When Good News Makes a Frustrating Reading
We tarot readers often share frustrations with each other, both online and in person. Often our frustrations are about readings where we see serious problems of which the client is determined to remain oblivious (even though they sought out the divination).
“Everything in my relationship is perfect,” Says the client whose spread includes the Seven of Swords, Devil, Tower, Three of Swords and Ten of Pentacles Rx.
Often, the way we readers process these difficult readings is by understanding that people come to the truth they can handle, when they are ready. Sometimes the cards come up to allow us simply to plant the seed. It may be months, or even years, before the client is ready to deal with their truth. We have to be OK with that.
We readers don’t talk as often about the opposite problem. That is, folks who can’t imagine that good things might happen to them, or folks who don’t want to believe that their problems really aren’t the end of the world.
Certainly, people often have readings to discuss their problems, and we have to be able to provide a forum for that. Often, the trauma they have endured is visible in some of the foundational cards, while the cards that point to the future show significant improvement.
Some people are happy to hear that we see improvement, and happy to believe that improvement is possible. At the same time, many people seem to end up in in a “Five of Cups headspace”. They catastrophize their problems, take on a victim mentality, and stubbornly refuse to admit that good things could possibly happen in the not-so-distant future.
What can we do when we are more optimistic about our clients’ futures than they are?
Sometimes it’s helpful to understand why the client feels more comfortable with pessimism than optimism. Perhaps it feels safer, or more normal. Pulling a few cards to discuss this issue will often lead to profound results.
It’s also a good practice to pull cards to determine whether or not the client’s pessimism will in fact serve to limit the good possibilities of the future. Some readers believe that negative thoughts can only attract more negativity, and positive thoughts are necessary to attract positive things. In my experience, each situation is different. That’s why performing the divination is so much more important than simply schooling a client on your belief system.
We have to meet our clients where they are, not where we wish they would be. That includes being compassionate with denial, whether they are denying the challenges in their lives, or whether then are denying the possibilities of their wonderful future.