How to Protect Yourself Spiritually

Back in 2006-2007 when I was getting started on my path of spiritual awakening, I was plagued with a huge fear of the spirit world. I often had nightmares about evil spirits, and I was just terrified of connecting with my Spirit Guides, ancestors, angels or any spiritual being in fact, because I felt like I would somehow lose control or attract negativity if I did.

Around that time, I knew that I wanted to train as a professional intuitive, but there was no way that was going to happen when I was holding onto so much fear about the spirit world.

Fast forward to the here and now, and fear of Spirit is not an issue for me at all. Chatting to Spirit to gain information about my own path or information for clients, is as easy (and normal) as picking up the phone. I do not sleep with the lights on now, nor do I have nightmares about bad spirits or feel vulnerable about being targeted by negative energies.

In this article I am going to share with you everything I have learned in the last 13 years or so, about how to protect yourself spiritually. More specifically, I am talking about spiritual protection not just as it pertains to psychic development and channeling, but also as it relates to life in general. Because let’s face it, we can encounter negative energy anywhere in life. And it’s a good idea to protect ourselves on multiple levels, so that we can feel empowered and in control.

In this article I am presenting 5 principles for spiritual protection, in order of importance. This is quite a long article, so grab yourself a cuppa and settle in.

5 principles for spiritual protection

  1. Clear earthbound spirits
  2. Clean up your “lens”
  3. Learn how to recognise narcissists, sociopaths and energy vampires & avoid them
  4. Avoid cannabis, or learn how to “clean up” afterwards, if you do use it
  5. Strengthen your energy field from the inside out

Let’s have a look at the first principle:

1. Clear earthbound spirits

I am covering the topic of earthbound spirits first because for me, this is the most important point for spiritual protection, especially for channellers, intuitives and empaths.

Here’s a quick run-down on what earthbound spirits are:

Earthbound spirits are deceased people who have not fully crossed over to the ‘other side’. When a soul will not fully move on after death, their mental/emotional body can stay on the earth plane and hang around.

Earthbound spirits are essentially ghosts. They can get into our properties (many homes have at least one earthbound spirit attached.) They can sometimes get into our auric fields. If you’re sensitive or perceptive, you may notice when you have one hanging around you.

Signs there’s an earthbound spirit nearby include:

  • Feeling a cold draught that is not explained by anything earthly in your environment
  • Seeing a stranger’s face in your mind’s eye (particularly one that you have never seen before in your life)
  • Being awoken at night because you feel like something is touching/hitting you (earthbound spirits have woken me up in the past by making me feel I am being hit on the side of my head)
  • Feeling watched or like you’re not alone, is another common sign an earthbound spirit is with you
  • Sometimes earthbound spirits can also gather enough energy to move objects and interfere with electronics

The thing to know about all of this is that earthbound spirits sound scary, but they aren’t. They’re just like you and me, except they are also dead, fearful and stuck. They just need some help crossing over into the light.

The problem with many methods for clearing earthbound spirits is that they come from a place of fear and are about banishment. Banishing earthbound spirits can work but only temporarily. When we banish them, they often come back.

It is actually more effective to clear earthbound spirits from our spaces and auric fields by helping them to cross over to the other side. And to help them to cross over, we need a technique that soothes the earthbound spirit, reminds them that they are loved and forgiven for anything they feel they did wrong in their most recent lifetime, and coaxes them into crossing over. In this case, lovingly coaxing is so much more effective than banishment.

Why do we need to release earthbound spirits in the first place? Why not just let them hang around?

There are 3 reasons:

1. If you have one of these spirits attached to your auric field, you can unknowingly channel it, assuming that it is your Spirit Guide. And this is not a situation you want to be in, simply because earthbound spirits are not high-vibrational spirits and they’re not going to give you high-vibrational advice. (If they were high vibrational, they wouldn’t be stuck here on earth.) So, clearing earthbound spirits, if you have them around you, can only improve your intuitive accuracy.

2. They’re draining in a subtle way. Earthbound spirits can draw energy from souls who are incarnate (aka you and me) when they are attached to us. This may not be noticeable if you have one earthbound spirit attachment, but it can affect us when we have multiple attachments.

3. Earthbound spirits can also affect us emotionally. We attract the spirits that are most like us. If (for example), you are feeling a lot of anger or frustration right now in your life, there are spirits out there who are also resonating with that particular emotion. If you attract a spirit to you, it’s likely to be one that vibes with your energy. And so when the spirit attaches to you, it will ‘pile on’ with its own emotional burdens and make you feel a bit worse.

Not to mention, these spirits can terrify our kids and give them nightmares.

Here are the people who most need to clear earthbound spirits:

★ People who channel without any thought given to spiritual protection
★ Empaths & sensitives
★ People who use cannabis

I provide a quick, effective and easy way to clear earthbound spirits in my book The Empath’s Toolkit. I also teach people how to clear earthbound spirits in every online course I offer. Yes, I consider this step very important for spiritual protection.

Now let’s have a look at the second most important point for spiritual protection:

2. Clean up your ‘lens’

What do I mean by cleaning up your ‘lens’? Your lens is your way of seeing the world, and the spirit world. Sometimes we can hold erroneous beliefs or assumptions about the spirit world which encourage us to see it in a fearful way, for example if we have watched a lot of horror films, we may assume that the spirit world is full of negative entities or forces that need outwitting.

However, through my professional and personal experiences in this area, I have come to the conclusion that that we do not need to be afraid of ‘negative forces’ on our path of psychic development. I personally feel that negative forces exist mainly in our own minds, and in our external, physical world.

Let me explain the full background around why I have come to this conclusion:

As human and spiritual beings, we have both light and darkness inside of us, and our shadow contains those darker aspects of our unconscious mind, including what we may consider socially unacceptable, repressed feelings and impulses such as greed, jealousy, rage, fears, entitlement, and selfishness.

The shadow is a natural and necessary part of the human psyche that is by its nature unconscious. Here on earth we, as souls, evolve through the contrast of light and darkness. Other worlds exist where there is only light and no darkness, but that is not how this world is constructed.

You chose to incarnate here because your soul wanted the chance to evolve through grappling both with the light and the dark. Ideally we will examine and become conscious of our shadow, so that it does not control us in unconscious ways. But the fact that everyone else in this world has a shadow is the reason why there is both good and evil in this world.

When we have a great deal of fear (unconscious or conscious) in our waking lives, we often project those fears outward onto the spirit realm, during our exploration of it. (These fears may be fears of the future, fear of death, fear of failing, etc). Some fears may even come from past lives.

The more fear we hold in our unconscious mind, the more we encounter things which scare us in the spiritual realm. When we are fearful, we actually interpret and see the spirit world through a fearful lens, which can distort our view of that realm and the beings in it.

I will give you a specific example of how this can play out for people in practice. When someone with a fearful ‘lens’ (worldview) encounters an earthbound spirit, that person can perceive the spirit as hostile, malevolent or evil. They may even label the spirit a ‘negative entity’, or a ‘demonic entity’

But demons do not exist, nor does the devil.

Evil is a feature of our earthly world — not the spirit world. Or as my dad used to say to me when I was a child who was very afraid of ghosts:

“It’s not the dead who can hurt you, it’s the living.”

In the long-term, the best way to protect yourself from experiencing anything that scares you in the spirit realm is to examine, explore and conquer as many fears as you can in your waking life, so that you no longer see the spirit world through a lens of fear. Self-exploration through psychotherapy, shadow work or meditation can help you to clean up your ‘lens’. For shadow work, I recommend the book The Dark Side of the Light Chasers by Debbie Ford.

So, to sum this up, if you believe in demonic entities or the devil, you are seeing the spirit world through a fearful lens and you are going to interpret your spiritual experiences accordingly. As a result, you will be giving your power away (mostly to earthbound spirits who are not actually that scary.) This is a waste of energy. Instead, clean up your lens.

Now let’s have a look at my third point for spiritual protection:

3. Avoid negative people (aka those who do not have good intentions)

The third most important point for spiritual protection is about identifying and avoiding those with questionable intentions — narcissists, sociopaths and energy vampires.

I’m not a fan of avoiding all “negative energy”. Most of us are sufficiently robust, spiritually and energetically speaking, to be able to come into contact with lower vibrational energies. I hate those “good vibes only please” signs. I don’t believe in avoiding your friends when they’re upset or avoiding those who are doing the work to overcome problems. Not every heavy/negative emotion is bad or worth staying away from. Both anger and sadness are useful emotions.

So I’m not going to tell you to stay away from all negative energy. In a world that is set up so that we evolve through the contrast of light and dark, that is an unrealistic and naive goal.

Instead I recommend practising spiritual and energetic protection by staying away from those who don’t have your best interests at heart and who don’t have good intentions in general. I’m talking about avoiding people who are consistently in a negative space and whose actions reflect this. People who don’t take responsibility for their own stuff; people who gossip, manipulate, lie, blame and drain others.

Stay away from toxicity as much as you can. And toxic environments where there is something dark going on, such as cynicism, control, aggression, cruelty, jealousy or exploitation.

You can usually sense when this is the case. You’ll often come away from environments like these feeling drained and exhausted. You may feel perturbed without being able to pinpoint the reason for it.

Our physical reality & relationships are reflected in the energetic realm — as above, so below. When someone is trying to control or manipulate you (as an example), this isn’t just an annoyance in the physical realm of your reality, it is also reflected in the type of energy they can bring to you and that you may accept from them.

To give one example, people who seek to control others often bring unwanted influencing energy, and if you have someone in your life who habitually tries to control or manipulate you, unwanted influencing energy is something that you’ll want to clear from your energy field.

To give another example, those who gossip and complain chronically may bring negative thought forms to you and to the spaces they inhabit. These are energies that can affect all of us.

In my book, the Empath’s Toolkit, I cover how to clear these two types of negative energy.

Now let’s have a look at the fourth point for spiritual protection:

4. Avoid cannabis, or learn how to “clean up” afterwards, if you do use it

Cannabis is one substance to avoid if you care about the state of your energy body because it has a particularly detrimental effect on your auric field.

Let’s have a look at why cannabis is a problem for spiritual protection and what we can do about it:

Cannabis, as a substance, does 2 things:

1. Cannabis does a great job of collapsing the boundaries that keep your energy field intact. Usually your energy field (which consists of your subtle energy bodies, your chakra system and your meridians) has boundaries and is contained in close proximity to your physical body. But when you use cannabis, your energy field collapses and expands its boundaries, and you’re much more open and energetically ‘undefended’ than you would be ordinarily.

2. Cannabis also takes you off to the astral planes. This is the ‘trip’ part of using cannabis — you’re no longer just in physical, 3D reality — cannabis propels you to the astral planes, which is the place where astral beings, such as earthbound spirits reside.

When you visit the astral planes (aka the residence of earthbound spirits) with your energy field so collapsed and expanded, you can more easily take on earthbound spirits into your auric field, and it’s very common to come back to your own reality with lots of earthbound spirit attachments.

The info above is a very quick explanation of why cannabis can be a problem, spiritually and energetically. If you’d like more information, check out these two articles:

If you choose to use cannabis as a one off, it isn’t ideal, but any harmful effects for your energy field can also be reversed, in that you can always clear earthbound spirits from your aura and from your space afterwards.

As mentioned, there’s an effective technique for doing this in my book, The Empath’s Toolkit.

Now let’s have a look at the final piece of advice for spiritual protection that I am going to give in this article:

5. Strengthen your energy field from the inside out

There is one experience in particular that weakens the boundaries of your energy field and makes it more challenging for you to protect yourself, energetically speaking:

Traumatic stress (aka the aftermath of experiencing traumatic, significantly stressful and overwhelming events.)

To keep your energy field strong and your energetic boundaries intact, look for ways to release traumatic stress and traumas, because traumas damage your energy field and make you more open and porous. When you’re in a very porous/open state, it becomes harder to be centred in what you need and want. Being so open means that you are overly affected by what goes on around you, including other peoples’ emotions and experiences.

At the moment there is a lot of traumatic stress going around (pandemic, anyone?) but trauma can also come from experiencing a car accident, assault or attack, any kind of abuse or domestic violence, a betrayal, a death or loss, financial loss, natural disaster, injury or severe illness.

When we go through shocking or distressing experiences, we often store the energy of these events in our physical and energetic bodies. Therefore, it can help to release old energies periodically through therapies such as Craniosacral therapy, Trauma releasing exercises (TRE), EMDR, cord cutting, psychotherapy, yoga therapy or somatic experiencing.

I think it is much better to strengthen your energy body rather than to use shielding or protection exercises, such as putting a cloak of white light around your energy body, in a long term way. A protection visualisation is fine in the short term, but not ideal for the long term.

Remember that if you’re an empath, you are always going to be porous to some extent. But as empaths we can become unbearably porous if we are carrying a lot of stress & trauma in our bodies.

In this time of social distancing, the best techniques for trauma releasing would probably be TRE, distance psychotherapy and cord cutting.

So, to sum up, here are the 5 best ways to protect yourself spiritually:

  1. Learn a method for clearing earthbound spirits
  2. Release your fears about the spirit world
  3. Learn how to recognise narcissists, sociopaths and energy vampires & avoid them
  4. Avoid cannabis
  5. Forget shielding & protection visualisations – instead strengthen your energy field from the inside out by releasing traumatic stress.

I hope this article has been helpful for someone and please leave a comment if you have any questions.

Further Reading & Resources:

Develop your intuitive abilities eCourse

Essential steps to develop your intuitive abilities & communicate with your Spirit Guides. Connect even if you never have before.

It includes:

  • The biggest myth about being intuitive.
  • The 2 essential (but widely unknown) steps for intuitive development.
  • How you personally are wired to receive guidance. 
  • The formula that more than two thousand of my students have used to develop their intuitive abilities.

Meet Anna

Hi, I’m Anna Sayce! My purpose here on this website is to provide practical techniques and information to help empaths to understand, and fix the root of their energetic overwhelm & also to help sensitives to embrace and develop their intuitive gifts. I believe that developing our spiritual & intuitive side is very powerful and allows us to improve our own lives, and if we wish, even make the world a better place for others. Discover more >


  1. Therese

    Hi Anna
    My boyfriend smokes cannabis from time to time but not around me. We do not live with eachother presently but I have explained to him my concerns from the above point of view. However he is not aware of or open to these ideas so there is nothing I can do. Is it sufficient to just clear myself if I sense anything around me? Or to check and clear him? So far I have not but in the past before him, I have picked up on alot…when I was fearful. The less fearful I am about these things I find the less affect
    it has on me. Thank you

  2. Catherine Motteler

    Hi Anna,
    This is so clear and helpful and it is what I have been working on for months. I have had to learn and then work on changing some of my frames of mind and patterns. Reading your blog feels so validating! I was feeling pretty lost in the middle of my intuitive abilities before I found your site! Your Intuitive Awakening Course, and Empaths Toolkit, and Starseed Groups books have helped me so much!
    Thank you,

  3. Fla

    Hi Anna, always love your articles and in this one you make some great points. As an empath and a healer, I strongly believe in energy protection visualisations and mantras, as they have saved me on so many occasions, and it can take many years to completely release all past trauma and emotional backup.

  4. Anna Sayce

    Hi Therese,

    You probably won’t be able to clear your boyfriend’s auric field without his consent. If you do this, you will need to ask his higher self whether it consents to the clearing (he may not.) Otherwise, keep clearing your space regularly, and use the prayer given in my empath book to repel earthbound spirits. That way you don’t need to clear these spirits from your own energy field that regularly.


  5. Anna Sayce

    Hi Fla, that’s great you have got a lot out of protection visualisations.

  6. Anna Sayce

    Hi Catherine, glad you found this blog helpful!

  7. Della

    Dear Anna,
    Thank you so much!
    I’ve have tried searching this since, realizing I was an empathic, intuitive, spiritual
    You, my friend, gave me the knowledge I needed.
    So glad, I signed up for your newsletter.
    Light & Love

  8. Esperanza Flaquer

    Hi Anna, very awesome article as always! Anna, can it be that an entity is in someone’s eye? My husband every time he drinks 2 beers, I feel and see in his left eye horrible energy and I feel it too! I clear it so many times but it comes back! Any advice? Do you do this type of healing or do you know anyone?


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