Starters Guide – Paranormal Investigating 1

One of the hardest things to do is to put together information sheets in a field so diverse that it will go against the thoughts of many who are participants within it. There are a multitude of ways to operate in this field of study and research, and at this time no one can lay claim to a correct way of operation.

Please use this article as a rough outline and not as gospel and do not feel inclined to follow it precisely to the letter. Some of the information that you are about to read has come from investigators who have taken part within international paranormal investigators(IPI) at various points in the last six years. No one person has constructed this information based solely upon their own hypothesis, it is a collective constructed article which has been pieced together to assist newcomers to this field. It will be put on-line in parts spanning time, this is the first of those parts with more to follow at future dates.

• Proper mindset, positive relationships and sharing.
• Continuous learning, evolving with the field and brainstorming.
• Full respect to both clients and locations.
• Common-sense, exhausting natural possibilities and truthful reporting.

We fully agree with PJay who is an IPI staff member when she said:

“I think one of the best things new people can do is ask questions. Not only ask how something is done, ask why also.”

So let us say at this point that if you have any questions that you need answered or that you’re unsure of, please do get in touch with one of us here and we will be happy to help.


What some newcomers fail to understand is that this field is based on cooperation not competition. We are all here for a common goal and thus we need to have very healthy relationships with our fellow colleagues. If you enter this field to be competitive you will not survive very long within it, we have witnessed the demise of many teams and individuals due to the aforementioned.

The key to having a very successful time within the paranormal community it is to be very respectful towards all those around you. Treat everyone as you equal, learn from all the seasoned investigators who have operated at a higher level for many years and be open, honest and sharing while you operate. Remove all inclinations toward competition, negativity and related behaviours from your mindset at this point. If you choose not to, I would stop reading at this point as the following information will not serve you in any way, shape or form.

It has been witnessed that those who come together in the common goal of progression within this research field tend to have very successful teams, friendships and projects. Due to the openness of their relationships and the sharing aspects that they employ in all their dealings, they become very influential in the sense that many of us take their advice and information very serious.

The above behaviour is a good target to aim for if you’re serious about participating in this field.

Learning & Application

We believe that Ian Murphy from Paranormal Research Association of Boston was spot-on when he said in one of his articles on starting a paranormal research team:

“Teams pop up all the time however a high percentage of them fail within their first year. This is generally due to bad planning, inability to manage the team and resources and inability to gain clients or their trust.”

We have witnessed a plethora of teams, researchers, spiritual individuals and hobbyists fold or give up over time due to lack of planning, learning and application. To highlight firstly, no one knows it all within this field regardless of what they say or do and how many media performances they have taken part in. If you close your mind and are egotistical enough to truly believe that you know everything about investigating the paranormal you most certainly will not be successful in your research. We are all students within this field on different levels of experience through the knowledge we are gaining by proper application of what we are learning.

I would advise personally that you seek out an established organisation online and study what makes them so fantastic within this field. You will find that it is due to proper planning along with application of what they have learned and done in a professional, respectable manner.

So your first steps are to locate and study a successful well-established paranormal organisation and begin your note taking and planning which in turn should be followed up by proper action i.e. application.


We have already looked at respect in the case of fellow colleagues and the field at large but a very important area is respect to both client and locations we research. How many times have we seen newspaper articles where a group of people under the heading of “ghost hunters” have been found guilty of trespassing, damaging or breaking into property?

Worse still, we have seen a rise in clients who’ve been mistreated by people claiming to be researchers and proclaiming to the clients that they have X amount of spirits, vortexes or other unverified circumstances. This has led to people fleeing their homes or being so scared that they cannot even sleep at night, this is totally unacceptable.

Always be respectful to all clients, locations and under no circumstances use your title to place fear or hurt on anyone. If you’re unsure, keep quiet and consult one of your peers with more knowledge within the field.


Jim Brown, IPI coordinator and independent paranormal investigator based state-side said it beautifully when he shared the following:

“Keep your eyes, ears, and mind open”

We would also say that you should keep your common-sense revved up and at the forefront of your mind while investigating, networking and operating on any level within the field.

Please make it one of your top objectives to exhaust all possibilities of natural phenomena while investigating the paranormal. Do not under any circumstances ham up your field visits so as to look good or unique, this while kill your reputation stone dead when found out. It harms the field, clients and makes a mockery of what we are trying to do as a whole.

Stay true to yourself, your team and your paranormal colleagues.

We wish to leave it at this point so as to expand in the future on this very brief beginners guide. Do not overload on too much information at this point, work on the basics as explained in this article and then continue the expansion.

Feel free to visit the resource board (at IPI) where you will find the beginners section with various pieces of information. It is completely membership free to access and will provide more than enough information at this point. Please continue to check back to this very website as we will be providing many more articles to assist.


Ryan O’Neill
Haunted Scotland
IPI Coordinator

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