Making Magick Happen

It’s as real as you believe it is.

Illustration by Kendra.

Illustration by Kendra.

A year and a half ago, I visited a few different psychics and tarot readers to see what they would say about my future, and wrote about it for Rookie. I didn’t mention this in the article, but part of my motivation when I pitched it was that I was prepping myself for a big change across all categories of my life: work, love, where I lived. I’d been stagnant for way too long; I felt stuck. But as much as I hate keeping anything from you guys, I couldn’t talk about all that on the internet at the time, because I hadn’t quit my job yet, and I didn’t want them to learn my plans prematurely. (Also because I’m a little bit superstitious.)

I’d spent the preceding eight years working as an office assistant at a petroleum company, a fact that always seemed to shock people—I think because I was a style blogger by night, and sometimes when they know that, people assume you’re living the glamorous life like Sheila E. And maybe that’s true for some bloggers, but in real life we needs to make dat scrilla, and behind many a sequined curtain lies a not-so-flashy day job. My job paid the bills, and I wasn’t miserable there—just constantly teetering between fairly bummed out and complacent, which wasn’t fun in any case, so I was thirsty for a legit transition. I was ready to shake everything up. I was dying to find out if I’d ever actually do it, and, if so, would I regret it? Hence the psychic readings!

If you read that piece from June 2012, you might be wondering if any of the things the psychics told me ever came to pass. Well, yes, a lot of them did: Almost all of the psychics told me I would get a new job in the fall, which happened. One of them, “the Germanic Madame,” told me (through the medium Vikramadithya Ikshvivek) that I would change residences in October, and I totally did. She also predicted that I would soon write captions for some pictures in a print anthology—some captions I was actually working on at the time (though I hadn’t mentioned them to her) were published three months later in Rookie Yearbook One.

But an equal number of their predictions didn’t come true. Like, I never had to choose between romance with a jock and a goth (though I do date some dark, goth-y dudes but that’s just my type, OH-KAY!) and I never met a divorcé named Tom at a 5K (THANK GAWD because I hate running). I mention this not to discredit any of the readings I got, but as an example of how I approach tarot and psychic readings in general.

I believe that psychic powers are real, because I have personally experienced them. (As I mentioned in that first piece, I had two very specific and eerie psychic dreams as a youngster.) But I never take everything a psychic or tarot reader or astrologer or ANYONE tells me as the complete and total answer. I think of such readings not so much as blueprints, with super specific directions, measurements, and plans, but more as maps: They give you a lay of the land but don’t tell you which roads you will choose to take or exactly what will happen to you while you’re there. I then use them as motivators and guides to help me get to where I want to be. If a psychic told you that some outcome you’d been really wanting would come to pass, would you go home and just sit there waiting or it to fall into your lap like a bag of Doritos your friend threw at you from across the room? I wouldn’t be happy just sitting around waiting for them Doritos—I’d want to help ensure that this prediction came true. I spoke with Louise Androlia, a London-based tarot reader, life coach, and healer, about all this, and she told me:

Nothing is set in stone. I could tell you absolutely anything right now, and if you then go and choose to sit in your bedroom for six months, nothing would happen to you. I believe tarot and psychic readings should be empowering. They should remind us that we are in the driver’s seat, and that we absolutely must participate in our own lives. If you go [to a psychic] wanting to “know your future,” that’s kind of forgetting about the awesome thing that is YOU, and how you are in charge of navigating this life experience yourself.

All action, on some level, begins with intention. Psychic readings help me focus on my intentions. But then I have to put those intentions into action. And that is how the magick really happens.

I know that all of this could be described as just self-fulfilling prophecy, but if it works, why the fuck not? I tend to think of it, though, in terms of energy. I believe in the law of attraction, which holds that “like attracts like,” meaning, in this context, good energy attracts more good energy, and bad energy attracts bad. Positive thoughts attract good stuff, but if you’re all like, “My day is shit!” then guess what? More than likely, your day is going to be complete shit, because you already subconsciously planned it!

The law of attraction lies at the heart of the Secret, which is where I first heard about it, back when that movie, and then that book, came out. I was curious about where all the ideas in The Secret (both version) came from, so I started googling around, and that’s how I learned about Esther Hicks, an author and inspiration speaker who has been writing and talking about the law of attraction since the late ’80s. She didn’t make it up, either—a guy named William Walker Atkinson mentioned it in his 1906 classic Thought Vibration or the Law of Attraction in the Thought World.

I started learning about this stuff shortly after a ~spooky~ incident in which I was thinking angry thoughts about some friends I was pissed off at, and then immediately crashed my car into a parked one on my way to get a cheeseburger. I figured I must be REALLY good at negative-thought manifestation, so why not try the opposite? Well, I quickly learned that the old cliché saying “Think positive!” is real, my boo. Once I started to live a more positive-thinking life, everything got better. Obviously, you’re going to have your bad days and that’s a bonafide truth, but having this trip at the ready can help you get back on the right path when you feel lost.

I believe that your thoughts have a profound effect on your future. I think it’s important to harness your thoughts, wishes, hopes, and dreams, and boil them down into a super-concentrated compound called intention. Then comes the fun part, where you get to put your intentions into action: “Work hard, be nice, research, explore, email people, network, write, make the steps you need,” says Louise. “That might be applying to colleges, jobs, joining a group to meet new people, starting an exercise class, anything. It’s you participating, it’s you getting up and going, ‘OK I’m going to live my life and not wait for it.’” When I have a question about something in my life and go to a psychic for advice, I come out feeling motivated and ready to take on the world. And if I had happen to get a not-so-great reading, I just remind myself: This is just a map. It is up to me what route I take. You have the power to avoid potentially bad situations if you see them coming.

There are a few things that can help you stay on the path of making magick happen. My friend Aaron, who is also like my spiritual advisor, has been helping me a lot with keeping my intentions in focus and at the forefront. One thing he taught me to do is to keep a vision book. If you’ve heard of vision boards, this is the same idea. You draw or glue in pictures that represent how you want to live your life, and/or write out what you want. In high school, I taped a picture of myself wearing the furry black Delia’s coat that I wanted on my wall. Little did I know then, that was my first foray into successful vision-boarding! I made another one last year, and almost everything on it came true: I moved to exactly where I wanted to go, found a cute apartment in a safe neighborhood with hardwood floors (I got SPECIFIC), and fell in love. There were only two things on it that didn’t happen last year, and I’m concentrating on them for 2014.

If you’re too lazy to cut things out or get your hands sticky with glue, try making a vision board on Pinterest. Just make sure you look at it EVERY DAY! Remember, everything you want is ultimately up to you to make happen. You are the master of your destiny. Embrace your power! You really can make things happen for yourself, you magickal creature, you. ♦


  • LouiseA January 9th, 2014 4:04 PM

    Yeah! We are all magic makers. Love you soul sister xo

  • spudzine January 9th, 2014 5:39 PM

    Woah, this was just what I needed. I’ve been in a slump for a little while, and I decided this morning that I was going to make positive changes for myself. The thing is, I didn’t know just HOW to do that. But thanks to this article, I now know which direction I need to take, and that is the one that I WANT to take! It all starts with a matter of vision, and I gotta let the rest happen in the way I want it to, because I have control over my own life.

    (Love the articles this month, BTW. They’ve all been really inspiring and great motivators for people who wish to start anew)

  • Laia January 9th, 2014 5:52 PM

    love this. i needed a reminder of this, too.

    thanks babe<3

  • Hajer January 9th, 2014 5:59 PM

    This is very inspiring to read but the idea of a vision board/journal is kind of intimidating. I feel like I’ll be so upset if things don’t go as planned. I guess you have to start small to gain some faith in the process.

    • LouiseA January 10th, 2014 2:34 PM

      Hi Hajer,
      Think of your vision board as something that’s super fun and inspiring for you – make it an empowering thing. The idea is that it’s just putting out to the Universe the kinds of things you’d like to bring into your life, and a little faith does help!
      I practice a form of ‘Surrender’ where you know that when you don’t get something it’s because there is something better ahead, or the space was needed for another reason. If we focus on getting things exactly as we said it can get a bit too controlling and we get tunnel vision. So have fun with the dreams and then you make steps of action and then you get on with life and let things flow in their own space and time :) xx

  • AidaA January 9th, 2014 6:15 PM

    I love this. I definitely believe that ‘thoughts have a profound effect on your future’. I always visualise what I want which gives me drive to carry on doing things that I may not particularly enjoy but that will get me to a certain place. The only problem with me though is that I end up self-sabotaging! gah self sabotage is the worst!


  • LaurenMichele January 9th, 2014 6:40 PM

    I just have to say that this month has some of the BEST articles I’ve read so far! So many parts of this piece really stuck out to me, so I’m going to record them in my journal so I can remember them! The emphasis on action and intention put an entirely new twist to my preconceived notion of fortune telling.
    Keep up the great work! <3

  • Delilah January 9th, 2014 9:50 PM

    I attracted this article into my life at exactly the right time. Thank you Marie <3

  • Mimi7 January 9th, 2014 11:09 PM

    Another example of perfect timing from Rookie. I just saw a psychic tonight! I was and still am skeptical, but he knew too much and got too many things right, so I feel like it could be real. It was cool! I got the same overall message, that you are in control, and to think positive and be open to good things happening. It gave me more confidence and make me happy.

  • keisya January 9th, 2014 11:16 PM

    This is really inspiring and motivating me. Thank you Marie for this amazing article! <3

  • lydiamerida January 10th, 2014 2:33 AM

    Loves this <3

    Ps isn't the Secret the basis of the homeschooling of the girls in Pretty Wild?

  • elliecp January 10th, 2014 2:50 AM

    I understand why you believe in psychic powers. I’ve always been interested in that kind of thing because sometimes things happen that I find hard to put down to anything other than fate, karma, a guardian angel or the like. I am sort of religious too, so I like to mix both and basically believe in every possible explanation for things whilst not disbelieving in anything either. <3

  • sully-bean January 10th, 2014 4:47 AM

    THIS IS SOME CRAZY COINCIDENCE RIGHT HERE, because I was literally JUST about to start reading Louise Androlia’s interview with Audrey Kitching… she’s like, my positive thinking role model <3
    Anyway, I LOVE THIS BECAUSE POSITIVE THINKING IS MY NEW YEARS RESOLUTION and already I feel happier and healthier from like, believing in myself. I used to start the day with "I'm not gonna wear eyeliner because I have a feeling something bad is gonna happen and I'm gonna cry," and I usually would at some point cry, and I KNOW IT'S ONLY BEEN LIKE 10 DAYS OF 2014 BUT SO FAR I'VE BEEN LIKE "SCREW IT TODAY'S GONNA BE RAD AND I'M GONNA WEAR ALL THE MASCARA AND NOT CRY" and I TOTALLY HAVEN'T EVEN CRIED and it's been RAD! so yeah, I love positive thinking so far. And your article only made me dig it more, so THANK YOU! <3

    • LouiseA January 10th, 2014 2:25 PM

      Awesome! I hope you liked the interview xx

  • WeirdCassie January 10th, 2014 7:59 AM

    Yup, I totally agree with the author that thoughts can be really powerful. I recently read about another method. You can just write in your diary something like that about your wishes, but as if they have already happened. And it really works, too c:

  • lexilikes January 10th, 2014 2:57 PM

    This was such a good article. I’ve never really believed in physics but this has given me a new and much better perspective of what they are really about. Also some really interesting points about positiveness and how to have a good outlook. Ever since I was really young I have always made mood boards containing my inspiration and goals so vision boards/books sound like a natural next step for me! <3

  • mangointhesky January 10th, 2014 6:24 PM

    This is really interesting!
    I love the ideas in this.

  • etoilefille January 14th, 2014 10:22 AM

    Does Kendra sell her illustrations? I would love one…