Mercury Needs a Time-Out

Find something to hide under for the next couple of weeks. (A nice blanket fort should do the trick.) Mercury Retrograde is upon us.

mercury-trollThis happens three or four times a year, when the Earth overtakes planet Mercury, making Mercury appear to go backwards in the sky. (The other planets have retrograde periods too, though not as often as Mercury’s.) This one started on May 19 and will go through June 11. It’s a doozie this time too, as Mercury just happens to be in Gemini, the sign that it rules.

Mercury and Gemini deal with communication, the rational side of social interaction (as opposed to emotional), education, and movement. So, when Mercury goes rogue, you can bet there will be mix-ups. Arguments and misunderstandings abound. Information gets lost. Travel plans go awry. Electronics and other machines have meltdowns.

You can’t blame Mercury Retrograde for everything — the planets don’t control us, so don’t use this as an excuse to go ballistic on people. In fact, we all need to exercise a little extra control during this time. Speak (or write) clearly, listen (or read) carefully. Ask questions. Try not to sign contracts, start big projects (especially involving other people), or make big travel plans without leaving a lot of room in your schedule for snafus. Mercury Retrograde doesn’t usually create HUGE problems, but its energy does generate a lot of little inconveniences and puts people in a snit.

Aside from hiding in a cave, which honestly sounds pretty good to me at this point, how can you deal with Mercury Retrograde constructively? This isn’t a good time for talking, but it is a good time for action: finish projects. Clean your house and your mind of all that crap that you’re sick of dusting. Get lost in memories and dig up some old wisdom you might need to re-learn. Be patient with yourself and others.

If you know which house in your chart is ruled by Gemini, you can zoom in on which area of your life is likely to be most affected by this, and how you can best turn it to your benefit. As it happens, I’m running a special offer to address this very problem! (Imagine!)

Looking for Life in All the Wrong Places

whorl01Many of my clients’ questions can be boiled down to one simple problem:

SOMETHING’S MISSING.

Their lives may be going just fine, or their lives may truly be a mess, but almost everyone comes to me with some variation of “Why am I not happy? How can I make my life perfect? WHAT’S MISSING?”

(Spoiler alert: This post isn’t going to answer that.)

Let’s start with the first part of that question: Why aren’t you happy?

1. Insert standard rant about how advertisements are designed to induce anxiety in the viewers.

2. Insert standard rant about how modern cultural ideals instill ridiculous expectations of what “happy” looks like.

3. Insert standard rant about how all your friends on social media seem to be doing better than you.

There’s plenty of material already written about these points, so I don’t need to add much to it. Note that they all have one thing in common, though: comparison. Instead of focusing on your own life, you’re dissecting everyone else’s…and keeping score. We’re conditioned to look outside of ourselves for the definition of “happy,” and to hold our own lives up to the fabricated examples we’re shown.

No wonder you’re anxiety-ridden and spiritually exhausted — the constant suspicion that you’re losing some kind of unspoken, endless competition would drag anyone down before too long.

Still. You know, on a logical level, that perfection is unattainable. GOD DAMMIT, you KNOW this. Yet there’s always that nagging feeling that everything could somehow be better if you just do… or look like… or get the attention of…

So, say you do the thing, and you look like the thing, and you get the attention of the thing. Does the nagging feeling shut up? Is life perfect? ARE YOU HAPPY NOW?

Chorus: NOOOOOOOOOOO!

Because something’s still missing, isn’t it? But if it wasn’t the one thing and the other thing and the other thing, then what, what, what, for the love of “Bob,” WHAT IS IT?

Pay attention: PROFUNDITY AHEAD

That indefinable yearning to define and acquire the something which will finally, once and for all, plug the godawful black hole in your soul — that horrible ABSENCE is, in fact, the very thing you’re looking for.

Other people are not going to dig you out of this pit. Not even if they want to. Not your spouse, not your friends, not your family. No one. They’ve all got their own empty pits they’re working on, anyway. No, you do something about it. That wonderful emptiness is yours alone, and no one else is going to chase it away or come to terms with it for you. You’re not their problem.

Besides, this missing thing keeps you going. If you get everything you want, why bother doing anything else? Why keep trying when there’s nothing more to gain? Perfection means STOP. The story is over and the book closes.

Yes, this is hard, and it often sucks. Life is wanting and needing and searching. Sometimes it’s also winning, or losing, but always, always, always, there’s something more to be accomplished. If you insist on separating the drive and the result — something you can grab and own, something you can point to and measure and define in terms of external standards — your life will be a long, sad, wild goose chase, because that definition is going to change all the time.

The problem is not the missing thing. The problem is the idea that it’s a problem. Anything you can gain, you can lose. Luckily, you’ll always have that sense of incompleteness that keeps spurring you on to the next level.

Learn to love that missing piece. It’s as much a part of who you are as all the blanks you’ve already filled in.

Photo-clickery!

I’ve been working with Corvin at www.mixed-debris.com lately. Here are a few of the promo shots we’ve come up with. (I did the post-processing on these, but it was his skillful eye and excellent direction that made the shots work.)

The cards say that you have the power of the entire cosmos in your hands. You still have to do the dishes, though.

The cards say that you have the power of the entire cosmos in your hands. You still have to do the dishes, though.

GO AHEAD. ASK ME AGAIN WHAT THE WINNING LOTTO NUMBERS WILL BE. ASK.

GO AHEAD. ASK ME AGAIN WHAT THE WINNING LOTTO NUMBERS WILL BE. ASK.