All about you, and you…and yes, you too!

Firstly, I want to say thank you.

You funny, brilliant people. 520 of you took the trouble to take my survey last month, and I’m grateful for all that you shared with me.

The reason it’s taken me so long to get back to you on the things you shared is…there was just so much!

I’m still reading and digesting all your thoughts and ideas about tarot, but it’s way past time to give you some feedback.

Some quick hits:

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Seriously? Less than half?

How do you view, use or feel about tarot?

Allow me to explain, with this simple chart! (Click to enlarge)

approaches to tarot

So here I can see – overwhelmingly – that you’re using your cards to explore your feelings, thoughts and experiences. For so many of you, this is about self-understanding. Psychology, spirituality, feelings. Me too! No wonder we get on so well!

Over half of you want to know more about how to actually read your cards, and just under half of you say you’ve just started learning. Well, to you I say – welcome! I’m glad you found Little Red Tarot, and I hope so much I’ll be able to contribute to the awesome journey you’ve just begun!

And who, actually, are you, anyway?

You’re mostly in Western Europe and the US, some from Canada, Australia, New Zealand, and a sizeable smattering from elsewhere, too.

You’re artists, baristas, teachers, grand/parents, administrators, nurses, activists. Librarians, scientists, retailers, unemployed folks, counsellors, outdoor folks, IT people, therapists, volunteers. And at least one of you writes subtitles for TV here in Manchester! ::waves::

Some of you are retired. Some of you are ill. Some of you are students. Some of you are taking time out. Lots of you juggle. Plenty struggle with work life balance. Many wonder about self-employment, many say you are teetering on the brink.

Most of you say you are happy with your work-lives, or else you’re on a course to change. There is much talk of ‘the journey’. Some of you are stuck, wondering where to turn next. Plenty of you hate your jobs. And many of you gave identities that went way beyond your jobs, when asked ‘what you do’, you’re readers, thinkers, wanderers, rock-music-listeners, and this:

I collect weird and wondrous facts and then I write weird and wondrous things.

Lots of you identify LGBTQ and/or trans*/non-binary (…even though I stupidly forgot to ask.)  To my queer siblings: Thank you, especially, for being here. This website is for everyone, but it is most especially for you. I love you.

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You’re an excitable, intelligent bunch – funny, warm, encouraging, thoughtful, and a gorgeous mix of optimism, cynicism and self-awareness that makes me want to have a party and invite you all.

The information you shared about your lives, your work, your relationships (and some of you got seriously personal!) helps me to know who it is that I’m writing to, who I serve, who I create for. When you open up like this, I can feel you so much closer, and start to get a better idea of who you are and what you value. So thank you. Genuinely, truly. Thank you.

And then we get to the big question. The one that will help me to plan my work for the coming year.

I asked you: What is the biggest problem or barrier you encounter when it comes to your tarot cards?

And you said (and I paraphrase crudely)…

Learning the meanings of all of those cards, I’ll never remember them, there are too many.

Those damn court cards!

Time. I never have enough time to devote to my tarot studies or even to do readings.

Confidence in reading for others, especially face to face. I still rely on my books, I’m scared people will think I’m rubbish.

Reading the cards in context – in spread positions, in relation to each other. Finding the common threads, the full story.

There were many other issues too, but these were the most commonly felt. What’s funny – and yet also kinda obvious – is that every one of these is familiar to me. I’ve struggled with each of these problems too. And one – the face-to-face reading confidence – I still struggle with on a regular basis (…more on that to follow.)

So! Challenge accepted.

My job as writer/curator of this blog, as a creator of tarot learning resources, as a general encourager-of-tarot-folks, is to help you with these issues. And that’s what I will do. If you keep your eye out over the coming months, you’ll find answers, tips, suggestions, strategies and ideas that will help you to overcome those blocks.

Most will be free – my blog is a publicly-accessible resource for anyone who wants it, filled to the brim with advice and ideas for tarot readers of all levels and persuasions, regardless of your disposable income. I know that a huge number of you don’t have much of that.

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Some will be paid for – obviously. Low-maintenance as my boat-dwelling, bike-riding, charity-shopping lifestyle may be, I gotta earn a living, else all of this will fold. Every time one of you purchases something from my shop or signs up to the Alternative Tarot Course, I’m grateful that you help to sustain my work, and the community we all enjoy here.

We’ll start tomorrow with that whole time thing!

You’re busy. I’m busy. But learning tarot – learning anything requires time. So let’s figure out, between us, some simple ways to incorporate our cards more easily into our lives, so that learning becomes not a chore or another item on the to-do list, but a moment of pleasure or reflection.

And it will be an open thread.

Let’s get a real conversation going in the comments. I’ve got my ideas, but between us we can times those by ten. If you’re struggling to make time for your tarot, or you’ve found ways to fit in a little card slinging here and there in your hectic life, pipe up, share your thoughts, let us know.

See you tomorrow!

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8 comments

  1. What a tally! I kept reading through looking for “me” – where are the ones who…?
    But yes. Cats. Maybe next year’s questions can include “do you read for your pets?” Because I know that some folks do! (and also include non-binary, although it’s great that we could fill it in anyway!) 🙂

    • Beth says:

      Yeah, I really kicked myself for not taking the opportunity to find out what proportion of you ID as LGBTQ, non-binary, trans* and so on. It would have been the obvious thing to ask, since it’s such a big part of my work. From what people shared even without being asked, I know it’s a whole big load of you though.

      In order to keep this post to a reasonable length, I couldn’t represent every view or lifestyle presented in the survey – I stuck with the most common things – but I hope everything that you guys shared with me will seep into blog posts, guest posts, resources and more over the coming year.

      And yes!! Next year I will *totally* ask ‘do you read for your pets!

      I’ve never read for a pet, but I have had a reading from a dog recently. I don’t remember the card they pulled for me but it was a great reflection of the current moment 😀

  2. Christine says:

    I’m new, having not long joined. I was looking for a new way to understanding the tarot. I couldn’t agree with ‘set’ meanings. I didn’t know where they came from or how they were arrived at. For me, it is important to know and understand the whys and the wherefores and I found the ideas expressed in the Little Red Tarot course excellent, i.e. picking a card each day and carrying it around with me and reflecting on it. In my case, I was also questioning everything I saw in that card (using The Marseilles; the only deck I’ve got at present). It’s surprising where it’s led. Loads and loads of research. It’s given me a new insight into the tarot and I’m finding I’m getting to know the cards so much better. I’m really excited by all of this, as it’s so unexpected and I’ve only just started.

    It’s made me realize, too, that the journey through life means you have to join the dots in the right order, otherwise you could lose your way or miss out on good opportunities. Strange as it might seem, but a few weeks ago I decided to do a search on Google to see what tarot cards and books were out there. I had taken an interest in them about 20+ years ago but just couldn’t relate to them. I’ve a problem I need to know how to deal with and the thought went through my mind to use the tarot (the last resort in my case).

    On the first page of that search I think was the heading “places you can buy tarot cards that aren’t bloody amazon”. I just burst out laughing and thought I must take a look at this – and here I am; very glad of it, too. BUT would my interest in the tarot be what it is now had I not found this site! It just seems strange how things work out sometimes.

  3. Luiza says:

    I’m for the party. I joined the community recently, and going through the forums just made me aware of how many cool people have gathered around your work. Everybody seems like a potential friend.
    A party with all these people would be epic.

    Oh! And you quoted me! (I’m the one talking about movement practice under Strength) And I’m reading this right after giving my very first independently organized dance class this year. 🙂

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