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The Balancing Path: Stress and Anxiety Management Sigil

The Balancing Path: Stress and Anxiety Management Sigil April 26, 2020

This is a sigil to help support efforts at managing prolonged stress and anxiety.  I created it specifically to help cope with the stresses of the COVID-19 quarantine situation, but it is potentially applicable to any time when you are experiencing prolonged stress and anxiety due to external situations.

I started with the concept of reducing and coping with stress and anxiety.  When we experience prolonged stress and anxiety, it spills over into all areas of our lives and starts affecting our needs and abilities.  This in turn causes more stress, potentially creating a horrible downward spiral.  To manage prolonged stress we need to stop that downward spiral, and support a return to equilibrium.

My sigil worksheet, with the finished sigil at the bottom. Image created by the author.

This sigil is specifically charged with the following intents:

Peace and Calmness – A calm mind will always be better equipped to deal with emergency situations, whether that situation is acute or prolonged.  Take comfort in the eye of the storm and any break in the weather, and have faith in your ability to ride out troubles.

The circle represents wholeness, calm, and clarity.  The wavy line represents the ability to ride out the ups and downs without being completely capsized by capitulating circumstances.  The straight line represents a calm like the smooth surface of a lake at dawn on a peaceful day, but it was too rigid to be included in the finished sigil.

Hope – This one combines both the ability to see an eventual end to the current problems, and the ability to take steps to facilitate that ending.  If we cannot find the hope that leads the way to the end of dark times, we are setting ourselves up to wallow in a pit of despair.

The heart represents kindness and compassion, both for ourselves and other people.  The + represents health and positivity.  The asterisks represent the ability to take action based on that hope.

Acceptance – Prolonged difficult situations are typically just a matter of circumstance.  We deal with them as best we can, but they exist whether or not we want them to, and very often regardless of our efforts.  When you accept that you are presently in a situation and stop fixating on whether or not it is deserved or unfair, you free yourself to be able to deal with it in a productive way.

The + represents the ability to reframe your perspective and move into a more self-supportive frame of mind.  The various kinds of brackets represent that you are in a thing, and that it is futile to rail against the fact that you are in a thing.  In the finished sigil, the parentheses were combined with the crescent moons, cradling hope and healing.

Ability to Relax – If you never relax, you will remain wound up.  Unwinding is essential to being able to stop the spiral of anxiety and stress feeding anxiety and stress.

The opening spiral represents relaxation and unwinding.  The finished sigil opens both directions so that we have the ability to find peace and relaxation in multiple aspects of our lives.

Restful Sleep – Prolonged stress and anxiety has a very detrimental effect on the ability to sleep well and restfully for enough hours.  If you are already prone to insomnia or sleep disturbance, this affect is compounded.  When we are well rested, we start each day with a greater calm and ability to deal with whatever lays ahead of us.

Clouds, ZZZZ’s, and the crescent moon all symbolize sleep.  I chose the crescent moons and couched them to either side of the heart because it flowed with the image, and protects and supports the cycles of sleep.  From waning crescent to waxing crescent and back again, the moon continues its cycles.  Healthy, supportive, and consistent cycles are ideal.  The little “Z” coming off the heart represents both sleep and energy, like a lightning bolt, because when we get enough rest we have more energy.

Concentration and Focus – Anxiety and stress make it very difficult to be able to concentrate and focus.  They tend to drive us into squirrel mode, or obsessive cycles, where it is difficult to put our attention where it needs to be.

A bullseye was a natural choice for this one, as was putting that at the center of the sigil around which everything else is moving.  It’s important to be able to keep focus, even when all the parts are moving.

Accept Help – It is daunting to face prolonged stress and anxiety alone, and it can be downright debilitating and overwhelming.  Sometimes it is not only necessary, but a relief to ask for or accept offered help.  This is especially true if you are accustomed to being the pillar of stability for everyone else, or otherwise completely self-reliant.  Ask for or accept help before you let yourself drown in your stoicism and independence.

The + is for allowing yourself aid.  The double spiral represents multiple forces coming together to help each other.  In the finished sigil, the double spiral is holding the bullseye of clarity and focus like two simplified hands cradling and protecting the ability to find calm and clarity and focus.  The spirals unwind from the hands, representing that when we accept and give help, we reduce our stress and have an easier time relaxing and going with the flow.

Created by the author. See instructions below for details about sharing.

How to Use the Sigil

You can use this in any way that makes sense for your practice.  Some ideas are to inscribe it on a candle, print it or draw it on a piece of paper and place it on your altar or somewhere you see regularly, put a copy in your wallet, draw it in dirt before planting your garden, make something crafty and include the sigil, or draw it on your body (anointing oil, permanent marker, henna, body paint, makeup, salted water, temporary tattoo pens, etc.).

This sigil may also be used for workings and rituals to aid with crisis in general, adding a focal point for those who are affected to have an easier time managing their stress and anxiety.

Like any sigil, it will be most effective when it is used in conjunction with real-world actions.  Be sure to do what you can physically to help mitigate, reduce, and cope with the stressors you are experiencing.  The sigil alone is not going to fix everything, but it can give a powerful boost to the actions you take, and hopefully help you sleep a little better at night.

Sharing

If you share this sigil, be sure to link back to this blog post so others who see it can find out exactly what it is charged to do.  Sigils are most effective when the user knows exactly what they were created to do, and that is also the only way they can be certain this sigil is right for them and their situation.

This sigil is Creative Commons licensed:

Attribution-NonCommercial-ShareAlike (CC BY-NC-SA)

This license lets others remix, tweak, and build upon your work non-commercially, as long as they credit you and license their new creations under the identical terms.

Additional Resources

These are blog posts here on Patheos by various authors, which offer suggestions about how to cope with the pandemic situation.  New articles are being posted all the time, and a good portion of them are, of course, relating to COVID-19, so if you want more, you can search for the latest and most popular posts.

The Balancing Path: Seeking Balance During Extremes, by Sidney Eileen

The Balancing Path: Productive Ways to Panic, by Sidney Eileen

Witchcraft For Coping With COVID-19: Banish, Protect And Heal, by Cyndi Brannen

Healing Prayer for use with Online Rituals for Covid-19, by Melissa Hill

COVID-19, Or How I Learned To Stop Worrying And Love Social Media, by Scarlet Magdalene

5 Things to Pay Attention to During the Lockdown, by John Beckett

 

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About Sidney Eileen
Sidney Eileen is a non-binary, asexual, animistic, polytheist witch and artist. They acknowledge divinity and unique natures in not just the gods, but in all manner of ephemeral and supernatural beings, spirits, living beings, and the souls that embody the physical objects and spaces around us. Their practice is lifelong and of an intuitive nature, seeking fulfillment through mutable asymmetrical balance. You can read more about the author here.
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