The previous articles focused on mental health and magic, but there are things that can drive even a “normal” person mad. A magical burnout is one such way. A burnout happens when you over extend yourself and don’t rest. It may even happen when working with certain types of beings.

A magic burnout is actually a common event when practicing magic, especially in the beginning. A lot of raw energy may not be focused which may completely deplete a practitioner, or make them feel ill.

There are many reasons that a person may become depleted or overextend their energy. I will go over these reasons, and suggest what you can do to prevent a burnout and how to recover from one.

What can cause a burnout? Here are some events that may cause a burnout:

  1. Magical Workings. If you are constantly doing ceremonies. or any type of magic, it depletes your natural source of energy. If you don’t allow for your energy to replenish, even if you have a large “battery”, it will deplete quickly. Doing a series of ceremonies can also cause a burnout. If you aren’t ready for the ceremony or have a small “battery” then consider not doing the ceremony until you are more prepared.
  2. Working with Powerful Entities. Some entities and deities can drain a person just by working with Them. This is more common than you think, especially if the entity/deity is invoked. Some of these deities will even leave a possession inside the person, unbeknownst to them, to drain and control the practitioner. This is why I suggest a person works with a deity for awhile, without invocation. You need to get know the deity in order to know Its nature.
  3. Witch War. I mention this, because this seems to be one of the more common reasons for burnouts. That’s because so much of a practitioner’s energy and time is invested in destroying the enemy, while protecting their self and loved ones. It is a double-edged sword that needs to be sharpened constantly. Because all the practitioner’s energy is devoted to battle and not resting, they can’t replenish their energy. I’ve seen many witches throw curses for many months and burnout from the loss of energy. Eventually they were effected by curses and other negative things that they “caught” from being weak.
  4. Mental and Physical Health. This can effect your magic greatly, too. Physical pain and mental illness can dampen your talents and drain your energy.
  5. Drugs. Sometimes medications and street drugs can mess up our magic, and even cause a burnout. It is not from depletion, but rather from the in ability to focus properly. This can cause energy scatter, draining, or even a backlash.
  6. Return to Sender. It can’t always be assumed that we won’t get back what we give out, especially when it comes to sending out curses. When a curse is returned, some people think it is an attack – which it is, but from their self. If the curse is exactly what you sent to someone else, you will need to dissipate the curse. If you return it to sender, you’ll be returning it to yourself.
  7. Curses. Both sent and received, curses can cause a burnout and drain a person of energy. For curses received, you may experience depression, a lack of interest, fatigue, etc.  The way most people do curses, the curse needs to be fed every day. This can be exhausting, especially since it takes a special kind of energy to sustain a curse for any amount of time.
  8. Stress. Stress from every day situations can really weigh on a person, including spiritually. Stress may take away your energy, which may cause problems when practicing magic.

These are just some of the reasons that a burnout may happen.

Next we’ll talk about the symptoms of a burnout. You need to be vigilant of both the symptoms and events in order to prevent a burnout. This list of symptoms will give you a good idea of what to look out for.

  1. Fatigue/Mania. This may start as needing a little bit more rest than usual, then escalate to sleepless nights that leave you exhausted. Alternately you may experience a manic state, which leads to fatigue that cannot be resolved without medication.
  2. Hungry/Loss of Apatite. Being close to a burnout can effect your diet and hunger levels. You’ll either want to overeat or not eat at all. It probably has to do with stress.
  3. Grandiosity. There will come a time when you feel the energy and magic flow through you. It feels great. However, there is a dark side. It can become addictive. Those usually addicted to magical energy seek ways to regain the high, and will do anything for the feeling of power. This is a type of psychosis. If this is happening, stop and check yourself.
  4. Depression. The opposing mental state to grandiosity is depression. Nothing feels right, and everything feels off. You may feel sad or hopeless. Depression and grandiosity can cycle.
  5. Paranoia. You may also feel as if someone, or everyone, is out to get you. It will be a constant feeling. You may also experience what feels like a lot of spirit activity around you at this time. This may or may not be real. You need to know yourself and abilities enough to discern the difference.
  6. Anxiety/Anger. This is another sign of a burnout, especially when stress levels are high.
  7. Altered Personality. This is where you switch from your normal personality and traits, to someone different. If someone notices this, and tells you their concern, it is important to listen and assess yourself.

Now that you know some of the signs, what can you do? Here are some simple suggestions.

  1. Stop all magical workings. This is not always possible, but for the workings you can stop — do it immediately. This will keep your energy from being drained, and allow for you to recuperate. This is a very important step.
  2. Remember to take care of yourself. Stop and check yourself. Are you safe? Are you getting what you need, including hygiene and food? These are some important aspects of health and self care.
  3. Set boundaries. Get rid of people that are negative, make you uncomfortable, or are overstepping your boundaries. It hurts sometimes to let people go, but if they are true friends they’ll be waiting for you. You may want to do this with toxic family members, as well.
  4. Rest. Don’t push yourself, even for normal daily activities. Take it as easy as possible. If you have to, cancel anything that is not necessary. Sleep and take naps, if you need.
  5. Focus on the physical plane. This will help you to become stable and grounded. Oddly, when you are grounded in this reality, your magic will also work better after your rest.

If you continue to work magic while overextending yourself, you will become ill. There have been practitioners that go insane, or die. This is why it is imperative to take good care of your health before doing magic of any kind. If you begin to feel any of the symptoms above, it is safest to rest for awhile. I suggest one Moon cycle, which is 28 days.

Remember to always be aware of your body’s needs, and keep yourself safe.

-Arachnia Stoneskull

January 24, 2018; 6:44 A.M.

Photo Credit: The Licorne (“Unicorn”) thermonuclear test; Fangataufa, French Polynesia; 1970