One of the most common complaints I see witches and other magical practitioners discuss is that they’ve lost their magic. The connection that used to come so easily has been muddied, or has disappeared entirely, and they feel as they’re just going through the motions with no sense of their own power or that of the Otherworld. I recently had this conversation with a friend who, having suffered a run of bad luck, had lost trust in her magical self. This is fairly common, when things are going wrong we take a knock to our confidence, and usually we pick ourselves up and carry on as normal. But if you’ve felt disconnected for a long period of time, and nothing you try seems to be working, here are a few suggestions to getting back on track.
Cleanse and Cleanse Again
This is my go-to method for any magical issues and if you don’t have a regular practice of cleansing and purification you should really consider starting one. We pick up all kinds of psychic gunk, along with the physical dust and dirt, and while regular bathing does keep most of it away, there are times when we become bogged down and need to perform some cleansing magic. This can be a simple as putting some cleansing essential oils, such as lemongrass, palmarosa and citronella, into an unscented shower gel and scrubbing from your head to your feet in the bath or shower. You can run a deep bath, light some pale blue candles, and add a handful of sea salt, dried hyssop and lavender to the water. Also consider cleaning your home with the same herbs added to a bucket of hot water and some bleach, and then smudging with white sage, dragon’s blood or cedar.
If you don’t trust your intuition at the moment, or don’t have a talent for divination, see a reputable tarot reader and ask them for some guidance. They may be able to pick up on certain things going on in your life that have caused you to become disconnected from your practice, or give you an idea of how long this phase may last for. They might be able to tell if you’re being tested by any gods or spirits you venerate, or that you’ve just faced some adversity and are lacking in self belief at the moment.
Go Back to the Beginning
Remember why you started practicing magic and witchcraft in the first place. Read anything that inspired you, even if it’s fictional or “fluffy”. You might be years into your practice but return to some of the books that got you started; they must have had some kind of impact for you to be where you are now. Watch films with themes of witchcraft, magic and mystery, anything that makes you feel an emotional connection to your practice.
Ask the Gods/Spirits
This is tied in with divination, but something that you can do directly. If you have a shrine then tend it, light candles and incense, sit for a moment and then pour your heart out to the gods and or/spirits you have a relationship with. Tell them your troubles and then listen to anything they may communicate to you. This phase might be a test. If you’ve become very comfortable in your practice and have plateaued, they might be using this period of uncertainty to push you into expanding and doing new things.
Do the Work Anyway
This can be difficult if you’re lacking the enthusiasm, but even when we think we’re just going through the motions we’re still performing ritual. We might not be getting anything from our actions, but the gods and spirits are, and forcing ourselves to just get on with it can help us shake off the lethargy and connect us again.
See a Counsellor
It can be difficult to admit it but sometimes there is an underlying mental health problem as to why we’ve lost our enthusiasm for our magical practice. This is especially true if we’re no longer interested in hobbies or pastimes we used to enjoy and our days are filled with just work, sleep and passive activities like watching television. Bouts of depression affect almost everyone from time to time, and sometimes just talking about them with a professional can help draw us out of them. You don’t have to mention that you are a witch or magician if you don’t want to, just that you’ve lost a connection to yourself.
Take a Break
Lastly, you can accept your period of disconnection and treat it as a sabbatical from your responsibilities and practice. You may simply be magically burnt out, especially if you have been running things for other people; rituals, moots, workshops, drumming circles, etc. Use this time away for some self-care and don’t beat yourself up for not doing anything for a while. However, give yourself a time-frame for when you want to start engaging in your practice again. Taking some time off magic between sabbats or other holy days, such as from the Autumn Equinox to the Spring Equinox, will tie you in with the rhythms of the land and her energies. Of course, if you feel your mojo coming back before the last day of your break then go with it and start enjoying your magic again.