candles and tarot cards

7 Stunning Tarot habits to make divination more effective

7 Stunning Tarot habits to make divination more effective

Are you new to tarot? Do you have a deck of tarot cards that you’d love to use but find that your efforts haven’t exactly brought you the results that you’ve wanted? Perhaps you’re frustrated with your tarot sessions and are wondering if there’s anything you can do to get clear and concise readings.

I understand where you’re coming from. When I first began reading tarot, my own readings were muddy, inconsistent, and generally unhelpful. I honestly didn’t know what I was doing and I was ready to give up!

Thankfully, I didn’t. Instead, I learned a few tarot habits that resulted in effective divination readings, not just for myself, but for friends. Over the years, I’ve learned even more tricks that have made reading my deck the best part of my day.

These are the habits that I’m going to teach you. You’ll find that everyone’s cards have a personality of their own, but with a few practices, you’ll learn how to use yours. You may even uncover your own tips! Let’s get started so you can begin using your cards with confidence.

candles and tarot cards

What You Will Need

Before we get started, remember that all of these tips are meant to help you; if you find that one of these tips doesn’t work for you, move on and give it a try later on. There is no right or wrong way to read a deck. Trust your instincts.

Another thing you’ll want to keep in mind is that divination is intuition, and specifically, your intuition. If you’re distracted while reading or frustrated, you may find that your reading will mirror your emotions. This is normal, but being aware of it will help you to become more effective at readings.

These tips are meant to be practiced on a daily basis, some more than others. Because of this, you may find that your readings become more effective the more consistent your practice is. Some may work straight away; in that case, congratulations!

What you will need to practice these tarot habits

  • A deck, preferably new
  • Patience
  • A daily journal for writing down your impressions and the card spreads you’ve done
  • A quiet place to work, free from distraction

You’ll notice that I recommended using a new deck. What I mean by this is a tarot card that only you have used for readings. A secondhand deck will also work, but you may find it necessary to do several cleansings prior to using it. This is because the energy of the old owner may still be on the cards.

I have never used a secondhand deck, but I have heard from friends that they work just fine after a good cleansing or two. I believe, however, that using a deck you bought yourself is the best path forward. Connecting with the aesthetic of the deck and the symbols are important, so find a deck you love.

notebook and a cup of tea

A daily journal to record your readings isn’t necessary, but for new readers, this will be of immense help. We’ll talk about that in a minute, but for now, just know the journal can just be a piece of paper or a spiral notebook; it doesn’t have to be fancy to be useful.

The Habits

Again, these tips are to help you in your journey; if one doesn’t work, try another. Most advanced readers do all ten, but this is your deck and your divination effort. Choose what makes sense to you.

1. Have Multiple Decks

If you’re serious about your practice, you may want to decide whether or not to have multiple decks. One set could be used for reading for clients, one could be reading for yourself, and one could be a meditation deck. While three decks aren’t necessary, it could help in focusing the intention of the deck.

Most readers, myself included, have two decks: one for ourselves and one we use to read for other people. If you read for others, try having a dedicated deck for that alone. Then, purchase one for yourself to build up your own practice.

2. Decide Whether Others can Touch Your Deck

Effective divination requires positive energy. Your readings should come from a place of compassionate intention. For this reason, you’ll want to decide if other people, family included, should be allowed to touch your deck.

Energies can transfer from people to decks. If someone is having a bad day, or a client is in a frustrated mood, that energy could embed itself in your cards. The only way to remove it, then, is to do a full cleansing. Decide now whether you want to take that risk or if you want only your energy on the deck.

man playing tarot cards

3. Do a Daily Draw

The fastest way to learn how your deck works is to do a daily draw. This is a practice in which every morning after you’ve meditated and have focused your, you draw a single card from your deck. It may reveal how your day is going, what your intention should be, and more.

Daily draws are one of the most effective tarot habits for all readers. Not only will you learn the deck, you will also get messages that perhaps you didn’t know where there. It’s also a very simple way to get into the habit of reading every day which will help you bond with your deck.

4. Keep a Journal

Journaling is one of the most effective habits we can give you. That’s because you’ll have a written record of the work you’ve done with a deck, which can lead you to a deeper reflection of what the cards mean. It also gives you space to write down your thoughts and look over your journey.

A journal doesn’t have to be fancy; it can be whatever notebook or binder you have lying around. Every time you do a reading, note the time, the cards, and your mood. When you look back in your journal, you’ll be able to form an understanding of your deck and how your emotions can influence your readings.

5. Always do a Short Cleansing Before and After Reading

We’ve done a whole article on cleansing before on this blog, but for the purposes of this tip, we’ll keep this brief.

Cleansing your deck before and after you read, even if you’re just doing a daily draw, is critical. That’s because whatever emotion you or your client is feeling may be imprinted on the cards. Cleansing them away means you start every reading fresh.

A short cleansing is simple: all you have to do is shuffle your cards in your hand while laying down your intention for a new start for your deck. That’s all you need to do. It takes a few seconds and your deck is ready for the next session.

6. Start Small

It can be tempting to do large and elaborate spreads when you first start reading, but it can get confusing fast, even if you’re familiar with your deck and the symbols. It’s best to start with small spreads until you’re confident in your ability to interpret your cards.

Small spreads are usually no more than three cards. This allows you to focus on the cards, their symbols, and what they mean. It also lets your intuition guide you through the cards without distracting you with too much information.

7. Pay Attention to Wayward Cards

the deck of Tarot cards on white background, top down card tow of cups

When you’re shuffling your deck, pay attention to cards that fall out of the deck, are facing you in the deck, or generally pop out at you. These are wayward cards, ones that are using your intuition to call out to you.

These cards can have a message you need to know right now or may have special meaning for you. If you’re reading for a querent, it may also be a message for them. Take a moment to acknowledge the cards before proceeding, because the answer you or your querent is looking for may already be present.

8. Look For Missing Cards in a Spread

If you’ve progressed to larger spreads and you find that major or court cards are missing, pay attention. This might mean that the deck is telling you something important, such as something integral is missing in the situation.

In many cases, missing cards can provide the solution to a problem. If you’re already reading larger spreads, you might be aware that an element could solve the situation. Pay attention to see what element or court card is missing. Your intuition will tell you the answer to the question you’re seeking.

9. Learn What Your “Sure Thing” Cards Are

Over time, you’ll notice that certain cards in your deck have consistent and accurate meanings. While it’ll take practice to understand these cards, you may find that they show up every time you do readings on similar situations.

Every deck is different and your intuition plays a large role in sure thing cards. However, if you keep a journal of all of your readings, you may notice patterns. Keep these in mind when doing readings, because these cards can show you the truth of a situation.

10. Keep a Clear Head

Perhaps the most important habit to stick to when reading is to keep a clear head. Your energy could have an impact on your deck. Because of that, your readings may not turn out the way you’d hope.

Beautiful woman massaging her head

The best way to combat this is to try to center yourself before every reading. This may mean meditation, having a cup of tea, or listening to relaxing music. Whatever grounds you, do it before you read. You’ll have a better chance of doing an accurate reading if you’re focused and relaxed.

Getting into these habits is a good way to begin your journey of learning to read the cards. You want to make sure your divination efforts are effective, both for you and your clients. For me, and for most readers, the fact that habits are available and easy to implement can be so helpful.

Surprise! We have 3 more Tarot habits for you that can make your readings more effective. Drop your email address down below and get the full article with 10 stunning Tarot habits for free in a PDF.


I hope you enjoyed reading about these habits, and that you commit yourself to keeping up with at least a few of them. If you have any comments or suggestions, we’d love to hear about them in the comments below. And if you have suggestions we left out, be sure to tell us! Happy reading.

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