Witchcraft is innately good for your mental health, it encourages emotional and spiritual wisdom.
Firstly, witchcraft is a way of life. Many witches have daily routines or rituals. When it comes to taking care of your mental health, consistent self-care is key. Psychological and emotional maintenance shouldn’t drain you nor should it be an afterthought. The same goes for witchcraft. As such, the witch’s daily routines strengthen the magick of the witch and the power of their mind. A mistake many new witches, or so I’ve realized, make is thinking they can just call on the spirits or outside forces to operform big-time magick without having done some maintenance along the way. The same goes for facing big psychological challenges in life. If you don’t put the self-care in now, when the world is thrown into chaos (and it will be, life is a series of ups and downs), you won’t have the strength to cope.
A good way to think about it is like putting money in the bank and leaving it there to accrue interest for a rainy day, except we’re not talking about money, we’re talking about spiritual energy. It is considered rude to constantly ask the spirits for help without giving anything back. This is why witches have altars, engage in meditation, and spend time communing with nature. Many witches s also opt to provide services to the community. All of these things are considered excellent self-care techniques by both witches and psychologists.
Altars are a witch’s sacred space in the home where they connect with the divine and their ancestors. It is also the place where they cast their spells and connect with the gods. Altars are creative endeavours and they encourage connection to higher powers and ancestors. It takes a lot of creativity to regularly design and freshen up your altar. Just like it takes a lot of discipline and openness to use the altar to connect with higher beings. Creativity, discipline, and openness have all been shown to reduce anxiety and depression. Using an altar to connect with higher beings and ancestors also encourages empathy and broader perspectives, both of which strengthen mental health. Altars reflect the seasons and astrological influences. This is because everything a witch does is in synch with nature. No matter what Path you follow, our place of worship and power is nature. Nature is everything. Even if you are a city-witch caught in the concrete jungle, nature will still call to you by way of sprigs of grass pushing through the pavement or night-time stars dripping from the sky. All witches are granted the ability to speak the language of nature, it just takes a little bit of work and a smidge of awe.
Nature benefits mental health but so does the feeling of awe. Awe is the doorway to speaking to nature but it is also a hugely healing emotion that in some senses a psychological reset it and can bring down stress levels. Most witches are naturally awed by nature. An example of this that you may be familiar with is when you are talking to a fellow witch on the phone. You’ll note that there are often long moments of waiting that lead into wild tangents when your beloved witch-friend suddenly becomes awed over nature on the other end of the phone. Their awe may be because of a squirrel, a new flower or bud on a tree, or even a particularly beautiful iridescent bug on the window frame. This is awe. This is happiness. This is how we talk to nature—a conversation that is naturally psychologically healing because nature is health.
SPELL CASTING & PROVIDING SERVICES
The act of casting spells or any other witch craft also demands a well and focused mind. This is not to say you can’t cast spells or perform witchcraft if you are mentally unwell (there are witches who disagree with this statement but that’s another article altogether.) However, it is important that you don’t cast when you are in a bad mood, but larger mental health issues have never stopped anyone performing magick. Casting spells requires determination, creativity, focus, and clear visualizations. By casting spells you are strengthening the muscle of concentration. You are taking control of your mind and extending this control on the world. You are taking back your power. Service in terms of readings also provides self-care for the witch through encouraging compassion, creativity/storytelling, and positive re-framing. In order to read for someone you need to enter a loving, open, and connected space with them. Even if the client enters with heavy vibes, part of the witches job is to clear those bad vibes, or at least set a boundary to hold those heavy vibes back while they work. This reinforces and strengthens the witch’s ability to set boundaries in her own life.
Once the boundaries are set and the space is cleared, the witch needs to deal with the content of the reading and communicate it. Even the most deadly, honest readers like myself have to find gentle and graceful ways to talk about the reading. In the case of a ‘difficult’ reading, I believe it is important to provide a solution-focused reading. This gives the client some direction even if the news isn’t what they were hoping for. The challenge of reframing difficult news into something positive and growth orientated is a very important skill and can help witches when they are going through their own dark phases.
The examples discussed above are just some of the ways witchcraft can aid mental health and be an aspect of self-care. Witchcraft practices build mindfulness, empathy, focus, motivation, concentration and encourage flow, optimism, connection to others and nature, and provide broader perspectives. It can also help people who struggle with setting and maintaining boundaries. Finally, witchcraft reminds us that at every turn we are the ones responsible for our mental health; we have control, choice, and freedom. We have control of our mind and we can choose who we want to be in every moment. By embracing these truths, we are ultimately free. We become spiritually wise.