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BTP5: The Fastest (and Easiest) Way to Read a Tarot Card

Think it will take you ages to learn to read Tarot? Think again! In today’s podcast I will teach you the fundamentals so you can get started with your reading Tarot right away. All you’ll need is a deck of cards and your intuition.

In this episode, I’ll cover:

  • How to craft Questions for the Tarot that will give you the answers you NEED
  • Feeling the Flow: How to Sense the Energy in the Card
  • How you can Unfold the Story of the Tarot…in just one card!
  • Numerology, Elements, and more – looking into the deeper meanings
  • Oh no! You’re stuck. How to get unstuck–in a jiff

So, let’s jump in!

[Tweet “Want to learn to read #Tarot in a jiffy? Listen to #tarotpodcast Episode 5@biddytarot  “]

Additional Resources

Podcast Transcript


Brigit: You’re listening to the Biddy Tarot Podcast, and this is Episode 5: The Fastest (and Easiest) Way to Read a Tarot Card.

Welcome to the Biddy Tarot podcast, where you will learn how to connect more deeply with your intuition and live an empowered and enlightened life with the Tarot cards as your guide.

Listen as Brigit and her guests share their very best tips and strategies to help you read Tarot with confidence.

And now, here is your host Brigit Esselmont.


Brigit: Hello and welcome!

If you think that you need years and years of practice and knowledge to read Tarot successfully, think again.

Today I am going to teach you the fastest – and easiest – way to read a Tarot card. All you need is a deck of Tarot cards and your intuition!

So, let's go!

First: Start With a Question

The first thing that you need to do before you even start picking up your Tarot cards is start with a question for the Tarot. This really helps to focus the Tarot reading on a particular area in your life.

Now, you might choose to ask a question that is broad and general about your life overall – or you might want to focus in on your relationships, or your career, or finances, or moving house, for example. It’s completely up to you.

In order to make this nice and easy for us, I’ve come up with three possible questions that you could use to really get you started. One question that you could use is simply: What do I need to know today?

Now this is a great question if you’re doing your daily, one-card Tarot draw. When I was learning to read Tarot, I used this question pretty much every day; not only for the insight that it gave me, but also for the learning opportunity. It was the way that I familiarized myself with the Tarot cards.

That’s a really great question: What do I need to know today?

Another question that you could use is: How can I live in alignment with my Soul Purpose?

We’re getting nice and juicy and deep here with this question!It’s just a really great question to bring you back in alignment with your Higher Self; to be living every day in the way that you were meant to live. It can be a very powerful question to ask.

So that question is: How can I live in alignment with my Soul Purpose?

The third question, and this is the question that we’re going to work with today, is: What energies do I need to connect with in order to manifest my goals?

This is an absolute favourite question of mine because it is so empowering. It’s helping you to tap into the things that you need to do, right now, in order to create the future that you want. And you remember in our previous episode, the Tarot is not so much about telling you exactly what’s going to happen no matter what. The Tarot is really powerful when you’re using it to understand the actions that you can take now in order to shape the future the way that you want.

This is a really great question to do that: what energies do I need to connect with in order to manifest my goals?

Awesome – we have our question. That means we’re ready to start selecting a Tarot card.

Time to Shuffle and Draw

Now, hopefully you’ve got a Tarot deck nearby. If not, that’s fine. You can have a listen and I will work you through an example with my Tarot cards.

Now, just as a side note, if you’re thinking, “Oh man, I don’t have my Tarot cards but I would love to take part in this somehow as I’m listening,” I’ve got two alternatives for you. If you’ve got the Internet nearby, maybe on your phone, what you can do is jump onto a free Tarot reading site and you do a one card draw. So ask your question, and do a one card draw, and you’ve got a card that you can work with.

Now Number 2 is a really neat trick, particularly if you are travelling or if you are out and about. Number two is to simply ask the question of yourself. Ask the question, and then close your eyes and see what Tarot card comes up for you straight away. You might see an image pop into your mind– that is the Tarot card that’s meant for you. It’s a beautiful way of connecting in with your intuition while you’re doing a Tarot reading.

There are two little extra bonus techniques that you can use in order to quickly access Tarot cards.

For today I have my own Tarot deck with me. I’m using the Radiant Rider-Waite deck, which is my favourite deck. I have used this deck for most of my Tarot reading career because I think it’s so beautiful, the colours are great, and it’s a really well known, popular Tarot deck. But, of course, you can use whichever deck you like. I’m not going to tell you that you must use the Radiant Rider-Waite, or the Rider-Waite of any kind.

Alright, so we’ve got our Tarot cards and we’re going to shuffle.Now, as you’re shuffling, just think about the question: What energies do I need to connect with in order to manifest my goals?

So we have done our shuffle, now I’m going to draw a card. What I have drawn here is the Knight of Swords, but in the reversed position. In another podcast episode I will be walking you through how to read reversed Tarot cards, but for now let’s just work with it as we’ve got it.

Hopefully you’ve drawn your card as well. All I want you to do is simply place that card in front of you.

Now, you might be inclined to look at the card and start thinking, ‘Oh goodness, what did my favourite Tarot book say about this card? Or, what can I remember about what this card means?’

I want you to put all of those thoughts aside for the moment, because all you need to do first is just gaze at the card and see what comes to you. Really just observe the imagery in the card.

Gaze Deep into the Card

I’ve read the Tarot cards for over 15 years now and every time I do this kind of exercise where I allow myself that time and space just to gaze at the card, every time, I can find something I’ve not seen before or noticed.

So I’m looking at the Knight of Swords, which is upside down at the moment, and I’ve not noticed this before but there’s this white patch. I don’t know what it is. Oh, it’s meant to be like the sky. Goodness! Okay, it’s this white patch that’s underneath this horse. So what I can see here is we’ve got the Knight; he’s on a horse; he’s going pretty fast. I was just drawn to this white patch of nothingness. Even though there’s all this activity on the card, all I’m focusing on right now is this just plain white – blank.

I want you to also know I’m doing at the moment is observing. I’m not reading into it about the meaning. Yes, my mind is naturally thinking, ‘Ah, white space, what does that really mean?’ but all I want you to do is just observe what is standing out to you.

I’m also taking note of some birds that are on the sort of the regalia of the horse and the Knight. And, again, these are things that I’ve not paid a lot of attention to in the past. I’m noticing some wings on the horse – not on the actually horse, on some of the saddle, and so on. So birds and wings – well that’s very interesting.

Okay, so perhaps you’re looking at your card right now and noticing some other things that you haven’t seen before.The next thing I want you to do as you’re gazing at this card is think about: What’s the energy in the card? What do you feel when you see this picture?

And I tell you what, looking at the Knight of Swords, there’s so much action and activity going on here. So the energy that I’m feeling from this card is mad rushing – everything moving very quickly. That’s very interesting.

So again we’re just observing the energy, we’re not reading into it.

The next step to take is to look at the more detailed aspects of the imagery in the card. We want to first look at what’s happening right now in this card.

For the Knight of Swords I can see the Knight on his horse, rushing forward. His sword is held high into the sky, and he and the horse are just gunning for it. They are going! There’s no stopping them.

Have a look at your card and think: What’s happening? The next question is: What might happen next?If this was a storybook, and you were to turn the page, what would be on the next page?

So with this Knight, maybe he arrives at his destination. Maybe though, he’s been rushing so quickly that he thought he was going one way but he was actually heading the other. I wonder if he ends up at the place that he really needed to go to?

Particularly, if there’s a reverse card – sometimes that energy can be a little bit distorted or misguided in some way. So that’s interesting.

Have a look at your card and think: What might happen next?

Now that you know what the story is in this card we can start to think about: What does this really mean for you?

What’s the interpretation, the symbolism, the significance, of this?

This is where it helps to come back to your question and think, ‘It was about what energy do I need to connect with in order to manifest my goals.’

Now, again, I’m sensing that energy in this card – the horse and the knight are rushing forward – so there’s definitely a lot of high energy that’s required.

Examining the Imagery

But remember when I was focusing on that white space?That was the first thing that stood out to me. The significance of that for me in the context of this question is: Yes, it’s important to push forward, and it’s important to really take action, in order to manifest your goals, but make sure that there is white space in that process. Make sure that you also have points in time where you’re doing nothing, you are taking no action – because that in itself is taking action. But it’s allowing this white space so that you can align your thoughts; you can check in and make sure: Am I actually on the right path?

Remember, the possibility of this card is that they’re rushing madly, but are they heading to the right destination?

Maybe, maybe not.

That white space allows you the time and space to really think about: Am I on the right path here?

Energy and activity are very important, but make sure it’s heading in the right direction.

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So have a look at your card. What’s the moral of the story that you’re seeing in your card?

What’s the significance of it?

How might it relate back to your question about how you can manifest your goals?

Often, when you’re working with a deck like the Rider-Waite, or other really visual kinds of Tarot decks, just looking at the cards imagery is enough to give you the message that you need. And telling the story of that card helps you to then see the story that’s happening in your life. And you can start to draw some really strong connection between what’s happening in the card, and what’s happening in your life.

And the importance of that just gazing at the card, and seeing what you initially observe, that’s like opening up the doors to your intuition, and saying, “Alright intuition, it’s your turn now. What do you see? What is it that I really need to notice in this card in order to get the message that I most need?” That’s a really important part of the process.

Now, if you feel like you’ve got everything that you need from the card – fantastic -job done…pretty much. Just make sure that you’ve answered the question.

However, you might be looking at the card and think: That’s really interesting. I wonder if there’s anything more to this card.

So here are a couple of extra steps that you can take.One is to have a look at the Numerology of the card.

Now, with the Knight, you can link the Court cards to Numerology, but it’s not quite as obvious. The Knight is typically a 12, because we have our Tens say from the Minor Arcana; then the Page is the 11; the Knight is the 12; Queen is 13; and King is 14.

But, for me, that doesn’t quite really connect as much. However, if you drew the Four of Swords instead, what you might do is think about: What does four mean to me? What do I know about four?Four is about stability and foundation.

And then what extra information does that give you about that card?

The other aspect to look at is the suit of the card.

Obviously with your Major Arcana you don’t have suits. But here you are working with a Minor Arcana card, so have a look at what the suit tells you about the card.

With the swords we know it’s about action; it’s about words; communication; the intellect.

And with the Knight – the Knights are often about being mission oriented; or moving things from the idea phase that we see in the Pages, and moving to a place where we’re doing something with it. Aligning that then with the Swords, we know that it’s like taking intellectual action – and intellectualizing– and pushing things forward.

That’s really consistent with what I’ve seen in the imagery of this card. So that’s just given me a little bit of extra information.

Have a look at your card and think about:

  1. What does the number tell you?
  2. What does the suit tell you? Do you get some more information from that card?

For When You Need a Little Help

If you’re still feeling a little bit stumped, this might be a good time to have a look in your different Tarot books and get some ideas. But what I’m really hoping is that I’ve given you enough steps that you can use to draw upon you’re intuition and your inner resources, so that you can quickly and easily interpret the card that is in front of you. The more that you get practice in doing this, the less likely it is that you’ll need to use your book during a Tarot reading. That is the ideal outcome.

I think Tarot books are fantastic for between readings and for doing a little bit of extra research. But when you’re doing a reading, the ideal is that you’re feeling really confident about just looking at a card and being able to interpret the messages.

We’ve gone through that process of gazing at the card, and then working with the imagery, and later down the track applying a bit more of our rational knowledge, which is: What does the number tell you, and the suit?

The final part is to check in with your original question, which was, “What energies do I need to connect with in order to manifest my goals?” and make sure that you’ve got, you know, an adequate answer to that question.

Sometimes we can get a little bit carried away with all the things that are happening in the card, and we lose sight of the question that we had asked to begin with. You want to make sure that your reading is staying relevant. So come back to the question and think: Okay, what is the answer here?

If I were to ask, “What energies do I need to connect with in order to manifest my goals?” and I had the Knight of Swords reversed, I would say: Taking action is important, but so is having the space to think about whether the action is indeed the right action. It’s also important to have the space to almost do nothing, because often times the best ideas and the best thoughts come about when we’re in the shower – because we are doing nothing. We cannot do anything in there -unless you’ve somehow put a whiteboard up there, or have a waterproof phone, or what have you.

But it’s when we’re completely restricted from doing things that we can have the best insights.

So, for me, that’s the advice of this card – a mix of action and a mix of having space.

Have a look at your card again and think about: What does that tell you about the question you originally asked?

So, there you have it.

That is how you can easily and quickly interpret a Tarot card. To recap, all you need to do is:

  • Ask a question of the Tarot cards
  • Select a card by shuffling and drawing a card – don’t worry too much about whether you’re doing the right shuffling technique, or whether you’re selecting the card in the right way, just go with what feels right for you
  • Then once you’ve selected a card, gaze at the card
  • Look at the imagery
  • Pay attention to the number and the suit
  • And finally, answer your question

It really is as simple as that.So there you have it, you have the easiest and the fastest way to read a Tarot card.


Now I know there are going to be a couple of you who have done the activity, and you’re like, “Oh but, this little thing – I couldn’t quite figure this out.”So here are a couple of questions that might come up as you’re doing this process.

Frequently Asked Questions

One question I often get asked is: What if my interpretation of the card is different to what I read in the book?

And to that I say: Awesome!

Because that is often a sign that your intuition is talking to you. We often see things in the cards that we need to see as individuals, and it can be different to what a Tarot author or Tarot expert has seen in the cards.

With our interpretations of the cards, we have very common interpretations, and that is based on our collective consciousness in this space; but in addition to that, we have our personal interpretation, and that’s really where it’s our own intuition is speaking to us.

That’s why I believe when you’re working with your Tarot cards, and reading your own Tarot cards, you can’t really get it wrong. If you are in tune with your intuition, if you have opened your mind up to receiving the messages that your Higher Self needs, then you can’t get it wrong, because what you see in the cards is what you most need to know.

I really want to give you some confidence around that. If your interpretation is different from the book, it’s okay. Don’t stress, you’re probably actually very much so on the right track.

Another question I get asked a lot is: What if I draw a blank? (As in you lay the card down and you think: Holey Moley, what does this card mean?)

I find that I draw a blank when I’m trying to rationalise the card – I’m actually over-thinking the card. I’m trying to rack my brain, ‘What does this card really mean? What did the book say it meant?’And that’s when I know that I’m getting off track.

So if you use the techniques of simply gazing at the card; seeing what you observe; working through the imagery – you’ll find that your intuition starts to kick into gear, and it becomes a lot easier to read the card and that blank moment will soon pass.

Finally, here’s another really popular question that I get asked when reading the Tarot cards: What if the card is completely out of context?

For example, what if I was asking about a relationship – a romantic relationship – and then I get a Pentacles card?

We know the Pentacles cards are about the Earthly Realm and money and finances, right? And so we think: What has got that got to do with a romantic relationship?

Well, think a little bit more broadly. Sometimes the Pentacles being in the Earthly realm are more about the material, or the physical, element of the relationship that you’re asking about.

I think the other piece that’s really important to do is, again, work through that process of gazing at the card, see what comes up for you, and what you notice about the imagery of the card. I think we can get carried awaywith those book meanings, when really we will get our best intuitive insights when we are just gazing at the card and looking at the imagery.Now you are probably absolutely sick of hearing me say, “Gaze at the card and look at the imagery,” but it is literally that simple.

So, there you have it.

I hope that that has been really helpful for you, and now you can go away and do your own Tarot readings easily and effortlessly.

Wrap Up

If you enjoyed this Biddy Tarot Podcast episode, then I invite you to sign up for my free Tarot tutorial series: 5 Simple Steps to Read Tarot with Confidence.

Because learning Tarot isn’t meant to be hard, complicated, or convoluted, it’s just meant to be fun, enjoyable, and insightful.

And that’s exactly what you’re going to experience when you sign up for my free email tutorial series.

So all you need to do is head on over to to join.

Thank you so much for listening.

I am so honoured to be a part of your journey with Tarot.

Until next time – bye!


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