Whether it was in passing at a meeting, while chatting with your best friend over cocktails, or in your favorite travel group, the phrase Mercury Retrograde has always been associated with catastrophic setbacks - especially those that relate to technology, travel and communication. This final Mercury Retrograde of the year takes place from September 27 to October 18 and is based in Libra, the sign ruling relationships, harmony, balance and justice. Don't be surprised if an ex comes crawling back to you now, or if you find yourself trying to slip back in your old bae's DMs in the coming weeks!
Every Mercury Retrograde is different. But in general, it is critical to take extra time in your day-to-day activities and to practice patience while communicating, especially through text or email. If possible, hold off on any major purchases or binding contracts.
Mercury Retrogrades are conducive to all things related to the past, for better and for worse. It is not a time to push full steam ahead on any future plans. If you work against the energy of this time period by trying to start something new, expect delays and setbacks! Instead, take this time to reflect on past habits and experiences.
Here's how to use this month's Mercury Retrograde to your benefit, according to your sign.
Ariesaries horoscope GIF by MashableGiphy
Thinking about giving a past love a second chance? With this Mercury Retrograde taking place in your seventh house of partnerships, you will definitely be reflecting on your old romantic connections - whether they're from a past city or a past life! Expect an ex to attempt to reestablish a connection with you, or to find yourself pondering on "what if?" and reaching out to an ex instead. Expect setbacks if you meet someone new during this time.
Taurushoroscope taurus GIF by MashableGiphy
If you're looking for work, now would be the perfect time to reach out to old co-workers and employers that you've remained pretty tight with. You may be surprised to find that an opening is available there for you and that they think you're the perfect person for the job! Take a moment to invest in your health and daily habits. Reflect on any old exercise or diet programs that were effective for you in the past and see how you can incorporate them now.
GeminiZodiac Horoscope GIF by MashableGiphy
Have you been all work and no play lately? This is the perfect time to connect with your inner wild child. Indulge in an old hobby! Were you into Zumba or yoga before the pandemic? Check out some virtual options. Art? Now's a great time to tap into your inner Basquiat. Make some time for play. Reflect on your childhood, look through old photos. Express that creative energy and enjoy recreation, whether it's through a favorite pastime or through sex.
CancerCancer Zodiac GIF by MashableGiphy
Focus on your foundation. Has it been a while since you spoke to a trusted family member? How can you strengthen your sense of family and home? Look back on old family traditions that you used to enjoy and figure out how to reincorporate them into your life now. If possible, take a drive by your old neighborhood or connect with your mom whether it's through phone, in-person or in spirit. Now is not the time to enter into a new lease or any real estate contracts.
LeoLion Leo GIF by MashableGiphy
Reconnect with your siblings. Spend more time taking in the scenes of your neighborhood. Be extra careful with your words during this period. You may say something that you will regret. Take your time when communicating with others. Don't be quick to shoot off that angry email. Feeling extra tense or anxious during this Mercury Retrograde phase? Practice meditation or take a soothing ayurvedic adaptogen like Ashwagandha or Tulsi.
VirgoZodiac Horoscope GIF by MashableGiphy
Now's the time to monitor your expenses. Think twice about any large purchases that you plan to make at this time or better yet? Hold off on them altogether. Get your financial house in order, re-work your budget and consider debt repayment options. What has added value to your life or sense of self-worth in the past? Whether it's a new look or a person or habit that always made you feel good about yourself, now's the perfect time to revisit it.
LibraZodiac Horoscope GIF by MashableGiphy
Take time to reflect on the way you represent yourself. It may be easy for you to be misinterpreted by others during this period of time. Make who you are and your intentions extra clear in order to avoid drama!
ScorpioZodiac Horoscope GIF by MashableGiphy
Take some time alone to reflect on yourself and your subconscious. Haven't seen your therapist in a while? Set up an appointment during this period. Revisit any healing modalities you've used in the past that you may have overlooked lately like meditation, yoga, or spiritual baths.
Sagittariushoroscope GIF by MashableGiphy
Use this opportunity to take a trip down memory lane with old friends. Reconnect with a friend that you dearly miss, but haven't spoken to in a while.
Capricornhoroscope GIF by MashableGiphy
What is your true calling in your life? Now's a great time to reflect on your career and your relationship with old mentors and father figures. Write down and ponder over all of your long-term career goals and by all means, protect your public image during this retrograde phase.
Aquariushoroscope aquarius GIF by MashableGiphy
Have you lost your faith in the religion you grew up with? Have you been exploring Yoruba or other cultural and spiritual practices as an alternative? Now is the time to reevaluate your belief system. Explore and expand your knowledge on spiritual or philosophical subjects that you've been drawn to but haven't put into practice yet. Many of you may contemplate a return to school.
PiscesZodiac Horoscope GIF by MashableGiphy
You may find yourself reconnecting with someone you enjoyed an intense, transformative experience within the past. Someone you haven't been able to fully shake. This experience may or may not stand the test of time, but appreciate any lessons and insights that you gain from it.
For more about zodiac signs, horoscopes, and astrology, check out xoNecole's Horoscopes section here.
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Exclusive: Gabrielle Union On Radical Transparency, Being Diagnosed With Perimenopause And Embracing What’s Next
Whenever Gabrielle Union graces the movie screen, she immediately commands attention. From her unforgettable scenes in films like Bring It On and Two Can Play That Game to her most recent film, in which she stars and produces Netflix’s The Perfect Find, there’s no denying that she is that girl.
Off-screen, she uses that power for good by sharing her trials and tribulations with other women in hopes of helping those who may be going through the same things or preventing them from experiencing them altogether. Recently, the Flawless by Gabrielle Union founder partnered with Clearblue to speak at the launch of their Menopause Stage Indicator, where she also shared her experience with being perimenopausal.
In a xoNecoleexclusive, the iconic actress opens up about embracing this season of her life, new projects, and overall being a “bad motherfucker.” Gabrielle reveals that she was 37 years old when she was diagnosed with perimenopause and is still going through it at 51 years old. Mayo Clinic says perimenopause “refers to the time during which your body makes the natural transition to menopause, marking the end of the reproductive years.”
“I haven't crossed over the next phase just yet, but I think part of it is when you hear any form of menopause, you automatically think of your mother or grandmother. It feels like an old-person thing, but for me, I was 37 and like not understanding what that really meant for me. And I don't think we focus so much on the word menopause without understanding that perimenopause is just the time before menopause,” she tells us.
Photo by Brian Thomas
"But you can experience a lot of the same things during that period that people talk about, that they experienced during menopause. So you could get a hot flash, you could get the weight gain, the hair loss, depression, anxiety, like all of it, mental health challenges, all of that can come, you know, at any stage of the menopausal journey and like for me, I've been in perimenopause like 13, 14 years. When you know, most doctors are like, ‘Oh, but it's usually about ten years, and I'm like, ‘Uhh, I’m still going (laughs).’”
Conversations about perimenopause, fibroids, and all the things that are associated with women’s bodies have often been considered taboo and thus not discussed publicly. However, times are changing, and thanks to the Gabrielle’s and the Tia Mowry’s, more women are having an authentic discourse about women’s health. These open discussions lead to the creation of more safe spaces and support for one another.
“I want to be in community with folks. I don't ever want to feel like I'm on an island about anything. So, if I can help create community where we are lacking, I want to be a part of that,” she says. “So, it's like there's no harm in talking about it. You know what I mean? Like, I was a bad motherfucker before perimenopause. I’m a bad motherfucker now, and I'll be a bad motherfucker after menopause. Know what I’m saying? None of that has to change. How I’m a bad motherfucker, I welcome that part of the change. I'm just getting better and stronger and more intelligent, more wise, more patient, more compassionate, more empathetic. All of that is very, very welcomed, and none of it should be scary.”
The Being Mary Jane star hasn’t been shy about her stance on therapy. If you don’t know, here’s a hint: she’s all for it, and she encourages others to try it as well. She likens therapy to dating by suggesting that you keep looking for the right therapist to match your needs. Two other essential keys to her growth are radical transparency and radical acceptance (though she admits she is still working on the latter).
"I was a bad motherfucker before perimenopause. I’m a bad motherfucker now, and I'll be a bad motherfucker after menopause. Know what I’m saying? None of that has to change. How I’m a bad motherfucker, I welcome that part of the change."
Gabrielle Union and Kaavia Union-Wade
Photo by Monica Schipper/Getty Images
“I hope that a.) you recognize that you're not alone. Seek out help and know that it's okay to be honest about what the hell is happening in your life. That's the only way that you know you can get help, and that's also the only other way that people know that you are in need if there's something going on,” she says, “because we have all these big, very wild, high expectations of people, but if they don't know what they're actually dealing with, they're always going to be failing, and you will always be disappointed. So how about just tell the truth, be transparent, and let people know where you are. So they can be of service, they can be compassionate.”
Gabrielle’s transparency is what makes her so relatable, and has so many people root for her. Whether through her TV and film projects, her memoirs, or her social media, the actress has a knack for making you feel like she’s your homegirl. Scrolling through her Instagram, you see the special moments with her family, exciting new business ventures, and jaw-dropping fashion moments. Throughout her life and career, we’ve seen her evolve in a multitude of ways. From producing films to starting a haircare line to marriage and motherhood, her journey is a story of courage and triumph. And right now, in this season, she’s asking, “What’s next?”
“This is a season of discovery and change. In a billion ways,” says the NAACP Image Award winner. “The notion of like, ‘Oh, so and so changed. They got brand new.’ I want you to be brand new. I want me to be brand new. I want us to be always constantly growing, evolving. Having more clarity, moving with different purpose, like, and all of that is for me very, very welcomed."
"I want you to be brand new. I want me to be brand new. I want us to be always constantly growing, evolving. Having more clarity, moving with different purpose, like, and all of that is for me very, very welcomed."
She continues, “So I'm just trying to figure out what's next. You know what I mean? I'm jumping into what's next. I'm excited going into what's next and new. I'm just sort of embracing all of what life has to offer.”
Look out for Gabrielle in the upcoming indie film Riff Raff, which is a crime comedy starring her and Jennifer Coolidge, and she will also produce The Idea of You, which stars Anne Hathaway.
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Have you ever been in a relationship with someone and felt so deeply connected to them? Everything about the relationship was intense – good or bad? Then you might be in a part of a soul tie.
The concept of a soul tie binds individuals on a level beyond a relationship's physical and emotional aspects; it’s more than a mere connection. You can form a soul tie with anyone – lover, friend, colleague, etc.- but we are discussing romantic partners for this article. Think of you and your partner as an intensely burning flame. The flame can burn passionately to light the relationship’s way or chaotically burn everything in its path. Either way, it leaves an indelible mark on the souls involved.
A soul tie should not be confused with the term “soulmate.” The main difference is that a soul tie can be positive or negative, while a soulmate is a mutual, harmonious connection. Unlike a soul tie, a soulmate relationship is generally characterized by mutual understanding, support, and shared values.
However, the more we learn about soul ties, the more it becomes evident that they are not monolithic; they vary in nature and intensity. As someone who has experienced a negative soul tie, it is crucial to discern whether they contribute positively to personal growth or hinder you from flourishing.
If Your Soul Tie Is Positive
A positive soul tie creates a deep and affirming connection between individuals. One key indicator of a positive soul tie is effective communication. If you’re experiencing a positive soul tie, a shared understanding fosters open and honest dialogue, contributing to a sense of connection and support.
Mutual growth is another hallmark of a positive soul tie. When individuals in a relationship encourage each other's personal development and evolution, it signifies a positive and uplifting connection. This mutual support leads to an environment where both parties can thrive individually and together, contributing to the overall health of the soul tie.
Emotional security is a crucial element in identifying a positive soul tie. In such connections, individuals feel a deep sense of trust and comfort with each other. This emotional security forms a stable foundation for the relationship, allowing both parties to express vulnerability and foster a strong, positive bond. These three indicators—effective communication, mutual growth, and emotional security—underscore the positivity inherent in a healthy and affirming soul tie.
If Your Soul Tie Is Negative
A negative soul tie manifests as a detrimental and draining connection between individuals. One clear sign of a negative soul tie is the presence of emotional turmoilwithin the relationship. When the connection becomes a source of constant distress, causing emotional upheaval and hindering personal development, it indicates a negative soul tie.
Codependency is another red flag for a negative soul tie. In such connections, individuals may become overly reliant on each other, impeding their ability to thrive independently. Codependency often leads to unhealthy dependencies and can result in a toxic dynamic that hinders both individuals' growth and well-being.
A lack of effective communication is a third indicator of a negative soul tie. When there is a breakdown in communication, misunderstandings and unresolved issues can fester, contributing to a strained and unhealthy connection. In negative soul ties, the absence of open and honest dialogue can perpetuate a cycle of negativity and prevent the resolution of underlying issues. These three indicators—emotional turmoil, codependency, and poor communication—point to the negativity associated with an unhealthy soul tie.
Putting Out The Fires And Breaking Your Soul Tie
Unfortunately, my deep, intense connection only caused destruction. And despite the obvious red flags, it took a minute before I broke the connection. Why? Because I was addicted to the relationship, we both were. But it is possible to break a soul tie if and when you are ready because if you are not, pretending you are when you are not is a waste of your time.
Breaking a soul tie requires intentional and purposeful actions. Establishing clear and firm boundaries is a fundamental step in severing the connection. By limiting contact and emotional engagement with the person involved, individuals can gradually weaken the tie and create space for personal growth.
Seeking professional support is another effective strategy to break a soul tie. Guidance from therapists or counselors provides valuable insights and coping strategies. Professional assistance can help individuals navigate the emotional challenges associated with breaking a soul tie, offering a structured and supportive environment for healing.
Redirecting energy toward personal growth is important in breaking free from a soul tie. Engaging in activities that promote individual well-being and create a sense of independence allows individuals to refocus their attention on their own growth and development. This redirection of energy is essential for breaking the emotional bonds of a soul tie and moving towards a healthier, more fulfilling life.
The last step I advise everyone to go through is the mourning period. My partner and I did our song and dance for years before I walked away. And I would be lying if I didn’t say that I mourned our relationship while I healed.
Recognizing the presence and nature of a soul tie in your relationship is crucial to understanding its impact on your well-being. Whether positive or negative, the intensity of a soul tie can shape the course of your personal growth and happiness. Breaking free from a negative soul tie demands intentional efforts, from setting clear boundaries to seeking professional support. Redirecting energy toward personal growth and allowing oneself a necessary mourning period are vital steps toward healing and liberation from the intricate ties that bind.
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