Making Visualization Easy for Witches
If you’ve read my blog before, you probably already know how important visualization is on the path of the witch. In case this is your first visit, I’ll break down a few ways we use visualization:
- When we use ritual magick
- Using all kinds of energy work, at least at the beginning
- In spellwork
- As meditation
- When doing manifestation work
- And more!
Now, if you struggle with visualization, you are not alone. When I first started being serious about this path, I found that I could not visualize. This was even more frustrating to me because I used to be able to visualize everything as a kid. I would read something once and memorize it immediately. I was a bad ass at the memory card game because I could visualize the board. But fast forward to my late teens and I couldn’t visualize for shit.
Could I dream, usually? Yes. Could I make visuals happen on command? Nope. And when you are starting out on the path and you want to KNOW ALL THE THINGS, it seems like such a huge obstacle.
But with practice and commitment, I re-learned how to use these mind muscles and you can too.
In many of the social groups I’m in, when someone talks about an inability to visualize, at least one person will tell them that they have aphantasia. Aphantasia is a condition where the person cannot bring a visual image to their mind. It’s like they just don’t have a mind’s eye. It is a real thing, but I think that a lot of people self-diagnose this immediately, and assume that they cannot improve their visualization ability. I’m glad that this wasn’t a thing when I started out, otherwise I might have just accepted my inability to see with my minds eye. Instead, I decided to work on it. Here are a few things that I did that really helped.
Try. Like a lot. Practice.
This sounds like something pretty obvious, but it’s easy to push this aside. It can be hard work, and we’re busy every day, but set aside like 10 minutes per day to work on your visualization. Will it work out the first day? Maybe not. The first week? Perhaps. It took me probably a month of active everyday work on my visualization to get me to a place where I felt successful. Even once you feel more comfortable in this skill, if you practice it, it gets easier. Then you can start working on incorporating sounds, smells, feelings, deeper imagery.
Try NOT closing your eyes.
I know several people who, instead of closing their eyes, just unfocus them a bit. Kind of like when you are staring off into space. Practice doing this instead and see if this feels right to you.
Have you every been to a baby shower where someone brings out a tray with 20 objects, shows them to you and then covers it up and asks you to write down what was on the tray? This is an example of a memory game. You can do this as a visualization exercise. This is easiest if you have a friend to help, but you can try it by yourself.
Start by placing 5 items on a tray. Cover it up while you get a pen and paper. Uncover it for 5 seconds, then cover it back up. Visualize the tray and write down what was on the paper. Now, if you threw the items together, you will have a better chance of remembering them, right? But when you write them down, note their positions. Then try it for 10 seconds with 10 items.
If they are small and unbreakable, you could place them in a bag and then pour them onto the tray, look at them and then cover after 10 seconds. Note the items and their positions. You can play with the number of items and how long you look at them. It’s more like a game when you can get friends involved. If you’re by yourself, however, Insight Timer is an app that will do a countdown for you – it also has a bunch of great visualizations, too.
Start with something you know.
Sit on your bed in your room. Take a good look around your room, and notice everything. Now close your eyes or relax your gaze. Take a few deep belly breaths. Then, rebuild your room in your mind.
How did it go? If you were able to do that, move out further. Visualize the hallway that you walk down every day. Then the other rooms of your home. Visualize what it looks like when you open your front door. And then what the front of your home looks like. Keep doing that for other places that you visit as well.
If you had issue with visualizing your room, just visualize your bed. Or the jeans you are wearing. Then slowly expand as you practice to “see” your room and the rest of your living space.
It’s easier to visualize something you’ve seen with your own eyes, rather than something that doesn’t exist. When you are asked in a visualization to visualize a path, use the paths that you’ve seen before as a starting point. You know what a rock looks like, build it in your mind.
Once you feel pretty good about these things, move on to non-concrete things. Like a floating blue light or a circle of flame. Visualize a portal of elemental energy.
It gets easier.
With practice, visualization will become easier. Just commit to some simple practice every day, and start “seeing” objects that are familiar to you. Experiment with closing and relaxing your eyes and see what works best for you. This, like most of the craft, is about experimentation and seeing what works best for you as an individual. Happy visualizing!