Professor Lupin’s Step-by-Step Guide to Conjuring a Patronus

Not all of us can be Defense Against the Dark Arts prodigies like that Harry Potter kid, can we? But since no one fancies having their souls sucked out of their beings, we all need to learn how to conjure a Patronus.

Being the nerds that we are, we took it upon ourselves to find Professor Lupin between classes and coax out of him a detailed theory of conjuring a Patronus. But lucky for you, we’ve been feeling pretty generous lately, so we’ve decided to share our notes with you. You’re welcome.


Step One: Clear the mind.

The Patronus Charm is no ordinary spell. It requires a clear mind and ample concentration.

We will prep ourselves with a breathing exercise called box breathing: Take a deep breath in for the count of four. Hold to the count of four. Exhale to the count of four. Hold to the count of four. Repeat a few more times until you feel your mind slow down and settle.




Step Two: Choose a memory.

Close your eyes and conjure the image of something, someone, or somewhere that makes you feel light and happy. It doesn’t matter how significant or trivial – a special familial memory or a cat on the internet. It can even be an imaginary scene. There are no limits as long as it elicits a flicker of warmth in your heart. You’re in your mind, a place that is entirely your own.


Step Three: Amplify the image.

Whether a single image or a montage, make it as vivid as you can. Add details – sights, sounds, and sensations. Make the colors brighter and sounds louder. Feel the warmth in your heart grow.




Step Four: Build momentum.

With your mind’s eye focused on this image, list out all of its attributes that make it special to you – the reasons why you chose it as your object of attention in the first place. No need to be profound, the silliest of reasons often work best. Simply let yourself flow in your fondness for this entity.


Step Five: Immerse into the feeling.

Become aware of the growing warmth in your heart and take a deep breath as if fanning the metaphorical flame in your chest. As you exhale slowly, it feels as if the warmth is flowing through your bones. Tingles run down to your fingertips and toes. Let the warmth consume your being, and revel in the deliciousness of this feeling for a few moments. The sensation in your chest deepens, and it feels like every cell of your being is alive.


You are now ready to cast the spell – Deep breath in. Shoulders back. Wand at ready.

Expecto Patronum.



The world doesn’t need to be crawling with Dementors for you to perform this charm. Nor do you have to be a wizard to reap the benefit of its effect. Even a Muggle could follow these steps and find their mood soften if not elevate significantly through this exercise.

And listen, you might not get it on your first try, or second, or third, or twelfth… it doesn’t matter. Don’t be too hard on yourself if you can’t feel it yet. Instead, be playful and explore your imagination. There’s bound to be something that makes your heart tingle and when you do find it, keep coming back to it when those nasty blues creep in.


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Pranjal Tipnis

At any given moment I'm either a Slytherin or a Hufflepuff... there is no in-between.