If you’re not sick of hearing about it by now, here is ANOTHER opinion about Mercury (and other planets) in retrograde! Planetary retrograde is nothing to be worried about; rather, it’s an opportunity to identify and dissolve the barriers keeping us from living our best lives.

There are currently six planets in retrograde (which is why some have termed summer 2018 the summer of retrogrades), so now’s a great time to understand a little bit more about these notorious cosmic events. 

When a planet is in retrograde, it slows down in its orbit around the earth. What this means for us humans is that the area of life the planet rules (for example, Mercury rules communication and travel) is going to be a bit off-kilter until that planet is direct again. It’s kind of like the planet puts a “Be back in 5” sign on its door; it’s checked out and can’t really help us.

We can work with planetary retrogrades by thinking of them as “re” times (e.g., time to review, reassess, renew, revamp). Routines are likely to get disrupted, making it an ideal time to look closer at your commitments and ask yourself, “How does this need to be better?”

Retrogrades invite us to connect with the parts of ourselves that don’t change: our strengths, our passions, our weaknesses and triggers. Don’t let these lessons pass you by.

Here are all the planets currently in retrograde and what it means for us:

Saturn Retrograde: April 18 to September 6, 2018

Saturn rules discipline, work, maturity, routine and structure. With this planet in retrograde, we get to see where we have been disciplined, where that discipline has paid off, and where we may have been lacking discipline. So maybe you’ve been kicking ass at the gym but slacking at work. Right now, you’re likely to realize a target health goal but maybe get a stern talking-to from your boss, for example.

Saturn in retrograde wants us to ask ourselves, “Is my foundation as strong as it needs to be? Are my daily routines supportive? Are my career goals aligned with my purpose and desires? Is my planner really up to date?”

Pluto Retrograde: April 22 to September 30, 2018

Pluto rules money, sex, power and death. With this planet in retrograde, we can expect to be forced to dive deep into things we normally don’t talk about or like to think about. Think: bad habits, things we feel ashamed of, things we’ve been trying to keep private. Since Pluto rules all things “underworld,” it wants to expose all that’s hidden below the surface so it can be brought to light and transformed. What are you clinging to? What might you be feeling shame about? What secrets are weighing you down? What are you ultimately worried about?

Neptune Retrograde: June 18 to November 24, 2018

Neptune rules creativity, dreams and fantasies, mind-altering substances and the psyche. This planetary retrograde is an opportunity to get real with yourself. What hopes or dreams are keeping you feeling stuck or powerless? Is your comfort zone feeling confining? Are you feeling really at home in your body? Are you confident in your current self-care practices? This is a great time to meditate, journal, or work with spiritual coaches and feel into the deeper purpose you’re craving.

Mars Retrograde: June 26 to August 27, 2018

Mars rules combat, sex drive, passion and desire. The biggest wrench about this retrograde is that it can rob us of our energy. (Has anyone else been feeling tired since late June?) We might even feel a bit listless or notice we come up against roadblocks that test our commitment to how hard we want to fight for things. Tension can run high when this planet is in retrograde. How do you keep yourself fuelled? How do you fight for what you believe in? Are you effective in your efforts, or are you giving in a way that depletes you?

Mercury Retrograde: July 26 to August 19, 2018

Mercury rules communication, travel, and our peer relationships. This planet is the messenger planet, governing how we put our energy and emotions into words, but it’s also the social butterfly determining how our social lives play out day-to-day. This retrograde wants us to reconsider how we are communicating with the world around us. It can also bring things back from the past to test you. An ex might slide into your DMs, or you could get an interesting job offer when you finally declare yourself an entrepreneur. Ask yourself, “What am I truly committed to?”

Uranus Retrograde: August 7 to January 6, 2019

Uranus rules the unexpected, inventions and innovation. This planet loves change, and it can be impulsive. When in retrograde, Uranus could prompt us to internalize its disruptive, vibrant energy, which could lead to impulsive decision-making. We might feel the desire to rebel. Pay attention to your impulses–hear them out, but don’t necessarily use them as a guide in that moment. Allow them space to breathe. Channel your impulses and they can become a lot more impactful. Be patient with yourself and the people around you.