As astrologer Hedy Damari explains to ELLE, “Retrograde refers to when a planet appears to be moving backwards, in its orbital path. It isn’t really [moving backwards], it just looks that way.”

When Mercury is in retrograde, “things can get a little funky,” says astrologer Leslie McGuirk. “But it’s usually never anything that serious. It’s just the Universe’s way to slow us down. If it didn’t [happen], it’s like always being in fifth gear, full speed ahead. So when Mercury is in retrograde, it’s like putting your car into reverse.”

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