You aren’t born a great Tarot reader, your choices make you one – in particular the choices that turn into habits. It is important then that you learn good habits that prime you for great, consistent performance.
Good Tarot-reading habits cover a lot of ground. Compare being a great Tarot reader to being a great athlete, if you will. Everything is connected; To be a great athlete, you need to work out mentally as well as physically, watch what you eat and establish a healthy sleeping pattern. Just like an athlete’s performance on the track is dependent on doing all of these things consistently, so a Tarot reader’s interpretation of a particular spread depends on all the good (or bad) habits she has in place.
1. A great Tarot reader is a perpetual student. A Tarot reader is someone who translates the language of symbols and archetypes into helpful everyday language that carries insights and guidance for the Seeker. Language and communication evolve so it is important to stay on top of it.
This is why a great Tarot reader is also a great student of history in general as well as Tarot symbology & history, languages, philosophy, the occult and metaphysical arts, nature, maths, physics, anatomy & physiology… They are curious about all of it, constantly seeking to connect the dots.
2. Great Tarot readers aren’t afraid of trying new methods of doing things. They constantly experiment, innovate and create new divinatory techniques. Growing stale is not an option! Through connecting with peers and colleagues, they expand their horizons on a regular basis.
3. They stick with the tried and tested. While this seems as a contradiction to the previous statement, it is true that a great Tarot reader will have a few trusty work horses in terms of spreads and methods. This is especially true when it comes to reading for clients where consistency is important. They know when to pull out an old work horse and when it is OK to experiment.
4. They meditate and/or use relaxation techniques on a regular basis. This is necessary because the brain needs rebooting after doing intense intuitive work. Clear, intuitive messages only arise in an uncluttered mind.
5. They are creative in general. Being creative helps your brain stay young, makes you more optimistic and a more capable problem-solver.
6. They are not addicted. Addiction makes people more reactive, damages and limits the brain capacity and in particular the ability to problem-solve. Establishing an addiction-free lifestyle may require medical intervention. Don’t be afraid to ask for help!
7. They are empathic, compassionate and non-judgmental. Great Tarot readers are able to put themselves in the Seeker’s shoes and this is only possible because of a lack of judgment, coupled with genuine compassion for the Seeker.
8. They are emotionally intelligent. This means they are able to accurately identify their own and others’ emotions as well as how to respond appropriately. They do not take the negativity of others personally and manage their own emotions wisely. They are able to harness their emotional intelligence for the problem-solving process, which means they are capable of producing an uplifting experience for the Seeker.
9. They are physically active. They understand that the physical body is their vessel/instrument for conducting intuitive Tarot readings and look after it with great care. It has been scientifically proven that yoga and aerobic exercise makes you smarter.
10. They eat right. They are sensitive and aware of which foods boost their energy levels as well as which foods make their physical body and energy system sluggish. They know that the best time for doing a reading is not right after a heavy meal. They understand which foods have a grounding effect and the importance of staying hydrated.
11. They understand that asking the RIGHT question is paramount for a reading that is actually useful to the Seeker. The right question is specific, proactive and allows the client to take full responsibility for their destiny. It ensures that the Seeker is guided on the smoothest path from A) where they are now to B) where they wish to be.
12. They know when to say NO. A great, ethical Tarot reader will refer Seekers with mental health issues for medical help rather than doing a reading for them. They will also decline for anyone under the influence of drugs or alcohol. They can easily identify Seekers who have become addicted to readings or who ‘reader hop’ in search of the answer they want to hear rather than the truth. They have sound personal and ethical boundaries.
13. They always trust their intuitive guidance and act on it. They understand that not acting on the guidance they receive for themselves leads to guidance overload. They can identify guidance overload in the Seeker. They have empathy with this because they know that acting on intuitive guidance often takes more courage than the average person is able to instantly muster, so they are able to provide ‘baby steps’ for the process.
14. They shuffle with intent. A great Tarot reader understands that the energy they put into the start of the reading (shuffling the cards) greatly affects the rest of the reading. This is why they ground and centre before even pick the cards up and connect with the energy of the Seeker as well as the issue at hand while shuffling. Depending on their spiritual Path, they may also offer up prayers in preparation for the reading.
15. They are not afraid to admit that they can be wrong. Not even a translator of modern languages gets it right all the time, in spite of the multiple easily available resources. Imagine then how much more difficult it is to translate symbols into a modern language. The intuitive process is ambiguous by nature. A great Tarot reader doesn’t strive for perfection but for connection, meaning and usefulness. This is why they rely on the dialogue, feedback and cooperation of the Seeker. They can handle constructive criticism and don’t take negative feedback personally.
No doubt, you are already using some or most of these habits. There is no need to go into overwhelm if a few of them are still missing – Rome wasn’t built in a day! Take baby steps and perhaps start one good habit a month, journaling your progress to gain wisdom in the process. It a takes a minimum of 21 days to form a new habit. A habit you struggle with may take a couple of months so give yourself all the time you need. Focused effort and determination is what will get you there in the end. Go at it like The Chariot!