What to do on the New Moon?

Just as most witches celebrate the full moon with magick and ritual, many also perform new moon esbat ritual as well. Some witches use a 4 moon phase system and some use a 5 phase system. The difference is that in the 5 phase system, the dark moon is when there is no moon in the sky and the new moon is the first crescent. In the common 4 phase system, the new moon is when there is no moon in the sky – though the energy lasts a day or two into that first little crescent. Regardless of how you see the new moon, the energy is that of initiation and transformation in the darkness. And you can harness that energy in many ways.


The new moon is a great time to create a new divination tool. It’s easy to create a pendulum out of a string or chain and any weighted object. Other options include creating your own runes out of clay or your own oracle cards from index cards or cards from another game like Magic the Gathering.

I feel like the best time to do divination is at the new moon. The darkness allows us to more easily look within, without the distractions that other moon energies can bring. Many divine for the next lunar month.

If you’ve never scryed before, the new moon is an opportune time to do so. Scrying is looking onto a surface and interpreting what you see there, whether it’s visions, symbols or anything else. You can easily create a scrying mirror with a picture frame and black paint. Or you can simply scry in a dark colored bowl with water.

Setting Intentions or Goals

The new moon is an opportune time to set intentions or goals for the next month. An intention is often open ended and a goal is more concrete. Think of the intention as the energy, and the goal itself is the channel to a successful outcome.

When setting goals, some use the SMART framework. You can make your goal specific, measurable, attainable, realistic and time-based. This criteria helps you create a goal that will help keep you accountable.

Finally, when you do decide on your goal, one way to help you avoid overwhelm is to break that goal into small tasks. I have a printable goal planner in my shop that can help with that. Its just important that you break it down into manageable pieces so you don’t get frustrated and abandon your plan.


The new moon is a great time for cleansing, both mundane and magical. It’s a traditional time to clean your altar physically. Dispose of any offerings, dust and clean the objects on your altar.

Some like to take this time to cleanse crystals, tools, etc. during this darkened period. And some people choose to do their housecleaning during this phase and turn it into a sacred act.

Shadow Work

New moon is a great time to dive deep into your Self and begin Shadow Work. You can check out my in-depth post on Shadow Work here,

Shadow work is about going inside oneself, reflecting and isolating parts of yourself that you’ve shunned, turned away, or dislike. These parts of yourself have likely protected you at some point in your life, but it’s important to realize that they are also holding you back from being a whole person. New moon is a great time to take the steps.

Making Plans

Making plans is completely different than setting intentions. It’s a great time to set anything new into motion. There’s an energy of initiation that accompanies the new moon. It may not be the best time to bring your plans to fruition, but align yourself with the new moon energy and make creative plans for the future. If you set goals and intentions, you can use these to start creating a plan.

Indulge Your Senses With Self-Care

The new moon is great time for you to find time for self care rituals and actions. Indulge your creativity and take time for yourself. This might mean baths, listening to music, yoga meditation, visualizations or art. Open your senses and align with that new moon energy.

The new moon is a great time to divine your future, set intentions and create plans, cleanse, and delve deep into shadow work or self-care. Align yourself with the energy and deepen into its power.

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Want to know what to do on the full moon? Check out that post here.

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