How To Do A Tarot Reading

How To Do A Tarot Reading

So, you’ve heard about tarot readings and you’re curious about how to do one yourself. Well, you’ve come to the right place. In this article, we’ll take you through the basics of tarot reading and give you some helpful tips to get started. Whether you’re a complete beginner or have dabbled in tarot before, we’ll guide you on how to harness the power of the cards and tap into your intuition. Get ready to unlock a whole new world of self-discovery and insight with this ancient divination tool!

If you’re intrigued by the mystical world of tarot and want to learn how to do your own readings, you’re in for a treat. In the upcoming paragraphs, we’ll delve into the art of tarot reading, explore the symbolism of the cards, and explain how to interpret their meanings. We’ll also discuss different spreads and layouts you can use, as well as tips for enhancing your intuition and connecting with the cards on a deeper level. By the end of this article, you’ll have a solid foundation to start doing your own tarot readings and gain a better understanding of yourself and the world around you. Stay tuned for a mind-opening journey into the realm of tarot!

How To Do A Tarot Reading

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Table of Contents

Basics of Tarot Reading

Understanding the Tarot Deck

The Tarot deck consists of 78 cards divided into two main categories: the major arcana and the minor arcana. The major arcana consists of 22 cards representing major life events and spiritual themes. The minor arcana consists of four suits (wands, cups, swords, and pentacles), each with 14 cards representing various aspects of daily life. Familiarize yourself with the different cards and their meanings to begin your Tarot reading journey.

Learning the Meaning of Each Card

To effectively interpret Tarot cards, it is crucial to understand the traditional meanings attributed to each card. Start by studying the cards one by one and learning their individual symbolism and interpretations. This process may take time, but by developing a strong foundation of card meanings, you will be better equipped to provide accurate and insightful readings.

Getting Familiar with Tarot Spreads

Tarot spreads are predetermined arrangements of cards that provide structure and focus to a Tarot reading. There are countless spreads to choose from, each with its own unique purpose and significance. Begin by learning a few simple spreads, such as the three-card spread or the Celtic Cross spread, and gradually explore more complex spreads as your skills develop.

Interpreting the Cards in Context

Remember that Tarot cards gain meaning and significance when placed in the context of a specific reading. Consider the surrounding cards, the position of each card within the spread, and the question or intention behind the reading. By interpreting cards in relation to their surroundings, you can uncover deeper insights and nuances in the reading.

Preparing for a Tarot Reading

Creating a Peaceful Environment

Before beginning a Tarot reading, it is essential to create a peaceful and conducive environment. Find a quiet space where you can concentrate without distractions. Dim the lights, light candles or incense, and play soft music if desired. Make sure you feel comfortable and relaxed before proceeding with the reading.

Setting Intentions for the Reading

To ensure a focused and meaningful Tarot reading, it is important to set clear intentions. Take a moment to contemplate what you hope to gain from the reading. Are you seeking guidance, clarification, or insight on a specific issue or situation? By setting intentions, you create a clear direction for the reading and invite clear and relevant messages from the cards.

Cleansing and Energizing the Cards

To establish a clean energetic connection with the Tarot deck, it is necessary to cleanse and energize the cards before each reading. There are several methods you can use to accomplish this. You can smudge the cards with sage or palo santo, pass them through incense smoke, or gently shuffle them while visualizing their energy being cleared and refreshed. Choose a method that resonates with you and perform it with intention and focus.

Choosing a Tarot Spread for the Purpose

Selecting an appropriate Tarot spread is crucial in addressing specific questions or areas of focus within a reading. Consider the purpose of the reading and choose a spread that aligns with your intention. For example, if you are seeking insight on a relationship, you may opt for a love and relationship spread. Remember, the spread you choose will provide the framework for the reading and influence the depth and accuracy of the insights you receive.

How To Do A Tarot Reading

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Shuffling and Drawing Tarot Cards

Different Shuffling Techniques

Shuffling the Tarot deck thoroughly is essential to ensure randomized card selection and eliminate any biases or preconceived notions. There are various shuffling techniques you can employ, such as the overhand shuffle, the riffle shuffle, or the Hindu shuffle. Experiment with different methods and choose the one that feels most comfortable and effective for you.

Selecting the Significator Card

The significator card is a card chosen to represent the querent, the person for whom the reading is being done. This card provides a focal point for the reading and can offer insights specific to the querent’s circumstances. The significator card can be chosen based on astrological associations, personal preferences, or intuitive guidance. Take a moment to connect with the querent’s energy before selecting the appropriate card.

Drawing Cards for the Reading

Once you have shuffled the deck and chosen the significator card, it is time to draw the cards for the reading. You can either spread the cards face down and intuitively select the cards that feel right or use a specific method, such as fanning or spreading the cards for selection. Trust your intuition and allow the cards to guide your hand as you make your choices.

Laying Out the Cards in the Chosen Spread

Now that you have drawn the cards, it is time to lay them out in the chosen Tarot spread. Take your time and arrange the cards in their respective positions, paying attention to the specific meanings associated with each position. As you lay out the cards, notice any patterns or connections that emerge and consider how they contribute to the overall message of the reading.

Interpreting Tarot Cards

Analyzing the Visual Symbols

During a Tarot reading, it is essential to pay attention to the visual symbols on each card. Symbols are the language of the subconscious mind and can offer profound insights and messages. Take note of the colors, images, numbers, and other visual elements on the cards and consider their individual and collective meanings.

Understanding the Card Positions

In Tarot readings, the position of each card within a spread adds depth and context to its interpretation. Familiarize yourself with the traditional meanings of each position and consider how they influence the cards they hold. For example, a card in the past position may represent past experiences or influences, while a card in the future position may indicate potential outcomes or possibilities.

Exploring the Card’s Traditional Meanings

While it is important to develop your own intuitive interpretation of each card, it is equally crucial to understand the traditional meanings associated with them. Study reputable Tarot resources, books, or online references to gain a solid understanding of the established meanings of each card. This knowledge will provide a foundation for your readings and allow you to draw on a wealth of knowledge and symbolism.

Using Intuition and Personal Associations

In addition to the traditional meanings, trust your intuition and personal associations when interpreting Tarot cards. Allow yourself to be guided by your instincts and the unique energy of each reading. Your personal experiences, knowledge, and intuition will contribute to a richer and more accurate interpretation of the cards.

How To Do A Tarot Reading

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Building a Narrative

Creating a Storyline with the Cards

Tarot readings are not just a collection of isolated card meanings but rather a narrative that unfolds as the cards are revealed. Connect the cards in your chosen spread and create a storyline that flows from card to card. Consider the relationships, themes, and transitions between the cards to piece together a coherent narrative that provides insights into the querent’s life.

Making Connections between Cards

As you explore the cards in a reading, be mindful of the connections and relationships that may exist between them. Look for similarities or contrasts in the visual symbols, colors, or themes. Notice how the cards interact with one another and build upon each other’s energies. These connections can offer deeper insights and reinforce the overall message of the reading.

Identifying Patterns and Themes

Patterns and themes often emerge during a Tarot reading, offering valuable insights into the querent’s life. Pay attention to recurring symbols, colors, or numbers, as well as common themes or motifs that appear throughout the spread. The presence of these patterns can indicate important messages or areas of focus within the reading.

Finding Relevance to the Querent’s Life

Ultimately, the goal of a Tarot reading is to provide relevant and meaningful guidance to the querent. As you interpret the cards, constantly consider how they relate to the querent’s life and circumstances. Use your knowledge of the querent’s situation, personal experiences, and intentions for the reading to provide specific and applicable insights.

Asking Questions and Seeking Guidance

Formulating Clear and Specific Questions

To receive accurate and insightful answers from the Tarot cards, it is important to formulate clear, specific questions. Avoid vague or open-ended questions and instead focus on a particular area of concern or aspect of life. By asking direct questions, you provide the Tarot deck with a clear focus and increase the likelihood of receiving relevant guidance.

Addressing Different Areas of Life

Tarot readings can provide guidance and insights into various areas of life, including relationships, career, finances, and personal growth. Tailor your questions to address specific aspects of life, allowing the reading to provide targeted advice and perspectives. Consider the querent’s current challenges, goals, and aspirations when formulating your questions.

Seeking Advice and Guidance from the Cards

When seeking answers from the Tarot cards, approach the reading with an open mind and a willingness to receive guidance and advice. Remember that the cards are a tool for self-reflection and insight, and their messages are meant to empower and support you. Trust in the wisdom of the cards and allow them to shed light on the querent’s path.

Avoiding Yes/No Questions for More Insight

While yes/no questions can be tempting, they often limit the depth and complexity of a Tarot reading. Instead, seek insight by asking open-ended questions that encourage exploration and analysis. By inviting the cards to offer guidance and perspective, you open yourself up to a wealth of information and insights that can contribute to personal growth and understanding.

How To Do A Tarot Reading

Enhancing the Reading with Intuition

Tapping into Inner Wisdom and Intuition

As you become more comfortable with Tarot reading, trust your inner wisdom and intuition to deepen your understanding of the cards. Intuition is a powerful tool that can provide additional insights and perspectives beyond the traditional meanings of the cards. Allow yourself to tap into your inner guidance and trust the messages that come through.

Trusting Gut Feelings and Impressions

During a Tarot reading, pay attention to your gut feelings and impressions. Trust the intuitive nudges and hunches that arise as you interpret the cards. These subtle insights can provide valuable information and offer a deeper understanding of the querent’s situation. Remember, your intuition is a valuable asset in Tarot reading and should not be overlooked.

Allowing Space for Subconscious Messages

The Tarot deck has a way of tapping into the subconscious mind and bringing forth messages and insights that may not be immediately apparent. Allow space for these subconscious messages to arise during a reading. Pay attention to any sudden flashes of insight or intuitive hits that may not align with your conscious understanding. These messages can provide profound guidance and perspectives.

Balancing Logic and Intuitive Insights

While intuition plays a significant role in Tarot reading, it is important to maintain a balance between intuition and logic. Use your rational mind to analyze and interpret the cards, while also trusting your intuitive insights. The combination of both approaches will provide a comprehensive and well-rounded reading that integrates both intellectual and intuitive information.

Recording and Documenting Readings

Taking Detailed Notes of the Reading

To make the most of a Tarot reading and retain the information received, it is essential to take detailed notes. Write down the cards drawn, the position of each card within the spread, and your interpretations and impressions. Include any intuitive insights or messages that may have come to you during the reading. These notes will serve as a valuable reference for reflection and future readings.

Recording Impressions and Interpretations

In addition to taking notes on the specific cards and positions, record your overall impressions and interpretations of the reading. Reflect on the themes, patterns, and messages that emerged during the reading. Consider the relevance of the reading to the querent’s life and any insights or guidance that may be applicable. These recorded impressions will help you track your progress and growth as a Tarot reader.

Tracking Patterns and Predictions Over Time

One of the advantages of recording and documenting Tarot readings is the ability to track patterns and predictions over time. Notice any recurring themes or symbols that emerge in multiple readings. Pay attention to the accuracy and relevance of predictions made during previous readings. This tracking allows you to build confidence in your abilities and deepen your understanding of the Tarot’s messages.

Maintaining a Tarot Journal for Reflection

To maximize your learning and growth as a Tarot reader, consider maintaining a Tarot journal. In this journal, record your readings, impressions, and interpretations. Reflect on the insights gained from each reading and track your progress over time. Use this journal as a tool for self-reflection and self-discovery, allowing the Tarot to become a powerful medium for personal growth.

How To Do A Tarot Reading

Ethics and Responsibilities of Tarot Reading

Respecting Client Confidentiality

As a Tarot reader, it is vital to maintain client confidentiality and respect their privacy. Ensure that any personal information shared during a reading remains private and is not disclosed to anyone else without the client’s explicit consent. Upholding client confidentiality builds trust and fosters a safe space for exploration and self-reflection.

Avoiding Judgment and Biases

In Tarot readings, it is crucial to approach each reading with an open mind and without judgment or biases. Remember that the Tarot is a tool for guidance and insight, not a means to pass judgment on the querent. Maintain a non-judgmental attitude and create a safe space for the querent to explore their thoughts, feelings, and experiences.

Offering Guidance with Empathy and Compassion

Tarot readings often touch on sensitive and personal topics. Approach each reading with empathy and compassion, providing support and guidance to the querent. Listen attentively and validate their experiences and emotions. Use the cards as a means to offer comfort, reassurance, and perspective, promoting emotional healing and personal growth.

Recognizing Limitations and Referring Clients

As a Tarot reader, it is important to recognize your limitations and know when to refer clients to other professionals when appropriate. Tarot readings are not a substitute for professional advice or therapy. If a client requires assistance beyond the scope of your expertise, encourage them to seek appropriate professional help. Remember, your role as a Tarot reader is to provide guidance and support, not to offer therapeutic or medical services.

Developing Tarot Reading Skills

Practicing Daily Card Draws

To enhance your Tarot reading skills, practice daily card draws. Set aside time to connect with the cards and draw a card each day. Reflect on its meaning and consider how it relates to your own life or the current energies in the world. Regular practice will deepen your understanding of the cards and strengthen your intuition.

Studying Tarot Symbolism and Archetypes

Tarot reading is not just about memorizing card meanings but understanding the symbolism and archetypes behind the cards. Study Tarot symbolism and the archetypal energies represented within the deck. Explore the connections between different cards and their corresponding archetypes. This knowledge will provide a deeper understanding of the cards and allow for more insightful interpretations.

Attending Workshops and Courses

To expand your knowledge and skills as a Tarot reader, consider attending workshops and courses. These opportunities provide valuable insights, techniques, and guidance from experienced Tarot readers. Learn from their expertise and experiences, and incorporate their teachings into your practice. Participate in discussions, ask questions, and engage in hands-on activities to deepen your understanding and proficiency.

Learning from Experienced Readers

Mentorship is a valuable resource for Tarot readers at any level. Seek out experienced Tarot readers and learn from their insights and experiences. Join Tarot communities, forums, or social media groups where you can connect with like-minded individuals and learn from one another. Engage in discussions, exchange readings, and seek feedback to refine your skills and broaden your perspectives.

Maintaining Tarot Reading Ethics

Honoring the Sacredness of the Practice

Tarot reading is a sacred practice that should be approached with reverence and respect. Recognize the profound nature of the Tarot and the impact it can have on individuals’ lives. Conduct yourself with integrity and authenticity, treating the Tarot and the querent’s experiences with utmost respect and reverence.

Continuously Developing Personal Morals

As a Tarot reader, it is important to continuously develop and refine your personal morals and ethics. Reflect on your values, principles, and ethical standards, and ensure they align with your Tarot practice. Regularly assess the motivations behind your readings and the impact they have on others. Strive to embody ethical principles that promote the well-being and empowerment of others.

Considering the Querent’s Well-being

The well-being of the querent should always be at the forefront of a Tarot reading. Be mindful of the querent’s emotional state and their capacity to receive and process the information provided during the reading. Tailor your approach and language to ensure the querent feels supported and empowered throughout the session. Foster an atmosphere of trust and safety, encouraging open and honest communication.

Being Responsible with Predictive Readings

Predictive readings, which aim to provide insights into future events, can be powerful but also delicate. Approach predictive readings with caution and responsibility. Emphasize that the future is not set in stone and that the querent ultimately has the power to shape their own destiny. Offer guidance and support, but remind the querent that they should always trust their own intuition and make their own choices.

Applying Tarot Readings to Everyday Life

Using Tarot for Self-Reflection and Insight

One of the most valuable aspects of Tarot reading is its ability to facilitate self-reflection and provide insight into one’s own life. Use the Tarot as a tool for personal growth and self-discovery. Regularly draw cards to gain clarity on a specific issue, deepen your understanding of yourself, or seek guidance on important decisions. The Tarot can serve as a trusted companion on your journey of self-exploration.

Gaining Clarity in Decision Making

The Tarot can be a valuable aid in decision making. When faced with important choices, consult the Tarot for guidance and insights. Draw cards to gain clarity on the potential outcomes, weigh the pros and cons, and tap into your intuition. The Tarot can provide a deeper understanding of the circumstances surrounding a decision and offer guidance on the best course of action.

Understanding Relationships and Interactions

Tarot readings can shed light on the dynamics and energies within various relationships. Whether it is a romantic partnership, a friendship, or a familial connection, consult the Tarot to gain insights into the underlying dynamics, challenges, and opportunities present. Understand the different energies at play and use the Tarot’s guidance to navigate and strengthen your relationships.

Navigating Life Challenges and Opportunities

Life is filled with both challenges and opportunities. When faced with obstacles or uncertain times, turn to the Tarot for guidance and support. Draw cards to gain insights into the lessons and growth opportunities hidden within the challenges. Explore the possible pathways and opportunities that lie ahead. The Tarot can serve as a beacon of light, providing clarity and guidance as you navigate through life’s ups and downs.

Seeking Professional Tarot Readings

Researching and Choosing Reliable Readers

If you find yourself in need of additional guidance or insight, consider seeking a professional Tarot reading. Take the time to research and choose a reliable reader who aligns with your values and intentions. Consider their experience, credentials, and testimonials. Look for readers who are transparent and ethical in their practice.

Preparing for a Session with a Professional

Before the session, take some time to prepare yourself mentally and emotionally. Reflect on the questions or areas of focus you wish to explore during the reading. Clear your mind and release any expectations or preconceived notions. Approach the session with an open mind and a willingness to receive guidance and insight.

Understanding the Benefits and Limitations

Professional Tarot readings can offer valuable benefits, such as personalized interpretations, expert insights, and additional perspectives. However, it is important to recognize the limitations of a Tarot reading. Remember that the future is not set in stone and that you always have the power to shape your own destiny. Approach the reading as a tool for guidance and reflection, rather than an absolute predictor of events.

Finding Support and Guidance when Needed

Professional Tarot readings can provide support and guidance during challenging times. If you are facing major life decisions, relationship issues, or personal struggles, a Tarot reading can offer clarity and validation. It can serve as a source of comfort and reassurance, reminding you that you are not alone on your journey. Seek professional readings when you feel the need for additional guidance and support.


Tarot reading is a powerful tool for self-discovery and personal growth. By understanding the basics of Tarot reading, preparing for a reading, interpreting the cards effectively, and applying the insights gained to everyday life, you can harness the transformative potential of the Tarot. As you develop your skills and navigate the ethical responsibilities of Tarot reading, embrace the ongoing journey of personal growth and insight that the Tarot offers. Allow the Tarot to empower you with inner wisdom, open doors to new perspectives and opportunities, and guide you on your path of self-discovery.