Tarot for Self-Care Is a Fabulously Simple Guide to Nurturing Self-Discovery
2019 has been a big year for me in learning tarot.
While I previously found the whole practice a bit mystifying, the pieces really came together for me when I finally sat myself down and committed to understanding the symbolic meanings of the cards and the different ways they can be used. Still, I didn't see it as a practical, everyday tool—at least, until I read Tarot for Self Care.
Tarot for Self-Care: How to Use Tarot to Manifest Your Best Self is a new book by Minerva Siegel that doubles as a tarot how-to handbook and a guide for unlocking your full potential through self-care. I was sent an advance copy of the book, which came out today, and I can honestly say it's changed the way I approach my mornings.
Tarot for Self-Care is all about the various ways tarot can be utilized to make our lives better. After all, tarot isn't just about fortune-telling. It's also a tool for self-analysis, allowing us to decipher the messages hiding in our subconscious. The cards simply point us toward better understanding ourselves. At the same time, self-care isn't just about pampering yourself and allowing yourself to indulge. It's also a means of self-discovery.
Throughout the book's 256 pages, it dives into various aspects of the tarot, including dozens of different spreads and techniques, highly detailed interpretations with actionable self-care tips of all 78 Rider-Waite deck cards, and pretty much everything else you need to turn a tarot deck into your new favorite self-care tool.
(Tarot for Self-Care via Simon & Schuster)
While I was all too excited to start using tarot cards to guide my personal self-care experience, I had to read the book first. Though there's a lot going on within the pages of Tarot for Self-Care, I found that it was simply written and divided into well-organized and easy-to-understand sections that made this process a breeze.
The book opens with an explainer of why tarot can be such a great tool for practicing self-care. It states, "In the simplest terms, self-care is the practice of doing things for yourself with compassionate intent." Since tarot is all about focusing your intentions, it's easy to see how the two go hand in hand.
From there, the book describes the cards of the tarot deck, including how they can be read, taking readers through the Fool's Journey to explain each Major Arcana card and its meaning, and then to the Minor Arcana and its suits and numerology. The book does a great job helping its readers select the cards with the right energy for what they want to accomplish, serving as the inspiration to propel your self-care habits to the next level.
Probably my favorite feature of the book is its highly detailed explanations of all 78 cards. Every card has its own two-page spread in the book, describing the card and giving its classic interpretation, as well as its meaning if the card happens to be reversed (upside-down). Every single card also includes distinct mental, physical and self-care activities to help readers focus their energy positively on their own minds, bodies and souls.
It's also quite practical, offering a number of different spreads that are great for addressing various situations or problems in life. Since I can be easily distracted and discouraged by processes that take too long, I was immediately captivated by the book's suggestion to do simple, one-card readings to start off the day. As much as I love the Celtic Cross, setting it up and reading it can be a big process I don't always have the energy for.
Beyond that, the book includes information on everything from cleansing your cards and how to use candles and crystals to enhance readings, to harnessing intuition through meditation. It also recommends picking a personal power tarot card (sometimes called a Significator) in order to guide your self-care journey. I personally use the Ace of Cups, which relates to an overflow of positive emotion that spills out into every aspect of your life.
After getting through the book, I decided to put what I learned into motion. Since then, I've started my mornings in the office with a "Card of the Day" from my trusty Cat Tarot deck to inform my thoughts and actions, thinking of the day ahead of me and the answers I've been seeking, and then following the guidance laid out for each card I've pulled.
On Thursday morning, I pulled the 3 of Cups card, which represents celebration. It's all getting together with loved ones, sharing joy and positivity and appreciating your shared successes. The mental self-care tip for this card recommended planning weekend time with the people I love to create new memories. Funny enough, I'd been meaning to call my dad and schedule a time to hang out with the family, but kept forgetting to do it. Getting this card finally got me to stop procrastinating and reach out, and I'll actually be seeing him this weekend. Turns out, this advice was exactly what I needed to hear.
On Friday, my daily card was the Ace of Swords. When I flipped the book open to find the interpretation for the card, I somehow landed on exactly the page I needed, which felt like it was destined to be. This card represents a-ha! moments and a sudden sense of clarity after a lack of focus period. It felt like the perfect fit for the day. After a week of rough sleep, I finally felt well-rested for the first time in a while that morning, and my thinking felt clearer than it had in a while. I appreciated the card telling me that my rut was over, for now.
I found the self-care tips highly applicable, too. The mind tip told me it would be a good idea to deep clean my car. I'd just heard the same thing from a love language quiz I took, so on Saturday I made sure to do some tidying there. For my spirit, the book recommended I meditate with the help of aura-cleansing crystals for a little boost. I have an amethyst crystal that did just the trick.
I didn't have my tarot deck with me over the weekend, but on Monday I resumed the practice of drawing a daily card, and I pulled the 3 of Pentacles. This card symbolizes obtaining success with the help of others, and using teamwork to reach your goals, even if you typically work independently. Though I ran into a couple of personal roadblocks this day, I was able to work through them by discussing them openly and collaborating, rather than trying to fix them myself. The day's spiritual self-care tip told me to keep a sodalite crystal on my desk to create open and clear communication. While I don't have a sodalite crystal, I do have amazonite, which has similar properties, and I made sure to keep it near me at all times.
This morning, my daily card was the 2 of Cups. This card has to do with harmonious unions, symbolizing strong relationship compatibility and a period of calm happiness on the horizon. Seeing as I'm in a long-term relationship, it's always nice to have a little validation through the tarot, and I hope its prediction of joy continues to stay true. The day's mental self-care tip asked me to memorize and recite a love poem, while its body self-care tip reminded me to keep up my daily face moisturizing habit to glow from the inside out. I guess I'll have to see how that love poem recital goes!
Tarot for Self-Care is a great resource both for those who want to learn more about tarot reading and those who need a few pointers to get them to practice better self-care. It's full of great information without being too dense or vague, and it can actually help its readers live happier, healthier lives.
After recently incorporating some morning journaling into my daily routine, I fully intend to continue pulling daily cards as well. While I'm just four days into my own process, I feel like it's also helped me in tangible ways. Plus, the fact I only have to pull a single card means it only takes a couple of minutes to see through.
The fact that I'm already seeing patterns in my drawings also speaks volumes. Two of the cards I selected were Cups suits, which is interesting because it's the suit I relate to most thanks to my watery Pisces moon sign. I also pulled two 3s, which symbolize the creativity, community and collaboration inherent in the work I do. As long as I keep learning from this process, I don't think I'll stop anytime soon.
Not a firm believer? Click HERE to find out why you don't need to believe in the spiritual power of tarot to benefit from it.