Llewellyn Worldwide, Ltd.
View your shopping cart Shopping Cart | My Account | Help | Become a Fan on Facebook Become a Fan | Follow Us on Twitter Follow Us | Watch Us on YouTube Watch Us | Subscribe to our RSS Feeds Subscribe
Browse ProductsAuthorsArticlesBlogsEncyclopediaNewslettersAffiliate ProgramContact UsBooksellers
Advanced Search
Article Topics
List of Articles
RSS Data Feeds
Mission Statement
Use of Our Articles
Writers' Guidelines

Email Exclusives
Sign up to receive special offers and promotions from Llewellyn.

Get the Latest Issue of New Worlds

September/October 2015 Issue

New Worlds Catalog

Get the FREE app for your tablet and mobile device. Now available in the iTunes Store and the Google Play Store

Also available as a PDF File.

Click for more information about New Worlds or to receive issues via mail.

The Llewellyn Journal
Print this Article Print this Article

Tarot: What To Do If You Get Stuck

This article was written by Barbara Moore
posted under Tarot

We’ve all done readings that go along very well until suddenly your brain freezes and no words are coming out of your mouth. If you’re reading for someone else, this can be awkward or embarrassing. Even worse, it may cause you to lose confidence yourself or create a disconnect between you and your reading mojo. Luckily there a lot of techniques that can help you overcome just such a moment. And, as is the way of Universe, these methods may become some of your favorite tools for accessing intuitive, divine wisdom, whether or not you’re feeling stuck.

Before we get into some of these practices, I want to mention a different experience of being stuck.  In an earlier article I wrote about the importance of community and provided some sources for you to connect with various aspects of the tarot community either online or in your local area. When I was working on this article, I got a stuck (a bit of writer’s block). I turned to the tarot community and found tons of support. In particular, Amy Lamash, creator of the Tarot Calendar (found at http://www.tarotcalendar.com/) shared some of her own ideas with me and said to share them with you.

Back to when you find yourself drawing a blank on card. Try any or all of these until your intuition starts flowing again:

  1. Take a deep breath and relax. Reground.
  2. Say the name of the card aloud.
  3. Describe the card in detail out loud.
  4. Focus on what draws your eye (if reading for someone else, ask them what their eye is most drawn to).
  5. Talk about the numerical, elemental, or astrological correspondence of the card.
  6. Draw another card and focus on the similarities and differences between them, as well how they relate to each other visually (are the characters facing each other, away from each other, or in the same direction?).
  7. Imagine the card is a scene in a story. Tell the story, including what happened just before and what will happen next. If reading for someone else, ask them to do this.

If you are reading for someone else, using these techniques should get things flowing again, particularly if you incorporate the methods that invite the querent to participate.

If you are reading for yourself, you might need or want to take more time with a troubling card. Doing a short meditation can provide some interesting insight. Look at the card until you have it memorized. Sit back, relax, close your eyes and visualize the card. Let it grow in size until it is like a life-sized scene that you can enter. Imagine yourself entering the situation. What is it like? What do you do first? Do you talk to someone? What do you say? Does someone speak to you first? Once you take that first step into the image, the experience seems to take on a life of its own. This is one of my favorite techniques when I’m stuck. And unless I’m being willfully obstinate and don’t want the message, it usually works very well.

If you want to create an excellent toolkit of tarot reading techniques for yourself, do read Mary K. Greer’s 21 Ways to Read a Tarot Card. Many of the ideas here are from her book. It really will give your readings a level of usefulness and depth that may surprise you.

Barbara MooreBarbara Moore
In the early 1990s, at a party, someone put a tarot deck in Barbara's hands; she's held on tightly ever since. Tarot provides just enough structure so that we don't get lost as we explore the mysteries, plumb our dark corners, and locate our North...  Read more


Please note that the use of Llewellyn Journal articles
is subject to certain Terms and Conditions

It seems strange, doesn't it? A patron saint of people who are lesbian, gay, bisexual, transgender, and all other sexually fluid shades in-between. Popular opinion would have us believe that, by default, a saint would be against such liberal sexuality, but then again, just because an opinion is popular doesn't mean that it's true. In my book La... read this article
The Mutable Grand Cross from the Perspective of Evolutionary Astrology
Realizing the Green Witch Tarot
Three Theories to Explain the Chupacabra
40 Years of Yoga on the Chakra Path
Tracing Lincoln's Ghost

Most recent posts:
Magic of Flowers Oracle
Magic of Flowers Oracle By Tess Whitehurst with are by Anne Wetheim This oracle deck was inspired by Tess’s book The Magic of Flowers: A...

Necromancy Made Easy
Readers, please enjoy this guest blog post by Tomás Prower, author of the new La Santa Muerte. "How can I get in contact with the spirits of the...

Ritual Purity vs. Spiritual Coolness
Readers, please enjoy this guest blog post by Aaron Leitch, author of several books, including Secrets of the Magickal Grimoires, The Angelical...

Gathering Deep Gathering Deep
By: Lisa Maxwell
Price: $11.99 US,  $13.95 CAN
Dream Alchemy Dream Alchemy
Shaping Our Dreams to Transform Our Lives

By: Ted Andrews
Price: $15.99 US,  $18.50 CAN
The Question of the Unfamiliar Husband The Question of the Unfamiliar Husband
By: E. J. Copperman, Jeff Cohen
Price: $14.99 US,  $17.50 CAN
Llewellyn's 2016 Witches' Datebook Llewellyn's 2016 Witches' Datebook
By: Llewellyn
Price: $11.99 US,  $14.99 CAN
$9.59 US,  $11.99 CAN On Sale!
Llewellyn's 2016 Witches' Calendar Llewellyn's 2016 Witches' Calendar
By: Llewellyn
Price: $13.99 US,  $16.99 CAN
$11.19 US,  $13.59 CAN On Sale!