Does the potency of a tarot reading depend on the quality of your question?

This isn’t the first time I’ve shared thoughts on questions in tarot readings, but it’s been a while since I wrote about the subject.

And recently, I’ve had some good conversations with tarot clients and peers about the types of questions we can explore together. It’s been inspiring me to ruminate further, and to expand upon the topic.

Asking the right questions is something that, in my opinion, takes time to refine. And that doesn’t just extend to tarot readings.

The questions you ask yourself when you’re making a decision can help or hinder your path to clarity.

The questions you ask when you’re talking with other people can influence the quality of your connections to those around you.

The questions that pop into your head throughout the day can sway your future actions: “What if I did this? What if I try that?”

And of course, all of these questions can lead us in one way or another depending on how we approach them. Questions can be thought-provoking and productive, but they can also be frivolous and inconsequential.

When you’re asking questions in a tarot reading, ideally you’re leading yourself to a productive place. You want to come out of the reading with information and insight of some kind.

But not all questions will necessarily lead to the clarity people seek from tarot. In my experience, questions that feel too hypothetical or theoretical can end up leaving querents with even more questions than they came in with.

And that can be okay for some people. But if you already feel like you have too many options to sort through, or you’re hoping for a clear, cut and dry answer, then that’s another story.

A common example is when querents are exploring options that don’t truly exist yet. This often comes up in career-related readings where clients are considering changing jobs or trying a totally new career path.

“What would happen if I go back to school?”

“What would happen if I start a business?”

“What would happen if I apply for a job in another city? Or in a totally different industry?”  

What I find most challenging as a tarot reader with questions like this is when querents are not even sure what they want to study, or which school they want to go to. Or they don’t know what kind of business they would start, or whether they even want to be self-employed. Or they don’t know if there is a job for them available in the company or industry they want to work in because they haven’t even started looking.

The answers that come up through these questions can feel nebulous – there can be potential in all of these situations, because they are already so open-ended.

But if there is no opportunity to anchor yourself into, then it can feel questionable as to how or when these potentialities can manifest into reality.

And so when we are asking questions – whether they are of ourselves or of the tarot – it’s important to keep expectations realistic about what we’re able to surmise in the moment. In other words:

What are your questions grounded in?

And is what you’re asking even what you need to know right now? Sometimes, people ask about going back to school or changing jobs because they feel a deep sense of restlessness. They have no idea what else they would like to do, though.

In those instances, I might suggest querents explore the root of what they’re feeling first: “Why am I feeling so restless?” brings you back to the present moment, whereas asking about enrolling in a yet-to-be-identified program or taking on a job that doesn’t necessarily exist yet keeps you very much in the future of “what if.”

No matter what your questions relate to – work, personal healing, growth, relationships – it can help to dig a little deeper if you feel like your thoughts are too big, and you’re seeing possibility everywhere you look.

It can be exciting to consider what else is out there for you, but it can also be incredibly daunting.

If you (or your tarot querents) feel like you are holding onto questions that are hard to pin down, it can help to ask:

  • Is this just an idea right now, or is there an opportunity or action I can anchor my intentions into in the short or long-term future?
  • What is driving me to consider these other options, and is there something else I need to resolve first?
  • What am I assuming about this situation, and is there anything I can reference in the real world to help validate or confirm my hopes and expectations?

Exploring questions and opening to new possibilities is exciting, but we can also get stuck in analysis paralysis along the way. And sometimes, that’s reflected in a tarot reading: Potential comes back as potential, rather than a concrete insight with a firm direction to follow. And for some people that can still be helpful, but not if you’re looking for a more definitive answer. And that lack of definition can be a reflection of the question itself, indicating there’s more work to do to figure out what’s right for you at this time.

Don’t rush an answer if it’s not available right away. New or different questions can help bring you closer to where you want to go, if you are willing to sit with them.

Acknowledging that there may be some things to consider before the path becomes clear is sometimes part of the journey.

Until next time,



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