So you’ve been doing you thing for a while now but it doesn’t feel right anymore and you want to try something new. You’re not the same person you were when you started practicing so why shouldn’t your practice change too?
But knowing where to start when you already have a foundation is hard. You know the basics that may be shared between your old path and your desired new ones but how do you actually, you know, start again?
Write down what’s essential to you
This may seem simple and weird but it’s an important step. Don’t exclude anything! If you love taking naps, for example, write that down too.
Writing down what you love, both mundane and spiritual, will allow you to focus on what is the most meaningful to you. Once you’ve decided what’s truly important, you can decide whether you want that to be included in your practice. You can begin again by focusing on the core of what you want and build out from there.
You can also use tarot card prompts to channel some things. For example, if you want to be more like the High Priestess include that.
I’m a big fan of mood boards and a mood board really helped me narrow down and nail a few goals for me when I was floundering a few years back. I used Pinterest for mood boards personally but some people use corkboard or similar set ups.
Mood boards can help you identify things you can’t name. For example, you might select five images of sunsets because you have a particular affinity to them. Then a few images of fire which feels similar. Maybe celestial fire is something you’ll want to incorporate in your practice.
It’s also super useful if you’re trying to build a witchy aesthetic to flush out and unite different areas of your practice into one cohesive unit. Plus mood boards have a tendency to be beautiful and that’s inspiring.
Talk to people & read things you don’t agree with
There are lots of magical systems that don’t mesh with my style. But reading books and posts about people’s experiences with this systems can allow me to knock a few cluttered thoughts loose.
Talking to people is similar. I’ve sat in on workshops about magical systems or topics that are completely contrary to my own style. It feels wrong to me even at times because they’re experiences clash so much with my own.
I might not gain anything but knowledge out of reading such materials or talking to people but it allows me to think about my own practice in a different perspective and that’s really important. being self-aware is a difficult process so anything that can help with that is useful.
Meditate and self-introspection
Meditation, self-introspection, and shadow work can help you realize what areas of your practice are lacking and what you actually want to do.
Identifying why your old practice isn’t working for you anymore is going to be a difficult process and a personal on. No one else can express how you’re feeling in that regard but you.
You’ll want to address various spirits and deities as well, asking their opinions or pull away from them as respectfully as possible, as needed.
Having a conversation with yourself and addressing any issues you have with your current practice will help you know what to avoid for the new practice you’d about to adopt.
This is probably the most important step. Just go and try some things. Talk to some people and join in on public rituals. Ask someone willing to answer questions about their practice and try a handful of spells that you wouldn’t normally attempt with your current path.
Spending time reaching out and touching what else there is in the world can help you figure out if the new things you’re trying to adopt into your practice are going to work for you or if they’re just good in theory.
Once you’ve decided what you want in your new path, it’s time to pull away from your old path.
Identify who you need to say goodbye to
Spirits and deities may change over time. Be as respectful as possible when you leave these relationships. Make a big offering and say goodbye. Speak with sincerity and thank them for what they’ve done for you.
You may not even have to leave the relationship with this entity but rather shift the tradition you’re working within. Or, you merely want to keep honoring them but not work with them. Whatever the specific case is, make sure you tell them what you’re planning and ask for their opinions on it, if possible. You don’t need to throw everything away simply because you’re moving on.
It isn’t easy to leave such relationships so give yourself time to mourn the end of the relationship as a whole.
Rehome and sell items that no longer mean anything to you
There are lots of practitioners out there willing to buy or swap ritual items with you. If you move from a ceremonialist system to a more folk-based one, you might want to sell off some ritual items.
Or, maybe you’ll want to talk to some people rehoming their items so you can pick up some new items for your own practice without having to pay full price.
This is another one of those difficult steps because you’ll probably find that there’s items you don’t want to get rid of but have no use for. Or items that might be useful but you’re not sure of. In this case, I recommend sticking the item in a forgotten drawer. In sixth months, go back to that drawer and look through it. If you didn’t think of the item, forgot about it, or discovered you didn’t care for it as much as you thought you did, get rid of it. If you did think of it but still didn’t find a use for it, keep it somewhere. Don’t toss things you still love.
Cleanse all the things
Cleansing your home, workspace, tools, clothes, bedding, work, and vehicles will help immensely towards setting up a new practice.
Focus mostly on cleansing everything you use for magic, from spell books to simple spoons. Then you’ll want to cleanse items that aren’t magical in purpose but still stuff you use and wear, such as shoes, clothing, etc.
A cleansing of your entire home, workspace, and vehicles can make getting a fresh start possible. Even cleansing your rug or coffee mug can go a long way.
Don’t forget to clean as well. A cluttered home doesn’t help you start anew. Cleaning and cleansing should always go hand in hand.
Keep a journal
Keeping a record of the changes you’re making and the changes you want to make can really help motivate you. Bullet journals are a really good idea for this but even doing a tumblr blog can be useful.
It will also allow you to track your personal progress and encourage you to keep to your goals. Just because something is spiritual in nature doesn’t mean you can handle it like a mundane issue, after all.
That’s it! That’s some really basic ideas on how to get started again. It’s a really painful process at times to realize that you’ve outgrown your old practice but it can be really fulfilling to allow yourself to embrace a new path that suits the you now.