Going Pro: Why You Should Answer the Same Question Again

answer the same question again
The Cosmic Faery Tarot

Quite a while ago, I came across a discussion in an online tarot forum about querents asking the same question again and again, especially with regards to relationship issues such as breakups.

Many tarot readers were adamant that they refuse such repeat requests, as the querent has apparently “not moved on yet”.

I didn’t want to get into an argument, so I refrained from admitting that I was totally fine with that.

The simple reason is that I don’t assume anything, when I get a reading request.

Relationships can be full of drama, and I trust that my readings will reflect these issues and make the querent aware.

Relationships can be on and off. People meet, get together, split up, get back together again… and this can carry on for a while.

Yes, you may not think this is healthy, but it is not down to us to pass judgement and then refuse to help someone, who needs guidance.

Energies around the querent change despite the same question being asked, and this will usually be picked up by the cards you draw.

You may be answering the same question differently every time, even if there are just a few adjustments.

Usually after the third time of asking the same question, I offer the querent a quick phone consultation to establish what is going on in their life.

These conversations have always revealed the bigger picture of their situation and also how accurate my readings had been in the past relating to the issue.

Emotional turmoil can take some time to come to terms with. In that situation the querent may need reassurance, encouragement, a new insight or perspective.

The last thing I want to do is take the moral high ground and turn them away for asking the same question yet again. I see it as my job to support them with compassion and an open mind.

Is he/she coming back to me? Sometimes they do!

Life is not black and white.

We cannot expect love to follow a straight forward pattern or even make it so, because it is not always straight forward.

We cannot base our answers solely on our experiences or that of people we know. This is where we can get it badly wrong as professional readers, if we are not careful.

Only because my friend got back together with her husband after a two-year separation, that doesn’t mean everyone else will, or nobody else will ever get back together with their ex.

If they made the right decision is a different matter.

What counts is how you answer the question. How much you empower your client.

For some it is hard to move on, for others there is still unfinished business. And then there are those, who are being played with, who are confused and try to make sense of an ongoing saga.

They need someone, who can see the bigger picture from far, far away. Someone, who patiently answers their repeat questions, knowing that at one point it will create a positive shift in the querent’s mind.

It is all down to your judgement without prejudice to make the right decision when faced with repeat questions.

Warmest wishes,

Christiane

 

 

How To Supercharge Your Daily Tarot Card Draw

Random Questions To Supercharge Your Daily Tarot Card DrawWhen you start learning the Tarot, most books and more experienced readers recommend pulling a daily tarot card in order to familiarise yourself with your deck and the images.

At this stage there is no pressure to come up with a relevant interpretation; just record the name of the card on a sheet of paper together with a note of the day’s events to compare.

The next step is to ask a question before you draw your card, such as “What do I need to pay attention to today?” 

Quicker than my more detailed one-card reading approach, the random question technique offers you new insights every day.

Asking a question will help you focus and make your daily draw a little more specific. Even better when you ask a different question every day.

For this purpose, I have compiled a list of questions you can ask at random:

  1. What do I need to do differently today?
  2. What do I need to embrace?
  3. What do I need to avoid?
  4. How can I invite positive change into my life?
  5. What will be my strength today?
  6. How can I tackle a challenge today?
  7. What new opportunity do I need to look out for?
  8. How can I be more positive today?
  9. What new potential will be emerging?
  10. How can I nurture new growth?
  11. What do I need to let go of that prevents new growth / opportunities?
  12. What can I be grateful for today?
  13. How can I nurture myself?
  14. How can I help others?
  15. What can I let go of without losing anything?
  16. How can I simplify my life today?
  17. How can I increase abundance in my life?
  18. What can I do to have a good day today?
  19. What lesson will I learn?
  20. What is happening in my life that I am not aware of?
  21. What step can I take today to reach my goal?
  22. How can I raise my confidence / self-esteem today?

Over time, you can add more questions to this list to expand your self-exploration.

And here is a cool way to choose a random question to answer each day:

Make your own question cards! Here’s how:

Use old greeting cards you received (e.g. Birthday, Christmas, etc.) and cut them into mini size cards (mine on the image above are approx. 45 x 75 mm). Write a question on the back of each card.

Mix the cards and lay them face down. Pick a card and hey presto, you’ve got your question for the day.

As I mentioned before, you can extend your card set when you think of new questions you would like to add.

Take a look at what I have created:

Random questions are a great way to add variety and depth to your daily tarot card draws, and hopefully you are inspired to create your own set of questions cards Smile

For more journaling ideas, please check my freebies page, where you can also join my mailing list for updates and more free resources.

Warmest wishes,

Christiane

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Going Pro: Third Party Readings

the lovers tarot sharman caselli third party readings
The Lovers (Detail), Sharman Caselli Tarot Deck (c) 2008 Connections Book Publishing Ltd.

One of those ethical dilemmas Tarot readers have to grapple with are third party readings.

There are different kinds of third party readings; some are subtle mainly found in relationship readings, others are more blatant, where the question doesn’t relate to the person requesting the reading at all.

One of those blatant third party questions I once got was How is my sister, and is her husband treating her well?

The lady, who asked was from the Asian community, and although I can only guess why she asked about her sister, it may have related to an arranged marriage.

I can completely sympathise with the querent; of course she wants to know how her sister is and if she’s okay, but I have explained already in this post that it is difficult to connect with third parties in a reading, and often as a result the messages from the Tarot can be confusing, unclear or even wrong.

Still, who wouldn’t want to put the querent’s mind at rest, reassuring her that all is well and her sister is happy.

But then I’d be guessing, at worst lying (what should I say, if I drew the Tower, Death or any other such card?).

Whatever I’d say about her sister couldn’t be validated, whereas a reading for the querent directly can be. That’s another reason why third party readings such as this example are risky and should be avoided.

Most questions Tarot readers get asked are about love and relationships.

Will he come back to me?

How does he feel about me?

What are his long-term intentions?

Is he cheating on me? 

are all questions focusing on someone other than the client, yet when it comes to a relationship it takes two to make it work (or not).

How many relationship spreads include positions such as What person A brings to the relationship/what person B brings to the relationship (and person B not being present during the reading).

Person B’s strengths, weaknesses and whatnot are analysed and dissected in a reading, while that person is absent; it’s very much talking behind someone’s back, judging them and making choices about the relationship without them, all based on a reading.

In my time as a professional Tarot reader I have noticed that questions about other people, especially in relationship readings, are deep down about the client.

When we examine in a reading what the other person is bringing to the relationship, I always point out that the answer is likely to be the perception of the querent.

For example, the Hanged Man is drawn in that position. Rather than saying “it seems like your boyfriend doesn’t want to commit or wants to take your relationship further”, I’d ask “do you feel your relationship isn’t going anywhere?”, “Are there circumstances that prevent you from moving forward together?”

Here you can see the difference between a third party (first answer) and a client-focused (second answer) reading. The latter can be validated by client and offers more scope to explore the bigger picture.

And yet, we still take the other person into account by looking at the relationship as a whole but from the client’s perspective.

Whereas blatant third party readings should be avoided, relationship readings that take into account both parties (where one of them is absent) can be explored by focusing on the feelings and perceptions of the client in relation to their partner. This way we don’t guess the other person’s intentions, and perhaps we can also help the client figure out for themselves how the other person is feeling.

How do you feel about third party readings? How do you answer them? Have you been using relationship spreads that include questions about the other – absent – person? 

I’d love to hear from you.

Warmest wishes,

Christiane

 

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Autumn Equinox – Embracing The Dark Season

autumn equinox oracle card
Oracle of Quotes

A friend of mine told me recently that she found the transition from summer to autumn hard.

The falling leaves make her feel depressed, and she was dreading the unavoidable approach of the long cold winter months ahead.

To a certain degree I understand her sentiment, but once you consciously decide to tune in and embrace the light and dark of all the seasons, you discover the magick and beauty of each one of them.

Just like the trees shed their leaves in the autumn, so can we shed old stuff that is holding us back.

The shedding of leaves is preparation for new life and growth in spring, and we can do the same in order to pave the way for new experiences and growth.

Today is Virgo’s (the Hermit) last day in the sun until Libra (Justice) takes over tomorrow.

Over the last four weeks, the energy of the Hermit has encouraged us to go inwards, reflect and explore what new skills to learn, new knowledge we can acquire and how we can turn it into wisdom that will serve us and others well in time to come.

The New Moon in Libra tomorrow invokes the energies of Justice, encouraging us to create and appreciate harmony in life, especially in relationships, including friendships that need building and nurturing.

So there is much we can do, and the approaching darkness will help us focus on what we need to do including planning and implementing.

Perhaps today at the time of the Autumn Equinox, or over the coming weeks until Samhain, you may want to consult the Tarot to explore some of the following questions to help you gain focus and direction:

What is holding me back right now that I need to let go of?

At this time of year with the energies of Libra/Justice, explore your options rather than making a decision. It’s about weighing up the pros and cons, so you can make your final decision by Samhain (31 October).

What new skills do I need to learn to help me reach my goals?

Depending on the card/s you draw, these could relate to

  • leadership and creativity (fire, wands),
  • emotions and relationships (water, cups),
  • mental challenges and conflict resolving (air, swords), or
  • hands-on practical skills and money management (earth, pentacles)

What can I do to strengthen my relationships with people that are important to me?

Remember that important people in your life are not restricted to your partner or close family, but also extended family, friends, co-workers, professional networks… Explore how you can build bridges, overcome conflict, encourage solidarity and teamwork, bring people closer together etc.

And here are a few other practical ideas to get you started:

  • make a to-do list
  • declutter your bookshelf to make room for new knowledge
  • network with people and see what you can do for them
  • when it comes to friendships, it’s not about quantity but quality. Only two genuine friends are worth more than a large bunch of acquaintances, who don’t care about you.
  • get your finances in order
  • avoid drama and the people creating it
  • enrol on a course

Wishing you a Happy Equinox and a magickal autumn season ahead.

Warmest wishes,

Christiane

 

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Ask the Right Questions

ask the right questions

When clients approach me for a reading, they are often tempted to ask questions like

When will I find new love?
When will I get a new job?
Does he still love me?
What does the future have in store for me?
Will my business be successful? etc…

Although I don’t rephrase questions and aim to answer them as best as possible, I also include some additional insight clients may not have thought about, which are meant to provide opportunities for personal development and growth.

It is important to ask the right questions, which put you in control and empower you. Strive to “know thyself” with the help of Tarot.

Through self-exploration you will find the answers within you rather than hoping to find them elsewhere.

“An empowered life begins with serious personal questions about oneself. Those answers bare the seeds of success.” 
Steve Maraboli, Unapologetically You: Reflections on Life and the Human Experience

Here are some personal questions you can explore with the Tarot, which you can also adapt to a specific issue:

“Who am I?”
“What do I need?”
“How do I function best?”
“How can I achieve my dreams?”
“How can I fulfil my potential?”
“What are my strengths and weaknesses?”
“What is blocking me?”
“What do I need to pay attention to at this moment in time?”
“What do I have to give?”
“How can I help and support others?”
“What’s the next step I can take right now?”

Self-inquiries like these help you

  • stay true to your values and principles
  • pursue your dreams and desires
  • take responsibility and make the most of what life throws at you
  • recover from setbacks
  • grow through challenges and adversity
  • set and maintain healthy boundaries
  • learn from your mistakes
  • accept and embrace change with confidence and resilience
  • add value to others and the world around you

“At the end of the day, the questions we ask of ourselves determine the type of people that we will become.” Leo Babauta

The right question should encourage you to take action rather than sitting back waiting for something to happen or surrendering to fate.

The right question should also discourage you from regarding yourself as a victim, and instead inspire you to step into your power in order to heal from any negative experiences.

For more information on asking the right questions, you can also check out relevant posts here and on my journal blog.

Warmest wishes,

Christiane

 

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Going Pro: You Cannot Help Everyone

you cannot help everyone
Image: Bohemian Gothic Tarot, 1st Edition, (c) Magic Realist Press 2010

“But what if a reading didn’t seem to be helpful to a client?”

My students keep asking me this question, as they are anxious to deliver accurate readings with a big dash of wow-factor Smile

I have written about this kind of insecurity before, but here I pick up on people’s intricate nature, and my answer is as follows:

You cannot help everyone. Even the most qualified and capable psychologists, doctors and counsellors experience limitations to their knowledge and skills.

For example, cognitive therapy is supposed to help people overcome phobias and depression. It’s a useful therapeutic tool, but doesn’t always work.

It’s not because you lack knowledge or skill per se; it’s because we deal with the complicated workings of the psyche. What goes on in a client’s mind is complex, and it’s not always possible to untangle the web in one or two sessions. Sometimes even 20 sessions won’t help.

When certain issues are ingrained deeply, it can take years for someone to unravel and overcome them. It’s not your job as a Tarot reader to do this for your client in one sitting; you offer them guidance, but it’s up to them to be determined to make a change and take action.

Remember that clients sometimes have unrealistic expectations of Tarot readings; they hope for them to be like a magic wand, providing the answer to all their questions and taking all their problems away.

Your job as a Tarot reader is to offer insight by making empowering suggestions based on the cards drawn; your client has to do the work afterwards. Not you.

But it is only natural that as a compassionate and empathic soul you want to help your client resolve their issues, so it sucks when sometimes it just doesn’t work out that way.

When this happens, ask yourself, if it was down to you, e.g. did you communicate clearly, was there a misunderstanding, or did your client have unrealistic expectations?

Here are some tips to help you limit these situations:

1. Be clear and realistic about what you can achieve with your readings.

2. Set your boundaries. In advance of the reading, communicate clearly what you can and cannot do.

3. Ask the client what they are hoping to get out of the reading.

4. Be aware that not every question can be answered in one sitting.

Trying to answer “big” questions, such as “I want to change career, but don’t know what I could do” are hardly ever resolved with one reading, and your client is likely to walk away still pondering. That’s normal.

Sometimes a reading is just a stepping stone on a long journey, but in most cases each stepping stone is useful, even if the client isn’t aware of it at the time or doesn’t openly appreciate it.

And with experience and acquired wisdom you will learn to handle those big questions, offering glimpses of illumination before you even look at the cards, but knowing full well that your client still has a long way to go when they leave you:

“I’ve just turned 40. Is this it? What do I do with the rest of my life?

Warmest wishes,

Christiane

 

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Reading Reversed Cards

reading reversed cards

My retreat holiday has been such a wonderful experience, but it’s also good to be back, and I’m diving straight into Tarot with a question my students keep asking me:

Do we need to pay attention to reversed cards in readings?

Some readers do, others don’t, and to be honest it is down to personal preference.

Here’s what I do:

In a reading, I usually make a mental note of any reversed cards and then turn them around. I cannot leave them upside down for visual reason; topsy-turvy images block my reading abilities.

It depends how many cards are reversed in a reading. I once had all ten cards in a Celtic Cross spread for a client reversed!

Immediately I thought there was a blockage somewhere in the client’s life, perhaps an inability to move forward with something, which was confirmed when I quickly mentioned it at the beginning of the reading.

Needless to say I turned all the cards around and proceeded with the reading and took the message of the reversed cards into account.

I don’t like the term “ill-dignified”, which is also used to describe reversed cards. Not every reversed card has a negative meaning. For example, the Hanged Man reversed could indicate movement after a time of stagnation, or the Ten of Wands shedding of a burden rather than carrying it. It also depends very much on surrounding cards in the reading.

I often feel that just one reversed card in a 5 – 10 card reading can be more significant than many reversed cards. Again, this also depends on surrounding cards and what your intuition is telling you.

Sometimes, a reversed card can stick out like a sore thumb, and it can carry a more meaningful message than if you ignored it.

When reading reversed cards, consider the following:

  • Do they enhance the overall message of the reading?
  • Do they weaken or oppose their upright meanings?
  • Do they strengthen the meaning of other cards in the spread?
  • Do they indicate a blockage, restriction, suppressed energies or indeed out of control energies?

Here are some examples for reversed card meanings:

Five of Wands: getting over a dispute, an argument getting nasty, not playing by the rules, quick temper

Emperor: loosing control/authority, being over-bearing, dictatorial

Tower: a disaster avoided, or something is brewing underneath the surface

Sun: burn-out, restricted creative potential, over-indulgence, hedonism

Ten of Swords (image above): on the way to recovery, releasing fears/pain/ resentment/regrets; starting over, inability to see that something has ended

Four of Pentacles: spending beyond your means, risky investment, becoming more generous with money after a time of frugality

Queen of Cups: over-emotional, drama queen, moody, insensitive, highly strung, easily stressed

When reversed cards come up, ask an empowering question such as:

  • What is the card asking you to avoid?
  • Every cloud has a silver lining. What is the silver lining of the reversed card?

As mentioned before, it is not vital to read reversed cards; you can consider both positive and negative aspects of the cards in a reading regardless which way they come up.

But once you get the hang of reading reversals and paying attention to them, you may well get some additional, valuable insight you wouldn’t have considered before.

Warmest wishes,

Christiane

 

Transform your life this year: 

Tarot Readings – Insightful guidance when you need it 
Learn Tarot – A magickal, inspirational tool for life
Tarot eBooks – Great value, innovative Tarot study material

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