Uncertainty sends a lot of people to their local tarot readers, or inspires them to pick up the cards themselves.
Sometimes the reasons for that uncertainty are obvious. Someone might be in a precarious situation at work. Or has just gone through some personal upheaval and they’re looking for reassurance that everything will be okay.
Other times, though, uncertainty is driven by our inner selves, rather than external factors. Our culture is so fixated on self-improvement and striving towards (an often vague notion of) potential that it sometimes causes us to live too far in the future.
This kind of thinking gets us so focused on what’s next that we’re not always connected to where we’ve landed, or whether we’re happy with who and what we are in this very moment.
We hear encouraging words to strive for more, to change for the better, to edit out our messes and flaws.
But – and this is a big BUT… it’s important to remember that not...
Years ago, before I was reading tarot professionally, I used to do a lot of tarot parties for friends to get practice.
I was at a café one night where a friend was having a trunk sale for a jewelry line she was selling. The room was full of my pal’s friends and family, and I didn’t know many people there.
A woman sat down for a reading with me. I laid down my cards. I saw something in them that was so specific: A story about a family inheritance.
Except that’s not what I told her.
Because what I thought I was seeing did not match the meanings of the cards that were in front of me.
I wasn’t experienced enough yet to know how to trust myself as a tarot reader.
So I played it safe.
I gave a by-the-book reading – literally – rather than talking about what I’d initially seen.
And it wasn’t exactly wrong. But it wasn’t exactly right, either.
It was generic, safe, and middle-of-the-road enough for this woman to find something...
I get a lot of questions about how to prepare for tarot readings from a reader’s perspective.
Readers are often concerned with protecting their energy by staying grounded. Or by shielding against a draining querent.
Boundaries in tarot readings go both ways, though, and it’s important to remember that our querents have boundaries, too.
But we might not always know what those boundaries are for each querent. Every individual will have a different comfort zone. And not all querents will be experienced with readings enough to know what they want from the experience.
People often come to tarot readings with an open mind. But that doesn’t necessarily mean that anything goes in a tarot reading.
Establishing some boundaries for your own conduct can go a long way in ensuring that querents have a great experience with you.
Here are a few boundaries I’m mindful of that you might find helpful, too.
Honesty and respect can co-exist.
Some tarot readers like to...
"How much should I charge for a tarot reading?"
This is one of the first questions people often ask when they start to read tarot professionally.
Charging for a tarot reading is a big step: It is a move that can change people’s perception of you.
Someone who is willing to pay you for your time is more likely to see you as a skilled craftsperson. They are invested in what you’re doing because they have some skin in the game.
When a client isn’t paying for a service, they don’t have anything at stake. It can be the worst reading, or the best reading, but either way, they’ve got nothing to lose it ends up being a bad experience.
But there is a "but" here, which is this:
There is actually a time and place to read for free – and a way to make it feel like a fair exchange. And that’s when you’re in the learning phases as a tarot reader.
I didn’t charge a dime for my tarot readings for seven years, because I was gaining experience.
I did offer...
A few years ago, I was a tarot conference when a few readers started talking about gift certificates for tarot readings.
“Don’t buy your friend a reading when they’re celebrating a happy occasion – no one gets tarot readings when things are going well,” one of them said.
He was half-joking, half-serious.
And the more I thought about it, the more it made sense.
Gift certificates aside, it’s typical for people to seek out tarot readings when they are contemplating a dilemma.
Tarot helps people when they feel stuck in a rut or trapped in a tough situation. It helps when they are blocked around a decision, or when they feel unfocused about their overall direction in life.
Sure, some people book in for cosmic check-ins and general life updates, but by and far, I’ve noticed that most clients have specific reasons for buying tarot readings.
This is why tarot reading requires compassion. While it can be tempting sometimes to tell it like...
When I started learning tarot, my goal was to be able to read tarot for other people.
I’d been getting all kinds of readings – palm, tarot, psychic, Akashic records – for years.
I had long been fascinated and awed by the way each reader seemed to hit on things that were so true and personal for me.
I cherished each of these experiences and wanted to be able to help others in the same way.
As soon as I could, I started reading tarot for friends and family, and eventually strangers. Over time, I built up my skills enough to feel confident charging for my readings.
When I first started my tarot business, I had certain visions of how it would all go. But I soon realized that, like many things in life, there are always surprises – and learning opportunities to grow from.
One of the things that I had to grasp was that tarot clients don’t necessarily think like tarot readers.
One of the biggest ah-a moments I had around this came up around tarot...
What does it mean to stay grounded when you’re reading tarot? (Or engaging in any other spiritual practice, for that matter.)
Like many things, the answer will depend on who you ask.
For me, groundedness can encompass many things:
Groundedness isn’t something only tarot readers should care about: It’s something everyone can benefit from cultivating in their lives.
But when you’re reading tarot for others, groundedness becomes particularly important. Because sometimes, you might have a querent who is struggling to stay present themselves. Or who needs some help discerning what’s true, and what’s not.
It’s so easy to get carried away with a...
A lot of people talk about tarot through the filter of it being a "gift." Which implies there is some kind of raw, natural talent or ability inherent within a tarot reader from birth.
While raw talent is real, I see the same way I do music, writing, art, carpentry... any kind of skill, really.
Which is that it is a skill, and even raw talent benefits from some practice, polish, and knowledge of the canon in which it resides.
When I reflect of my own path as a tarot reader, I also have to acknowledge that a lot of what it took for me to get this far with it happened through a willingness to work on myself.
People skills are a big part of tarot reading.
I've met a lot of people in this world who claim psychic ability and strong intuition, but when you sit down to talk to them they have terrible listening skills, or say things that rub the wrong way.
Being honest with yourself, keeping your ego in check, and reflecting on beliefs or behaviours that aren't serving you - or others -...
Tarot reading brings a lot of ambitious clients to the table.
A common reason people turn to tarot readers is to gain insight into their goals. People’s dreams hinge on questions like:
“How can I help my business succeed this year?”
“How can I build my creative practice?”
“How can I become financially independent?”
And sometimes, these conversations can lead into questions about manifestation. Tarot clients wonder exactly what they should be doing holistically to achieve their dreams:
Should they be performing a certain ritual?
Or using affirmations?
Or visualizing their ideal outcome?
Changing their vibration?
There’s a lot of talk out there about manifestation. And like anything else in the New Age space, there are a lot of opinions, ideas, and contradictions to be found on the subject.
The word manifest also has several definitions. In spiritual contexts, it is often used as a verb, meaning to make something manifest –...
Do you ever feel like you look down at certain tarot cards and feel stuck for new things to say about them?
It used to happen me to all the time. I’d spent so much time carefully memorizing card meanings and keywords that it started to get in the way of my growth as a tarot reader.
When it came time to sit down and do a reading, I realized I was blocked from coming up with my own interpretations because my head was so full of other people’s tarot meanings.
On one hand, I had to give myself credit: I’d set out to learn the card meanings, and I’d succeeded. But I didn’t realize that it would end up getting in the way of putting tarot into my own words.
I also didn’t realize that card meanings are just jumping off points with the cards. There are so many layers and aspects to tarot that meanings alone can’t fully capture.
Yet there’s so much emphasis on learning those meanings, as though they are a means to an end.
In reality, they...