When we first join the paranormal field, it is an exciting and thrilling place. We are instantly surrounded by people that we make friends with or others that we look toward for guidance and support. Often you will find you have values and beliefs that are aligned. There was something that seemed to draw you together. Maybe it was the location? Some locations have a draw that you just cannot explain. Investigating it is effortless. Investigating with your people that you share similar beliefs with can be a bonding experience. Often what follows is people tend to organize to investigate together or they may even decide to start a team. You have so much fun together so why not?
When everyone is on the same page, a team is a great place to be. You get along well, you vibe, you have fun, you laugh, you cry, you share your vulnerabilities, your fears, and your vision for your team. Some teams last for years and years and years and are still going. Others have a few good years and disband. Some never really get off the ground. It is not because there is a right or wrong way to do things in the sense of running a team. It comes down to the people. What worked for you last year may not necessarily work for you anymore. Maybe your techniques have changed, your goals have changed or even your beliefs have changed. You may find yourself being pulled in a different direction. Maybe you feel you are driven but others aren't quite on board and are phoning it in. Maybe your team demands too much of your time and you start to dread attending every week. You want to stay loyal to your team so you stick with it but express your opinions and start saying things like "what if we do it this way etc." Maybe there was always one person who ran things but as time has gone on, others have found their confidence and voice to speak up and start sharing their own ideas of how they feel it should be run. These are natural things and a natural process of growing and evolving which are important. What it can do however is throw off a group dynamic that once worked really well. Soon you may feel like you would be better off somewhere else or even on your own. There has been no dramatic split or falling out, you have just outgrown the situation and you simply want to do your own thing. It is important to understand "THIS IS OK!" and in fact when you start talking to people, we have all been there. Much like friendships you have in life, the same can be said about the paranormal field. Often people come into your life for a period of time and then for whatever reason you may drift apart or you just don't feel it anymore.
If we were meant to stay in the same place, we would have roots instead of feet
Maybe there is a location you visit on a regular basis, but you just don't feel it anymore. You want to go on to bigger and better locations or events, but you have so many nice memories and friends you don't want to leave behind. Sometimes it is better to leave things just as they are - a good memory. If you don't enjoy what you are doing and where you are doing it, you will start hating investigating in general. A location can lose its appeal. Maybe the long drive is now a burden instead of exciting. You find yourself dreading going out on the investigation because you would rather just be at home. Investigating shouldn't feel like a job, but honestly, sometimes it can if you are not feeling it. Do it for joy and not because you have to. You can be done with a location and that is OK. You may not have received all the 'paranormal' answers you have been looking for, but sometimes it is better to say goodbye to a location before it loses its appeal and move onto a different way of researching. Remember there is plenty of ways to research the paranormal without having to go to a 'haunted building'.
I think we all know a few people in the paranormal field that act in a way that makes us wonder 'if you hate it so much why are you here?' They act like everything is a burden and that everyone else is doing everything wrong and they just hate the World. They constantly complain the field is not what it used to be but at the same time don't contribute anything useful to move it forward. It just seems like they are cranky and over it. I am pretty sure they didn't start this way. We know in this field that life is short. Too short to be spending our time being so angry at others and feeling like we HAVE to go out and investigate every weekend if they would rather be home instead. If you find yourself heading in this direction. Take a break! You don't have to be out investigating the paranormal every weekend to love what you do. While it works for some, it may not work for you. It is about finding a balance that works for you. Investigating the paranormal is not a job and it shouldn't feel like one. You don't want to look back and feel like you have wasted years on a path you don't want to be on anymore. You could end up becoming that cranky aggressive person we have all encountered that really needs a bit of a break.
It is important to follow your heart. There is a lot of talk about ego in the paranormal and people 'letting exposure get to their head or only worrying about themselves and not their team'. This in some ways in unfair because why shouldn't you be allowed to follow your own dreams? This doesn't mean that you can't go and do the things you want to do because you are worried it might upset someone you are working with. A team environment is not supposed to be a dictatorship. It is supposed to be friends coming together and enjoying their search for the unknown. Following where your heart calls is not an egotistical move. If something isn't working for you, speak up. When you start going behind people's back, lying, or feeling like you have to hide things, you can be unknowingly feeding into a toxic environment. Self-care is not selfish and don't let anyone make you think you are being selfish for following your heart. Ultimately if the people around you can't be supportive of you and your needs, then they aren't meant to be a part of the next step of your journey. There is so much to love about being in the paranormal field. People are going to come and go and sometimes it won't always be pretty. There will be falling out, there will be bitchiness, there will be all sorts of things that happen that will make you question why you are even here doing this in the first place. When this happens, go back to that first investigation and the first time you felt that spark. That is why you are here and it may mean a change in scenery to feel it again, but its potential is always there.
It is a part of the human experience. Funnily enough, we often seem to separate the human element from the paranormal field and think that regular human traits don't apply here. Maybe it is because we are seeking the supernatural that we forget about the very natural things that make us human. It is not necessarily a person being jealous or a person being egotistical, sometimes you just want to move forward in a different way that is true to you and it is not something you should be made to feel bad about. I find often if someone expresses something we are quick to say oh they have an ego or they are just jealous. While this does of course happen too, it isn't always the case. Sometimes, people just want to move on and just this very act can cause conflict. The human nature side of us kicks in and feels defensive. We as humans don't tend to like change and when things worked so well we cling to what was because it was comfortable. Other human behaviours can come into play like shaming and gaslighting not out of intention, but out of desperation to stop the ship from sinking. Some people are happy where they are and not wanting to move any further. Again this is nothing wrong with this. If somewhere is so comfortable, why would you want to go? If you find yourself in a position where you feel you want to go further, don't be made to feel selfish or that you are doing something wrong. You are simply being human.
Don't forget to follow the Facebook page for regular updates
Join the mailing list to receive weekly updates of NEW articles. Never miss an article again!
Buy the latest and past issues Haunted Magazine
Check out the books written by LLIFS