograde effects everyone differently — and, try as you might, you still might mess up under its watchful gaze — so there isn't any secret cheat code to emerging from a backspin totally unscathed. But, nevertheless our astro buddies came through with some seriously game-changing advice. Whether you plan to lay low until the messenger planet goes direct later this month or have already gotten embroiled in some Mercurial drama, these tips just might save you a headache or three.
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Don't fight change.
During a previous retrograde, Natasha, a Pisces, went through a major breakup: "Someone that I was in love with broke my heart. Fully smashed it to pieces." It's hard enough to come back from something like that when Mercury's direct, let alone resist the urge that a retrograde can inspire in so many of us to dig in our heels and refuse to accept the change. Natasha says it was only when she got some distance that she saw the breakup in a new light. "After really taking a step back from the situation, I could see how much better off I was without them. I wasn’t being treated like a priority; I wasn’t being treated with equal amounts of respect," she says. "I couldn’t see that from where I was before the breakup, but during the retrograde it became clear to me that I was happier without them." Sometimes, retrogrades can feel like an eternity, but that slow-motion effect might grant you a much-need opportunity to adopt another, maybe ultimately more useful, perspective.
Write it down.
Stephanie, a Cancer, credits past retrograde successes with a simple journaling practice. "Every morning (and randomly throughout the day as thoughts pop up), I write in a digital journal — everything about how I feel that day: What I'm grateful for, what my thoughts are on an ongoing situation or anything else that comes to my mind," she explains, adding that the most important part of the process actually comes later, when she revisits and rereads her entries for lessons she may have missed in the moment. "It helps me put things into perspective... With Mercury jumping all over the place, this really helps me to understand if my moods are just for a moment, or if there is some common theme I need to pay attention to."
Commit — then communicate.
Aquarian Chelsea landed a new job in the middle of a Mercury retrograde. Although our initial assumption was that Chelsea is a wizard and planet whisperer, it turns out she just knows how to ride the Mercurial wave — with patience, a clear goal in mind, and open lines of communication. "I was introduced to an employer who was looking for an employee with the current title I was seeking. I endured a two-phase interview with this company and won them over," she explains. "I believe that you can still be successful during this time, as long as you stay focused and communicate openly."
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