Aries (March 21st to April 19th)
Let the primal side of you out to keep your boundaries and priorities clear.
As the prime sign of the Zodiac, this week you’ll have to get in touch with other variations of being first, such as uncovering what’s primal in you and sticking to what’s primary. The primal side of you is when you’re clear on your needs and your willingness to take action to meet them. I know when you usually hear primal, you might think of animals. However, the key aspect about animals is that they know how to fend for what they want on basic levels. In civilized society, primal covers how you stand up for yourself, whether to get a raise or to stave off someone seeking to cut you in a line. As far as what’s primary, this is about putting first things first. Watch out for procrastination this week. With Mercury about to go retrograde, if you dilly-dally, you could lose out!
Taurus (April 20th to May 21st)
Changes in the game requires that you revise current plans that turn out way better than the original plan…eventually.
When Mercury appears to go backward in the sky to retrograde, there’s usually a need to change the current game plan. And it’s usually because the game itself has changed. You might not like it. You might not even be sure if you want to continue to play the game. However, revision needs to become your very best friend, so you might as well shake hands. (Revision, meet Taurus. Taurus, meet Revision. Done!) The good news is this is mostly a good thing. You will see in fairly short order that the original game plan had all kinds of holes in it, though you thought you had thought it through. You did, but, remember, the game changed. The revision will be so much better that you could end up changing how you will make plans for good.
Gemini (May 21st to June 20th)
Trust your own mind, and return unsolicited doubts and opinions to their owners without buying in.
First order of business is to breathe this week. Everything else will fall into place as it will. The famous Roman Emperor and Stoic philosopher Marcus Aurelius (played by Richard Harris in “Gladiator”) once wrote, “Your three components: body, breath, mind. Two are yours in trust; to the third alone you have clear title.” As Mercury prepares to backpedal through touchy-feely Cancer on Saturday, remember that your body and breath are on loan, so treat them well. However, your mind is fully your own, so it doesn’t have to be subject to the market of opinions of other people, especially people who don’t know you. Someone may attempt to have you doubt a course of action you’ve decided to take; but don’t let their doubts become your own unless those doubts truly belong to you. Stick to what’s fully in your grasp, like your mind, and treat everything else as if on loan. This way you can easily return what isn’t working for you.
Cancer (June 21st to July 21st)
Tell people what’s going on with you if you don’t want them to guess and get it wrong.
When Mercury kicks off this season’s “moonwalk” dance in your sign, you may not have much wiggle room to get around feeling a bit weird. So let’s get this out of the way first: you’re not crazy…nor are they, per se. It’s all kind of situational, much like how certain chemicals mix to make something toxic or dangerous. Unfortunately, as usual, people may have a hard time gauging your feelings by looking at you. Therefore, you have to be extra careful about taking their readings and mis-readings of your body language to heart. Let people know how you’re feeling, so they don’t have to guess. However, be aware that once you do that you’re opening up a two-way street. You might have plenty of opportunities to listen to people talk about their feelings as you express yours. If you don’t want all of that, then endure their possibly wrong guesses.
Leo (July 22nd to August 21st)
Before you put your foot down about something, you had better look where you’re putting it.
This coming Saturday’s Mercury retrograde has an important lesson for you. Perhaps the following navy legend story will better illustrate its contours. On sea, the captain of a battleship spots a blinking light in the distance. He radios to tell the ship to change its course. His callback says that the captain should, in fact, change his course instead. He blusters back that he’s the captain of a US battleship and that this other ship had better change its course or face severe countermeasures. The radio replies, “This is a lighthouse. Your call.” The captain, of course, changes his course. Like that captain, don’t put your foot down before you’ve looked around to see what you’re about to put your foot in. You’re likely running on half the facts with your feet in the burning sands of your ego.
Virgo (August 22nd to September 21st)
If you keep your feelings in check and stay fluid with your plans, you can have a very productive week.
Since your sign is patroned by the planet Mercury, you’re more likely to feel the effects of Mercury’s retrograde once he appears to go backward in the heavens on Saturday. During the week, especially once the moon is in your sign from Wednesday to Friday night, your feelings may fire off faster than your well-reasoned thoughts can keep up. That’s when you should watch your mouth so you don’t wrongly launch any torpedoes. Thursday and Friday would be good days to take an action step for shifts you’re attempting with your career or job. When the weekend comes, you’re more likely to feel freer and lighter. That’s good, because when Mercury starts his retrograde, you’ll have to be a lot more fluid with plans that you have with friends or with social groups.
Libra (September 22nd to October 21st)
Although Mercury’s going retrograde, start an action that moves you forward on the career front.
When Mercury appears to go backward in the sky for his nearly seasonal retrograde, you too may have to take a step backward to take greater leaps forward. Last week, you had some wiggle room to dig in your recent past to figure out work issues before they became full-on problems. This week you’ll have less wiggle room, especially if you didn’t tackle what cropped up. If you didn’t, then this week is going to be a game of catch-up. That sucks, but there’s no use being upset about it or lamenting lost opportunities. If you were on point last week, then you’ve done the necessary work to sift through BS to produce better answers. You’re also less likely to be intimidated by the work you’ll have to accomplish to get to your next plateau. The key is to start, not merely be satisfied with mapping out a plan because plans can and will change.
Scorpio (October 22nd to November 21st)
Expand your mind and spirit by paying attention to where you feel inspired to do something with “re” in it, like return, revise or review.
Mercury begins his nearly seasonal retrograde in the area of your star map that deals with long distance travel, philosophy, religion and higher education. Essentially, anything that expands your mind and sense of spirit will be subject to inspiration from “re” words, such as review, repeat, or return, like Mercury’s (re)trograde. For instance, you may feel inspired to re-visit a church or place of worship that once spoke an important message to your heart. If you decide to travel far during this week, you’d do well to revise (another “re” word) your plans, most likely with more flexibility. The more you attempt to tighten things or set things up with a rigid sense of control, the harder this retrograde will likely be for you. Again, it’s time to expand by looking back rather than contract.
Sagittarius (November 22nd to December 21st)
Beyond Mercury’s pranks this week, he could be directing you to pay better attention to what’s happening around you.
Last week, your fellow Sagittarius-influenced brother Brad Pitt got “punched” by a red-carpet prankster at the premiere of his wife’s film, “Maleficent.” Although “prankster” Vitalii Sediuk is a real person (though not necessarily a nice one), I like to imagine that he’s like Mercury himself. When Mercury goes retrograde this Saturday, you might receive your own kind of sucker punch, but, like Brad, you’ll likely be able to shake it off and continue cruising along your own version of a red carpet. However, Mercury’s prank will probably leave you with questions and perhaps you won’t be the only person asking them. It may prompt concerns about security and your own watchfulness. After all, you’re well known for seeing clearly into far distances, but are you paying attention to what’s (or *cough* who’s) right in front of you? Again, you’re fortunate, like Mr. Pitt, because we’re only talking about Mercury having pranks and not something possibly more serious.
Capricorn (December 22nd to January 20th)
Stay sensitive & alert to your partner’s feelings…and your own.
Mercury starts his backward motion in the sky in your opposite sign, Cancer, on Saturday. An important one-on-one relationship is where you can expect the most dynamic change in how you communicate or formulate travel plans. With Mercury in sensitive Cancer, communication, travel and other people’s thinking (maybe even your own unbeknownst to you) picks up a touchier and more indirect quality. The antidote is to narrow down the indirectness with straightforwardness. However, don’t turn off or down your feelings. In fact, you should be extra attentive to the tone in which you say things or respond. Sarcasm isn’t likely to be a good first response unless it’s clear that this playfulness is welcomed. Sticking close to home toward the weekend could prove a lot more relaxing and rejuvenating than gallivanting around town.
Aquarius (January 21st to February 18th)
Time to pay attention to the little things, including any odd aches & pains you have.
As Mercury gets ready to make another retrograde run on Saturday, you’ll likely need a moment to make sure that all systems are truly a go, because they might not be. When a planet retrogrades, it means that it appears to go backwards from the Earth’s perspective. It’s a time to look closer at the present while themes and issues from the past also seem to surface as well. For instance, you could have a past health challenge crop up. We’re not necessarily talking about anything serious, but a little scrutiny now could go a long way toward keeping a possible long-term condition in check. Similarly, this is a good time to review current work practices and routines. You’ll do better to trust your intuition with figuring out how to streamline and improve things than to look far outside yourself.
Pisces (February 19th to March 20th)
Mercury retrograde isn’t out to ruin your fun. That’s on you if you’re inflexible and aren’t willing to adapt.
Your security blanket from last week could become a kind of picnic blanket for you this week, except there may be no picnic and you’re eating at a table. If that image created any dissonance for you, then you’ve had a tad of what’s on deck with this Saturday’s Mercury retrograde. It might seem as if the Cosmos is pranking you, but it’s not. When Mercury appears to go backward from the Earth’s perspective, it can skew our perception of how things happen, especially when it comes to communication and getting people and things from point A to point B. In your case, you may feel this acutely with how you attempt to have fun. This doesn’t mean you won’t have the fun, but your notions of how it will go down are subject to cosmic revision, much like the picnic blanket that becomes a table cloth instead.
Samuel F. Reynolds is a NYC-based astrologer. As an Ebony reader, you’re eligible for discounted fees for in person or by phone/skype consultations. For more info, visit unlockastrology.com, write firstname.lastname@example.org or follow on Twitter at @sfreynolds.