Get to know your strengths as a tarot reader: The reader’s tarot reading

Here’s聽a tarot spread I sort-of came up with recently.

I say ‘sort-of’ because it’s a direct rip-off of the ‘getting to know you’ spread that I found *somewhere, once* and use for meeting and greeting new decks. So this one’s about you/me as a reader and your/my special skills.

It goes like this:聽

1. About you in general: what is your most important characteristic?
2. What strengths do you already have as a reader?
3. What limits do you feel as a reader?
4. What key lesson can you learn on your developmental journey?
5. How can you be open to learning and developing on this journey?
6. What is the potential outcome of this journey?

Quick plug – this spread appeared in the Feb edition of Tracker, the monthly tarot zine produced by TABI. It’s lovely. You can subscribe here.

I’m gonna use Charissa Drengsen’s Steampunk Tarot again because I’m just having a moment with it right now, and because I find it so neat and snappy and in brain-dead times that’s kinda what one requires doesn’t one.

Riiight then let’s get down to business. I’m drawing the cards one at a time…as in draw card no.1, write about it. Draw no.2, write about it. Etc.

Mere’s my reading:

Note on the picture…I did this on the scanner and aforementioned sleepybrain forgot to realise that I was laying them right-to-left. So they are like this:
3 – 2 – 1
6 – 5 – 4

1. What is my most important characteristic?

Well! Since you ask, it’s The World. Get me! Does this mean I’ve found my niche? Although very much a learner (aren’t we all), I’m hoping this suggests that I’ve a well-rounded understanding of tarot’s place in my life…or perhaps, since this position is more about me myself, rather than tarot reading, that I’m just feeling secure about who I am.

I love the imagery on this card – the three women on there all actually look like friends of mine (or at least resemble them in their posture – I’m thinking of YOU lady leaning back in chair in underwear with top hat and fizzy wine 馃槈 …plus there’s tattoos and globes and lovely things like this. I’m getting a feeling of mish-mashed happiness…a sense of satisfaction and confidence.

2. What are my strengths as a reader?

Nine of Cups. Biddy blogged about this card this morning, reminding me of its qualities as ‘the wish card’. As a reader, perhaps I won’t be able to solve everyone’s problems or make them feel amazing, but hopefully I’ll be able to offer encouragement and help people to feel good. And judging by this image, I’ll be wearing a pretty hot costume t’boot. So what else is new?

3. What are my limits as a reader?

The Heirophant. Ooh bloody hell. That’s not what I wanted to see. A little bit of ‘I know best’ perhaps? Note to self: when I feel a touch of this geeza coming into my readings, give myself a pinch. To my mind receiving a tarot reading just ain’t about someone telling you what’s what. Helpful guidance, maybe, but The Heirophant can sometimes take this further, instilling his own laws and ideals into the next generation. Not appropriate! And I do recognise the personal quality this is referring to. Hmph.

4. What key lesson can you learn on this journey?

The Hermit speaks for himself.

5. How can I be open to learning and developing on this journey?

Oh wow – the Five of Wands! I do find this card amusing I must say. Two guys battling it out to impress three women who look, to say the least, not particularly bothered. Still, a little tussling, a little bit of fighting (perhaps with myself), as I try to push my status as a reader that little bit higher. I guess there’s something here about not being afraid to stick my neck out and speak my mind, even if it’s gonna cause a little conflict. I just don’t expect anyone to fall madly in love with me over it…

6. What is the potential outcome of this journey?

Aw, yay. My favourite. The Queen of Swords. Older, wiser. Sadder perhaps, but with a sharpened sense of humour and a keener sense of judgement. (Or are those my querents?)

Great stuff – thank you lovely Steampunk Tarot!

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  1. saricchiella says:

    I love the deck you used 馃檪

    I came across this post looking for some help with my own Reader’s Reading spread, but first, I would like to know. This post is from feb 2012. What do you think of it now? Does it show the evolution you have had as a reader? Is there anything you would read differently?

    I don’t see the Queen of Swords as sad at all, my sister is very much that queen, and she’s one of the funniest people I know! Her wit is quick, and she can laugh about pretty much everything, including herself. I see this card as almost clairvoyant: this queen can see through people, knowing their true intentions, even when they try to mask them.

    I have a question regarding my own spread. As my limits as a reader, I got the King of Wands, and I don’t really know how to interpret that. All the characteristics I associate with that king are good in my eyes! Arrogance, perhaps? Impatience? Wouldn’t those be the characteristics of the Knight?

    I’m confused… can you please help me?

    • Beth says:

      Hey! Thank you so much for drawing my attention to this reading – it was so good to go over it once again. I think it deserves a whole new blog post of its own, but as I read over this, I feel that each of these cards is absolutely spot on for me, though I am adding a lot of extra learning and ideas about each card to the reading.

      As for your reading, yes, I personally would associate a degree of arrogance with the King of Wands (though even more so with the Knight, just as you say). Think also about the King of Wands being the ‘boss’ of fire, as in, a person who uses the element of fire – inspiration, projects, gut-centred action, charisma – to control the world around them. So there could be ideas here about you being very ‘gung ho’ with your readings, perhaps not leaving enough room for your querents to bring in their own ideas, and focusing more on feeling that you ‘know what they should do’? Just thoughts!

      • saricchiella says:

        Hmmm… that’s a very interesting take on the King of Wands, yeah. And yes, it is quite spot on. I think it comes from knowing enough about tarot to identify the cards, but not enough to understand them properly. I can work on that! 馃檪


  2. Nina says:

    I just used this spread and I’m a bit confused as to my potential outcome because I received The Empress Reversed, which doesn’t seem to good as a beginner on the journey. Any advice on this one?

    My spread appeared as follows:
    1. Hermit Reversed
    2. Magician
    3. Death Reversed
    4. 5 of cups
    5. Knight of Wands Reversed
    5. Empress Reversed

  3. Beth says:

    Hey Nina! Wow, I love all of the major cards – that is one hell of a reading!

    I don’t personally read reversed cards, but you could look at it in a few different ways. Start with the general energies associates with this card – self-indulgence, nurturing others, nourishment, abundance. This may be saying that you won’t be one of those fluffy tarot readers who makes everything seem okay? Or maybe that you won’t be drawn to *read for everyone you know* – it’s gonna be more of a personal relationship for you, at least at first (I’m looking at your other cards here, the Hermit and Death in those positions too.) There’s a real ‘inward’ feeling here. I feel like this isn’t about giving everything at once, but bit by bit, going deep. Does that make sense for you?

    • Nina says:

      Yes that does make sense. I’m an inward type and I go d e e p. I use it mostly for my own healing and clarity and don’t know how to translate that for others yet. Im hoping with time that will change and I can offer others a nurturing experience. Thank you!

  4. I just did this reading for myself a couple days ago (, and had to sit with it for a long time before I could write it up. There’s a lot in it! I really appreciate your compassionate approach to accepting The Hierophant for yourself here. It helped me figure out how to process the cards that I hadn’t wanted to see in my own spread. Thank you! (Also, I am really enjoying the course. Thank you!)

  5. tartanlass says:

    Hello, I love your blog and thanks for posting this great spread路 I just completed a reading for myself and it was very insightful. I did however receive the three of swords in position 2 “strengths I already have as a reader”路路路路路Which I had to giggle at路路路路路The cards sometimes throw some pretty off the wall stuff at you! Maybe it means I have dealt with heart break in my life so can help others in these situations?? I always try to look at the positive. Do you have any other suggestions? I’m a bit of a novice reader. Thanks!!!

  6. bznak says:

    Oh wow!! I just did this reading on my self, using the beautiful “Wild Unknown” deck. As I watched the cards unfold, my heart filled with warm love and emotion. Truly, the beauty of these cards gets me every damn time.

    I am having quite the love affair with my deck, it is the sweetest deck I have ever had the pleasure of working with. It spells everything out in the nicest possible way, making everything clear for my novice mind.

    1 – Daughter of Cups
    2 – The Empress
    3 – The High Priestess
    4 – The moon
    5 – Father of Cups
    6 – The Hermit

    Such a lovely reading and so encouraging. It will surly keep me inspired for the remainder of the course.

    The High Priestess and father of cups are a bit of a confusion for me in their positions though. I take the High Priestess in regards to limitations i feel, as I don’t trust myself to see all there is to see, that I am worried I will not listen closely enough.

    The father of cups in the number 5 spot, I take as not letting my insecurities stand in the way of perusing and learning. Remain open minded.

    Anything you see that perhaps I am not seeing? Thanks so much for developing such a fun online program!

  7. Madhvi says:

    Hey Beth, just completed mine as part of your course. Drew a few interesting cards, my take on them are –

    1. Three of wands – the most important thing about me is that I have started on this journey and am looking at my options. The open vista is almost like the tarot world lies ahead of me and I am deciding how to move forward. This is true to an extant as at this point in my tarot journey I am choosing to spend more time and look at online courses, communities, etc. so as to learn more and dwell deeper.

    2. Six of pentacles – hmmm .. I do find this to be a tricky card and I guess I need to spend more time with it, for now I take it to mean that you strengths that I already bring to the tarot are that I am fair and open to giving to others. Not sure how to read it – like I said – as of now – this is a tricky card for me.

    3. Knight of cups – again a good card but a confusing one. What my limits are – taking a leaf out of your interpretation of your card. I would think that this card is saying – be mindful of your tendency to want to heal/ fix the seekers problems/issues.

    4. Eight of wands – what key lessons I can learn – lots of new energy will come with this endeavor – so I can learn lots of new things about me, about life, etc.

    5. Ace of wands – how can I be open to learning the most – by utilizing the opportunities that come my way as I start reading/working with the tarot.

    6. Knight of pentacles – what will be the outcome – well one will have to wait and watch. If I take the opportunities offered by the ace, lots of new energy will come my way. If I can steadfastly work on those and do my bit. Then hopefully good things will sprout up. The knight of pentacles is strong and stable. So maybe it will also bring me stability?

    Those were my two pence as of now, would you add anything else? Esp. With respect to the 6 of pentacles and the Knights ?

    Thanks for the amazing course – as you can see I,be only just started. But so far so awesome 馃檪
    Much love

  8. Jenny says:

    I did it yesterday and I am still puzzled with my most feared card “the tower” as my outcome on No 6.

    • Beth says:

      Wow, what a card to get! I would interpret that as you being the kind of reader who brings scary but much-needed change, a liberator, a status-quo challenger. Bold and strong and not for the light-hearted!

      • Jenny says:

        Awww! Beth, this helps for sure <3 ! As the readings for myself are most often like that. You saved my day! Now I can finish this reading for the course. Yihaaa

    • Jen Angel says:

      I also saw The Tower as my outcome. If this question is, “what can in expect from this journey?” I interpreted it in a very positive way as change – that beginning this journey (learning Tarot) will change my life dramatically and that it is the right path. A friend often interprets this card as “revolution”, which has often has a positive association for me.

  9. Razinthia says:

    I did it with the Aquarian, which I’ve found more helpful for more inward-looking readings, and I did it as Beth did. Turn a card, write it up, turn the next, write it up, etc.

    1. Most Important Characteristic as A Reader
    Seven of Rods: I stand up for what I believe the cards mean. I’m secure in my opinions and not too easily swayed. I defend my interpretations and way of reading, even if it might not be the most conventional. For example, I don’t own a Smith Waite deck, and some have said that that’s the only way to learn, but I feel much more connected to the Wild Unknown and the Aquarian than I did to my Smith-Waite when I had it.

    2. Strength as a Reader
    Ace of Cups: This exact card came up to represent me during a polyamory reading I did a few weeks ago. In this case, it tells me that I make use of my intuition, emotional wisdom, and empathy for my querents when I read. The Ace of Cups also represents a promising new relationship, which could be the seed of my relationship with the cards or Tarot as a discipline in general.

    3. Weakness as a Reader:
    Three of Pentacles: I might not be the best in working with groups or doing collaborative readings. I have a hard time taking input from others.

    4. What key lesson can you learn on your journey:
    Eight of Rods: I can learn to draw conclusions from the information provided, and put plans into action or encourage my querents to do so.

    5. How can you be open to learning and developing on this journey?
    Ace of Rods: Another ace! I’m keeping in mind that I’m just beginning, but channeling my creative power with confidence in all things whether that be reading the cards, taking courses, getting readings from others, etc.

    6. What is the potential outcome of your journey?
    Queen of Rods: I can become the full realization of the Ace of Rods’ creative potential: open, honest, passionate, and confident, with faith in my abilities. The conflict of the Seven of Rods will be an important part of the past, but maybe not quite as prominent.

  10. Hi your reading just popped up after a really old friend who is a witch criticized my new tarot business. Stating I’m dumbing down tarot and remember the old ways. I’ve always felt uncomfortable being a fortune teller and she felt tarot was just that ‘period’ she’s American.

    I read tarot via energies I feel and have developed as being someone who focuses on the clients situation nin and helping them understand this and whether they want the outcome that could come about. I focus on clafication that the cards show me. I’ve felt very confident since understanding this is how I’m supposed to read.

    So after the knock back seeing your spread I was yahhhhhh this may help or show me how wrong. So here it is….

    1. . Most Important Characteristic as A Reader
    The Magician. I enable. I bring it all together and allow the client to understand iltje answers are all there. I’m the magician who allows them to see what they can’t. Ok positive

    2. 2. Strength as a Reader
    Page pentacles. I don’t shout it out. I examine I learn I check. I take it slowly and sensible without rash comments. I start there interests and thought process.

    3. Weakness as a Reader

    Ten Cups . Stumped with this one. Maybe I’m being too mice. Maybe I need to give it a bit more reality. Maybe my friends right I am sugar costing it all.

    4. What key lesson can you learn on your journey:

    The Fool. To just do it. Bumble along don’t think too much. If you don’t risk it then you will never achieve.

    5. How can you be open to learning and developing on this journey?

    10 Swords .Realise that your thought and fears are what bring you down. I have to stop the stop negativity and watch out for others wanting to stop or fell me due to their words. Time to let go of past. The battles finished.

    6. What is the potential outcome of your journey?

    Oh my no explanation. This cheered me up. I’m doing it right.

  11. Marie says:

    Love this spread… so wanted to try it out as I’m seriously accurate in my readings, so really curios to see what the deck had in store for me. I used to RWD however don’t know if that was actually the deck I was intuitively drawn to… it was the one I had at hand, however another deck – The Fountain Tarot, was on my mind. Anyways. Here’s the cards I got:

    1: 5 of Pentacles
    2: 10 of pentacles, reversed
    3: Queen of cups, reversed
    4: Queen of swords, reversed
    5: Page of Cups, reversed + 4 of pentacles
    6: King of Wands, reversed

    In addition I pulled 3 cards asking for my ideal cliental:
    – 4 of Swords, reversed
    – Ace of Cups, reversed
    – 8 of Cups, reversed

    I’m totally speechless at the moment, I honestly have no clue what’s up with all the reversed cards in this reading. usually I read reversed cards as a guiding to focus more internally rather than outwards.

    Would appreciate your thoughts on my cards, as sometimes it can give some great understanding hearing it from another reader (especially one as gifted and talented as you!).



  12. As long as we’re sharing…. (my deck was the Mucha Tarot, because I like me my pretties)

    1. Knight of Pentacles. I have a foundation. I think things through carefully. I want to build on something solid and know where I鈥檓 going. And yet, I also look back over my shoulder a lot. I want to be generous.

    2. High Priestess. I鈥檝e got both spiritual training and intuition. I seek balance. I am open to receive wisdom.

    3. Ace of Swords. This is a re-beginning for me. (I’ve had a few years off from reading for the most part, and I signed up for the course to help me refresh.) I may overthink or overanalyze. Or, I may imagine limits into being that aren鈥檛 there because really I鈥檝e Got This.

    4. Nine of Cups. Just loosen up and have some goddamn fun. Tap into the plenty that鈥檚 there and enjoy it. Share it around. …This is so relevant to how I trip myself that I’ve chosen it as my keynote for the course. REMEMBER THAT YOU’RE HAVING FUN.

    5. Eight of Wands. Don鈥檛 overwhelm yourself. Don鈥檛 hurry. Don鈥檛 freak out. Remember that it is a journey that is its own reward. There鈥檚 not an exam coming. (I resemble this too.)

    6. Eight of Pentacles. I mean, yeah, there will be work, but you鈥檒l master it. You need the relaxing and pacing and enjoying so you can maintain more work; with that balance, you can work at a more 鈥減ro鈥 level.

    Thanks for the course and the site – it’s always awesome!

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