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An important part of working with the Spirits is learning to formulate clear, honest and focused intentions.
Whether it is going to a Power Place, taking a Medicine Walk or working with Journeys – make sure to clearly and concisely express what you want to ask for. A clear intention creates a stronger framework and helps you to better understand the experience afterwards. The intention is the key to unlocking the deeper teachings of the Spirit world.

Your intention formulations need to be real and meaningful. They should not be asked simply out of curiousity. Make sure they always relate to you yourself, not another person. For instance, if you find a relationship in your family difficult, ask for help for your relation with them, don’t ask for help for them to change. We never do work for people who have not asked for it, this is very important and ensures the work is ethical and clean. 

When deciding what to journey on, you might like to explore different aspects of an issue, such as:

  • What is difficult or challenging for me in this? What am I afraid of?
  • What is exciting and joyful for me in this? What do I long for?
  • What effect is this issue having on my life?
  • How does it relate to other parts of my life?

Try not to diagnose the problem or ask the Spirits to deliver the results you hope for. They have a different perspective and may feel that something else is more important or appropriate. Try to simply tell them what the pain, problem, wish or situation is and leave it to them to decide what is needed.

There are different types of intentions: do you need help or advice? If you know what to do, but don’t have energy, courage, willpower etc, we recommend using a help or power formulation (number 1-2 below).

If you feel ready to take action, but are not sure of the best way to do it, use an advice or information formulation (number 3-5 below).

Once you have settled on what you want to work with, explore ways to express it. Keep your intention short, focused and powerful. Say the mission out loud to “taste” how it sounds. Try to feel what words are right for you.

It is important to only ask for ONE thing at a time. Stay focused on one issue and trust that everything in the journey somehow relates to this. Make sure to formulate OPEN requests, as this tends to give a much richer experience than yes-or-no questions.

Here are some examples of formulations, where you can add in your specific issue:

  1. I am going to the Spirits to ask for help for… (eg. my knee; to sleep better; to start or finish a project; for my relationship with a person or place; to find a new job)

  2. I am going to the Spirits to ask for power to… (eg. learn a new language; move house; say sorry; open to love; take care of my body; build my practice)

  3. I am going to the Spirits to ask how can I …. (eg. stay grounded in everyday life; find a supportive community; live in a more joyful way?)

  4. I am going to the Spirits to ask what is my next step…. (eg. in finding my calling; developing my gifts; balancing work & family; on my spiritual path)

  5. I am going to the Spirits to ask how can I be…. (eg. a better friend; a better partner; a better gardener; more myself; more at home in… etc)

In our monthly newsletters we offer regular suggestions for mission formulations, often related to the Seasons or special situations. You can sign up below or go to the Blog to revisit previous newsletters for further inspiration.

Read more about developing an ongoing personal practice and how to work more deeply with shamanic journeys


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