When you start out and progress on your journey as a professional Tarot reader, you most likely look for advice and inspiration from your peers, usually found on their websites and in online networking groups.
Although it is helpful and enjoyable to engage with your fellow readers, I have noticed over the years that there tends to be a herd mentality, which can have the unfortunate effect of self-brainwashing.
I do understand that when you start as a professional, you are looking for all the help you can find to get yourself established, but at one point it is important to find your own way and think your own thoughts.
From that herd mentality and the resulting self-brainwashing, try to avoid the following three mistakes:
1. Being judgemental and presumptuous
Many tarot readers claim they are non-judgemental and objective, but are they really?
When readers announce in their blog posts that they refuse to read on repeat questions, or they “have to” rephrase some of their clients’ questions, then in fact this sounds pretty much judgemental. They seem to judge their clients’ situation based on these issues.
And when you read about their reasons why, then it seems that most of them are based on assumptions and speculations, such as the client obviously hasn’t moved on, or why are they asking me such a self-restrictive fortune-telling question? I can teach them how to do better...
When one tarot reader complained about clients requesting several readings from various readers about the same issue, it sounded like that client almost committed a criminal offence.
Of course the reader refused to do the reading, and I will probably get shot by the tarot ethics police when I admit that I have no problem submitting my reading when asked and getting paid for it, too.
Why? I hear you ask. Well, because every client has the right to spend their money on what they want. They can invest it in a huge DVD collection, or they can ask several readers for advice on how to handle and deal with a situation.
Everyone is entitled to second opinions, which doesn’t necessarily mean that they feed a habit or live in denial. And being in denial is nothing to feel ashamed or bad about. Denial is often part of the grieving process.
If I hadn’t asked another doctor for a second opinion many years ago, I would have been dead today.
When you need help resolving an issue, you may ask several people for their advice. In the end, you evaluate and make up your own mind. What’s wrong with that?
Not every client in this position is a tarot junkie.
The antidote to being judgmental and presumptuous is unconditional open-mindedness and acknowledgement that anything is possible. Avoid generalisation. Treat each client as an individual with their own unique issues.
2. Being a copy cat
When you are in awe of fellow tarot readers’ fabulous websites and blogs, it can be tempting to emulate them and inadvertently ending up being a bit of a clone.
How many unboxing videos are there on YouTube now? Who has time to watch them all? Are you sure you want to spend / waste time adding to that pile?
How many thousands of websites are out there offering tarot readings? How is yours standing out to get noticed? It doesn’t help to copy another website’s colour scheme or stock photos.
It’s even worse copying their products or services, such as courses and ebooks.
Last year I noticed that a big name in the tarot business had copied the concept of my Tarot Moon Journal, which I first published in 2012. My creation was given a different title and a once-over in corporate colours, but I know mine is the original and best, like all original ideas usually are.
The antidote to being a copy cat is to find your own style, your true and authentic voice and create unique offerings with your personal touch.
3. Following the Tarot herd
- you don’t need to have a huge tarot deck collection
- you don’t need to join the latest social media platform, because other tarot readers do (what on earth is Periscope?)
- you don’t need to condemn a fellow tarot reader solely based on accusations from another tarot reader. Tarot readers can be highly strung at times. Best to avoid this kind of drama – and judgement! Be fair and kind rather than part of a tarot mob.
- only because one reader claims that they don’t read reversals doesn’t mean you shouldn’t either. Whatever works best for you really counts.
- contrary to popular opinion, you can still use Tarot for fortune-telling, if that’s what you want to do
- you don’t need to be constantly on social media. Switch off to think for yourself and generate your best ideas
- you don’t need tarot certification
- you don’t need to bombard the world with masses of tarot deck reviews, complicated spreads and tarotscopes. Instead, why not create a Best of… list linking to your favourites you found on other people’s blogs? Better than rehashing what is already out there (watch this space for my list coming soon :))
- you don’t need to call yourself a healer only because it seems like the new buzz job title for tarot readers
- not all third party readings are equal. Some of them are okay to do, others are not. Avoid putting them all into one bucket. Consider each one carefully and see how far you want to go with it.
The antidote to following the tarot herd is critical thinking, discernment and realising that less is more. Take a step back, observe and evaluate without worrying about your peers’ acceptance or rejection. It’s the age-old dilemma of fitting in versus standing out.
Deep down you are wise, clever and intelligent enough to avoid these three mistakes as a Tarot reader once you put your mind to it.
Yes, I have made some of the mistakes listed here, learned my lessons and began to focus on my own imagination, new interests and experiences outside the tarot world that have inspired me to create the crazy cosmic enlightening stuff on offer here on my website.
What about you?