Here's How This Summer's Mercury Retrograde Can Actually Help Your Career

Jacob Lund/Fotolia

Mercury retrograde gets a really bad rap. When communication gets fuzzy, technology starts glitching, and the subway acts up even more than usual, people start to panic. So in the spirit of getting the cosmos to work for you, let's take a look at how Mercury retrograde will affect your job in Summer 2018. First off, it might be helpful to know that Mercury retrograde isn't trying to be a jerk. It doesn't roll around a few times a year intending to destroy your life for three weeks, and it's typically a lack of understanding about how to work with this particular energy shift that's most problematic for people. Navigated properly, Mercury retrograde is actually meant to help us get closer to what we want.

"Mercury retrograde" is what we call it when the planet Mercury appears to be moving "backwards" across the sky instead of east to west, which is how all planets orbit the sun. Really, this trick happens because Earth moves more quickly around the sun than Mercury does, so as we pass Mercury by in our orbit, it appears to move backwards alongside us. We're both going the same direction, but because Mercury is slower, it looks like it's going backwards as we pass by it.

In astrology, the planet Mercury is thought to govern communication, travel, and learning. So these aspects of our lives can "regress" during Mercury retrograde, leaving us in a state of turmoil if we're trying to forge a path forward in these areas. The best thing to do is actually to lean into the retrograde. Take a step back. Focus on reflection and gathering energy, instead of trying to force something new to happen. It's why people give advice like don't sign contracts or go on a first date or otherwise strike out into a new venture during this time. The same goes for your job.

How Your Career Can Benefit During Mercury Retrograde

BDG Media, Inc.

"We don’t want to initiate new things, but instead, reassess to bring further clarity for the next steps to take," Jess Domain from GiftedAstrology tells Bustle. In other words, spend more time thinking and less time doing during Mercury retrograde. You can externalize your goals after Mercury goes direct again on August 18, but for now, just do some internal strategizing.

"You will benefit the most at this time when you bring your evolved, more mature self to any and every situation," Domain says. "Be mindful with work acquaintances and try to picture those familiar characters in a new plot. Meaning: switch it up! You’ll be amazed at what happens when you shift your beliefs about old patterns and behaviors of others."

So be prepared to face work challenges with grace, forgiveness, and mindfulness. That doesn't mean don't hold people to account, Domain cautions. But if you come from a place of empathy, rather than resentment, people will be more likely to recognize that you deserve better treatment. The "new reality" this can open up is one of Mercury retrograde's most powerful gifts.

Other good self-care practices to incorporate during this time are ones that draw energy inward and ones that connect us to our personal higher power. These can include things like meditation, prayer, connecting with nature, or doing yoga. Finding ways to go to bed feeling joyful can also bring insight.

"Remind yourself that you can handle anything," Domain says. "Work with the energies and trust that you are always supported, even when it doesn’t feel like it. Karma-clearing is a huge theme at this point in the year and it’s not easy energy to deal with. But it’s 100 percent worth going through to learn the lessons and move forward as the new you."

One exercise Domain likes to do with people includes making a list with two columns. In column one, list all the reasons a situation or relationship isn't working. Phrase your reasons with personal accountability — if you blame others, you impede energy-clearing by holding onto your grudges. Plus, you rob yourself of the control you have over your own life. In the second column, list all the lessons you learned from the experience. Visualizing your personal growth in this way can help difficult situations feel worth it.

"Once you’ve completed the list, visualize that person on a boat, floating off into the sunset," Domain says. "Wave goodbye and send them love from the shoreline as they drift away."

These Signs Will Be Affected The Most

Certain signs will be hit harder than others during this particular Mercury retrograde. Astrologer Linda Furiate tells Bustle, "Leo, Scorpio, Aquarius, and Taurus will be most affected since Mercury will retrograde in the sign of Leo. He will make a challenging aspect to all the other fixed signs." Gemini and Virgo also tend to have a hard time because they're both governed by Mercury.

"Think of this as the boss or your mentor being out of town and it is now your turn to step up before you are fully trained," says Furiate.

It's Not The Best Time To Apply For A New Job

Hannah Burton/Bustle

In case it's not clear at this point, it's not the best idea to go job-hunting during Mercury retrograde. This is the perfect time to plot your next career move, work on new skills, or rewrite your resume, but don't go on a big application spree right now. "If we do apply for a job during this time, we may feel like we are spinning our wheels when we don’t hear back from anyone, our application gets lost or misplaced, a scheduled interview is postponed or cancelled, or we spend a great deal of time playing phone tag," Furiate says. And if you're starting a new job during Mercury retrograde, it may start to feel like a bad fit.

Most importantly, don't feel like you have to "fight" the effects of Mercury retrograde, because that's a waste of energy. "It is best to allow our thoughts to flow during this timeframe," Furiate says, "And to not act upon these ideas, fears, or judgments until Mercury is again in forward motion." So engage with the stuff it brings up and save your action for later.