Let’s start with the good news: “True hauntings are actually quite rare. They occur when spirits get stuck and can’t cross from this world to the spirit world, which doesn’t happen often,” says spiritual medium Erika Gabriel. The other good news? “Ghosts aren’t aggressive; a haunting can be freaky, yes, but remember that they don’t want to hurt you, they’re just upset,” she adds. Think there’s something a little other-worldly happening in your house? We asked Gabriel to share five tell-tale signs your house is haunted, and, more importantly, what to do to un-haunt it. Cue the creepy music.
A strange gut feeling
“If you go into a room and it simply doesn’t feel good or you don’t like it there, that can be a sign that a spirit is present,” says Gabriel. “Often times we second guess ourselves, but energy and intuition are everything.” Simply feeling weird vibes can be enough of an indication.
Unexplained physical sensations
Along with a strange gut feeling, you may experience some physical feelings, too — namely sudden chills that come on for no reason or suddenly feeling like the room is hot or cold. Your emotions can also inexplicably change suddenly. “Spirits that are stuck are unhappy and that negative energy can be transferred onto you in the form of anxiety or feeling upset, even when you aren’t,” says Gabriel.
Spirits often become upset because they think you are in their space and will start to move your things around as a result, says Gabriel. It can be large things, such as furniture, or small things, like your keys or wallet.
Spirit energy is intense, and as such it can often affect electronics — lights flickering, your phone or computer crashing, the TV randomly turning on. These types of electronic issues can also be a way that the spirit is trying to make its presence known to you, points out Gabriel.
Noises (especially in the middle of the night)
“Spirits are just going about their business, which is why you may hear footsteps or talking or laughing, even when no one is around,” says Gabriel. To add to the freaky factor, you’re most likely to notice this at night when your energy is quieter and calmer.
Thoroughly freaked out yet?
Don’t be. Step one is to NOT freak out, since that kind of frantic energy only contributes to the negative energy, says Gabriel. Easier said than done, but the reassuring thing is that cleansing your space is actually pretty easy — no Ghostbusters required.
First and foremost, clean your house. A deep clean and de-cluttering will go a long way in helping to clear the energy. Next, open all the doors and windows in your house, as well as any cabinets, closet doors, drawers…if it can be opened, open it, says Gabriel. Light a bundle of sage and walk through each and every room, moving it around the entire space, especially around each window and doorframe.
As you do so, repeat a positive mantra, positive being the key word. “You don’t want to go at this yelling, ‘get out, ghosts, you’re scary!’ Frame it in a positive way,” explains Gabriel. One option: “With my guides, I clear this space and cleanse this place of any negative energy and anything that’s stuck here. I ask you to go.” Finally, put out the sage and light a candle in the heart of your home (the kitchen, the family room, your bedroom). Close your eyes and imagine a white light surrounding your entire home, then blow out the candle. Haunted house no more.