Mercury will begin its retrograde motion starting Aug. 23 and last until Sept. 15 this year
If you're feeling a bit off, have no fear! Mercury is just in retrograde.
Approximately three to four times a year, Mercury — the planet of communication and the mind — appears to move backward across the sky, resulting in periods often associated with confusion, delay and frustration.
Mercury will begin its retrograde motion starting Aug. 23, according to the Old Farmer's Almanac, and will continue through Sept. 15. Despite its apparent backward-moving appearance, it's an optical illusion to the human eye.
The publication notes that the illusion is "caused by the position of Earth in relation to that of the planet since a planet in orbit always travels in one set direction and can’t suddenly reverse course." This explains why Mercury might look like it has abruptly switched directions, giving this space phenomenon its name.
To those who practice astrology, it's said that intuition is high when Mercury is in retrograde and we are all influenced by its effect during these periods. Astrologer Kyle Thomas tells PEOPLE that Mercury retrograde comes in stages and depends on the zodiac sign it falls within during the complete phase.
According to Thomas — known for his cosmic guidance for celebrities, business executives and prominent influencers — this Mercury retrograde will also be "extremely intense because it is taking place in Virgo, a zodiac sign that it rules." This will make it "the most challenging Mercury retrograde of 2023," he adds.
However, Thomas says it's important to note that Mercury retrograde phases "are not here to destroy you or create problems." Instead, they "are here to help you slow down and review, reassess and reorganize."
To find out what the upcoming Mercury retrograde could mean for you based on your zodiac sign, per Thomas' suggestions, read on!
Aries (March 21-April 19)
Take a big inhale and exhale, Aries. This Mercury retrograde is likely to bring "headaches around work and employment matters," says Thomas. "You may sense confusion with coworkers or around projects and responsibilities."
He adds, "Someone may up and quit, causing all sorts of matters to spin off the rails. If you’d like to reconnect with an old employer, do so now."
Taurus (April 20-May 20)
For Taurus, Thomas predicts that drama with your ex is "guaranteed." He says "confusion around dating" may be felt, plus similar feelings felt in "your passions and creativity." Maybe even "children," he adds.
Meeting someone new? Thomas says that "you may find yourself suddenly ghosted." Already have a lover? He says you may find that person to be "having second thoughts."
"An ex, old hookup, or old flame could even cross your path," Thomas says. "If you’d like to reconnect with someone, do so now."
Gemini (May 21-June 20)
Take a minute to unplug, Gemini. This Mercury retrograde "will bring confusion to your home, family, real estate, and domestic matters," predicts Thomas. If you’ve been in the process of a move or renovation, he says it could "experience delays and frustrations."
Cancer (June 21-July 22)
Is your mind swirling, Cancer? Thomas says this Mercury retrograde might make you "confused around your ideas, opinions and plans." Specifically, if you've been "working on an important writing, speaking, advertising or branding initiative," he adds. "Hurdles around travel or contracts" may happen as a result.
Leo (July 23-Aug. 22)
Find your zen, Leo. "Prepare to experience plenty of delays, frustrations, and drama around your income and finances," warns Thomas, who says this will likely bring "anxiety" as a result. Therefore, he suggests "to triple-check all of your expenses and transactions."
Virgo (Aug. 23-Sept. 22)
Take some time off to relax, Virgo — you'll need it! Why? Thomas says that Mercury is likely to cause "all sorts of drama in your zodiac sign."
As a result, "challenges and hurdles" might occur in relation to "every project, plan or desire you set your mind upon." Frustration could be felt so instead of fighting the current, Thomas says to "take a moment to unplug and just go relax."
He adds, "Nothing will proceed now, so it is best to chill."
Libra (Sept. 23-Oct. 22)
Prioritize your mental health, Libra. Thomas says that this Mercury retrograde phase "could feel like your anxiety, frustration, and insecurity is all over place."
"You may be obsessing about closure or baggage," he continues. "Secrets, hidden enemies, and unresolved situations may haunt you."
Scorpio (Oct. 23-Nov. 21)
Give this some thought, Scorpio. Whether its "miscommunication with people you know" or you find yourself "caught up in a bit of drama," Thomas predicts that this Mercury retrograde is likely to bring "mischief to your friendships, social life and network."
Furthermore, Thomas says that "old friends and flames may return to you during this time" — so if you'd like to reunite with them, he says to "do so now."
Sagittarius (Nov. 22 – Dec. 21)
Don’t sweat the small stuff, Sagittarius, as this Mercury retrograde could "bring thunderstorms to your career and professional projects." Whether it be "delays, conflicts with a boss or even challenging news surrounding your ambitions, success or public recognition," Thomas says all can manifest.
Therefore, he suggests avoiding the launch of new projects because they're likely "to fail." However, if you have thoughts of returning to a "previous employer," Thomas says to "reach out now."
Capricorn (Dec. 22-Jan. 19)
Having trouble getting on the same page? You have Mercury retrograde to thank! "You’ll be having frustrations around academics, media endeavors or legalities," predicts Thomas. "Something difficult is afoot."
Aquarius (Jan. 20-Feb. 18)
It's time to evaluate your relationships. The Mercury retrograde phase "stirs the pot on all levels within partnership," says Thomas, so you could be "feeling a significant connection is not balanced."
Perhaps, he suggests, "you could be having trust or sharing issues." Therefore, this "could instead bring frustration to assets or investments."
Pisces (Feb. 19-March 20)
Fasten your seatbelts, Pisces! This Mercury retrograde phase is likely "to bring confusion and miscommunication to your partnerships and relationships," according to Thomas. "This may bring friction or cause you to wonder why you’re not on the same page."
He continues, "This may even bring back an old partner in business or love to you. If you’d like to reconnect with someone, use the time now."
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