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Tune In: How to Use Tarot for Inner Work and Self-Reflection

By May 13, 2015 May 4th, 2018


Last month, I went on my very own ‘bliss weekend'. Two of my girlfriends and I hired a house down on the Mornington Peninsula, amongst the rolling sand dunes and sprawling tea trees, to retreat and re-energise. We enjoyed an in-house massage, a relaxing bathe at the Hot Springs and good, meaningful conversations about our lives. Ooo, so good for the soul!

While the girls headed home on Sunday, I stayed on for an extra night. I was ready to turn my attention inwards and do some of the inner work I have been putting off for quite some time (always too busy or distracted by family commitments and daily responsibilities).

What happened over the next 12 hours was incredibly powerful. I delved deep into my life and by ‘unpacking' what I knew at a soul level, I reached a point of laser insight and clarity that helped me to see the next steps forward. And all with a little help from my friends, the Tarot cards.

Today, I want to share this powerful process with you, so that you, too, can ‘tune in' with your Tarot cards and unveil what really lies beneath. Use this revealing process to work through deeper issues, discover solutions and manifest your goals.

Before You Begin…

Before you begin this deep, exploratory process, make sure you have:

  • A notebook or a journal to record your insights
  • Your favourite Tarot decks – I used the Gaian Tarot and the Kuan Yin Oracle
  • A quite space where you will not be interrupted, preferably outside in nature
  • Your favourite crystals, candles or anything else to help make this a sacred, magical space

Clear Your Mind

Now that you're ready to begin your inner work, take a moment to close your eyes and take in three deep breaths.

On the first breath out, let go.

On the second breath out, be here.

And on the third breath out, ask, “Now what?” Open yourself up to receiving new possibilities.

(Thanks to Christina Baldwin for sharing Thich Nhat Hanh's teachings.)

Now, ground yourself through the earth, imagining deep roots extending down into the ground. Then visualise a pure white light showering over you from the Universe, connecting you to the ‘oneness' that is all around you.

Set an Intention

At this point, you may wish to set an intention or say a prayer, calling on your spirit guides or angels, or asking for support from the Universe.

In my practice, I set the following intention:

“I radiate light and raise my vibrations to the highest level. I call on the Universe to work through me as I open myself up to receive these divine messages.”

Of course, go with your heart. What is calling out to you in the moment? And what is important to you for this deep session?

Explore the Shadows

Now we begin the hard work – exploring the shadows!

Think about what is truly bothering you right now. What is standing in the way of living your fullest potential? What is creating negativity in your life? What are you truly struggling with?

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It might be a challenging relationship riddled with conflict and negative energy. It might be a frustrating or upsetting situation that continues to appear in your life and you're wondering what the deeper lesson might be. It might be an issue you've struggled with for many years such as weight loss or lack of confidence.

Select just one area to focus on and then begin to ‘free write' about this issue in your notebook for at least 10-15 minutes. What is it about this issue that is upsetting you? Where is this negativity coming from? What does it really feel like? Keep writing and fleshing it out – you'll find that the more you write, the deeper you go.

If you hit a roadblock, then draw a Tarot card for insight. For example, you might wonder, “Why does this keep happening?” or “What's really lying beneath the surface here?” Draw a Tarot card and then explore that card through more free-writing.

You may also like to call on your angels or spirit guides to show you aspects of this issue that you may not have been aware of.

Explore the shadows and shine the light of consciousness into the dark corners of your mind.

Find the Resolution

Now that you know what is truly bothering you and why, turn your attention to finding the resolution. What do you need to do in order to move forward from this negative energy or frustrating issue?

Again, free write for a period of time and use your Tarot cards whenever you need to go deeper.

I recommend that you don't turn to your cards immediately. This isn't about doing a typical Tarot reading where you lay out the cards then work through the answers. This is about connecting with your inner voice first and using the Tarot cards simply to clarify what might be unknown.

Use the Tarot cards to prompt your intuition and your inner wisdom to guide you. Again, call on your spirit guides to show you the possibilities and the path forward.

Envision What's Possible

To round out the exploratory process, close your eyes and envision what would be possible if you were able to resolve these deeper issues. What do you want your ideal life to look like?

Step into that picture in your mind. What does it feel like? Pay attention to the sounds, smells, tastes, sensations, and images. Truly experience it as if it were real.

Offer Gratitude

Give thanks to the Universe, your spirit, your guides and angels, and any other force or ‘being' that has supported you in this journey.

Rinse and Repeat

If you're ready to tackle another ‘shadow',release yourself of the energy of the previous session with a good shake or even a cleansing shower, and start over.

In the long-term, schedule a ‘date with your soul' every week or month so that you make it a habit to tune in and connect with your spiritual self.

Now, you don't have to do this exact process. Take what is most meaningful to you, add in your own ‘flavour' based on what connects YOU to your soul, and make it your own. The important thing is that you're tuning in to yourself regularly and you're clearing any negative energy that may be getting in the way of you living your life at your fullest potential.

Over to You

What practices do you use to ‘tune in' and reflect, with the Tarot cards as your guide? Share your comments below.


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Wish You Had A Tarot Card Meaning Cheat Sheet?

Get Your FREE Tarot Card Meanings Reference Guide

And Avoid Getting Stuck When Trying To Remember The Card Meanings