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Article: Building Self-Awareness with Tarot

Building Self-Awareness with Tarot

Building Self-Awareness with Tarot

Self-awareness is the awareness of one’s own personality or individuality. It is the mindful consciousness of your strengths, weaknesses, actions and presence and requires having a clear perception of one-self. Although it’s a skill that every human being can cultivate and harness, it’s easy to get distracted by all the noise. The human psyche mirrors the outside world, that is, what exists within the self is mirrored or reflects what exists outside the self. Sometimes, it’s hard to gain that clarity and perception when fears or insecurities come up, but thankfully there are tools to practice and master self-awareness.

Carl Jung believed that Tarot represented the psychology of the ancients and that the symbols recorded in the Tarot are the core of our dream imagery. He believed that it is still valid today both as a mirror into the mind and as a catalyst for dormant intuitive powers. The Universe flows in cycles, therefore Tarot, as a reflection of the Universe, also flows in cycles highlighting the points of ever-turning changes in life. Tarot connects to your inner most guidance to bring out and confirm messages from your intuition to help relay and understand your deep fears and blockages. Tarot cards don’t have any essential magical powers, their only power lies in their use and, the knowledge of the cards is revealed in the ways they relate to you.

Each Tarot deck has a set of 78 cards divided into 5 parts:               

  • The Major Arcana, representing the Universal archetypal forces. This represents your soul’s journey and the major phases of life’s cycles.
  • Wands, representing the Fire element. This symbolizes strength, willpower, violence, passion, action and creativity.
  • Cups, representing the Water element. This symbolizes emotions, intuition, love, sensitivity and the subconscious.
  • Swords, representing the Air element. This symbolizes wit, intelligence, logic, communication and flexibility.
  • Pentacles (or Discs), representing the element Earth. This symbolizes stability, materialism, abundance, environment and career.

Setting up

Any method of self-awareness requires relaxation and concentration. Relaxation is the first step into developing the mental space where meditation and other techniques are performed. You will need to find a comfortable, quiet place free from distractions. Use relaxing lighting and try not to play music in the background if it disrupts your concentration. You may light an incense of your choice to clear and cleanse your space. Sit in a comfortable position making sure you’re not hunching or cutting off blood flow in the body, close your eyes and concentrate on your breathing. Deep breathing plays an important role in relaxing the mind and body. Do a meditative body scan, breathing deeply into your body parts from the top of your head scanning down to the tip of your toes. Spend time breathing into the places that have aches and pains and visualize your healing breath clearing that energy and bringing life into that area.

Getting started

To get started all you need is your deck of Tarot cards, a quiet time and place and the will to perform. Having a notebook or diary to keep record of the information, messages, ideas and lessons is helpful as you develop and adapt them. In these exercises it is not important to memorise the meanings of the Tarot cards, instead they will be used to demonstrate how each card represents aspects of the self and shows which to consider more important, unique and relevant to self.

1) Go through your deck to get familiar with the cards, take notes on each card and notice the imagery and symbolism. What do you like and dislike? What feelings come up? Anything in particular that stands out to you? Next pick one card that you feel represents you right now or reflects your inner nature and another card you feel is the complete opposite. What do these images say to or about you? Doing this exercise often gives insight into your psyche, considering you’re always changing and evolving with time.

2) Select two cards, one deliberately and the other randomly. Intuitively and in free flow write down a colour, idea, emotion and stage in your life. Allow your unconscious to provide your answers, not your logic and judgement. Now, letting logic back into the process, look at your answers. What do they tell you about yourself?

3) Reading your past events is a great way to build self-awareness and self-reflection to determine your present. Pick three cards, one representing the outward situation, one representing your own feelings and ideas of the situation and the last representing other characters in the situation. Spend time looking at each card and writing what comes to mind. How do they connect? Are there things you didn’t consider before? How did you interact with people then that’s changed now or could have been done differently?


Self-awareness in day-to-day life

Most people live in a world of sensory overload, their sensory system is so cluttered or underused that they’re unaware of answers and signs right in front of them. These simple exercises can be done every day to increase awareness of your sensory system and environment and can be done with or without the Tarot.

1) Take an item of food or drink, observe it, what colour is it? Smell, shape and size? As you consume the item turn all your senses toward it. What does it feel like? How does the texture feel going down? Do you feel refreshed and satisfied or sick and low energy?

2) At any point in the day, pause and focus on your awareness in the body. How is your posture, environment and breathing? Are there any aches and pains in certain areas you didn’t notice? Ask yourself what you need to feel more grounded in that particular moment.

3) In any interaction, focus on your hearing and other people around you. How often do you mishear or misunderstand what people say? Notice the sounds around you that you normally wouldn’t consider, like the ticking of a clock or distant rain and, take a moment to sink into the sounds of your environment.


It’s important to consider that, contrary to popular belief, it’s much easier to read Tarot for yourself than it is for others. While it takes special abilities, years of practice, knowledge, wisdom and discipline to perfect reading others as it requires a full consideration of morals and technical issues, it still remains a great tool for building self-awareness and self-development in your personal daily life. With this in mind, remember that Tarot is only a tool to help with your process in connecting with your inner wisdom and knowledge, which is already within you.

Trust yourself and enjoy the process. Asé

Written by

Ashyana Lakhani

Psychic Tarot Reader



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