You: "It's the end of 2017, and I'd like to wrap up the year without any additional drama." Mercury Retrograde: "Yeah, that's not going to happen." It's true, the cosmic creeper is back, and you're going to need some ways to protect yourself against Mercury Retrograde during the 2017 holidays. The holidays can be stressful enough without adding in the communication, technological, and travel debacles that Mercury Retrograde brings. While you might be tempted to stay in bed and pull the covers over your head until 2018, that's probably not an option.
People will be expecting you to turn up for holiday parties and family gatherings, or perhaps you have a holiday vacation planned that you're determined to take. The best you can do during Mercury Retrograde is plan for the worst and hope for the best, and there are some measures you can take to give yourself a little extra protection against Mercury Retrograde's quarterly kerfuffle. Because my friendlies, Mercury's backspin could have your brain swirling into a downward spiral, so this one is going to be extra rough.
"Such negative thinking can lead to depression and difficulties [in] communication. Harsh or critical words can cause relationships problems like coldness, isolation, or rejection," Astrology King noted on their website.
"The key to dealing with this heaviness is positive thinking and keeping your mind busy. When dealing with others it is more important than ever to listen carefully and think twice before speaking."
Staying positive when everything is spinning out of control can feel like trying to lift an object off of the ground using only your mind. And, unless you're Eleven on Stranger Things, you're going to have to find another way. Luckily, these tips can help you survive Mercury Retrograde during the 2017 holidays.
1. Start Meditating ASAP
OK, you're probably thinking, if one more person tells me to meditate I'm going to scream, but hear me out. I recently completed a month-long meditation challenge, and this stuff really works. While meditating isn't going to solve all of your problems, and it won't stop the wrath of Mercury Retrograde, it can help you deal with it better, which is kind of the point.
After a month of meditating every day I became much more patient, less agitated, and little mishaps stopped bothering me so much. Basically, meditation helps your mind create space between your thoughts and actions. This can really help reduce your chances of communication problems over the next month. If you've been thinking about taking up meditation anyway, there is no better time than now. You can even do this Mercury Retrograde meditation.
2. Practice Self Care
Cold and flu season, the holidays, and Mercury Retrograde is a trifecta designed to derail you, and taking care of yourself during this time is super important. When you're feeling lousy you're more likely to make poor decisions, snap at those close to you, and fail to double check details. Letting this cosmic trifecta of terribleness wear you down can lead to disaster, so be sure you're eating right, drinking enough water, and getting enough sleep. You can also use essential oils to boost your immune system.
Another thing that can help relieve stress and anxiety is performing a self scalp massage. "When you take a moment to apply pressure with your fingertips around your temple, circling your jawline, moving down through your neck and shoulders, and up through the top of your head — suddenly, your world slows down, and it’s easier to pause and breathe deeply. Like exercise, massage benefits are immediate," Maria Walley wrote on Verify. "Whether my massage was a whopping  minutes or a mere  seconds, I felt relief. And science backs this up too, as scalp massages have been shown to reduce stress hormones such as cortisol, reduce blood pressure, and even lower heart rate.
3. Get Yourself Some Crystals
Like meditation, turning to crystals in times of trouble might sound like new age mumbo jumbo, but you really have nothing to lose here. And, if nothing else, they also make great jewelry. I got this piece of clear quartz in the above photo for $10, and I just wrapped a string around it. There is no need to spend half your paycheck on something like the Goop Medicine Bag. You can get tons of crystals online for a reasonable price, and if you want to learn how to use them Crystal Muse: Everyday Rituals to Tune In to the Real You is just $12.99 on Kindle.
While crystals aren't magic, they can help you during Mercury Retrograde. Singer/songwriter Stevie Nicks is into crystals and she's still killing it in the music biz at 69. "In reality, crystals are simply tools; they only work if you put in the effort to work with them," Energy Muse explained on its website. "Each crystal vibrates with a unique, healing energy that you can use as an ally to guide you through difficult experiences."
Some of my personal favorites are clear quartz (for overall healing), rose quartz (for love and acceptance), and amethyst (for protection). Amethyst, according to the website Crystal Cure, is "traditionally worn to guard against drunkeness and to instill a sober mind. The word amethyst comes from the Greek meaning 'without drunkenness' and amethyst is believed to protect one from poison." So, basically this could stop you from putting your foot in your mouth during Mercury Retrograde so you can ensure you stay on the "nice" list.
4. Double Check Everything
During the madness of the holidays, you might be tempted to do things quickly and neglect to double check details. This is a huge mistake during Mercury Retrograde. While it might take a little extra time, double checking travel details, dinner reservations, and gift delivery addresses could save you from accidentally mailing your mom that vibrator disguised as a lipstick that's really supposed to go to your old college BFF. In order to avoid a major oops, do yourself a favor and check your list twice. Then check it again.
5. When In Doubt, Don't
This is good advice anytime, but it's especially important during Mercury Retrograde. One of the best ways to protect yourself is to learn about what not to do during Mercury Retrograde. The biggest thing to know? Don't start anything new. "Focus on activities that start with the prefix 're-,' which means to go back," the Astro Twins explained on Astrostyle. "Review all your contracts before you sign. Renew your commitments, rather than making new ones. Prepare to repeat yourself often. Reunite with old friends, redecorate a room, rekindle a romance."
The Astro Twins added the reigniting old romances should only be done with the goal of closure in mind. Starting up a new relationship with an old flame and carrying it into the new year is generally not a good idea.
6. Back Up Your Phone, Computer, & Tablet
In many ways, the best way to survive Mercury Retrograde is to be proactive. This means that if you haven't done so already, you should back up all of your devices so you don't end up like this guy. Mercury Retrograde is when technology problems are most likely to occur, so take a few extra minutes right now to make sure all of your data and documents are backed up just in case your computer decides to crap the bed.
7. Go With The Flow
This particular Mercury Retrograde is going to be especially difficult for Sagittarius, Gemini, Capricorn, and Virgo-born people. And, Virgo, everyone knows that going with the flow is generally not your jam. This is where the meditation can help. The bottom line is that things are going to go wrong during Mercury Retrograde. Either you can go with it, or you can get stressed out and worked up, which isn't good for anyone — most of all you.
If you're taking the other tips to heart, going with the flow should be relatively easy. However, if you're determined to be stubborn, and you approach Mercury Retrograde without proper precaution, you might be forced to learn some painful lessons. If you're proactive during Mercury Retrograde, you might still have a bumpy ride, but it won't flatten you. And, after the year you've had, you deserve to have a drama-free holiday.