Cover Here's your ultimate Mercury retrograde survival guide (Illustration: Chesca Gamboa/ Tatler Asia)

Tatler's astrologer De Rui gives us five tips on how to navigate through 2021's third and last Mercury retrograde happening from September 27 to October 17

On September 27, for the third time this year, the Messenger planet Mercury appears to travel backwards in the night sky. If your plans have been going awry or have put your foot in your mouth one too many times lately, Mercury’s upcoming transit could be the culprit.

In ancient Western mythology, Mercury was represented by Hermes, the restless son of Zeus who was celebrated for his cunning and ingenuity. Mercury rules information and circuitry, both mental and electrical. Words—including the ones we think, speak, and receive—are all associated with this planet. Its sign and house placement when you were born governs how you process inputs from your environment to make sense of the world.

When we collectively experience a Mercury retrograde, we are being encouraged to take time out for reflection and to cut back on commitments. Day-to-day organising can become more challenging. Tasks can fall through the cracks and miscommunication can be more frequent. If you are always the last person to board the flight or someone who pushes your phone’s low battery mode, a Mercury retrograde could introduce a surprise that makes you vow never to do it again (again).

Read on to see how you can give yourself and others some extra time, space, and attention during this coming retrograde period.

See also: The Final Mercury Retrograde Of 2021 Is Coming—Here's How It'll Affect You

Using a gig-economy app

Technology is meant to save us time but it can also make demands on our coordination skills. If you find yourself calling an Uber or Deliveroo during the Mercury retrograde, expect the driver or delivery person to call you (at least once) to confirm your location. It’s worth taking an extra minute to speak or text in order to avoid missing the pickup.

Keep an eye on the app so that you are ready to go when the service provider is at your door. In case of a problem with your order, double-check that you have the evidence straight before filing a dispute.

Planning a Halloween party

Arranging a private get-together can be a major operation under the best of circumstances. During a Mercury retrograde you will want to order extra food and drink, double-confirm the venue booking, and even plan backup entertainment in case your live band or playlist fails you.

Guests may cancel last-minute or bring unexpected friends. With people in costume or fancy dress, it’s best to make sure the person you are talking to really is who you think it is. Mercury officially turns direct on October 18, but its shadow period persists for about two weeks after the retrograde period.

Having a relationship chat

In 2021, Mercury is in the sign of Libra for an extended stay, from August 30 through to November 6, bringing prolonged attention to our interpersonal communications. If you are planning to bring something up with a lover, business partner, or colleague, consider the possibility that your message may be misinterpreted.

Calibrate your tone to be open-minded and sympathetic, or to be clear and firm, depending on your goal and on the responses of the other person. It may be necessary to adjust your tone or to have multiple conversations in order to get your point across.

Chair a meeting

The possibility for people to talk past each other is higher when Mercury is not functioning in its normal way. Circulate a detailed agenda ahead of time and check in with folks individually to make sure they are preparing the relevant material.

During the meeting, it may be useful to summarise what has been said at regular intervals. Overall, it would be wise to lower any expectations for productivity or decision making. Sometimes it is more important that different views are considered and that people feel heard. 

Fighting for justice

A Mercury retrograde is a great time for reviewing the past and coming to new conclusions. With both Mercury and Mars transiting Libra, the sign of the scales, now is the time to take action on some form of unfairness or injustice in the world you may have seen or felt.

There is plenty of supportive, forward-moving energy from Pluto, Saturn, and Jupiter—all turning direct—while Mercury is still retrograding. The moment calls for us to gather information about all sides of the situation or social cause before rolling up our sleeves to help.  

About Our Astrologer

De Rui is a Hong Kong-based Western astrologer and the founder of Chart Life, a personalised astrology service for those who want specific insights for love, business and personal growth. She offers the standard caveat that the most relevant astrological interpretations are based on birth charts.  De Rui is a member of the British Astrological Association and the National Council for Geocosmic Research, and is a graduate of Harvard College.  

See also: 5 Best Astrology Apps To Try In 2021