Many times, when a pattern repeats itself for me a few times, I think of it as a cue to speak more widely about that particular pattern. The repeating theme right now? It’s luck. Over the last few months I’ve had an unusual number of clients, students, and friends come to me for help with managing their flow of luck. So, let’s talk about it.
There are different kinds of animating energy that inform our lives. Vitality is one – we can all think of someone with low vitality: someone who is ill or injured often, whose bandwidth for life doesn’t leave much room for error, who constantly seems to be behind the curve, and who often saps the energy of those around them (we sometimes call these folks unmanaged “energy vampires”). Vital energy is influenced by various factors: heredity, upbringing, environment, structural issues in society, access to resources, and coping mechanisms. On an intuitive level, most of us can wrap our heads around how vital energy works and what it looks like in action. I bring up vitality first because luck is quite similar.
The flow of luck in any given life includes a hereditary component. The offspring of a lucky family tends to also be lucky. I count my own life as an example of this – my maternal bloodline has a particular kind of luck: we’re good at landing on our feet. Many of us go through a big life reset at some point and come out the other side in better shape than before. Some of that luck is a resilient mindset, but some of it really is beyond any sort of personal control. We tend to be in the right place at the right time. The right person picks up our resumes. The right house appears on the market at the right price. The right person wanders into our lives when we need their specific help, etc.
It is this latter aspect of luck – the factors outside our conscious control – that we can influence with different magical techniques. Resiliency must be learned over time, but luck can be moved. I find it useful to think of luck as being like the flow of water in a stream. That flow can be obstructed or diverted, turning the flow away from us. We can dig a path to draw more of the flow to us. We can deepen the pool closest to us so that more luck gathers there. Like the flow in a stream, how much luck is flowing does vary a bit. However, for all of us, there’s a general baseline level of luck that is the “normal” flow of energy.
A sudden run of bad luck – a series of harmful events or situations – is a classic warning sign for a few different magical maladies: curses or other intentional interference, irritated spirits, energetic misalignment, or over-reliance on a finite resource (yes, you can overdraft your luck).
The good news is that when you hit a run of bad luck, the starting point for redirecting the flow toward you is the same regardless of the cause. For misalignment, low-level intentional interference, most irritated spirits, and some kinds of overdrawing, a luck adjustment is all that’s needed to reestablish a normal flow of luck. That adjustment takes a simple 3-step form:
Purification – Protection – Attraction
Now here’s the part where I lecture you. Doing spells is fun! It’s way more interesting than going through a purification round or redoing your protection protocols. Here’s the thing: attraction magic does nothing if it hits a wall when what you’ve attracted reaches you. That’s why the first two steps are the most important. If your own bullshit, or someone else’s, has gotten so entrenched that it’s impacting the flow of luck, your attraction spell most likely will not work. Or, it will not work as well as it should. Maybe a trickle of luck gets through, but if there’s an entire tsunami of luck waiting on the other side of the blockage, wouldn’t you rather clear the block and enjoy the benefits of all that good luck? Do the purification and protection first.
Start here. The flow of luck is impacted by the energy on and around you. The immediate action to take when you’ve experienced a run of bad luck is to purify yourself, as many of the people who live with you as are willing to participate, and your space.
Smoke. Smoldering herbs, resins, and woods and then wafting the smoke around is a cleansing technique that appears in most cultures. Earthly, sharply-scented smoke generally works better for purification. Try to use herbs that grow in your region and are not appropriative of oppressed cultures. I personally like to use a blend of rosemary, juniper, and mugwort. If you are using premade incense, some purification blends are commercially available.
To use smoke to purify, start by wafting the smoke around as much of your body as possible. It can help to have a partner assist you in cleansing the back of your body. If you’re working alone and need to clear the back of your body, take a moment to notice which way the smoke is moving in the room, and then position the burner and your body so that the smoke flows toward you.
Waft smoke around the people you live with if they’ll consent to it. Our immediate family – the people we live with – have the biggest impact on our own luck. Then, move on to the house or apartment you live in.
When I purify my living space, I begin at the heart of the house. For many homes, that’s the kitchen, but it does vary. The space where people seem to gather regardless of whether there’s seating for it is the home’s heart.
I start by telling the house spirits what’s going to happen so they can decide whether to move out of the way. I then open a window and begin working clockwise and top to bottom. So, starting in one corner of the room, I waft smoke from ceiling to floor, opening cabinets and closets as I go. Once I’ve done the perimeter of a room, I waft smoke through the center, creating smaller clockwise circles with each pass until the entire room has been cleansed. I then move on to the next room of the house moving in a roughly clockwise pattern. When I’ve finished smoke cleansing, I close the window.
Salt. If using smoke to cleanse a space is not an option, salt is an excellent choice. You can use simple table salt for purification, but Epsom and rock salts of various kinds also work.
To use salt to purify, start with a salt bath or shower. For a salt bath, simply pour a cup or so of salt into the tub. You can add herbs or oils (go carefully here – not all oils react well with skin. I gave myself a chemical burn with eucalyptus oil once) associated with purification to the water as well. Climb in and have a good soak. Use the bath water to completely rinse your body. Drain the water from the tub and then, using fresh water, rinse yourself off. Ensure that you’ve completely rinsed any saltwater from your skin – you want it to carry any energy it cleared off of you away.
To take a shower and use salt cleansing, purchase a salt scrub or just add salt to your preferred shower gel. Scrub with the salt mixture and try to get it onto as much of your body as possible. Completely rinse the salt off afterwards. When I do a salt scrub in the shower, I generally start with the salt scrub and then follow with my regular shower regimen to ensure that I’ve fully cleared the salt from my skin and tub.
As with smoke cleansing, request that your immediate family members take salt baths/salt showers as well. Then, move on to your home.
I use two techniques for salt purification of a space: asperging and sprinkling, then sweeping/vacuuming up. Start by warning your house spirits about what’s happening, then open a window. Mix a little salt into a bowl of water. Using your fingers or a sprig of a willing plant (even better if it’s a plant associated with purification), flick/sprinkle small droplets of water throughout your house. I use asperging (that flicking/sprinkling) for the walls/furniture/closets/etc. As with smoke purification, work clockwise and top to bottom. For the floors, sprinkle fine-grained salt. Go through the house and lightly sprinkle all the floors, then start over in the same spot with the vacuum or a broom and clean the salt up. When you are finished, close the window and empty the vacuum canister/dustpan into an outdoor trash can.
Sound. If smoke isn’t an option and salt seems too daunting, there’s one more option for you. The pure, stable sound waves of a well-tuned bell or singing bowl can also break up discordant energy.
To use sound to purify, begin by ringing the bell close to your body and then moving the bell around slowly as the tone rings out. You may notice a shift in pitch as you do so – if you find spots where the pitch shifts noticeably, ring the bell again at that place to direct more sound waves to smoothing out that spot. It can be helpful to have a partner assist with ringing out the back of your body.
As with smoke and salt cleansing, use the bell to clear as many of the people you live with as will consent to it. Then, move on to your space.
To use sound to clear your space, start by warning your house spirits and opening a window. Working clockwise and top to bottom, ring the bell and let the sound waves carry across the surfaces within your home. Open the cabinets/closets/drawers as you go to thoroughly clear the space. When you’ve finished the perimeter of a room, work your way into the center still moving clockwise. Then, continue to the other rooms of the house. When you are finished, close the window.
The next step after purification is protection. Now that you’ve got the energy around you moving in a more healthy pattern, it’s important to keep it that way as long as possible. I’ve written extensively about protection magic, so rather than repeat myself, I’m going to give you some links.
Create or rebuild and power up your shields: http://glassewitchcottage.com/2019/01/07/shielding-a-crash-course-in-safe-hex/
Protect your space, or rebuild and power up your protection spells: http://glassewitchcottage.com/2019/04/22/defend-the-keep-warding-and-home-protection-practices/
Add at least one set-and-forget protection charm: http://glassewitchcottage.com/2022/05/09/set-and-forget-protection-magick/
Once you’ve done a round of purification and protection, you can stop there and observe for a week or two. In the vast majority of cases, clearing the blockages out of the way is more than enough to get your luck flowing correctly again. If you’ve purified and protected yourself and your luck is still flowing poorly, or you’re still experiencing bad luck, it’s time to add an attraction spell.
There are a dizzying number of spells for good luck available through books and the internet. Luck spells are one of the oldest kinds of magic, and we see that history handed down in the form of lucky talismans of various kinds (rabbits feet, four-leaf clovers, etc). The best luck spells include:
An object or talisman to carry with you. Think of this like a magnet – it’s showing the flow of luck where to go by drawing it toward you.
A symbolic opening of the way. This often takes the form of starting with the doors in your home closed and then opening them, sweeping the house from front to back, clearing off the entryway/path to your home, etc.
A way to keep luck fed and happy. Luck energy likes shiny things like new pennies, bright metallic paper or other objects, things that move like small fountains and wind spinners, lucky objects like four leafed clovers and upturned horseshoes, and stones like aventurine, citrine, pyrite, and peridot.
So, an example of a good luck spell is:
Choose an object to be a talisman. This should be small and easily carried in a pocket or purse. Then, choose a small space either within your house or just outside or over your front door to be the luck-feeding/luck altar space. Gather a few luck-attracting objects for this space.
Start with the doors in your home closed, and begin your spell in your normal magical working space. Charge your talisman and luck-feeding objects with drawing good luck. Visualize your outcome as clearly as possible and then transfer that visualization into the objects.
Place the talisman into your pocket and pick up the luck-feeding items. Starting with the door nearest you, open the doors to let luck flow toward you. Include the exterior door(s) of your home. With the doors open, place your luck-feeding items where they are going to reside going forward.
Hold the talisman and stand or sit by your luck-feeding items with the doors open. Connect to your visualization once more and welcome the flow of good luck back into your life. Then, conclude the spell and close any doors that must be closed during the normal flow of day-to-day life.
Going forward, periodically refresh the visualization and add items to your luck-feeding/luck altar space.
If a couple weeks after purification, protection, and an attraction spell, your luck is still flowing sluggishly, it’s time to bring out the big guns. Consult a professional for de-hexing or uncrossing work.
So, that’s my take on an immediate response to a run of bad luck. Is yours different? If so, what do you recommend people do when their luck goes sideways? Hit me up in the comments. You never know when your technique is exactly what another witch needs.
If you enjoy my weekly blogs, please consider supporting me through Patreon. Patreon is what enables me to invest time in writing, teaching and exploring the wide world of spirit. Through small monthly donations from supporters, I am able to make ends meet and devote time to this Work that would otherwise be spent at a mundane form of income generation. Here’s the link: https://www.patreon.com/glassewitchcottage