Mercury is in retrograde this month, causing havoc. See how to survive the chaos and get through the month of miscommunication in one piece.

If you're feeling in a bit of a muddle this month, your confusion could be caused by more than your own absent mindedness. Celestial events are lining up over the coming few weeks that could throw even the best laid plans out of kilter - but this astrological shift could also open up exciting new possibilities for you.

From June 7th until July 2nd, the planet Mercury is retrograde. This astrologically important event happens about three times per year. Mercury appears to slow down and move backwards through the sky. It is an optical illusion but one that astrologers say has a very significant influence on life on earth.

The meaning of Mercury

The planet Mercury is named after the ancient Roman god of communication. Mercury, or Hermes as the ancient Greeks called him, flew about the heavens on his winged sandals delivering messages to and from the ancient divinities. Usually loyal and reliable, Mercury can also be a trickster God on occasion and it is this dark side of Mercury's influence that is unveiled when his planet goes retrograde.

In astrology, Mercury influences communication, travel, business, negotiations, luck and success. So when Mercury is retrograde, many aspects of life are thrown into confusion. Communication can grind to a halt with messages misunderstood, delays mounting up, and mistakes occurring. Mercury retrograde is a time to double check everything before you commit to long term plans.

However, it's not all bad news! Mercury retrograde can signify the return of unfinished business to your life. So you are able to properly process and resolve aspects of your life that have not been adequately dealt with and released. You might find an old friend of lover stepping back in to the picture, or an old idea might spark again in a fresh way in your mind. You might start to see past events in a new light or you might decide it's time to finish a certain cycle of thinking or behaviour.

Mercury's mix-ups

This month, Mercury is moving back from Cancer into Gemini. So both these signs are at play in the potential focus of Mercury mix-ups.

Gemini is the sign of communication so social interactions may be at risk of being misunderstood, while technological communications such as email may be disrupted. On the other hand, this may be a time when you can see new ways to re-invent yourself through written communication - perhaps your business website needs a revamp? This might be a good time to look for unusual twists to get your message across - just be sure to double check all your information before you press 'send'.

Mercury retrograde in Cancer is about putting the past into a new perspective. Re-think situations that are still playing upon your mind. Can you find a new solution? Mercury retrograde often offers a second chance to change your future.

How to survive the Mercury retrograde

Follow these tips for making the most of Mercury retrograde - as well as avoiding its pitfalls...

Opportunity or obstacle?

Delays are said to occur more frequently during Mercury retrograde. But if you get stuck on your journey, instead of retreating into self-contained angst, take a look around you. Perhaps you will miss one train but get on another and meet an old friend or a future love. See unexpected delays as possible opportunities instead of annoying obstacles.

Hidden Insights

The confusion of Mercury retrograde can be the perfect time to stop forging ahead for a moment and stand still. It's a time to contemplate past events and to see how past lessons can be used to improve your future. Allow old ideas to surface and think about how you might infuse them with new life to create something new.

Exercise Caution

Mercury retrograde can play havoc with technology. So back up files on your computer, double check paperwork, read the small print and put off travel plans if possible, or be prepared for the unexpected during this astrological phase. Of course, unexpected twists keep life exciting so even if things don't go to plan, try not to panic and instead go with the flow and see where it leads you.

Review & Reflect

Reflect on your goals in life, not necessarily with a firm plan in mind but just musing upon a number of different possibilities for your future. Look back at old photo albums, social media or diaries to see where you were a few months ago and compare that point to where you are now. Are you happier? Which aspects would you like to improve?

Think before you speak

It's very easy to say the wrong thing when Mercury is retrograde. When the planet of communication is in flux, you are much more likely to say the wrong thing. So think carefully before you speak, and before you write anything online. Equally, if a friend says something to upset you, put it down to pesky Mercury playing tricks and give him/her the benefit of the doubt.

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