How to become a psychic medium

There's no better place to learn how to become a psychic medium than at The College of Psychic Studies. We outline the central tenets of the practice...

By: The College of Psychic Studies.   Posted

One of the most common questions we get asked at The College of Psychic Studies is: 'How do I become a psychic medium?' We relish this question because the answer is simple: If you're asking, it indicates that you are a psychic medium waiting to happen. You may just need to work on developing your innate skills. 'Innate' is the operative word here because we ALL have the potential to develop our psychic and mediumistic gifts. 

So, whether you want to blaze a trail like Tyler Henry and Theresa Caputo, or would simply like to learn an incredible skill that will serve you for the rest of your life, you just need to put in the practice – and plenty of patience. To get you started, we have listed the most important steps of how to become a psychic medium. But first, an important question…

Person with fingers to temples receiving psychic information.

What is the difference between a psychic and a medium?

What is a psychic? 

A professional psychic tunes into our past, present and possible future to intuit information about us. They can feel, sense and see aspects of our character, home life, family, career, emotional health and more. There are four main ways in which the psychic receives this information, depending on their predominant 'clair':

  • clairvoyant ('clear seeing') means you receive information by seeing it in your mind's eye
  • clairsentient ('clear feeling') is about feeling information through the body, for example, you might feel anxious if the person you are reading for is stressed, or you may experience a pain in our kidney if they have an issue there.
  • clairaudient ('clear hearing') psychics hear messages. For example, your inner voice might tell you the names of your sitter's children, or the suburb in which they live.
  • claircognizant ('clear knowing') psychics simply know. If you ask the claircognizant psychic, 'How do you know that?', they will respond, 'I just do!'

What is a medium?

If you have psychic abilities, it does not necessarily mean you are a medium (yet!). The most important difference between a psychic and a medium is that psychics do not communicate with spirits, whereas mediums do. Mediums talk to the dead; they communicate with those who have passed on from this world. Senior College Tutor Anthony Kesner compares mediumship to a radio station. He says: 'If you want to listen to Capital Radio, you tune into 95.8. But if the radio is tuned to 95.7, you won't quite hear it.' A psychic medium must tune into the correct station to receive the information they are seeking from spirit. They must also develop the stamina to keep that vibration in order to establish coherent communication with spirit.

A radio showing how mediumship is like radio waves.

Your psychic superpower

The key to being a psychic medium is intuition. Have you ever thought of a friend hours or minutes before they call you? Or perhaps you've experienced an overwhelming urge to go somewhere, only to realise, in retrospect, that there was a very good reason for going there. Alternatively, you may just know something about someone without them telling you, or you may sense that something is going to happen before it happens. It could be that you can detect when someone is telling a fib. That's your intuition in action.

We are all born with intuition. It is our sixth sense; our gut feeling; our inner knowing. Whatever you want to call it, it's that internal radar that alerts us when something feels right or wrong, safe or dangerous, an opportunity or a dead end. And every psychic medium knows that this intuition is our superpower.

How do I know if I am psychic?

According to legendary psychic medium Ivy Northage, who taught psychic mediumship at The College of Psychic Studies in the 1970s, the natural psychic is vulnerable to receiving spontaneous or random messages, forewarnings, advice or bytes of information that come from 'out of the blue'. Ivy lists four signs that suggest you have psychic potential:

  • You may be more sensitive.
  • You may be more aware of the atmosphere of a place or vibe of a person.
  • You just know when something is 'good' or 'bad'.
  • You may suspect when people are not telling the truth.

If you have any of the above psychic signs, Ivy Northage would suggest you have great potential to grow your natural psychic gift. But don't try and run before you can walk! At this early stage of your psychic development, the above signs will have no pattern, control or directive. They are not controlled by you in any way. Indeed, these psychic signs are completely random in how you experience them. In a sense, you are at their whim. That is, unless you consciously apply yourself to learning how to control and order their activation. This is the aim of those who wish to become a psychic medium.

Ghostly energies in a dark room.

The first step to becoming a psychic medium

Now that we have established that you are naturally psychic, how do we actually become a psychic medium? Recognition is your first step. Any programme of serious psychic development must begin with the recognition that you have psychic ability. For some, this ability might be just a tiny inkling of one of Ivy Northage's psychic signs listed above. While for others, it might be a more heightened awareness of your abilities. Whatever your level right now, it is important at this stage to admit to – and own! – your psychic potential. Affirm to yourself, with assurance, that you have some degree of psychic ability. This is your first step to becoming a psychic medium.

Get to know your spirit guides and helpers

As soon as you commit to becoming a psychic medium, your spirit guides and helpers will start coming through to support, guide and assist you. In fact, they are already here with you, waiting in the wings for you to step up. It's important at this stage that you start to get to know your spirit guides and helpers. Spend time becoming familiar with how they work with you. Your spirit guides and helpers are your greatest friends on the path of psychic mediumship. They are your support network, your teachers, and your road map. If you ever experience doubt on the spiritual path, they are your first port of call. You can never go wrong if you listen to the advice of your spirit guides and helpers.

A Native American spirit guide walking through a twilit landscape.

Follow the signs

Once we accept that we want to become a psychic medium, our guides and helpers will immediately step in to support us. They will endeavour to bring us the opportunities for development that we need to grow in our spiritual mediumship. These opportunities come in a variety of subtle, unobtrusive ways. For instance, you'll see a sign on a passing bus that echoes a revelation you just had, or you'll meet exactly the right person to help you answer a burning question. Think of these as gentle pointers in the right direction, or breadcrumbs from the universe. Here is a great example of one of these pointers: It's really no surprise that you have landed on this page at The College of Psychic Studies!

Prepare for increased sensitivity

As soon as you start developing your psychic mediumship skills, you will experience an expansion in your aura. This results in an increasing sensitivity. Things that previously didn't bother you – such as sounds or people's voices – might start to affect you deeply. You may not be able to bear loud noises or being around too many people, for instance. Furthermore, this increased sensitivity might manifest in moods such as apprehension, irritability or depression. These moods may seem to come at you from out of the blue. This is because your expanding aura is picking up information from the world around you. As you progress on your path of psychic development, this sensitivity becomes infinitely more acute. But don't worry – there are ways of managing it… and that's where learning how to ground and protect yourself comes in.

Learn how to protect yourself

It is essential for your wellbeing as a spiritual medium that you learn how to manage your increased sensitivity. The answer? Protect yourself. Rest assured, protecting yourself won't inhibit the expansion of your aura. However, it will consciously insulate you from the atmosphere around you. It is one of the most important tools you can learn at this stage of your psychic mediumship development. Psychic mediums use various techniques for protection. For example:

  • Some imagine they are encased in a space suit. 
  • Others visualise that they are inside a reflective bubble or a mirror ball. 
  • Another technique is to imagine that you are sitting beneath a waterfall, washing away what isn't yours (for instance, those moods we spoke of above). 

Try a variety of visualisations to find the one that works most effectively for you. It is essential to keep yourself protected because this helps you maintain your own vibration and it insulates you from the energy, moods and influences of others.

Bubble visualisation for psychic protection

Trust yourself

In learning how to become a spiritual medium, it's crucial that we relearn how to trust our intuition. In fact, learning how to trust yourself is one of the most important things you can gain from attending psychic and mediumship development classes at the College. As Senior College Tutor Gerrie March says, this self-trust can have many advantages for you in your everyday life. When we start trusting the information – the guidance – that comes through for us, we'll discover that our life starts to change. The more we develop that self-trust, the more information, guidance and insight will come to you from your guides and helpers. This will serve you in making positive changes.

Expect resistance...

Resistance comes in two forms. The first kind of resistance is external. This is when those around you question your decision to become a psychic medium. For instance, you may encounter doubt from friends or family who misunderstand the intuitive path. They question your motives for studying psychic mediumship because they don't really understand what it's all about. The second is internal, which comes in the form of doubt, self-criticism and confusion. This form of resistance is trickier to overcome. However, it is an inevitable and crucial stage of your spiritual journey. When we learn to overcome this resistance, and really begin to trust in our innate gifts, our growth and development is assured. So if you are questioning: 'How do I become a spiritual medium?' your simple answer is, don't let your resistance get in the way!

Pay attention

Occasionally, the information we receive through our psychic senses is completely at odds with our rational mind. Our rational mind has been trained to think and act in a certain way by various social institutions. We have all learned appropriate modes of behaviour from our school, family, workplace and society at large. Furthermore, we have been taught about the things that society holds valuable, such as a 'sensible' job, a house, a car etc. We have perhaps been taught that our psychic abilities are nonsensical or flights of fancy. We are trained to override them and trust our rational mind instead. Most of us have learnt to ignore the information we receive through our psychic senses. So, when you receive those random bytes of information, sit up and pay attention! 

Stop self-editing

Self-editing is the enemy of good spiritual mediumship. When we start out developing our mediumship, we have a tendency to question the information that we receive. If something sounds a bit strange or nonsensical to us, we don't want to vocalise it for fear of getting it wrong. College Tutor Gary Wright says: 'You've got a lot of information, and people start to filter it to look for what's right. And because they're nervous or uncomfortable, they start to filter out what they've got. You don't want to do that. You want to be very confident and put it across in a professional manner.' If the information is from Spirit, you can rest assured that it's accurate. You can trust it. If you want to become a professional psychic medium, it's important to trust.

Say it as it is

Being a good psychic medium is really about being a good messenger. That means, it is about trusting, and delivering with integrity, the information that comes through from Spirit. College Tutor Daniel Pitt says that ultimately, there's only one question that any medium needs to ask the Spirit world, and that is: 'What do you need of me.' He elaborates: 'If you receive what Mum needs to say, it will always be right. Mum may not need to say that her name was Betty, but she might want to say: 'You moved my photo yesterday when you were dusting,' or: 'I was there yesterday at your son's assembly.' This proves the presence of Mum. Trust that Mum knows what to say!'

Commit to working with integrity

When you have decided to become a psychic medium, you must recognise that you have chosen a vocation of service. You have chosen to willingly offer your gifts in service to uplifting your those around you. Ivy Northage recalls St Paul's Corinthians:13, in that anything done without love is valueless. Be sincere that you have a gift, and that you wish to use it on behalf of your fellow beings. There is no ulterior motive, here. Being a psychic medium is not about establishing power or gaining respect and influence. Rather, it is about the upliftment of humankind, and making a positive contribution. As soon as you have adopted the affirmation: 'Whatever gifts or potential I have, I want to use them to benefit others,' then your journey to becoming a psychic medium begins in earnest. Your helpers and spirit guides have been waiting for this moment!

There is a time and a place

As we start to receive information and gain confidence in our psychic mediumship gifts, it is very tempting to use them all the time. After all, we can really help our friends and family – and even the shopkeeper or woman sitting next to us on the bus! Resist the urge, and make sure you apply your gifts in the appropriate time and place. Your psychic mediumship is not a party trick! Treat it with respect, with reverence. You are offering the highest and best of yourself, so create strong boundaries around your psychic mediumship. When in doubt if it is appropriate to share your psychic mediumship gifts with someone, ask your spirit guides and helpers. With their help, you can be confident when it is right to use your gifts.

You can never go backwards

Once you start developing along the path of becoming a spiritual medium, you will experience endless variety in your gifts. However, you can never go backwards. So don't despair if it appears that you have lost an ability that you previously used to have. Ivy compares the progress of the psychic medium to a chrysalis. As you further refine and develop your gifts, you begin to understand how to better manage them, and stabilise your abilities. Gradually, your gifts become more established. You are developing constantly, and as you grow, you will start to enter new, unknown terrains. Your confidence may be undermined, as you are constantly growing and being introduced to new things. The key is to keep stabilising and supporting yourself.

Don't be afraid to develop

The journey of the spiritual medium may take many routes. You might be called to be a healer, or a tutor or consultant at the College, or a person who gives comfort in bereavement. It may be that you feel called to use your gifts in combination with tarot or lenormand cards or palm reading. All of these skills are opportunities to use and develop your psychic mediumship gifts to help others. You will be guided every step of the way, so listen closely to what your guides and helpers direct you to do, and dive in!

Remain detached

When we step onto the path of becoming a psychic medium, we offer ourselves in service. This means that the emphasis shifts from 'me' to 'we'. It no longer becomes about what I want as an individual. Rather, it becomes: 'Here I am! Where do you want me?' As Ivy Northage says, you cannot possibly know the true value of your psychic power. You can only offer it in service of spirit. That means you must follow the guidance from your spirit helpers. You may never have imagined that you would be called to do platform work… but here you are, offering a live demonstration! Whatever your calling, honour it and follow your guidance.

Remember, you are only human!

Having said that, it is also important to remember that you have needs. It is all very well to wish to dedicate yourself wholeheartedly to being in service of Spirit. However, you must take care of your physical body. Nourish yourself, rest well, and ensure that your physical needs are taken care of. When in doubt, always listen to your helpers and guides.

Enjoy the path

You have chosen a wonderful journey of awakening and development, and as College Tutor Maria Antoniou says, you can never stop learning! There is always room to grow, to develop, to learn something new. Our online courses in psychic training and mediumship development celebrate this! We look forward to helping you discover gifts you never knew you had. 

Much of this article was adapted from a lecture presented by Ivy Northage at The College of Psychic Studies called What Defines a Psychic Medium? To learn how to be a psychic medium, our beginner courses are a great place to start.