Ever wondered, what to expect in a Tarot reading? In this post, I’ll try to answer:

  • What happens in a Tarot reading?
  • Is it scary?
  • How will I feel after?
  • If I get the Death card, what does it mean?
  • When not to do a tarot reading?
  • Some things to say first.

I had never had a Tarot reading before. Nor did I ever want to. And, one week later, I still don’t feel that comfortable using the word ‘Tarot’.

I like to think of myself as down-to-earth, practical, logical, and maybe even boring—basically, not your typical Tarot consumer!

BUT, I am into self-care. Because who isn’t? Self-care to me means taking the odd daytime nap, getting myself to a yoga class once a week and attempting to use the screen time restrictions on my phone. Nothing like Tarot readings, right? Well, actually, no. It turns out that the Tarot is not a million miles away from these things. More on that later…

Why I booked a Tarot reading

I would like to tell you it was a dare. Or a quirky gift from a friend (great idea, by the way). But no. I booked a Tarot reading because, I err, felt like it. I mean, I literally felt like it. I saw the company, which has nice branding. I did my research (there are a LOT of options out there), and I’m not ashamed to say I picked the place that has the logos and reviews to back up their claims. Plus, they use the word ‘modern’, immediately making the whole thing feel less witchy.

Who wants to know the future anyway?

I waited in the Zoom link, thinking, ‘What happens in a Tarot reading? What on earth am I doing? ’ And then, phew. The reader was A Normal Guy. He wasn’t wearing a cape (as far as I could tell!). Plus, he was funny, which always helps. He made me feel totally normal and safe.

Firstly, he gave me a bit of background on what to expect in a Tarot reading. Importantly, what not to expect;

  • To be told when I’m going to die
  • To be told how I’m going to die
  • To be told anything about death
  • Predictions about the future

And what I COULD expect from the tarot, which was not what I’d thought:

Simply put, the tarot opens up things within me, like stuff I’ve been avoiding, ignoring, or just coping with, and helps me see it differently. The best bit—the tarot will only reveal what I’m ready to hear. 

I was shocked and relieved to hear that this wasn’t about someone telling me some horror story about my life and why all my decisions were wrong. The reader is simply helping to connect it all. In other words, I can use the tarot session to:

  • Find new perspectives on old issues
  • Understand habits I didn’t even realise I was stuck in
  • Get insights and ideas about where I’m headed
  • Realise why I overthink SO much
  • Uncover where I’m really not doing myself any favours

Pretty useful, right? Not only that, but the focus can be on any part of my life, career, social life, finances, my (non-existent) fashion style, my (non-existent) romantic life, etc. etc., etc.

can tarot cards ruin your life

The actual tarot cards

Tarot is about cards, right? Well, kinda. Because we were online, I didn’t really see the cards. The reader clearly did the shuffle thing and put them out in a ‘spread’ (he was connected to something like another realm while he did that, but I just watched and drank my tea). Then he went through the card names and used them as a way of talking about my ‘messages’.

What to expect in a Tarot reading

After the preamble and safety checks – basically, to make me feel better and not weird, we got to the reading. It was really like being told stuff I already knew, somewhere deep down, that I usually suppress or don’t have time for. Or like speaking to my oldest, wisest friend who simultaneously totally has my back but will say things I really just need/want to hear. AND there were a couple of total WOW moments that were like learning I’d been wearing the wrong shoe size my whole life. I spat out my non-herbal tea several times. I laughed out loud, and there was loads and loads of nodding.

Importantly, I didn’t find out anything that wasn’t really interesting. Ok, some of it was a bit bizarre (I’m told it’ll make sense at a later point). But the thing is, it was not scary. 

What did I find out?

I didn’t find out my future, but I did find out loads of great stuff. First up—work (the card was called something seemingly unrelated and weird, but he explained the link). I was given a really great pep-talk that I’m glad was recorded (they do that for you if you ask) because I’ll be listening to that every day before going in to face my boss.

Next, love. Basically, I’m not doing myself any favours, and now I know why. I won’t bore you with the details, but it’s about holding grudges and expecting the worst. Yawn. The key takeaway—the habits need to be broken, and I know my next move.

Next, we found out why I’m going round in circles when it comes to approaching a lot of my life and the people in it. Also, despite years of denial, I am actually gifted creatively and I need to give more time to it. Stop denying myself—end of.

That’s the summary of the outcomes. The process was really positive. All of it was kind, about letting go and totally motivating, affirming and calm. It also wasn’t vague and as strange as I’d imagined. I got the details.


I mentioned self-care earlier because that’s how I saw this whole thing (I like categories, which is, it turns out, a good and a bad thing). So now I’m thinking of Tarot as part of self-care because who wouldn’t want to help to make sense of how weird and confusing, and repetitive being a human is?!


The reader advised me what to do with all this ‘stuff’—basically, nothing. Don’t spend time trying to work it all out (my overthinking is not necessary). Leave it to work its magic?! So I shut my laptop and got on with my day, which was surprisingly easy to do.

Later, I had the best night’s sleep ever. Maybe a coincidence, but I doubt it. I woke up feeling good, and well, and ready. I’ve noticed how positive it all felt, and one week on, it’s lasted. I’ve had many more ‘I’ve got this’ moments than I’m used to and, randomly (or not) I have had some awesome things happen to me regarding work and house stuff. Whether the Tarot fed my soul with mega energy, I don’t know. I didn’t know what to expect in a Tarot reading, but what I do know is that it helped me feel clearer, prioritise what I want and point me in the right/new/springing direction.

When not to do a Tarot reading?

I wondered this, so I’ll put it here. This isn’t a pro opinion, but…I reckon you shouldn’t get a reading if you are a total utter sceptic. Of course, I had a little scepticism; it’s healthy (he even said that). But if you’re completely like, ‘This won’t work’, it just won’t.

I also think you need to have a few questions or queries about your life. I found this easy; it was basically the stuff I find myself worrying about, stressing about, or ranting about.

If you can be open-minded enough and have a few things on your mind (if you don’t, go you), go for it. There’s nothing to lose. You won’t get a freaky death warning or turn into a wizard or frog or anything.