Your Guide to Surviving Mercury Retrograde in 2021, Based on Your Zodiac Sign
Here’s everything to know about the upcoming cosmic event.
If you’ve been undergoing a series of miscommunications lately, that can only mean one thing: Mercury retrograde is upon us once again. To put astro-terminology in simple terms, Mercury moves backward from its orbit three to four times a year, resulting in a series of unfortunate occurrences. Known to be the planet that represents communication, travel and technology, Mercury allows us to convey our thoughts by filtering what we say, as well as how we absorb information from others on a regular day. With that in mind, during these unpredictable times, you may want to remain vigilant when it comes to conveying your feelings to the people you care about, or even when sending out simple texts or emails.
In 2021, this cosmic event will only take place three times, with the first having already occurred on January 30 and the second Mercury retrograde starting on May 29. Below, astrologer Julia Modorsky of the Sanctuary app breaks down all the different dates you need to look out for this year, as well as what to expect based on your zodiac sign.
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First Mercury Retrograde (January 30 to February 20 – Aquarius)
Aquarius offers progress that will aid the future, and tends to bring on new discoveries and sudden realizations. During Mercury retrograde in Aquarius, you will retrace your steps to come to a better understanding of these new insights. Due to the Aquarian influence, you may want to back up your tech devices or save some files as Mercury slows down consciousness here on Earth.
Find where 26°29’ to 11°01’ Aquarius is in your natal chart. This is where Mercury will appear to move backward for you, where you will be introspective for three weeks.
How This Mercury Retrograde May Affect You, Based on Your Sign
Introspective about friendship, community and hopes, dreams, visions of the future. Some will experience this reflection in the area of career, goals and public presence.
Introspective about career, how you’re recognized publicly in the world and your goals in life. Some will experience this reflection with where they feel free in life or with their philosophies and beliefs.
Introspective about exploration (new perspectives, worlds and philosophies). Some will experience this reflection on the deeper meanings in life, intimacy and vulnerability with others, and personal empowerment.
Introspective about your transformation in your life, where you feel powerful, and diving deeper into a topic or practice. Some will experience this reflection on relationships, connections and balance.
Introspective about your partnerships, support systems and how you feel centered. Some will experience this reflection on health, personal healing, daily routine, or services they can provide that can help others in some way.
Introspective about your day-to-day, healing, your job (not career) or even your coworkers. Some will experience this reflection on creativity, self-expression and how they shine.
Introspective about your creative expression, your playfulness or romantic life, your courage and exuberance, or what really brings you to life. Some will experience this reflection on their area of home (what feels like home), family, comforts or emotional nature – the core of the being.
Introspective about home, family, foundations — as well as your inner world, intuition and heart. Some will experience this reflection on their ideas, voice (speaking, writing) or anything they’ve been learning.
Introspective about the voice, speaking, writing, sharing your ideas, how you communicate, or the messages you’ve been receiving. Some will experience this reflection on where you find grounding and security in life, what your values are (including finances), your patience and your body’s natural rhythm.
Introspective about what you find valuable in life – personal, spiritual, financial values, self-worth, self-care or grounding. Some will experience this reflection on who you are, your sense of self, your persona and presence or independence.
Introspective about your independent nature, connecting more deeply with who you are, and what comes naturally to you — the energy you embody. Some will experience this reflection on their spirituality, psyche, psychic knowing, sleep cycle, meditation, compassionate or soulful nature, or feeling of oneness in the greater whole.
Introspective about your dreams (can literally be your dreams at night), your spiritual connection, higher self, deep inner knowing, releasing potential subconscious blockages you may feel or become aware of. Some will experience this reflection on their dreams of the future, ideals, brilliant new insights, or friendships and community.
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Second Mercury Retrograde (May 29 to June 22 – Gemini)
With Mercury retrograding in Gemini, now is the time to slow down with your words, and breathe deeply and consciously. In addition, consider being more mindful and thoughtful in communication, processing and integrating what you’ve been learning. This will also be a great time to revisit past writings and go deeper with them, or to further your studies in an area. Feel free to reconnect with someone you’ve had on your mind before Mercury began to retrograde, as long as it was a healthy parting or if you just lost touch with an old friend you’ve been missing.
Find where 24°43’ to 16°07’ Gemini is in your natal chart to see how this can particularly influence your life.
How This Mercury Retrograde May Affect You, Based on Your Sign
More so than others, there’s a major emphasis on listening, learning, speaking, writing, and staying very curious and adaptable as Mercury retrogrades in the area of your chart that’s most similar to both Gemini and its planetary ruler (Mercury). You can receive a variety of messages throughout this period. Now is the perfect time to dust off a book you’ve been meaning to read after all these years, and you may even benefit by taking short walks around your neighborhood. Become the student, rather than the teacher, and you’ll come upon so much growth this season by doing so. Be kind, thoughtful and deeply wise with your speech.
This is the time to reflect on your values and what you find holds true significance for you in life — spiritually, financially and personally. You may even find yourself revisiting your finances and refining your financial plans and details throughout this retrograde. Explore the general and overall ways in which you feel grounded, stable, steady and secure. Be sure to also intentionally focus on any matters of self-worth, self-love and self-care, and be so deliberate in valuing yourself, your body and all of the resources around you. As you slow down this season, focus on the way you naturally flow. Become more attuned to your rhythm.
This period of introspection is all about you. A time of self-actualization, self-reflection and learning more about who you are — gaining further understanding of your passions in life, your presence, persona, actions and the energy you embody. Revisit where you’ve been, where you are in the present, how far you’ve come and where you’re headed. Don’t rush ahead in conversation or make assumptions and you’ll be in the clear. The focus is on the self, your independence and self-embodiment, so really continue to grow, evolve and reflect on who you are as an individual.
Trust your inner knowing and what you feel your soul wants to share with you. Now is the time to surrender to the flow of life and trust that you will be able to float along safely for the entire ride. Release, let go and speak compassionately from your deepest and highest self. Reflect on your dreams, create a dream journal, take note of the synchronicities and messages the universe sends over, and be sure to pick back up on your favorite spiritual practice. Go on a hike, sing, dance, paint or write. Meditate, breathe, and flow. Connect beyond the physical and what’s visible, and cultivate a greater knowledge of your psychic sense as well. This can be such an energetically sensitive area where we can blur past our perception of space or time.
Now’s the time to reflect on the communities you belong to and the way in which you communicate within them (with your friendships too). Take the time to rehash any visions you have in terms of your most optimal future as you revisit your hopes and dreams. There’s a lot of focus on progress, innovation and forward-thinking ideas. You may find many of your thoughts coming together and just finally click during this retrograde. It’ll be important to keep an open mind and stay fluid — if there’s any rigidity in thought or unwillingness to adapt, progressing onward could feel more challenging. It’s a great time to delve deeply in thought with what you’ve been working on manifesting for your future.
This can be a time where you feel unsure of what’s next or what path to take, so spend time revisiting your goals these next few weeks as your career comes into focus. Consider where you feel most committed, and as you reflect, also take note of how you publicly share your voice and ideas. Are you currently finding your voice again? Are you being heard and recognized? Deepen your love for the words you share with the world, and if it’s something you’ve been thinking about for some time now, begin prepping for your future blog, novel or public talks. Be sure to also revisit any WIPs, rough drafts or your “saved, not sent” social media content.
You may be thinking about your next grand adventure right about now — this is a great time to explore what truly inspires, motivates and excites you. Focus on merging a deep sense of wonder to your wander during this retrograde, and be sure to reflect on some beliefs and philosophies as you explore a variety of points of view. Remember to steer clear of any dogmatic verve or overzealousness while embracing great freedom, truth and joy with your voice. Be introspective about the mental and vocal expansion and growth you’ve been experiencing lately, alongside the cathartic release of limiting beliefs.
This can be one deep and profound Mercury retrograde for you, where you reconnect with your powerful voice, sureness of self, depth of mind, and maybe an old thought-provoking read. Some things to consider: where you invest your time, energy and resources, what you can remove from your life that you’re ready to shed, and how your words can affect others. Don’t be too sharp with them as they can either bring upon deep transformation or deeply pierce. Continue developing a beautiful trust with your intimate relationships by being sure to carefully communicate with one another to avoid or repair any misunderstandings.
Time to revamp your connection with your partner (whether business or love). Get to know one another’s minds even more deeply, and whatever you do, keep the lines of communication open, calmly. If there’s ever a misunderstanding with your close friend, romantic partner or business associate, take a moment to collect yourself, to breathe deeply, and clear it up when you’re ready to do so. Some old conversations can be brought up for further discussion — even if you thought they’ve already been fully addressed in the past. If an ex tries to re-enter your life, remind yourself whether this was a healthy connection or not. Reflect on “what was” before moving on to “what can be.” If you’re single, reflect on how much you’ve grown from previous relationships, what you desire in a future connection, and deeply think about how you have (or haven’t) been communicating with others.
This is one Mercury retrograde where awareness and being attentive and conscious is paramount to your success. Re-examine your daily routine — be sure it’s a healthy one or make adjustments and watch your life transform in the most healing sense. Practice grace when communicating with others, especially if someone’s asking for your help. Reformulate your plans, steer clear of space case-iness, enjoy the great outdoors and try not to over-analyze your waking life. You can now focus on the details of your day-to-day reality if you take the time to move slowly and be perceptive of your surroundings.
Revisit some of your creative projects, hobbies and reflect on what it means to have fun for you. If you have kids, really listen to what your children would like to tell you. Slow down and hear their voices, thoughts, ideas and everything they want to share with you. Express yourself thoughtfully, connect more deeply with your own voice, your courageous self and your sunny nature. Self-expression, playfulness and your ability to shine brightly come into focus at this time. Let yourself be introspective about the star you know you are, while also keeping in mind the sweet balance of being humble. This can be a very fruitful period for you.
There can be an emphasis on speaking from your heart this retrograde. There may be opportunities to reconnect with family — mutually working towards gaining a greater understanding of each other. Your thoughts can be on the home during this time and you may even begin planning some renovations, or even begin to ponder where it is you feel most at home and with whom. What is it that brings you immense comfort, warmth and nourishment? Reflect on your roots, your foundations, your very core and explore your inner world, while fine-tuning those intuitive senses.
Third Mercury Retrograde (September 26 to October 18 – Libra)
When Mercury retrogrades in Libra, balance, weighing your options, relationships, what you love and find beautiful in life, and your sense of justice come into play. This will also be a time to deepen your connection with your partner. However, be mindful if you will reconnect with an ex. Be discerning with why things didn’t work out in the past and ask yourself, “Was it situational or personality?” This can actually be a wonderful time for closure if needed. Additionally, this will be a great period to slow down and deeply reflect on and enjoy what you love. Keep in mind where you find support, cooperation, beauty and balance in your life.
Find where 25°28’ to 10°07’ Libra is in your natal chart.
Having always been one to enjoy problem-solving, finding patterns and exploring the deeper meanings in life, Julia Arielle Modorsky discovered the intricate depths of astrology years ago and quickly made it her full-time career. Since joining Sanctuary in 2019, she’s given thousands of readings to clients all over the world to help bring clarity, guidance and empowerment to their lives through the interworkings of the cosmos. You can find Julia giving readings on the Sanctuary app most nights, as well as on her Instagram.