The Method to my Madness: One Investigator’s Look at How to Investigate the Paranormal


By Kate

When most people hear I am a paranormal investigator, they immediately think of a ghost hunter on TV, provoking spirits and being assaulted by demons. It’s a lot of yelling and scary and nonstop action. The reality is much different. Three quarters of a typical investigation is sitting in the dark talking to yourself. Every investigator has their own unique style. Some prefer to isolate themselves, others investigate together as a team. There are those that use a ton of gadgets and wire the place like they’re going on air, while others are perfectly content to sit in the dark with a voice recorder and a KII meter.

How I Investigate

Regardless of the method, the thing that is most important to me is respect. Respect for the location, respect for the spirits and respect for the living. When I get to a location, I like to walk through alone and get a feel for the property. I wander aimlessly from place to place, absorbing the energy, and simply listening. If I feel drawn to a certain area, I’ll go that way, I try to let the spirits lead the way. Sometimes I stop and sit quietly to see what happens.

During my initial walk, I’ll introduce myself to anyone who may be around, tell them why I’m there and what my intentions are. I think it’s crucial that they know I understand they were once living, had feelings, had a life. I acknowledge they may be afraid and try to connect to them on an emotional level. I’ve discovered as I continue to do this, that I feel a strong need to be understanding and build trust before I ask for anything from them in return. I want to bring a human element to my investigations as if I’m having a chat with a new friend. I want to know about them, what they’re experiencing, what we can do to help them.

I often think about my Mom who has been gone eight years now, and what I would want to know if I ever had the chance to speak to her. When asking questions during an investigation, it’s important to me to really listen to the answers. Many times the line of questions and the investigation itself takes a completely different turn than expected based on the responses given. Keeping an open mind and not getting caught up in what you think you know is huge. When wrapping up, I think it’s just as important to say goodbye, thank them for their time and for speaking with me and to let them know that they aren’t forgotten.

Investigations Are Opportunities

There aren’t any experts in this field and it’s one of the things about it that I love most. Every investigation is an opportunity to learn. Every location has a story to tell, even if it’s not the story you were expecting. Many may disagree and find that spitting out the same questions at every location and sticking a REM pod and a camera in a corner is investigating. That an EVP or two and they’ve done their due diligence and proven a location is haunted. To me, the victory is in the connection. It’s walking out in the morning and feeling like you’ve made a difference. Not only for those who still roam the property but the living who may share the space.

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