Survey Results: How Psychics ‘See’

Martha Dunlop New to This, Ready for More 11 Comments

I’ve had a fabulous response to this survey, and I want to send out a big thank you to everyone who’s taken part and shared the link. It’s really fascinating to see how you all experience your gifts, and I hope that sharing this information might help people to see that what they feel is normal.

This survey is not intended to be scientific. Instead it gives a broader picture than I could give you on my own. Here I tell you how 76 people, all of whom consider themselves to be psychic, intuitive or an empath, experience their gifts. If you have anything to add, please do join the conversation in the comments section below.

What does psychic really mean? And how do people see and hear intuitively?

These are questions that fascinate me. I know how I see and hear, and what the term psychic means to me, but I know other people experience their gifts in very different ways.

On TV and in books extrasensory gifts are very black and white. People know everything, or they’re completely ‘normal’. If they have visions, they pass out or enter into the scene in an almost physical way. Messages are irrefutable and iron clad.

In reality my experience has been very different. It takes time to learn what a message from spirit feels like, and what is your own imagination. It’s only as I’ve developed psychically that the differences have become clearer and it’s become easy to tell.

Alison Gowdridge

‘I sense energy and this gift’s definitely increased over the years, certainly since working as a healer. Psychic impressions I’ve always been aware of. Growing up it’s seemed more of a feeling and knowing, later during development my sight kicked in, but it’s certainly not an outer sight, it’s more like fleeting images in my mind. When I close my eyes at night, I often get images of people I don’t know and have no real understand of who or what these images are. I often find it hard to go off to sleep, so I just ask the archangels to protect me and for those individuals to go. I’ve had some powerful experiences, particularly when I was in a psychic circle and was developing. I must have remained open, but can recall walking past individuals in shops and getting their deceased relatives come through. That was weird because I didn’t feel I could just go up to a stranger and say, hey I have your wife here!’ Visit Alison’s Facebook page at: Intuitive Reiki, Mind, Body and Spirit

What are your psychic skills?

My survey tells me, that the vast majority of respondents, (79.3%) describe themselves as clairsentient or an empath. This means their intuition manifests through feeling, allowing them to experience the emotions around them from places and other people. This can be very uncomfortable if you are around someone negative and don’t know how to protect yourself. If you would like to find out about psychic protection techniques, please click here.

The next most common gift according to my research, is claircognizance (52.7%), or clear knowing. This manifests as an inner certainty that something is right, or will happen. I find it easiest to recognise this sense when something is coming up that would normally worry me. If I ‘should’ be worried but I’m not, that is my intuition talking. I never take anxiety as an indication of intuition because it muddies the waters too much. It’s almost impossible to tell what’s real, and what’s an over active imagination.

Clairvoyance and clairaudience are the skills most typically associated with being psychic, with people seeing energy or hearing information or voices. But only 43% of people considering themselves to be psychic or intuitive describe themselves as clairvoyant, and only 39.19% as clairaudient.

Clairalience (smell – 16.22%) and clairgustance (taste – 6.76%) were the least acknowledged skills.

This is fascinating for those who want to help people develop their gifts, because it tells us that working with feeling and knowing is an important way to go.

Lisa Boswell

‘The most comfortable way to develop spiritually, I believe, is to form a relationship with spirits around you (which are typically passed relatives). Notice the ‘signs’ they send, observe coincidences and take notes of dreams. Know they’re only there to help and guide you. The more aware you are of spirit AND the more you accept your gifts the easier psychic ability is to live with. ‘ Visit Lisa’s website at:

How do you experience your skills?

To me, this is the most fascinating question. Do people see energy in their minds, through their eyes as a transparency, or solid, and in the case of the last, do they become confused about what is ‘real’?

At this stage in my life I see in my mind, with occasional occurrences of seeing energy as a transparency. This is a skill I am trying to develop.

I know I have the ability to see energy with my eyes. As I child I once looked out of the window and saw a group of people sitting in a circle in my garden. My parents have a round feature in their garden in that very spot to this day. Other times I looked at a dark window and saw a face pressed up against the glass. These experiences were frightening to my child-self because I didn’t know that they weren’t from my own reality, so I somehow switched them off and persuaded myself they were dreams. Now I understand better and have cleared the fear, I am trying to switch that skill back on again!

Like me, 65.79% of clairvoyants see pictures in their mind, but 18.42% see transparencies with their eyes and 11.84% see energy as solid. This roughly seems to correspond with the 16.44% who find it hard to tell what is physically solid, but there are clearly some people who are seeing energy in solid form, but find it easy to tell the difference between realities.
Similarly, 59.21% of respondents hear words telepathically in their mind, compared to 23.68 who actually hear a voice through their ears as though a physical person was talking to them.

One respondent described their understanding of what happens when they see as though with their eyes, and hear through their ears:

“I ‘see’ clearly on another level or frequency/plane so not physical or overlaying the physical. I use my physical eyes together with my ‘third eye’ or pineal, so I have to have my eyes open. When I hear a voice, what is actually happening is that the guides send me information as energy, which my brain translates into thoughts/words, which means that I need to be detached, so as not to influence what I am hearing.”

Helen Fatir

‘To me, this is natural and makes sense of our physical life because it enables a feeling of the oneness between the physical and non physical or spiritual. ‘ Visit Helen’s website at:

Kendra Hurteau

‘I have many “gifts,” some stronger than others. When I was younger I did not like it because I hadn’t found a way to harness it. Now, of course, I’ve learned it is part of me and use it professionally. I think a lot of people are “gifted” and confused about it and I’d like to see it spoken about more openly in the general public instead of treated like a taboo.’ Visit Kenda’s website at:

The majority of people were born with intuitive gifts, 72.97%, but an encouraging 29.73% have developed them out of choice.

As someone who believes strongly that everyone has the potential to be psychic, I am delighted to see such a good number of people actively choosing a path of psychic development.

I’m pleased to see that a strong 95.89% of people find their gifts enlightening, with only 19.18 feeling frightened. There is obviously some overlap there with people finding some experiences frightening and others enlightening.

I would love to hear more about what frightens you about your gifts. I would like to do a separate blog on this subject, so please do get in touch and tell me what you would like to learn, what fears you would like to put to rest, and any techniques you think might be helpful. If I don’t know the answer, I’m sure I can find someone who does. 

Please either comment below, or if you’re in the closet, click here to send me an email.

I believe the fear is something that can be cleared through self-development and cord cutting. So please do send me your worries and I will do my best to address them and help you find a way forward.

Open or In the Closet

Slightly less than half the respondents are openly psychic, with almost as many open to friends and family only. Only 11.84% said they were entirely in the closet. That said, I imagine that most people who don’t admit to their gifts probably wouldn’t visit my page or fill in an online survey!

I am delighted to say that whilst 27.63% of the respondents are professional psychics, 72.37% were not. This suggests that more and more people are speaking up about their skills and experiences, and hopefully, developing them.

I find it fascinating to hear about the way you all experience the world and your gifts, thank you so much for taking part in my survey.

Please do click on the picture below to read the full results, and continue the discussion in the comments section on my blog, on Facebook, or on Twitter. I would love to hear more.


‘I do not use any of the “clair…” terms to describe what I do. It is like allowing my imagination to come up with answers or to embellish what is observed. And this turns out to have real information.’ Visit the website at:

Amanda Rhodes

‘I am incredibly blessed to have these gifts and to be able to provide comfort and guidance to others. The work is extremely fulfilling. Since I came out of the closet, I’ve never looked back. ‘ Visit Amanda’s website at:

Read the Full Survey Results Here

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Comments 11

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  1. I think your survey is really great Martha – and I very much enjoyed reading other people’s experience of their abilities. Like Amanda Rhodes, I feel blessed to be able to do what I do.

    I forgot to mention in my response, that I also ‘feel’ energy – in fact the information I get is based on how the energy feels.

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  2. This is such a fascinating topic! It’s interesting to observe how psychics and intuitives all receive their information in different ways. Thanks for diving into this subject, and for sharing the results with us!

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