Mercury retrograde is intimidating enough. When you realize it takes place two days after the most romantic day of the year, though... it can really put a damper on things. Yes, Mercury will retrograde shortly after Valentine's Day 2020, on Feb. 16, making it the first Mercury Rx of the new year/decade. While this won't bode well for many — especially if you have V-Day weekend plans — I'm going to give you the tea on Mercury, along with everything you should expect during this post-Valentine's Day cycle, so at least you can prepare yourself for what's to come.
Mercury is the planet of communication, thought process, cognitive functioning, and everything that revolves around your due diligence and immediate exchanges. For instance, conversations, emails, texting, importing, exporting, and processing information are all some of Mercury's favorite things. The term "retrograde," on the other hand, is another way of saying "slows down," and when a planet slows down, it's not working at its full potential.
The only two heavenly bodies that don't retrograde are the sun and the moon; Mercury, Venus, Mars, Jupiter, Saturn, Uranus, Neptune, and Pluto will retrograde from time to time. The purpose of these retrograde cycles is equivalent to the feeling you get when you forget something or leave something behind. When Mercury slows down, it's because there's something that needs to reviewed, reworked, and reevaluated. The effects can be a real nuisance, especially when a planet as booked and busy as Mercury is involved.
The First Mercury Retrograde Of 2020: Feb. 16 To March 9
Mercury stations retrograde three to four times every year. With only a month into this brand-new year and decade, the planet of communication will station retrograde in the mystical sign of Pisces on Sunday, Feb. 16. Aside from Mercury not working at its maximum potential when retrograde, the planet of intelligence is also "detriment" when in the sign of Pisces because it's Virgo's polar opposite sign, and Virgo is Mercury's sign of rulership.
Another way to look at it is, Mercury is detail-oriented and organized. Meanwhile, the energy of Neptune-ruled Pisces is incredibly vast and all-encompassing. It knows no boundaries and, therefore, can process information in both the physical and psychic realms. What's even more interesting is, Mercury will travel through dreamy Pisces all throughout its astrological season, and it will also conjunct the new moon in Pisces on Feb. 23. New moons are a time of new beginnings, but that might be the exact opposite with Mercury Rx in the mix.
Mercury Retrograde Enters Aquarius: March 4
Just when you thought it couldn't get any weirder... Mercury will decide to take a walk on the wild side, amidst its retrograde journey through Pisces, and slide back into Aquarius on Wednesday, March 4. Now, here's where it gets tricky, so pay attention: On Feb. 1, Mercury officially began what is referred to as the "retrograde shadow" at 28 degrees Aquarius, as this is the exact degree (28 through 29 degrees, to be exact) where Mercury will make a celestial U-turn. Make sure you look closely at your surroundings (aka your conversations, commitments, schedule) during this time for clues on your upcoming Mercury Rx experience.