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It’s a term from tech startups. The valley of despair is when the initial excitement wears off and the founders realize how much work goes into creating a company. Many quit. Experienced folks write about the valley so newcomers know it’s normal and stand a better chance of working through it.
(It’s from other places too. The bible? Anyway, I know it from tech startups.)
Magick research has a valley of despair, too. If you create new techniques, you’ll hit a point where the initial excitement is gone, you realize how much work goes into understanding and building this stuff, and you’ll want to quit. And you’ll stand a better chance of working through it if you know you’re not alone.
I’m in the valley this week with my sensation research:
- I’ve gotten my arms around the problem, and I see how big it is. These two often go hand in hand, by the way — It’s a good sign when you realize what’s involved in solving the problem, but that’s also the time it’s easiest to get overwhelmed.
- I’m learning to control energy consciously. That’s another good and necessary step, but it means I’m feeling the effort of learning each new step, at the same time I’m seeing how many steps there are.
- Sometimes I test a technique, manage to do all the steps right, and get better results than I’ve gotten with visualization. But often, I mess up one step and get no results. And about 1/3 of the time, I realize there are more steps than I thought, my list gets longer, and my valley gets deeper.
The valley will fill you with doubts. Is this project worth it? Am I even able to do it? What if magick isn’t real, and I’m just wasting all this time? Those thoughts are normal. They’ll pass once you get out of the valley.
There’s no secret to getting out. You simply work the problem, learn the techniques, keep going. Once one technique starts working — once you have something to show for your effort — you’ll find your way out.
Hopefully, knowing this is normal will help you keep going, too.If you liked this post, consider visiting my current blog at mikesententia.com.