How to Do Automatic Writing

Maybe you’ve heard of automatic writing and you want to know how to do it. In this article, I will show you how. Automatic writing is a great, non-scary way of channelling your Higher Self or Spirit Guides through writing.  It allows you to ‘download’ their perspective subconsciously using claircognizance and transcribe it as it comes in.

How To Do Automatic Writing

The basic recipe for automatic writing is that you open a word document (or get a pen and paper if you wish) and you type/write a question. But remember that you are not consulting your thinking mind. In order to do it successfully, you have to put your mind to one side.

In many ways, doing automatic writing is like being ‘in the flow’ while writing. If you’re a writer then you will know what I’m talking about when I say ‘in the flow’.  It’s the state when you have many creative ideas and they all seem to fit together quite nicely, and you can transcribe them coherently and quickly – and often it feels quite exciting. Yet at the same time, your conscious mind is not labouring away – it feels effortless and light. You can also be in that state when you do automatic writing – not so much in a creative writing sense, but in an intuitive sense.

An Example of Automatic Writing

Perhaps you know the book Conversations with God (which is incidentally one of my favourite books).  It is supposedly a channelled work, although I think the author Neale Donald Walsh actually channelled his Higher Self.  If you’ve read that book and you were surprised at how insightful and progressive some of it was, know that your Higher Self has got some equally interesting things to say, if not about our world, then definitely about your life and where you’re going.  There are loads more channelled books available too.  Perhaps you can recommend some of your favourites in the comments.

Why do Automatic Writing?

Here are some examples of when you could do it…

  • When you have a fear of spirits and are too scared to contact your guides in any other way
  • When you are not yet very clairvoyant or clairaudient (i.e. you can’t hear or see your spirit guides), so you want to try another way.  Automatic writing is actually very easy if you manage to put your mind to one side, and I know lots of people who have trouble hearing their inner voice who have had success with automatic writing.
  • When you want to get your Higher Self’s perspective on something that is bothering you – (I used to do automatic writing when I was upset about something and needed to raise my vibration. I’d tune into my higher self and start writing.  She always had some very comforting and insightful things to say about any situation.)
  • Or just when you have some questions that you want a spiritual perspective on.

Some tips for putting the mind aside and doing automatic writing successfully

1. Start each automatic writing session with ‘My Spirit Guides or My Higher Self’ or ‘My Angels’ as the first line.

You can call on all of them if you want.  Be clear about whose input you want, as it sets an intention to hear from that being.

If you want, you can also see your guides as parts or extensions of you that you can access whenever you want, like your subconscious.  (The more you see these entities as beings outside of you, the more channelling them may seem quite elusive.)

If you want, you can also raise your vibration and connect with your guides/higher self before you begin typing.  For example, you can do some deep breathing, or visualize going up to a room to meet with your guides, so that you can get their input for the duration of the session. 

2. Just start writing and don’t worry about what you’re writing at first.

For example, type your question and just see what comes out when you put your fingers on the keys.  Just start writing about anything that comes into your head, just as you would if you were journaling about your day.  The trick with this is to get used to writing (if you are not already).  The more you’re used to writing, the easier it is to get into that ‘flow’ state when writing, where you can channel your inner sage.

3. Setting a timer while you do it can be helpful

This is so that you don’t have time to think about what you’re writing.  That works particularly well when you have a set of questions you want to ask your guides.  I do sometimes set a timer when I’m writing a blog article, especially when I’m being too much of a perfectionist or my mind is being very chatty and not saying very helpful things.  Setting myself a time limit focuses my mind on the task at hand, and for automatic writing it can help to focus your energy.

4. Create the right conditions so that you can lose your inhibitions about what you’re writing

Sometimes while I’ve been doing automatic writing, my mind was judging the information I’m getting and wondering what people around me would think if they were reading it.  If you do automatic writing on a shared or borrowed computer, you might feel inhibited.  So, make sure you do it while alone and make sure you have privacy with your computer – one reason why I prefer a word document over pen and paper.  To ensure absolute privacy with my automatic writing, I use a program called The Journal. The Journal allows you to set a password so that no-one but you can read your entries (and it automatically saves and dates everything).  And it has a timer feature, which is helpful for automatic writing.  They also do a free 45 day trial of it on their website, that you could use for the purposes of this exercise.

5. Don’t allow your mind to interpret the information while you’re getting it

You can interpret it afterwards.  But know that it is totally normal for the mind to butt in and judge information in the process.  When I started doing readings, occasionally I would be getting information and my mind butts in and freaks out: “what if this is all wrong” – especially if it’s highly specific information.  However, experience has taught me that the mind’s fears are unwarranted in those situations.  The mind can only react according to its previous experiences and its task of keeping you safe and secure.  Intuition sees a lot further than that.  So, know the role of the mind, acknowledge it for doing its job but don’t give it too much attention while you’re doing this exercise.

How do you know if you’re really channelling spiritual guidance?

In my experience, channelled information tends to be high vibrational in nature.  It will often comfort you, provide clarity or will raise your mood in some way.  If it feels negative or feels heavy, you’re probably not channelling a source that you want to tap into or you may just be channelling your own emotional body, if you are not feeling very good.

What you channel via writing will usually not sound like your voice. Mine speaks with authority and sounds completely different from the voice that I ‘think’ in.

Another feature of intuitive guidance is that it tends to be very clear, usually feels light and is often simply expressed.  Having said that, I have read automatic writing that is poetic and metaphorical in nature.  But don’t be hung up on how yours should sound or be.  If you do it often enough, you will soon get a sense for what your automatic writing ‘feels’ like.

Please leave a comment if you want to recommend any more channelled works or if you have something to say about your experiences with automatic writing.

Your information will not be shared.

32 Responses to “How to Do Automatic Writing”

  1. Fran says:

    Interesting timing with this article ..my house mates and I actually tried this a couple of days ago and it was amazing what came out of it. We found that the first time we did it was the “best” – we figured it was because we had no expectations. All of us really felt like we were writing from a higher place.

    However, some of the stuff we wrote was really crazy so we got to have a good laugh!! And we also had a lot of doubt, I guess you can never really be sure if it’s just your own mind writing it …

    But it was still a beautiful exercise and I agree with what you’re saying about being comforted. The answers I received were definitely comforting and it certainly did raise my vibration at the time. Thanks for the article :)
    .-= Fran´s last blog ..An Evening With Food Matters & Don Tolman =-.

  2. Fran says:

    Anna, one more thing I forgot to add – what exactly is your higher self?
    .-= Fran´s last blog ..An Evening With Food Matters & Don Tolman =-.

  3. Anna says:

    Hey Fran!

    That was brave of you to share your automatic writing with one another! No-one gets to see mine :D

    Maybe you got some crazy stuff as well so that you would feel playful and raise your vibration? I thought of that because my guides keep telling me that the state of playfulness and fun is the best state to access intuitive guidance.

    Btw, I wrote a definition of the Higher Self here: http://www.psychicbutsane.com/intuition/whos-my-higher-self

  4. Yang says:

    Hey Anna,

    Great post. What ways or methods do you prepare yourself to do a session like this.

    I would have thought grounding yourself to be a good idea. I read the book Trust Your Vibes by Sonia Choquette yesterday and she was talking about how doing something physical resets your system and clears accumulated stuff in your aura. I think that’s a good idea even if you don’t do automatic writing.

    Anyway I’d like to hear how you ease yourself into one of these.

    Yang

  5. Anna says:

    Hi there, Yang!

    To answer your question – when I do automatic writing, I don’t actually do any preparation. I just put my hands on the keyboard and type. But that’s just me…if you feel like you want to prepare in some way, then go for it! And I think you’re right, grounding yourself before connecting to the higher realms is always a good idea.

    Btw, did you read my article on my process for doing a reading? http://www.psychicbutsane.com/developing-psychic-abilities-spirit-world/how-to-tune-into-your-spirit-guides – if you want some steps for preparation, you may find some of the steps in there helpful.

  6. andrew says:

    your information really helped, whatever you are, it is surely good that you share your knowledge, i hope whatever you are, you get better and get guided towards good.

    i really do.

  7. angelina says:

    i want to do this yet i cant. im trying to contact my deceased uncle. any tips from anyone would be greatly appreciated

  8. Katharine in Berlin says:

    I have had very clear, specific thoughts of suicide recently – that I am socially very isolated and pretty much unemployed has led to this very negative, “I can’t, I have no courage, I don’t respect myself” place. (I have seen a doctor and will start looking for a therapist to help me.) Last night I did Automatic Writing for the first time. oh. my. god. It’s most certainly something to be experienced; my mind switched off (extremely unusual) and i wrote with great clarity, wisdom, quietness… I had all the answers. I repeat – i had all the answers there. …
    sorry if this is a bit long, but the following particularly struck me somehow; while writing i visualised little balls of light moving around..
    “There are many energies, some meld together, some clash and jar, others are harmonious, some are attracted to each other, other energies shy away, some are bombastic and knock energies out of the way like skittles; there are small quiet energies, those which race around, those which are alone doing their own thing, energies that huddle together, some are on the look out for energies to connect with, who are seeking, seeking, some of these seekers are constantly moving around, looking; others are more steadfast, still, solid, and observing what’s around them.”
    Automatic writing is defintely something I will use to ground me, stop the negative racing repetitive thoughts and to inspire me. Fabulous.

  9. Anna says:

    Hi Katharine – really glad you found this useful, thanks for leaving your experiences here for others to read! Hope you feel better soon. Anna

  10. Dave says:

    Thank you for this article. I was just given a link to your work and I find it perfectly timed, like an answer to a question I have been asking…Especially with the article on “Light Worker”. This article was also very helpful because it confirmed the experience that I have practiced for years, with “Automatic Writing” (as you call it). You referenced Walsch’s work, which I also love. I’m not sure if you’ve seen the movie “conversations with God” or not, but if you allow it to play past the credits, there is an amazing clip that follows, which in my opinion, makes the movie! The scene is where a lady comes into a book signing, and she thanked him for the confirmation – not that HE heard from God, but that she also did too.

    Again, thank you for your work… I look forward to reading more from your site and newsletter.

  11. Anna says:

    Hi Dave, You’re welcome – No, I haven’t seen that movie yet!

  12. Annie says:

    Hi Anna,

    Thank you for sharing these four steps to communicate with spirits. I used to communicate with spirits when I was very young but I wasn’t scared at all. I used to tell my sisters and my mom who would dies and within a week time, my statements would come true. Then I kind of lost this gift during my preteen years.
    About thirteen years ago, I started to sense spirits presence again. Even though I seldom experience clairvoyance, I developed a intense fear because every time I sense the spirits presence I strongly feel that clairvoyance is just one step ahead of what I’m actually feeling and I am really scared. Anna, I have experienced for years…to be exact, 13 yrs, no matter where I live. I used to study in Tokyo, California, and Hawaii for this past thirteen years and every place is the same. December 30, 2008, I saw a man in my living room and I thought it was my husband because he looked definitely a human being but as I turned directly to talk to him but he disappeared instantly. Since then, I have not been able to sleep alone unless my husband is with me in our room because I still feel a strong spirit aura in our house, not negative, but its surely is there. Beginning of November 2010, I decided to communicate with the spirit to see if would communicate back, and so I began to use dictionary as a communicating device to give me some words after I have aksed a question outloud or have written it down by just close my eyes and open a dictionary and point to a direction which my intuition directs me to. Anna, it is working great! Although, I am still not ready yet to experience clairvoyance, communicating through dictionary is less scary and it has given me a sense of connection and understanding with spirits!

  13. zoe says:

    hey anna

    i wanna do some automatic writing but i dont think i have a spirit guide. How can i find out if i have one?

  14. Emma says:

    Hey :) I’ve tried automatic writing (pen and paper) a few times, and each time I’ve tried it, I feel like it hasn’t really worked. The first time I tried was probably my most successful, as I got a fraction of information, althought I always feel like it’s not my higher self I’m interacting with – it’s just myself. It’d be great if you could help at all :) Thank you (:

  15. Nanhey says:

    Hi Fran,

    i have been trying automatic writing for over 20 days now… & i just get straight or zigzag lines… two days back even that slowed down… they say it takes time for automatic writing… does it usually take that long??

    is there anything in particular that i need to do or change??

  16. Nanhey says:

    oops sorry wrong name there… I meant ‘Anna’

  17. Rene says:

    Hello,, I believe I have done automatic writing off and on over the last few years, and i describe almost like someone else takes over the pen and writes beautiful thoughs, insights down on paper usually in the form of a poem, Often I go back to what I have written down, and scratch my head wondering what it is about lol…. these writings are never my conscience choice ie) I don’t choose a specific topic to write about… only open to writing down…

    is this what automatic writing is?

  18. Judith says:

    2 nights ago I felt someone behind me whilst on my pc. I picked up a pencil without thinking, and suddenly I started to write. I asked who was there and wrote Sam, where he was from and he said Zimbabwe. Asked what he wanted and he said he wanted help to go home.
    Have tried automatic writing before with no success. I wasn’t even trying it just happened. I do often see spirits around me and have called them up a few times using other methods. This was definately the quickest way and straight to the point. Loved it, will definately be trying this again. Think the secret is to not ‘try’ too hard.

  19. Ailsa says:

    Hi Anna – I just found your website an hour ago, subscribed, then tried automatic writing for the first time. I have never before left a comment on any site but feel compelled to share the result! FYI – I recently met and had a relationship with a man in Africa and was vaguely contemplating meeting him in India because he cannot get a visa to Australia. I asked my higher self and my spirit guides. ‘Should I go to India? What will I learn there?’

    I wrote (sorry for the length): I will be transformed by a higher being that is not myself. There will be much love in this place and you will find what you are seeking. You should go with this man for he is a good soul and you are connected to one another in another lifetime. There is a lesson you will learn together but it will be from a small man of short stature who comes to you in the night. He will have a message for you. Heed his message and turn out the lights. Fortune bestows those who are coming in need of assistance to the light in gold. You are one of those people. Music is important to your higher intuition you must listen more for the sea waves, they heal your soul. The relationship you seek is fulfillment but you must trust him to deliver. He and you have much energy to share in this lifetime so acute is your understanding of one another. Heed not warning from others or what they may think. There is a sea place. There is a teacher who lives by the sea who will guide you. You must let go of the fear of youself it is holding you back from him. He is thyself reincarnated he will show you courage and green, green pastures for you to delve with flowers and mystical beings.

    For real!!??? I’ll be doing this frequently from now on! I too am interested in any ‘preparation’ advice you can give for getting the most out of this. Great website. Thank You!!!

  20. Andrew says:

    Hello

    If a person did not know how to read or write could this still work?

  21. Joe says:

    How would I contact a single person, such as a relative ?

  22. patricia says:

    I tried Automatic Writing for the first time today. I asked my question and got about a 3 sentance response. did I do something wrong? It seems everyone else has gotten paragraphs of information. How do I know the response was not just my thoughts?

  23. Anna says:

    Patricia,

    You might find these posts helpful: http://www.psychicbutsane.com/intuition/intuition-vs-imagination – How to Distinguish Intuition From Imagination

    http://www.psychicbutsane.com/intuition/intuition-101-part-three-the-two-secrets-to-developing-and-recognizing-intuition – The Two Keys to Recognizing your Intuition

  24. Just can't seem to connect. :/ says:

    Hi Anna,
    I have tried many times to connect to my guides. Only one time did I see one of my guides when I asked to see them. I only saw a profile of a woman holding a crystal in her palm.
    I tried this morning to do some automatic writing to hopefully get some insight to a financial situation but wrote nothing. I did feel a feeling in my body that is similar to the feeling I have gotten when an intuitive thought has entered my head. When I have received intuitive thoughts they have always been spot on.
    Why am I not finding an answer to my financial question and why is it so hard to see my guides?

  25. Susan says:

    This is so cool.. I’m a fast typer, and I felt a little stupid trying this.. But I was kinda nervous ’cause I kept hearing unexplained noises. { I’m home alone } I’m still doing it right now. But anyways, after I read some more, I got an urge in my stomach to write something, so I did, and this time it came slower, and had a different sentence style and such. This is SO COOL. That you for publishing this, it’ll help me a lot.

  26. Aurora says:

    I am a writer, so I started with just journaling. Once I got my muse sparked, I allowed the question to flow. This is pretty much what it looked like:

    My Spirit Guides,

    How can I become better as a writer?

    The response was:

    Sour peaches and wooden desks. Simple things in everyday life can help you. Just focus on using life experiences to channel your writing. It’s about fluidity and making your sentences smooth. Use what you learn everyday to guarantee that your writing is fluent and consistent.

    I am a bit suspicious that might have been my mind talking, but I don’t think I know that for sure. However, it is a good piece of advice, and I think I’ll use it. :) Thanks for this great exercise!

  27. Julia says:

    Thank you!
    I have recently learned of my psychic abilities from a friend of mine who has been able to see energies/spirits since she was a child. Although, we are both still young (she being 13 and I 14, going on to 15) and some of her ways of doing automatic writing was different. At a sleepover, (the four of us all have psychic abilities, so for hours we were chatting with our spirit guides through the automatic writing and Ouija Board) she told us about automatic writing and how she did it was by holding the pen lightly and letting your guides (or whomever our contacting) move it. There were great amounts of energy in the room (About 9 guides were there as well as two other spirits [ John Lennon and Anne Frank, supposedly ]) so I kept getting warm shivers. I have to say, it was my first full-blown experience with the paranormal, and it has encouraged me to continue down the path of understanding what some people call “the sixth sense”.
    After the party, I went home and a few days later I decided to try automatic writing. I decided to try to play tic-tac-toe with my spirit guide Ed (I have three guides, or so I was told) and I couldn’t tell if I was moving it myself or not. After the game, I tried asking a few questions and even though the pen was moving incredibly slow, I could still tell that I wasn’t moving it myself. Then, some odd things began to happen. It appeared that my other spirit guide Claire was drawing something that looked like a monkey with a wagging tail, but some of the drawing became obsessive. The pen would move continuously over the same lines repeatedly, and the pen became increasingly faster. I would pick up the pen and move it to a different spot on the drawing frequently and say in my mind, “You should start drawing new lines and completely the drawing.” I was becoming anxious to know who was actually drawing, because I no longer felt confident that it was Claire. The pen was moving furiously now; drawing what looked like lightning towards my body and off the page. It wouldn’t stop. My hand felt stiff, as if I could no longer control it as freely as I usually could. There was a lightning storm going off as well, which made the surroundings a hit more spooky. I decided to drop my pen.
    I looked at it in disgust, but picked it up again to ask who was drawing. I put the pen down and it looked like it was beginning to draw a C until it erupted into more scribbles of lightning. I asked again, and it began to do the same thing. I then asked I it was good, and it hastily circled no and I dropped the pen. My hand hurt, and it didn’t feel like mine. I texted my friend (the one who sees spirits) and we talked about it. I ended up chanting a random prayer (I wasn’t too sure what to do, and I was fighting off fear and anger), poured some Kosher salt on me and where I was sitting and sat on the couch and held my dog (which my guides said was a form of guardian) and waited for my friend to respond. I kept chanting and I told my guides to surround me an assist me. I got more feeling in my hand, but it wasn’t completely gone yet. My friend told me to send the entity to her, so I said that he wasn’t wanted here and that my friend wanted him. He ended up leaving, but to help my friend I sent Bob (my third guide) to assist the entity in “brightening up” to put it. It turned out that my friend had met the spirit before and that his name was Optical. She had not seen him for years, and that before he left her he did strange things like that. She also said that my guide was talking to him and Optical went from a black shadow to a form of gray and recognizable face and body. I had only learned of my abilities for about three days and I experienced this, and it was enough to make me feel more cautious on when I do automatic writing again (or stop entirely). The method I was told appeared to be different than the one here, so what was I really doing? What was really going on with this Optical and how did he find me?
    (I ended up burning the page he had wrote on with sage just to be safe.)
    I apologize for the extensive comment, but your website has been extremely helpful so far, and I’m curious to know what really happened that day…

  28. Ray says:

    I’m a novelist and NF writer and I’ve been curious about automatic writing recently. This is a good explanation about how to get started. I read a lot of books on developing psychic abilities and quantum effects in science relating to a potential extra-physical realm, but most don’t touch on the subject of automatic writing. One book that does that I’m currently working through is Psychic Intelligence by the Jamison twins.

    Time to write a story or novel with AW and see how it goes! =)

  29. Salome says:

    hi there Anne

    After reading your part about claircognizance, I now know that I am not mad. I have the same thing and often while speaking to people a name or situation will just popp into my head. when I ask that person if they know that so and so they will be stunned, i will than start talking about the things that pop up into my head and I find that I am spot on. Always thought I was mad, but not anymore. thanks for the very understanding articles

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