In part one we discussed the magical timing and purpose of the new year’s resolution and how to prepare ourselves for the process of creating them. If you haven’t already, check out the first part of this two-part series. *Product links are affiliate links.
Now, on a side note, I have to say that a lot of what I am about to recommend is very high-vibrational and it may be a turn off to the witches out there who prefer the darker side of things. For a long time I avoided anything new-age, new thought, inspirational, etc. because I thought it was all a bunch of crap. However, when I started to look for ways to help others as a professional witch working with the public, the answers to some of the big stuff could only be found in the places I usually avoided. I embraced those things, with discernment, and found not only tools that were valuable to the people I was trying to help, but tools that became invaluable to me.
No matter your personal aesthetic or taste, the road to self-improvement is a long one and while we tend to prefer working with spirits and playing in the shadows, others have spent their lives figuring this stuff out. At this juncture, what do you have to lose by checking them out?
Make it a Good Thing
The way in which we approach and frame a magical working has immense impact on its overall success. This is true for many things in life, but when it comes to the occult, there is little denying the effects of the mind. If you see your working/resolution as a chore, it will become one. If you grow resentment at your goals, you won’t want to achieve them. A big part of what we have to do involves keeping ourselves invested and excited in the process of transformation.
If your goal is to lose weight, you have to keep yourself positive when you are making dietary changes and sweating on a treadmill. If your goal is to write more, you have to not only find time to put pen to paper, but also find a way to be inspired when you do it! None of this can be particularly easy for us to do, especially long term or when results feel like they are stalling.
The only real way through is to frame everything as positively as possible and to find your own piece of stillness in all of the chaos of transformation. Be careful with how you treat yourself in response to slipups and get back on the horse whenever you fall off. Instead of surrendering to feelings of inferiority, shame, disappointment, or fear, isolate them and seek ways to resolve the conflict(s) they are rooted in.
To do this, I highly recommend an old-fashioned journal. When you feel any blocks or like you might be lost, write it all down and get it off your conscience. When you have written it all out, take a few moments to meditate on what you can do to resolve any issues and move on. You may also want to seek guidance from a divination system for this and you may need to plan more magic as a result of what you find. Whatever comes up during this time, be sure to seek a conclusion to it and to know how you will handle it moving forward. Face your shadows with the light of your will and take no prisoners!
Be aware of how you word things and lean in on affirmations. I know we tend to roll our eyes any time someone recommends them, but affirmations can have a huge impact on how we construct our thoughts around topics as well as how we shape our worldview. Admittedly some of them are just downright silly, but I have found that if you find a guided affirmation/positive self-talk artist or teacher that you connect with, it can be way more enjoyable. Here is a link to my favorite affirmation guide at the moment.
Making it About YOU
A lot of witches struggle with is the idea of doing magic for themselves. While there are a lot of moral and ethical reasons folks tend to come up with for why you shouldn’t do magic for yourself, none of them are actually rooted in anything solid. I could go on and on about why I don’t agree that there is anything wrong with doing magic for yourself, but instead I am going to save that lecture for another blog. The truth is, a resolution has to be about you, or you will lose interest and most long-term magic is a lot like that, too. When many of us already do so much for others, something as personal as a resolution should be about us and our goals.
Our resolutions provide challenges that encourage us to grow and become the people we want to be. Chances are you won’t have a cheerleader by your side throughout the process so you will need to find ways to mark your successes, so it isn’t all work and no fun. I often recommend clients treat themselves to a dinner or even a movie night, something that freezes all other activities and recognizes their accomplishments. It doesn’t have to be a big deal; it just needs to be special because what you are doing is special.
Here are a few excellent video resources for your journey as well ways to cheer yourself on while you plough ahead with your resolution.
Aside from what we have discussed here, I also have a few book recommendations for those of you who are really ready to tackle the magic of change and transformation in your lives. They are timeless, but since the energy is ripe, I recommend ordering them now or taking the copy you already have off your bookshelf and keeping it close by!
The Little Work by Durgadas Allon Duriel has quickly become one of my most recommended books from 2020. It is so helpful and well thought out that it gives you the feeling of having someone there with you. If you get lost in the big picture and struggle to take care of the day to day tasks (like me) or you are someone who is looking for ways to take magic to really personal and deep places, this is the book for you. Admit it, that is everyone.
Atomic Habits by James Clear is a mini trip to shadow-work bootcamp for those who aren’t magical. To put it simply, it helps to reorient the way you see things like our daily routine and personal rituals so you can take responsibility and change the way you approach almost everything.
The Obstacle is the Way by Ryan Holiday is quickly becoming an instant classic among leadership development circles and I have it on here especially for those who are in leadership positions. It is a guide to being in the moment as you face difficult circumstance and finding ways to be there for others as they face their own trials.
The Miracle Morning by Hal Elrod is a book I love to recommend but that no one ever reads because it involves mornings. I get it! For me, mornings are for coffee, contemplation, and preferably silence. I am not at all a morning person and I loathe the suggestion. I will write more about this book in a future post, but let’s just say; I resisted reading it like I have never resisted a book in my life. When I was really down I picked it up and by the end of the second chapter it had already changed the way I looked at my life. This is especially good for those who are working on developing a daily practice and for those who are trying to tackle a chaotic life.
Make it Magical
Janus Resolution Blessing Ritual
© Modern Witch ™ 2020
For those of you who don’t know about my friend Janus, I am here to tell you that you’re missing out! Janus is the Roman god of time, space, gateways, transitions, traveling, doors, new beginnings, and a whole lot more. There is much to be said about him as he is one of the stranger gods from the ancient world, (he was invoked before all others in ritual and had no sacred priests), but in the interest of time I am going to recommend you check out this article if you want to know more. You can also check out my books, The Witch’s Book of Spirits and The Witch’s Book of Mysteries where I talk in depth about working with him.
For some time we were told that January was named after Janus, but we now know that is wrong. January was named after the goddess Juno, who actually has a lot in common with Janus. As a follower of Janus, I nevertheless devote the entire month to him and begin my preparations for this the week leading into the new year. I find that New Year’s Eve and New Year’s Day are especially sacred to him. Most especially, I ask for his assistance in the coming year and that he bless my resolutions. For those interested, here is that simple working.
You will need
Sacred Resin (any will do, but he is fond of Frankincense and Dragon’s Blood)
Charcoal to burn resin & fire safe dish
Candle of your choice
Written copy of resolution
Ground and center using your preferred method and find yourself in front of your altar. Ignite and place the charcoal (that is in a firesafe dish) in the center of the altar. Place the candle to the left of the charcoal and the beverage on the right. Take a deep breath and tone the words “Ave Janus!” ( Aw-vey Ya-noos), three times.
By this point your charcoal should be nice and hot! Gently sprinkle a few granules of resin onto the coal and say, “Father of Space and Time! Bless me with your presence! Accept this offering of smoke and be here now!” Take a deep beath and again, tone the words “Ave Janus”, but this time only once.
Take another deep breath and light the candle. As you do so say, “Hail the seer of dawn and dusk! Hail the keeper of the gates and the maker of peace! Ave Janus! Hail the father of witches!” Once again, take a deep breath and tone the words “Ave Janus!” once.
Taking a deep breath, pick up the beverage and hold it at eye level just in front of you and say, “Hail Janus! Accept this offering of (insert beverage) and know that you are held high in this house! May you find a home in my heart and in the hearts of others. May you bring peace where there is war. May you bring love where there is hate. May you bring truth where there are lies!” and then once again, tone the words “Ave Janus!”
Take a few moments to bask in the energy and when you feel ready say, “Father of change I ask for your blessing as I embark on the path of transformation! Hear these words and strengthen them as I speak.” Now, read your resolution(s) out loud. When you are finished say, “Ave Janus! Help me make this true! Ave Janus! Help me turn the old to new! Ave Janus! Give me the strength to see this through!”
Take as long as you need after this to journal or to meditate on any messages or feelings that might be coming through. Leave the candle and charcoal to burn out completely on their own. Dispose of remnants as you normally would the next day.
I wish you the best of luck in the New Year! May your gods be as kind to you as you are to others. Blessed be!