How NOT To Break Up During Mercury Retrograde

We’re constantly fascinated by what our zodiac sign says about our love lives, whether it's which signs are most compatible, the best sex positions for each sign, or how each sign handles conflict in relationships. That's why Bustle has enlisted Mecca Woods, a New York City-based Astrologer to tell us all about how astrology is affecting our love lives each week. This week's topic: Mercury retrograde.

There’s something about the term ‘Mercury retrograde’ that sends people shaking in their boots as soon as they hear it. Maybe it’s because a Mercury retro period is notorious for plans falling through last minute; computers, cars, cellphones and other gadgets going caput; ridiculous arguments; getting lost or majorly delayed while traveling; and the hauntings of ghosts of exes past. Yes, you read that correctly— those lost loves are going to be hitting you up.

Given the increasing popularity of astrology, I’m sure you’re somewhat familiar by now with this planetary phenomenon that takes place three weeks at a time 3-4 times year. During these times, Mercury— astrology’s cosmic courier, appears to be moving backwards in the heavens resulting in all kinds of confusion in communication and travel here on earth. While the madness of Mercury retro is undoubtedly frustrating, there’s a method to it. We’re supposed to slow down, to review where we’ve been and where we’re headed. Retrogrades help us stay on the right track.

And so it is, another Mercury Retrograde is upon us. This time in the love and partnership oriented sign of Libra. From September 17 to October 9, the way we mate and relate will take center stage (just in time for Libra season). That’s why I’ve come up with a few tips on how to work this Mercury retrograde like your love life depended on it:

1. Say It Face-To-Face

Have something important to say to your partner? Don’t—and I repeat, don’t say it by text or email or Facebook feed. The tone, timing, or delivery of what may be a well-meaning memo can easily be misconstrued, misdirected, or lost entirely when the planet of communication is spazzin’ out. Save yourself the trouble of having to have an annoying conversation later and save the heart to heart convos, dinner plans, and decision making for face to face time. This ensures that your message gets delivered and received just as you intended.

2. Take A Chill Pill

Though, with all of the communication precautions you can take to avoid a misunderstanding, there’s a good chance that words exchanged between you and your sweetie will still get lost in translation. The solution? Chill. Out. Even if one of you starts talking really crazy; like “maybe we should take a break” crazy. Don’t freak out. Chances are the both of you won’t be thinking clearly enough to make a sound decision anyway. As tough as it may be to sit on a resolution or to avoid what seems like an inevitable argument, take a breather, take a walk, take a nap even and resolve to revisit the matter when the fog of Mercury retro has cleared. Oh, and don’t take it personal.

3. Don’t Start Anything New

Retrograde periods are best survived by taking your time. This means that anything involved with catching-up, reviewing, renegotiating, re-thinking, and revisiting is the kind of stuff you should be doing now. This is especially true when it comes to love affairs. Similar to a Venus retrograde, a Mercury retro period (namely a Mercury retro period in Venus-ruled Libra) is never a good time to begin a new romance. Why? Because we tend to miss crucial cues and clues to determine whether the cutie we’re interested in is right for us. Online dating? Take your time. Getting married? Wait or choose another date. When it comes to Mercury and your love life, it’s important to make sure that everyone is on the same page to avoid headache and heartbreak.

4. Beware Of The Ex

You know I had to say it, right? And it’s not because of the influx of former flames blowing up your telephone line, it’s because during these three weeks there’s at least one ex who looks like a really good option right now, I mean really, really good even though you know full well that they’re not. (Unless of course, you two parted under extra special and sweeter circumstances.) But I’m willing to bet that your story was more of a crash and burn novella , and now maybe because you’re lonely, bored, or haven’t quite learned your lesson, you’re seriously considering giving them another shot. Don’t. They haven’t changed; even if Mercury retro says so. Trust me.

5. Remember The Time

Now if you’re in a happy relationship, a Mercury retrograde is the perfect time to get that old thing back. If you and your honey have been a little too busy for each other, put down the phone, the laptop, and the tablet and reconnect. Re-enact your first date, revisit plans you may have dreamed up together, renew your vows (if married), and take the time out to remember why you fell in love in the first place. Every long-term union needs a little rekindling now and then to keep the energy in it fresh, vibrant, and strong. *cues up the Michael Jackson*

Images: Orlando Florin Rosu/Fotolia; (5) Giphy