Can you count on friends to support your tarot business?

Declaring yourself a tarot reader and officially offering your services can be an exciting and nerve-wracking experience.

Some readers take a long time to come out of the “tarot closet,” as the saying goes, and there can be a number of reasons for that: Lack of support, fear of judgement, or living in a religious community top the list.

But putting your stake in the ground and making tarot a visible part of your life can still be a challenge even if you are supported through the process.

No matter what your beginnings in tarot look like, tarot is a path that will continue to challenge you to define, clarify and uphold your boundaries every step of the way.

It will also push you to realize that you can’t sustain a business off of your social network alone – even if you have friends and family who are eager and excited to support you.

In fact, those close, enthusiastic relationships can bring their own sets of challenges when you start building your profile as a tarot reader.

I’ve been lucky to find some great support within my personal network over the years: One of my friends tapped me early on to read at some pop-up events she was hosting. Other friends booked appointments with me in my first year of business, and referred other friends.

But in the back of my mind, I knew that I needed to be building my presence outside of my circle of friends if my business was going to last beyond a year.

And when you start working with more clients – many of whom you have never met before – you start putting tighter parameters in place in your business.

Some of the boundaries I faced early on included dealing with last-minute bookings and last-minute cancellations, which led me to build out formal policies and booking processes to protect my time.

But this also meant I had to face the consequences of making exceptions for friends – especially when I would let pals book last-minute through text: “Can I pop by for a reading tomorrow and pay you when I see you?”

Well, you know what I learned by saying yes too often? That friends don’t always respect your boundaries the way you think they will. Some of my friends who I allowed to slip past my processes ended up cancelling at the last minute, after I’d made the effort to arrange my calendar around them – which was exactly what I’d been trying to avoid by tightening up my procedures in the first place.

Similarly, you might find that friends want you to read tarot for them on your off time – because that’s when they’re used to hanging out with you.

My appointment schedule has varied over the years as I’ve experimented with different availabilities.

Over the last few years, I’ve cut down on the number of appointment slots I offer and only open up a few times per week, usually during the afternoons. This works best for me as I’m able to come to my sessions clear, focused, and ready to read.

Even though this has been my schedule for some time now, I still have friends who ask for late-evening or weekend appointments because “it’s more convenient for them.”

These are just a couple of examples of where friction can exist between friendship and business: Your clients see you as a professional who is providing a service they are willing to pay for. A good client will work with you on your terms, at the times and rates you set.

But friends, no matter how willing they are to cheerlead your work, don’t always perceive a friendship with the same level of respect or authority. Because in friendship, compromise and flexibility is often a given.

If we were friends and were making plans for coffee, we would work around each other’s schedules and needs to find a time to meet.

But when work is work and you’re running a business, you’re taking on a different role: The Entrepreneur. That’s a role that your friends probably aren’t used to seeing you in. And that role requires that you have procedures, policies, and processes in place that allow you to serve all of your clients at your best capacity.

Friends also have more access to you - something that clients don't have. Clients don't have my personal phone number, and can't call or shoot me a text at any time. (Although there was one time a well-intentioned friend was giving out my phone number without permission to potential clients, thinking it would help me build my business, but that's another story...)

And we can’t always expect friends to know or see all the work that’s going on behind the scenes of a tarot business. But it can sometimes be confusing when the people we expect to respect us the most are the ones asking for the most exceptions.

This isn’t to say that friends can’t be amazing clients: They absolutely can be. But don’t be afraid to communicate the differences between your work life and your personal life, and to draw a line between the two if and when you need to.

You can always decide to make exceptions, of course – it’s your business and you call the shots. But remember, too, that you deserve to have your work taken seriously by everyone in your corner. That goes for clients, community, and friends.  


~ Liz

p.s. Are you prioritizing the growth of your tarot business this year and want some support? I have time on my calendar for 1:1 tarot business consultations to help you take the right steps to move your tarot work forward.

Book here.


50% Complete

Join my newsletter!

Are you enjoying this blog post? If so, you'll love my newsletter, because I send valuable tarot tips like this straight to your inbox.