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A Guide For Sitters - Useful Advice For People Having Readings With Mediums and Psychics

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There is a great deal of literature about how to become a medium or psychic, but less is written about how to be a good sitter - i.e. the person having the reading.

In my opinion, good "sitters" get the best readings.

This is a guide for people who go to mediums and psychics, either for messages from the spirit world, and/or psychic guidance. Later on I will clarify the different types of reading.
I am a medium, therefore the advice is strongly slanted towards things to be aware of in that type of reading. However, I believe the things I talk about relate to most types of reading and should be helpful to many.

Apart from the potential "sitters" who read this guide, some of you will be doing readings yourselves and just be interested in what I have to say on the subject. Alternatively, you may be just starting your own psychic development and needing clarification as to how you should conduct your readings.

Psychics and mediums learn much from the way another person works, and when a reading has not turned out well we can learn from that too. In fact every reading is a joint learning experience between the sitter and the medium. We need to have a clear understanding of the role that each has to play in a reading. The best readings I give are often to people who understand the process a little and wish to help me to do the best for them that I can.

What I write, is of course my own opinion. I am not speaking on behalf of all mediums and psychics in this guide. However, I hope that by writing this I will not only be helping sitters, but also my colleagues in this work.

Chapter one Deciding what type of reading you want, and understanding the differences.

Many people describe themselves as mediums, though they don't in fact provide evidence of the survival of the spirit.

If you are wishing to receive confirmation of the continuing existence of a loved one it is important to make sure that the person you choose can do this.
The word "medium" is generally accepted by Spiritualists to mean someone who can link with a person in the spirit world and provide information from them to prove their continuing survival in that world.

However, many people consider the word "medium" to mean a person who can convey information from an unseen source, regardless of whether the source is the spirit world, telepathy, or psychic awareness.

I'm not going to split too many hairs about this, but you need to always check that your medium/psychic is going to be the type you want.

You will see advertisements using some of the following words:

Medium, Psychic Medium, Psychic, Psychic Guidance, Fortune Teller, Prediction......The list is endless.......

Psychics and mediums all have their own definitions of what these words mean, so check before you spend your money. I will give you my own definition of the differences in terminology and I will try not to make it too complicated:

Most readings in my own experience are a mixture of both spirit communication and psychic impression. In my own opinion people describing themselves as mediums should be able to communicate with other personalities in the spirit world, conveying survival evidence ( e.g. physical description, characteristics, past memories etc.) as well as spirit guidance.

A psychic link, however, is attuning mostly to the sitter's own energy, (though possibly to the spirit world as well), producing impressions about the sitter and the circumstances in their life. A psychic reading can be very clarifying and helpful in some situations.

This is perhaps a good moment to point out that a great number of sitters do not wish to have a link with the spirit world. I have done many readings for people who do not want this, asking for a psychic reading only.

Remember though, always check that the person giving you the reading understands what type of help you feel you need, so that they have an opportunity to tell you whether or not they feel they can provide it.

Chapter two Email/postal readings.

Attuning to someone, (or to someone who is in the spirit world) without visual or spoken contact with the sitter is definitely possible. Some mediums and psychics find this easier than others. It can be very successful with both mediumship and psychic work. All the points I make in this guide apply equally to this type of reading as to any other. Perhaps with this type of reading it is even more important to be prepared to give the medium/psychic a little background information, because this type of reading is often directed to specific questions.

Chapter three A few words about Prediction.

I find the most popular mediums are people who can attune to the spirit world to provide evidence and guidance, as well as being prepared to work on a psychic level to a certain degree as well. However, I also notice that many mediums, (myself included), are wary of trying to predict future events.

As most sitters are hoping to find out something about what lies ahead they are often disappointed.

On the other hand there are many mediums and psychics who seem to have an unlimited access to details about your future. In this instance I advise caution.

Very often we are given information from Spirit about "possibilities," but this is not necessarily accurate prediction. I believe we all have free will, and options to choose from. It may be that our more evolved helpers in the spirit world have some insight as to what our eventual choices are likely to lead us to, but it is up to us to choose if we are going to bring about one circumstance or another. The people we share our life with also have free will, and therefore their own decisions can alter your course. Nothing is cut and dried....though the "likely" outcome can be shown to us sometimes.

This is my own opinion. Many mediums and psychics share this opinion, and there are others who disagree.

Chapter four Is it from spirit?

People giving readings sometimes claim everything they are saying to you is from the spirit world, when this may not be the case. This does not necessarily mean you are having a fraudulent reading. If the information and guidance you are receiving is uplifting and helpful then you can be sure it is spirit inspired, even if it is coming from the spiritual awareness of the medium/psychic rather than from another personality in spirit...... This is perfectly feasible as we all belong to spirit though we are still in a physical body.

Another possibility is that the medium may be receiving influence from someone in the spirit world to say a particular thing to you even though they have not identified who it is. This may, or may not, give you any proof of the spirit survival of a particular individual, but it can still be very important and confirming to you. It is not always easy for the medium to be sure of the source, i.e. whether it is from their own spiritual awareness or from another person.
For true survival evidence though, you need information to validate it. Sometimes one piece of evidence alone can be so outstanding that no more confirmation is needed.

If you want proof of spirit survival ask the medium to provide it. If they claim to be a medium you are entitled to expect the evidence. However, do not be fixed about what that evidence must be. If you have a specific agenda about what the medium has to tell you in order for you to be convinced, you will nearly always end up disappointed. Mediums need to be open to what the spirit world is saying to them. If they are hampered by your own expectation they will often not be able to produce their best results.

Some mediums can receive certain types of information more easily than others. For instance some mediums are clairvoyant ( seeing), others are clairaudient, (hearing), and nearly all of them are clairsentient (feeling). Some have all these abilities, others will have one or two of them. These different abilities, combine with the mediums own perception, making every medium unique in their method of linking to spirit and transmitting the communication back to you.

Please don't make the mistake, which is so common, of sabotaging your own reading by your own preconceived idea of what the medium should be able to "pick up."

Some mediums are excellent at providing names addresses, and even, sometimes, the previous phone numbers of our spirit friends. Others may have very little success with that type of evidence yet they will "feel" the spirit person, and describe characteristics, previous ailments etc and receive information about past events very clearly indeed.

Others will be good at describing peoples' appearances or perhaps the neighbourhood they lived in. These are just a few examples.

The evidence that can be obtained is limitless, though there are few mediums who are consistently good at receiving all those types of evidence. However, those who take their work seriously never stop trying to improve their range of evidence.

I had a conversation with another medium recently. She was telling me how a reading of hers was going well until the sitter started pressing for more and more detail, telling the medium that it was most important that she get this absolutely right as the information was vital to her. Result? You guessed it, my friend was pressured and lost the link.

It's so important to remember that a medium does not always have an unfailing, ongoing clear link to the spirit world. We are mostly just ordinary, people who have learned that it is possible to communicate with spirit and have practiced and studied it in order to do this work. We can fall down on the job under pressure just as anyone else can in their own professions.

Chapter five If the reading does not work.

Do not feel there is something wrong with you if a medium says they cannot make a link for you, or if a psychic cannot sense anything for you.

It does not mean, (as some people fear), that the medium/psychic is seeing something they don't want to tell you. Sometimes they just cannot get the information clear enough. This can be because they are just not properly attuned or because they feel a little lacking in confidence that day, and also it can be because you are making it a little too difficult for them. We sometimes expect the medium/psychic to have extraordinary clarity from the first moment of contact and this can be unfair.

As this is a guide to help you get a good reading, I cannot avoid this point... I am not an advocate of mediums who blame their sitters for their "off" days, but sometimes sitters can spoil their own reading, as mentioned earlier, by being too black and white in their expectation.

Chapter six When to say "no thanks".

Whatever type of reading you have, if someone gives you the impression that they have seen something unpleasant that they don't want to disclose, or if they have said something distressing, just get up and go. Anything upsetting to you is almost certainly not a genuine spirit communication. People in the spirit world need to come with warm feelings of friendship in order to make a clear link. If they do not come that way then the message is likely to be confused and untrustworthy.

People who are your friends may be blunt with you, but they will not say something that would be expected to distress you, and this goes for friends in spirit too. Therefore, anything of a distressing nature in a reading is likely to have been misinterpreted, or at worst "imagined" by the medium.

Spirit sometimes want to tell you something that they wish you to be cautious about. That is fine, but they will not wish to upset you.

I can tell you with my hand on my heart, that I have done many readings with beautiful strong spirit contacts and never once picked up anything frightening. Occasionally an unpleasant memory may need to be referred to, but it is never given to me in an upsetting way. I have always been fascinated by the sensitivity of our spirit friends with difficult situations. In fact I am often aware that they are expressing things with more diplomacy than I do myself!

Also, I advise you to steer clear of people who talk about curses and especially those who say they can remove them for a fee. Remember that fear is the only thing that can harm you. Unfortunately a few unpleasant psychics take advantage of people with fear, in order to get into their pockets.

Note: Mediums and psychics can sometimes be a bit big headed ( like anyone else), so do not feel intimidated if they insist something is right, when you feel yourself that it is wrong.

Also, do not assume that because a medium/psychic has a gift it makes them a better person. They are normal people with varying characteristics, some good and some not so good....just like everyone else.

Chapter seven Telephone readings.

If you are thinking of having a telephone reading where you pay by the minute, I suggest you first ring their customer service number to ask which readers can provide the type of reading you want, and check if you can have a refund if you are disappointed with it. The level of ability on those lines is very varied, but that goes for readings generally. However, when you pay for any type of reading in advance you need to know beforehand what is going to happen if you are disappointed with the standard.

It is often difficult for people to accept that a medium or psychic can work effectively on the phone. I can tell you from personal experience that the spirit world will work with a genuine medium through any means available in order to prove their survival to their loved ones. I actually prefer to work this way. I find it works just as well as having the sitter with me in person. In fact I often find people are more relaxed with me on the telephone and that always helps a sitting to flow better. I think psychic work also works very well through voice contact only.

In any sitting, either by telephone or in person, it is important to talk to the medium.

I do not mean that you should be giving information to the medium, I am just talking about clarification. This is a debatable issue between mediums and I will say more about this in the following chapter.

Chapter eight  Don't mind if the medium asks some questions.

A good medium will always strive to get the information exactly right, but we need to be realistic about this. Of course, it is quite ridiculous for the medium to ask you to provide the information which they should be seeking from the spirit world for you. However, unless a medium has perfect objective clairaudience ( hearing spirit as they would hear a person in the physical world), then the communication has to be transferred from Spirit to the medium's mind by using the medium's faculties of seeing, sensing, or spiritual telepathy. This means that the message can be wrongly interpreted. The more skillful the medium is, the less likely they are to mess it up, but even the best mediums in the world will sometimes need to ask you to clarify something.

Try to imagine a spirit message as a blank crossword grid. Now imagine the medium receiving impressions that have to be converted into words which will fit this grid properly. If the words go into the wrong squares, i.e. incorrect context, then your message may be a bit muddled and you will need to think about it and sort it out for yourself afterwards. On the other hand, if the medium feels free to ask one or two questions to clarify where the information fits in, you will get a comprehensible message instead of a puzzle.

Some mediums are amazingly accurate and clear, and a joy to listen to as they work. They hardly ever need to ask a question and their ability is admirable. However, many very good mediums sometimes need to ask you to clarify something they are receiving. It is usually obvious to you if the questions are due to incompetence on the part of the medium or psychic. I advise a common sense approach to this. If it seems that your reading will be improved by providing some clarification in order to assist the medium to place your message, then please do not be afraid to give it.

A reading is a wonderful opportunity to communicate with loved ones in the spirit world, so do not spoil it by failing to give a little leeway. I have always maintained that sometimes if you give an inch to a medium it enables them to give you a mile back. I advise you not to be automatically dismissive of mediums who ask reasonable questions.

Chapter nine Things that can affect the medium's performance.

Some spirit communications are clearer than others. This is due mainly to two things in my opinion: Firstly, the expertise of the medium, and also how clearly they are attuned, (which can be temporarily affected by circumstances beyond their control). Mediums individually have various factors which can affect their clarity ranging from low energy and stress to, - believe it or not, - climatic conditions. In fact the very things that give you a hard day in the office or at the factory can affect a medium's work.

Secondly, the people they are communicating with in the spirit world can affect the standard. People who were not good communicators in the physical life are likely to be just the same in the spirit world. Spiritual growth does not entirely change the personality, (thank goodness).

I urge you to always be a little flexible and enable your medium to give you the very best standard they can reach that day.


At the end of the day we are all individuals. No two mediums or psychics work in exactly the same way ( at least not genuine ones), and no two sitters are the same either. One person's favourite medium/psychic may not be another person's cup of tea.
In this guide I am trying to give you a clearer understanding of what is happening with many mediums and psychics when they read for you, so that you can approach them with more flexibility and awareness of the process.

If you want spirit survival evidence, make sure you know if the medium/psychic is giving you information from their own spiritual awareness, or from another personality in the spirit world. If they claim the latter ask for evidence....but don't be specific that it has to be a certain piece of information. Many of us arrange a secret code for loved ones to pass back from the spirit world when they die, to prove the message is from them. If you are too focused on that you can actually make the medium tense. He/she will be aware of a block in the flow if your mind is too fixed on a particular piece of evidence, and the reading will suffer for it. Many sitters do not realise that by relaxing with the medium, they are helping their own spirit friends to relax with this medium also. My very best wishes to you all.....have wonderful readings....many of them.......

My name is Janet Harrison. For a number of years I provided readings for people, mostly evidential links(my favourite thing) and mainly by telephone. I do not currently feel able to continue with them. If this changes I will make a note here. Best wishes to all.

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