Mercury retrograde is never too far away. In 2020, the phenomenon will happen three separate times. And if you want to save yourself a headache, you’ll start preparing yourself now.

When a planet is in retrograde, that means that it’s appearing to move backward in its orbit from our perspective on Earth. All the planets are in retrograde at some point, but Mercury goes in and out of retrograde more frequently than the others — and in astrology, the planets that are closer to the sun have a stronger influence on our day-to-day lives than the outer planets.

Mercury rules communication (including technology), self-expression, travel, and timing. During a retrograde, these areas of our lives can experience some conflict. When the Red Planet is tracking backward, contracts fall through, exes come out of the woodwork, and flights are suddenly delayed — or you might just start missing them. In a peak example of Mercury retrograde chaos, last November, a server glitch meant that many people received texts that were originally sent on Valentine’s Day. Yikes.

Mercury retrogrades in different zodiac signs — sometimes two in the same retrograde — depending on where the planet is in the sky at that time of year. Each retrograde will be subtly influenced by the characteristics of the sign Mercury appears in. When Mercury was in retrograde in water sign Scorpio this past fall, for instance, intense emotions were at the forefront of our experiences. And while everyone will notice retrogrades, some people could experience stronger effects than others, depending on their birth charts.

Okay, mark your calendars. The dates for Mercury retrograde in 2020 are:

  • February 18 (Aquarius) – March 9 (Pisces)
  • June 19 – July 11, in Cancer
  • October 16 (Libra) – November 2, in Scorpio

Read more here at Start Preparing: Here’s When Mercury Will Be In Retrograde In 2020

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