As this post is published, the winter holidays are hurtling toward us. It’s this time of the year we women stretch ourselves to the limit. We’re organizing, arranging, making lists, wrapping gifts, planning menus, shopping, caring for others, and generally trying to be our very best while carrying out a myriad of small and not-so-small tasks. So what about you? How are you feeling?What do you need? Who’s taking care of your well-being? Take a little time for yourself and try this self-care and healing tarot spread.
It’s not complicated. You can do it any time you have 20 minutes to spare. It helps to use the cards as journaling prompts, so have your journal or notebook to hand.
Self-care and Healing Tarot Spread
This spread is designed to help you gain clarity on your current mode of being, and to help you focus on what is best for you. It’s a four card spread because the number four represents stability, strength and balance.
Shuffle your deck, breathing calmly. Center yourself and think about your current circumstances and how you’d like to feel.
Cut the cards and lay out four cards, face down. This is important because you need to focus on each card before seeing them as a combination.
- What am I thinking/feeling at this time?
- What is really happening?
- My energy right now?
- What do I need to do to feel good?
Turn over each card in turn. Really look at it, then journal what you think it means to you. Don’t concern yourself with traditional meanings, this is an intuitive reading. As you finish with each card, turn it back face-down.
When you have finished with the individual cards, turn them all over and see if there are any patterns, any interactions between them. What’s supporting; what is in opposition. Journal a little more if you like.
Once you have the message, you must act on it. If you need rest, take it; if you need a little solitude, arrange it; if you need exercise, get to it.
Tarot Cards That Say You Must Take Care of Yourself
There are certain cards which clearly indicate you need to look after yourself a bit more:
The Two of Pentacles shows you are desperately trying to juggle money and time. You are good at this and usually manage it all with aplomb, but be aware: this constant balancing is exhausting.
The Four of Swords is an obvious one. It usually shows someone resting alone. The message is unmistakable: slow down, get plenty of sleep and, if you’ve had the flu recently, take time to recover properly.
The Four of Pentacles might mean you should pay attention to your own self-protection. Your energy levels need maintaining. Perhaps you have been doing too much for others and not enough for yourself?
The Five of Pentacles shows you have stretched your resources too thinly. You cannot go on like this. Ask for help.
The Seven of Wands indicates you are feeling like it’s you against the rest of the world. Stop fighting and defending for a while. If you remove yourself from the fight, your opponent has nothing to fight against.
The Nine of Wands shows someone almost at the end of their strength. It is imperative you stop and rest. Now.
The Nine of Swords tells you nothing is worth this amount of worry and anxiety. Find a way to soothe and comfort yourself. Reach out for help, if necessary. Don’t try to do and think of every thing. Hand over some of the work to someone else. Healing your thoughts and feeling is of paramount i
The Ten of Wands indicates you have taken on too much work. You really can’t do it all. You might have over-committed yourself on several fronts: work, money, promises to others. There’s only one of you. Do your best to wriggle free of unnecessary and draining commitments.
The Ten of Swords is not such a bad card in these circumstances. It tells you to drop all resistance. To let go because you no other choice. It’s all fine. The world won’t end because you have decided not to cook dinner for 14 this year. Just let go and feel the relief.
Major Arcana cards with messages of self care include the High Priestess (calm meditative reflection necessary), the Hermit (solitude will restore you) Temperance (remain centered and balanced), the Devil (release unhelpful patterns of behavior), the Moon (pay attention to your intuition), and Judgment (you may be ignoring a call to do something important for yourself).
Cards With Messages of Healing
The Ace of Cups tells you self-love and nurturing are a top priority for you.
The Three of Cups shows you should relax, unwind and party.
The Three of Swords mirrors the effects of poor communication. If there’s a rift between you and a loved one, look for a way to mend it.
The Four of Cups indicates emotional stability is of paramount importance. Do what you can to achieve it.
The Five of Cups holds the message that even deep feelings of grief are temporary, you can learn to cope. The healing river of time is flowing through you, lessening pain and giving you hope.
Major Arcana cards with positive healing messages include: The Magician (you have the power), the Empress (an abundance of love and good earth energy), Strength (you have inner strength), Temperance (balance and stability), the Star (emotional healing), the Sun (improvement in all things, including health), the World (everything is good).
Reversed Cards and Energy Depletion
Look out for reversals, as they can point to weakening of positive energy, or the opposite of what you are hoping to happen. And certain combinations are also important, such as the reversed Ten of Pentacles and Four of Swords. Those cards would instantly show you are doing too much for the family. Maybe you are trying too hard to impress?
Practical Actions For Self Care
In practical terms, it’s so important for your self-esteem, your well-being and your health, that you don’t feel like the one person who has to hold everything together over the holidays. Think teamwork. You can delegate – you have to delegate; you can’t do every single thing by yourself. Put your partner in charge of clearing up after meals, put your kids in charge of looking after the pets, and take a nap, a long bath, or time-out for some relaxing reading. Don’t feel guilty; know you deserve it.
Card used for illustration: The Rohrig Tarot by Carl W. Rohrig