How To Overcome The Summer Retrograde (or a really crap time)

Hands up who’s been feeling the cosmic funk recently? I most certainly am: from the sleepless nights to the anxiety over sod all (and, oh yes, the small matter of the summer holiday juggle), I have not had the easiest fortnight. And, though I know some might put this train of thought down to woo woo, I like to blame the Summer retrograde.

The Mercury retrograde is an astrology-led time that affects pretty much all of us in a similar way. In a nutshell it just make life that little trickier: you’ll argue with your partner that much sooner, letters and emails will go missing or to the wrong person, there’ll be that unexpected expense pop up that’ll drain your rainy day fund, sat nav will send you on a wild goose chase. It’s the little annoyances and frustrations that send you round the bend, basically.

My own retrograde started with losing my brand new sunglasses (durr) and has continued with a stilted business cashflow (I know the money’s coming, it’s just taking a VERY LONG TIME) and an unexpected big car expense. Sleep has been disrupted and exercise more difficult, and motivation levels have dipped at work and around the house. Things are in flux, the wind has changed, and frustratingly I know it’ll take a few weeks to get back to normal.

This period of lunar awkwardness kicked off on 26th July (and was exacerbated by the mega lunar eclipse on the 27th) and will be with us for just over another fortnight, until August 18th. It’s one of those ‘just ride the wave til it gets easier’ situations – luckily I’ll be on holiday for a week of it – but in the meantime to help me get through the ups (and mostly) downs, here’s what I’m doing.

How To Overcome The Retrograde

1. Declutter
Nothing clears the mind like a good old declutter. When my house is free of bits and bobs I can think more clearly: I’m more relaxed and productive. For me, a clean house is such an important part of increasing both my success and energy. It feels good!

Which is why, when I get a little antsy about the state of my home, I grab a couple of bin bags. One is for useless or broken tat – this gets chucked. Another is for things I no longer use or need- this gets sent to the charity shop. The last is for things that cost too much to let go of – these go on selling sites, like eBay or Vestiere. Once this hour-long swoop on the house is done I feel so much more relaxed – it’s well worth the time investment.

2. Relax
I know I know, this will mostly be laughable. Who on earth has time to relax?! But relaxing doesn’t just mean sitting still in a darkened room, it can be productive too. For me, relaxation these last couple of weeks has meant stepping up exercise, making sure I cook from scratch where possible and taking half an hour to read a book before bed. Every little really does help.

3. Get realistically organised
An organised mind is a calm one, and when you’re feeling all over the place a little bit of structure is the perfect place to start. I always feel more grounded when I have lists, plans and written manifestations around me: this doesn’t have to be anything big, an up-to-date iCal is enough to settle my anxieties. A realistic to-do list ordered by priority really helps, too!

“Here’s to those who wish us well, and all the rest can go to hell”.

4. Look for guidance
If you’re feeling a little lost and unsure there are so many places you can go to for a bit of guidance. I love my daily tarot card pull for this (The Wild Unknown deck is beautiful), and for a bit of mantra/affirmation-based assistance the YesMum cards are brilliant – Elfie and Hux pick their own cards every morning from the kid’s pack and I love the fact I’ve passed on this introspective guiding practice to them.

5. Be flexible and let it go
Things are going to go wrong: now, in Mercury retrograde, and in life. God knows it has in mine! But I’ve learned a way of dealing with this recently and, though simple, it’s been revolutionary.

I just let stuff go. I know, right?! GROUNDBREAKING.

Granted, it’s taken a while (and what sometimes felt like the judgement of the whole world post-book release on my shoulders), but I’ve learned that as long as I and the people I love are on board with me living life in my best most authentic and loving way, then that’s all I need.

One of my absolute favourite quotes to come out of the Real Housewives of New York was from a husband, the late Bobby Zarin: “Here’s to those who wish us well, and all the rest can go to hell”, and this is something I have held so true in the last few months in particular.

Mercury retrograde? We’ve got this.


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  1. Katherine wrote:

    Have you read Marie Kondo’s book, ‘The Life Changing Magic of Tidying’? Incredible! It makes me think of too number 1 ??

    Posted 8.21.18 Reply
    • alice wrote:

      I have – I love that book!!!

      Posted 8.22.18 Reply