Tips On Investigating
Many people and ask how they can go about investigating a haunted house or other location. I hope some of the following tips will help with these questions!
Be honest! Don’t attempt to fool people into thinking you found something when you didn’t. NO person or group has 100 % positive findings, so don’t be afraid to say so.
Be persistent. One of the things most frustrating to new ghosthunters is that they truly DON’T find anything. Be patient and be persistent. But remember that approximately 1 in 20 cases will turn out to have paranormal activity. It may take a while before you get something. Keep in mind that as you learn, you may be better able to interpret your data… and you’ll be better able to spot paranormal activity.
Be prepared! Prior going out to a location, find out as much as you can about it physically (historical research might wait until after). Go out during the day so you are familiar with the layout. Save everything! No matter how unimportant it seems (photos and tapes with “nothing”), save it! Later interpretation by someone with a different viewpoint or more experience may bring interesting results. Regardless, SPIA routinely saves all evidence. It can also be handy to compare back to a possible positive photo, etc.
Write down everything! No matter how insignificant it seems write it down. Logs that detail noises (normal ones… like cars passing by) can go a long way to help correctly interpret audio sounds. Logs that detail people’s movement and equipment use can help correctly interpret a photo (such as a weird light that was really just a flashlight bouncing off a wall). Notes that seem inconsequential now may well be important when everything is brought together. Remember, it can never hurt to write it down, but it may hurt NOT to write it down.
Batteries! Batteries! Batteries! That may seem a little obvious, but you can go through a lot of batteries during an investigation! And you don’t want to be left in the dark…. Same goes for film, disks, tapes, pens, etc.
Take someone with you. Never investigate alone! This is for many reasons…safety in numbers for one. Also, to have a corroborating witness and to have someone help out. But don’t go overboard. Taking dozens of people probabl ywon’t get you anywhere and may irritate the property owner.
Take lots of photos and use the standard photography protocols to insure your work is clean. The more photos the better chance of capturing something.
Read! A lot! There are many different ideas, theories and methods. There are oodles of great books and great web sites.
Read and learn… that is the best way to soak up information.
Keep a notebook and write down everything that you want to remember. No one person has the lock on how to handle ghost research… learn from as many people as you can. Eventually you will sort out the best method for you.
Go do it! Practice makes perfect… go work an investigation using the things you’ve learned. Take lots of notes. Always look for rational and natural explanations BEFORE jumping to paranormal conclusions! Be critical in your thinking and use it to make the next investigation better.