What the First Mercury Retrograde of 2022 Means for Your Sign

By The AstroTwins

Communication planet Mercury makes three complete Mercury retrograde cycles in 2022. The first Mercury retrograde of the year begins on January 14 and ends on February 3.

When signals get crossed––and they will––you’ll want to be prepared. Use our guide below to help you navigate the first Mercury retrograde of 2022.

What the first Mercury retrograde of 2022 means for each zodiac sign:

Aries | Taurus | Gemini | Cancer | Leo | Virgo | Libra | Scorpio | Sagittarius | Capricorn | Aquarius | Pisces

ARIES

With Mercury backtracking through Aquarius and your eleventh house/teamwork zone, group projects could get chaotic. Nerves could fray among friends, especially while harmonizer Venus is also retrograde through January 29. 
Set crystal-clear expectations with everyone to offset some of the inevitable misunderstandings. Back up your electronic files and be careful what you email, text, post and publish. Words are irrevocable now. Since the eleventh house is one of the zodiac zones that rules technology, this Mercury retrograde could feel double-strength. If “digital detox” was on your 2022 resolutions list, this would be an ideal period to take one!

On January 25, Mercury backs into Capricorn and your ambitious tenth house for the duration of the first retrograde of 2022. Lay low until February 3 when it comes to approaching decision-makers or pushing any business ventures to the finish line. Better to tweak and perfect your pitch then step out with a rock-solid plan when Mercury goes direct.

TAURUS

The first Mercury retrograde reverses through Aquarius, your tenth house career zone, until January 25. For the majority of the trickster’s backward transit, professional matters will be up for reevaluation. If you’ve been pondering a new path, you might have a change of heart—or a temporary case of cold feet.

Is fear of the unknown, or a real-life obstacle, stopping you from shifting gears? Use this Mercury retrograde to investigate. Take extra care with any work-related contracts and negotiations. You may discover some hidden items that don’t feel equitable. Tension could flare with coworkers and clients.

Since Mercury retrograde is great for reconnecting with your past, you might get an offer from a former employer, or an ex-colleague may dangle an intriguing opportunity. Explore, but don’t commit until you’ve conducted due diligence. Your public image falls under the tenth-house domain, so what you post or say can easily be used against you. You might also consider a change in career path.

On January 25, Mercury backs into Capricorn and your truth-telling ninth house. Until February 3, when Mercury goes direct, it’s time to get honest with yourself (and others) about what you really want. Look in unexpected places for new approaches. But don’t scatter your energy as Mercury in this supersized area of you chart could send you on wild goose chases.

GEMINI

When the quicksilver planet shifts into reverse for its first retrograde of 2022, it travels through Aquarius, your expansive ninth house. A visionary project might need to be temporarily put on hold. Have you overshot the mark or underestimated the time and resources needed to pull off your plans? Use this period to recalibrate and scale back to a soft launch if necessary. Better to roll things out in phases so you can test and adjust. 

Mercury dips into Capricorn and your intimate eighth house on January 25. Coupled with love planet Venus also retrograde until January 29, this could spell trouble in paradise. Manage your moods, expectations and boundaries. Expect to need more privacy and feel irritated by other people’s energy in your space. Trade people-pleasing for being clear (and unapologetic) about your needs. This convergence of retrogrades could also bring an ex-lover back into your realm. Tread lightly before you go there!

If you’re booking a trip (already a Mercury retrograde warning light) or considering a return to school, be sure to review the fine print. If you’re able to, hold off on anything binding until Mercury goes direct on February 3.

CANCER

The first Mercury retrograde of 2022 agitates the two most committed places of your chart. Mercury first backtracks through Aquarius, until January 25, causing mayhem in your eighth house of intimacy and shared finances. An ex could resurface, tempting you to re-engage. Though the attraction may still be strong, have those lingering issues actually cleared up? If you dare to go there, sort over due diligence before handing over your trust. If you’re still stinging over a past betrayal, Mercury’s backspin could poke the old wound. What part of the lesson or healing still needs to happen?

Press pause on any fast-moving financial collabs, if you can––especially if they involve plunking down cash or equity. Mercury retrograde can be a blessing in disguise, buying you time to really think through your plans. If a prospective partner stalls or waffles, get clear about their hesitation. And instead of feeling intimidated, get interested. Ask the questions.

On January 25, Mercury backs into Capricorn and your committed-relationship/seventh house, for the duration of the retrograde, until February 3. During this phase, and even into the shadow period of Mercury retrograde, you could have second thoughts on making things official, business or personal.

LEO

Quicksilver Mercury reverses through Aquarius until January 25, disrupting your seventh house of committed relationships and contracts. During this time, an ex could appear out of the blue, or an old argument could flare up. You might have second thoughts about moving forward. With love planet Venus also retrograde until January 29, tension could reach critical mass with a key person. If your usual strategies aren’t solving the issue, maybe it’s time to try a new approach—or even to go to a neutral third party for help mediating.

Negotiating a deal? Think twice before signing. During this first Mercury retrograde of 2022, key information could be obscured—all the more so when Mercury backs into Capricorn on January 25. Even after reading the fine print, you could still miss important details. Ask ALL your questions and conduct due diligence. When in doubt, wait it out! While in your sixth house rules employees and helpful people, you can’t be too clear with instructions. Make sure you have a solid system for checking people’s work (your own included) because things can easily slip through the cracks until Mercury goes direct on February 3.

VIRGO

The first Mercury retrograde of 2022 spends the bulk of its journey, until January 25, in Aquarius, your analytical sixth house. Mixed signals and crossed wires are already par for the Mercury retrograde course—along with data and devices that mysteriously crash (back yours up, stat!). But to make it worse, you’ll be overthinking just about everything, whipping yourself into a state of confusion or analysis paralysis.

With Mercury in this weakened position in your health house, you could be susceptible to a midwinter flu or virus. Wash your hands frequently, work remotely when possible and avoid anyone who’s under the weather, even if you’re triple vaxxed. Take care to manage your stress levels, which can make you more prone to well-being breakdowns.

Since retrogrades rule the past, this is a smart time to book any overdue checkups and revive your lapsed gym or yoga studio membership. Sticking to a routine will be challenging with Mercury mucking up your schedule. Streamline and simplify your calendar to avoid over scheduling.

On January 25, Mercury backs through Capricorn and your fifth house of love. Things could get #complicated. This is especially since romance planet Venus is also retrograde in Capricorn until January 29. An old flame could reappear, perhaps extending an olive branch. Aim to put closure on the last chapter rather than trying to dive back into that pool. We’re not saying you shouldn’t explore, but proceed with caution. If it was a timing issue, maybe the stars are better aligned for you now.

For coupled Virgos, this double retrograde could dial up old drama or heated emotions until Mercury goes direct on February 3. You might use this window for a brief timeout. Little breaks can be healthy, especially if you spent a little too much time together over the holidays or with new virus restrictions.

LIBRA

The first Mercury retrograde of 2022 is in Aquarius, your fifth house of love, which means it could be a bit of a buzzkill. Trouble in paradise could surface as the quicksilver planet bumbles through this zone of your chart (that also includes your creativity and self-expression). An ex could resurface or a budding romance could hit a stumbling block. Slow down and make sure you’re on the same page—no assumptions allowed! 

Hold off on any artistic debuts now since a backward-spinning Mercury in your performance sector could bring a lukewarm reception instead of the buzz you crave. Note: This tricky transit can stir up major drama in any relationship, not just romantic. When in doubt, err on the side of politeness (even if you deliver it through gritted teeth). Brash remarks could be taken the wrong way. Keep your ego in check and avoid making controversial statements, especially online. Your attempt to be cheeky could land as downright offensive.

On January 25, Mercury backs into Capricorn and your domestic fourth house for the duration of the retrograde, until February 3. Coupled with your ruler Venus, also retrograde here, some post-holiday resentment could come out of the woodwork. What have you, or a loved one, been stuffing down since the new year began? Remember, stay in camp gracious best you’re able. Maybe try to talk/text things through. If it’s too challenging to keep tempers even, table a topic until after Mercury goes direct (or after its shadow period ends on February 24), when cooler heads can prevail.

SCORPIO

Mercury backtracks through Aquarius and your domestic fourth house for its first retrograde of 2022.


Until January 25, the messenger planet causes friction in your personal life. Take special care to navigate. Patience is key, in particular with everyone from roommates to relatives (especially female-identified ones).

Mercury retrograde could cause some of your appliances and especially electronics to go on the fritz. If you’re upgrading your digs, take your time to research your options. But hold off on buying that new dishwasher until after Mercury goes direct on February 3. 

Since retrogrades rule the past, you might reconnect with a long-lost relative or do some research into your family heritage. (Beware: That Ancestry.com kit could get lost in the mail since Mercury rules the postal system!) It’s very possible that waves of nostalgia will sweep over you. Unprocessed feelings could crop up. This Mercury retrograde can be a healing time, so allow yourself to feel any sadness or hurt that you’ve swept under the rug. At least try! 


When Mercury backs into Capricorn and your third house of communication on January 25, it might be easier to make peace with a loved one. Meanwhile, an extra dose of self-editing can make all the difference. Until Mercury goes direct on February 3, also be sure to be clear in all interactions, especially where there have been misunderstandings. Think of it as clearing the slate. 

SAGITTARIUS

The first Mercury retrograde of 2022 backs through Aquarius, roiling your third house of interpersonal affairs and media. It might feel like a double-strength retrograde at moments, and you’ll want to take the utmost care with every word. If you’re not sure whether you should write, post or say THAT––maybe don’t. Run big decisions by your wisest sounding boards; their feedback could help you massage your message.

The third house also rules siblings, neighbors and anyone in your social circle. Take extra care to avoid misunderstandings in these relationships. Think before you speak has never been more sound advice!

The usual Mercury retrograde precautions merit your attention, too. Back up all data and devices. Avoid signing contracts if you can (and triple-check that fine print while you’re at it). If you’re considering buying anything with wheels—car, e-bike, scooter—shop around and conduct your research.

On January 25, Mercury backs into Capricorn and your second house of work and money, joining an already-in-progress retrograde Venus. Yikes! Signals could scramble around finances. Or you could run into issues with a client or project. That said, this is an opportunity to untangle wires and get processes in place. By the time Mercury turns direct on February 3, your work could pay off. As famous as you are for saying “I’ll just do it myself,” this is a chance to delegate. Hone your managerial skills rather than taking on a crushing workload.

CAPRICORN

Save any splashy debuts until after the first Mercury retrograde of 2022, if you can. Until January 25, Mercury rolls back into Aquarius, your productive and profit-centered second house. Do you need to get clear on the fuzzy areas of your budget? If a case of “scope creep” is turning a project into a costly time-suck, get real. Simplify plans and scale back anything that’s become unmanageable. And like any Mercury retrograde, be sure to back up all your most important data, especially at the office.

It’s worth giving your resume a refresh, too. Mercury retrograde is a great time to reflect and review—a salary renegotiation or a performance check-in could give you a helpful roadmap for where to focus your energy. Did an exciting endeavor end up on the back burner last year or get shelved because of the pandemic? The timing is right for revisiting such plans. 

When Mercury reverses into Capricorn on January 25, it will join the already-retrograde Venus in your sign. Wave the white flag, Sea Goat: If you try to launch something now, you’ll be swimming upstream. Not that you’re afraid of a challenge, but with the deck this stacked against you, why work harder, not smarter? Take a little break and recharge. Then come back swinging when Mercury goes direct on February 3.

AQUARIUS

Mercury reverses through your sign until January 25, putting you in the hot seat (aren’t you already the zodiac’s most misunderstood sign?!). But there are always silver linings. This first Mercury retrograde of 2022 can help you grow in new ways. A passion project or personal plan could become delayed, much to your dismay. If that happens, don’t fight it. Instead, use the time to perfect your vision.

Dust off a creative venture that got put on a back burner. Spend time reviewing your goals and plans. If you need to polish up your presentation, do so now. From training to new headshots to rebranding, this is a great time to tweak behind the scenes.

Speaking of behind the scenes, on January 25, Mercury slips into Capricorn and your twelfth house of hidden information, closure and healing. With love planet Venus already retrograde here until January 29, it could be hard to distinguish between reality and illusion.

You may be foggy and forgetful while Mercury backtracks through this zone. How about a mental break? Truth is, as a future-focused sign you probably don’t spend ENOUGH time processing your feelings before racing into the next situation. While you’re at it, do you have an apology to issue or amends to make? Use the time before Mercury goes direct, on February 3, to feel and heal. That way you can move forward with a clean slate—and conscience—especially after Mercury’s shadow period ends on February 24.

PISCES

The first Mercury retrograde of 2022 backs into Aquarius and your twelfth house of illusions, closure and healing. Have you been getting mixed signals or feeling uncertain about whether to stay or go in a certain situation? Slow down and do a gut check before barreling ahead.

While Mercury retrograde can scramble the signals, it’s also a fruitful time to work through your confusion by tuning in. Maybe there’s a reason that you clench up around a coworker—but is it because they make you feel unsafe, or do they remind you of someone from your past? This could be a powerful moment to sort through some past-based fears. The twelfth house rules hidden agendas and, in some cases, secret enemies. Make sure the people in your orbit have earned your trust before you just hand it over to them.

Have you abandoned a creative project? Pick it up again! Fallen out of touch with beloved relatives? Reconnect. The mentally astute planet in your sensitive twelfth house is a prompt to trek down memory lane and get in touch with deeper emotions—including nostalgia, grief or pain you’ve pushed aside for a long time.

Mercury completes its first cycle of 2022 in Capricorn, from January 25 to February 3. The backspin moves into your eleventh house of friendships and groups. Are the people around you elevating you or bringing you down? Take an honest inventory of your own habits, too. Are you contributing enough, being clear with your requests, holding people accountable? You could have an amazing breakthrough on Team Pisces now. Set aside pride and ego, if you can, and focus on the bigger pictures.

Photo by R.F. Studio via Pexels

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ABOUT THE AUTHOR

AstroTwins

Identical twin sisters Ophira and Tali Edut, known as The AstroTwins, are the founders of Astrostyle.com and the authors of multiple bestselling astrology books. Their horoscopes reach millions here and through their resident astrologer column at ELLE Magazine.