Mercury’s in Retrograde! Here’s What It Means for Your Money

mercury in retrograde
Dmitry Boyarin under Creative Commons

If it seems like you just can’t seem to get anything accomplished later this week, it might not be your imagination.

Once Mercury enters retrograde on April 9, just blame it all on weird planetary alignment.

Many people believe Mercury’s little backwards phase can really play with our heads, leading to poor decisions, throwing a wrench into communication and messing with our judgement. When it comes to money, this can spell disaster.

Here’s a guide to surviving the next few weeks of planetary weirdness with your finances intact.

What Does it Mean When Mercury is in Retrograde?

Retrograde means “moving backward”. When Mercury is said to be in retrograde, it means the planet appears to be moving backward when viewed from Earth.

In reality, it’s not actually changing its orbit — the way our planet is going in relation to Mercury’s movement just produces a strange optical illusion.

This lasts for a few weeks, and then the orbits snap out of it and everything goes back to normal.

What Effect Does Mercury Have on Us?

In astrology, certain planets are believed to be associated with various life events.

It’s not that the planets are controlling the events, it’s just that certain types of events tend to occur during the time frames assigned to particular planets.

The idea is everything associated with Mercury gets a little wacky when the planet is in retrograde.

And that’s problematic for our finances because Mercury rules things like communication, decision-making, judgement and (randomly) transportation — all of which are closely related to managing and spending money.

When Mercury is in retrograde, keep a close eye on these aspects of your life.

How Could Communication Issues Get Me in Trouble Financially?

It might be trickier to communicate with your significant other about money, especially around fraught topics like setting a budget. That’s never fun.

Also, remember contracts are a form of communication.

Many people recommend avoiding any financial agreements when Mercury is in retrograde.

Obviously, this is not always possible. So at least quadruple-check those leases, contracts and other documents if you must sign during this unstable cosmic window.

How Does Mercury Mess With Decision-Making?

A huge portion of managing our finances has to do with making smart choices about how we spend, invest and save our money.

If we’re not operating at full potential due to the swiftly tilting planets, that’s a problem for our bottom line. Therefore, you might want to hold off on any big financial decisions.

If at all possible, experts say you should take a few weeks to ponder big decisions and only act once things calm down in the solar system. No matter what the planets are doing, taking some time to think about big decisions is a good idea!

What Does Mercury-induced Transportation Drama Have to Do With My Finances?

A lot! First off, travel is awesome, but disruptions in travel can be costly.

One blogger recalls taking a cab to the wrong airport during Mercury’s retrograde. That’s an expensive cab ride, plus the potential cost and headache of getting on a new flight.

Alternatively, your mode of transportation, like your car or bike, could be affected.

And don’t even get me started on the danger of trying to purchase a new car during this time. You’re combining a big decision, with signing a contract, all related to transportation.

So What Should I Do During This Period?

Astrologers recommend using Mercury’s retrograde to take a step back and evaluate.

What’s working for you financially? Maybe you’re doing a good job keeping your grocery bill in check or bringing in some extra money with a side hustle. Congratulate yourself on the things you’re doing right.

What could you do better when it comes to money? Maybe it’s something small like saving money on your daily cup of coffee or planning an affordable vacation. Or it could be a big goal, like reaching an ambitious savings target or buying a home.

Use this time of flux to take stock of your current financial situation and set some goals

Whether you believe in the effects of Mercury’s retrograde or think astrology is nuts (although in that case, how in the world have you made it this far into this post?), these principles still hold true.

Decisions around money carry weight, and approaching them with caution is a good idea no matter what’s happening in the cosmos.

Your Turn: Do you believe in Mercury’s retrograde? Are you an astrology skeptic?

Lyndsee Simpson is a writer and editor living in Washington, D.C. She’ll be spending Mercury’s retrograde in bed watching Netflix and not making any decisions, big or small.