Mercury Retrograde happens three, sometimes four, times a year and lasts for three weeks, sometimes a bit more, each time. This means it is Retrograde 20 - 30 percent of the time. That is quite often; it is not rare. Because each planet moves at differing speeds as they orbit the sun, they appear to slow down, stop, move backward for a time, stop again, and then move forward normally. A car moving at 30 miles per hour will appear to moving backwards to anyone moving past it at anything over 30 mph. Its all about relative motion; all of astrology is based on how the planets appear from the perspective of the viewer.
As with all of astrology, there are some things to do and not do; benefits and problems will manifest according to the activities engaged in and the expectations involved.
Some Mercury Retrograde periods are, generally, stronger than others, and some are stronger or weaker, for the individual.
In all cases, no matter the the surrounding circumstances, it is a time to prepare, gather information, and plan.
It is not a good time to buy mechanical devices. Computers to can openers. They will either not work, not work as expected, not actually be needed, or become obsolete quickly.
Do not make commitments, verbal and especially legal. New information will be forth-coming that will make the commitments invalid or not work as expected.
Changes in plans, meeting postponed, other being late, you being late, miscommunications, misspelling or decimal points in the wrong place, will happen more often than usual. Take your time and triple check everything, however, be aware that others may not and be flexible.
Test taking, evaluations of any kind, and the application of subjects that require precision measurements can become problematic.
In these cases:
Do not plan for specific activities to work out as planed. Murphy's law will be in full force.
Keep in mind; While the delays and problems cited above, occur all the time, no matter the planets, will happen with more frequency.
There are many activities that are favored:
Research, study, gathering information, while always good, will yield better results now.
Brain storming and open-ended discussions.
Meditation in all of its forms.
Vacations, getting away from it all, and exploring unusual and unfamiliar territory is good but only if there are no schedules or deadlines.
Doing something artistic, imaginative, or relaxing. Something that does not require the mind to work in a logical or linear manner.
Upcoming Mercury Retrograde time periods:
the dates are universal. The week before can also be affected.
March 5th - March 29th
July 6th - August 3rd
October 31st - November 21st
February 16th - March 10th
June 18th - July 12th
October 13th - November 20th
January 30th - February 20th
May 28th - June 22
September 27th - October 18th