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Becoming a Professional Tarot Reader – Insider Secrets from 12 of the Best Tarot Experts

by Brigit on February 6, 2013 in Tarotpreneurs

I asked some of the leading professional Tarot readers, authors and experts the following question:

“What is your best (and uncommon) piece of advice for someone wanting to become a professional Tarot reader?”

I was so impressed by the insights each Tarot professional had to share. From being true to yourself, to practising at local events to being consciously ‘professional’ – you’ll be amazed too at what these Tarot experts have to say.

Read the insider secrets and advice below to help you become a professional Tarot reader. Responses (in alphabetical order) from:

  • Angelo Nasios
  • Arwen Lynch
  • Carolyn Cushing
  • Christiana Gaudet
  • Gina Thies
  • Ginny Hunt
  • James Wells
  • Kim Huggens
  • Linda Marson
  • Mary K Greer
  • Ruth Ann & Wald Amberstone
  • Sasha Graham

And when you’re done, I would love to hear your unique tip for becoming a professional Tarot reader in the comments section.

Angelo Nasios, Tarosophist of the Year (2011) and Blogger at That’s Totally Tarot

angelo-nasiosBecoming a professional tarot reader is no easy task. There are many things to learn besides tarot. First, being a professional in any field requires a certain level of professional etiquette, specifically communication. Second you need to promote a professional appearance.

Communication deals with all forms of interactions with your client. Other than being a tarot reader I have been working in the banking industry for six years and I have learned a great deal about communication. I read online via email, so my written communication skills need to be very polished. Response time is important. You want to make sure your clients are not waiting around for hours waiting for a response from you.

Secondly, what is inside your emails is very important. Proper grammar is important, because using slang, abbreviations and having spelling mistakes makes you look immature and unprofessional. You are not texting your best friend, you are communicating with a paying client, so act professionally.

Professional appearance is also important. This comes through in how you dress and look, and how your website looks. If you read in person will you dress the part as a gypsy? Or will you dress more ‘normal’? It all depends on your character, style and personality. Website appearance is critical. My own website has gone through many incarnations over the last ten years. From my own creation from what HTML I learned in high school to my current HTML5 site powered by wix.com, I have tried to capture my essence as a reader online. I have done dark and spooky, mystical with stars and the whole shebang.

Finally the uncommon advice – be selective in who you read for. You do not need to read for everyone; you are not obligated to read for all of humanity. Have a standard for your practice, what type of clientelle you wish to read for.

Why be selective? Because if you read for everyone that wants a reading from you, you will find yourself in situations you would rather not have. Dealing with clients you would rather not deal with, answering questions you rather not answer. You decide who you read for.

Learn more about Angelo Nasios and read his Tarot blog at That’s Totally Tarot.

Arwen Lynch, Professional Tarot Reader and President of the American Tarot Association

arwen-lynchNever believe you know it all. I think the moment we grow overly confident that we have nailed all there is to know about Tarot–BOOM. The Universe tosses a golden apple at our feet then giggles like a mad thing when we fall on our noses.

Because I don’t believe I can ever know it all, I am always learning more. I learn from everyone I encounter including my clients. I leave space in our consultations for them to share their thoughts on cards. This has enriched me more than I can begin to say.

Learn more about Arwen and connect via Facebook.

Carolyn Cushing, Change Maker and Tarot Enthusiast and Founder of Art of Change Tarot

carolyn-cushing“Know thyself” was inscribed over the entrance to the Temple of the Oracle at Delphi in ancient Greece. This is good advice for all seekers and especially those who want to be professional Tarot readers.  Know the special perspectives and gifts that you bring from your non-Tarot background.  Know your motivations for taking your Tarot to the professional level.  Know your own special way of working with cards and revealing their wisdom.  Know your boundaries, those things that you will and will not do or read about.  Having a personal practice that incorporates Tarot is a great support for the building of both self knowledge and a connection to that which is greater than yourself.

I’m assuming that you have a grasp of the cards if you are considering going pro.  But, I say, never assume you know all about the Tarot.  Keep learning through exchanging with others, exploring new innovations in Tarot, and having beginners mind when you approach the cards.  The cards and their storehouse of symbols continue to fascinate me because they are constantly revealing something new. Become a Tarot professional because the cards are both familiar guides and constant teachers.  Then step into the dynamic flow of the Tarot and enjoy the adventure.

Learn more about Carolyn Cushing and connect via Facebook.

Christiana Gaudet, Certified Tarot Grandmaster

Christiana GaudetMy book Fortune Stellar: What Every Professional Tarot Reader Needs to Knowoffers a great deal of advice to aspiring tarot professionals, including two primary pieces. One is to use tarot to plan your business. So often we forget to use our best tools for our own benefit! The other is that it’s your business – you can fashion it any way you want!

Beyond that my best advice is to foster two things – one in yourself and the other in your business. You need patience and your business needs good will. You need the patience because it takes some time to develop that good will.

What is good will in business? Good will is the trust you earn over time. It is your reputation as a professional. Whatever your venue, good will is the true value of your business.

Good will is what makes a mother say to a daughter “Call our tarot reader; she’ll know what to do!” Good will is what makes an event planner say “Call that tarot reader and see if she can work our event again, she’s terrific!” Good will is what makes the groom say to the bride “Don’t forget to invite our tarot reader to the wedding.”

Good will brings you return clients. Good will brings you referrals. Good will sells gifts certificates because your clients can think of no better gift for their loved ones than a reading with you.

You earn good will for your business over time. You earn it by being reliable, charitable and compassionate. You earn it by having good ethics and good skills. You earn it by being there when you are needed. You earn it by being visible.

In my years in business I have been a high school student’s senior psychology project. I have read at countless charity events. I have taught programs to senior citizens in assisted living. I don’t earn money for doing these things – I earn something far more valuable. I earn good will.

There is no replacement for good will, and no short cut. Good will is the advertising you can’t buy, the respect you must earn and the commodity that will make your business a success in years to come.

Learn more about Christiana Gaudet or follow her on Facebook.

Gina Thies, Professional Tarot Advisor and Editor of Tarot Tips Newsletter of The Tarot School

Gina ThiesMy advice would be that no matter what you feel the cards indicate, avoid giving advice on matters where you lack knowledge or experience. This goes beyond the obvious legal, medical or financial areas, in which one may not have licensing or certification. So consider for instance, if you have never owned a business, how would you be able to advise an experienced business owner? In addition to this, do not be afraid to use phrases like, “it’s not clear”, “it’s a possibility” or “ I don’t know”.

Learn more about Gina Theis and connect via Facebook.

Ginny Hunt, Owner of 78 Notes to Self: A Tarot Journal

Ginny HuntThe thing that makes your tarot readings shine is the same thing you must use to navigate your business — your intuition.  Listen to it when it tells you not to read for someone.  Heed it when it warns you against accepting that tarot gig.  If it’s nudging you to take a risk, take it.  If you can trust it when doing a reading, you can trust it for your day to day business life as well.  Get advice from pros, too, because intuition will only take you so far.  You need practical advice on how to set up and run your business. Network with other tarot professionals.

Be proud of what you do and get the word out about yourself but don’t be annoying.  Nobody appreciates someone who is constantly promoting themselves on social media.  It appears desperate and needy.  Share yourself, let people get to know you, engage and interact with people. BE YOURSELF.

Don’t fall prey to the temptation to imitate someone you admire. We don’t need another like them, we need your specific gifts and talents. The tarot community is a smallish pond and sometimes we inadvertently step on each other, think of the same things, and get the same brilliant ideas.  That’s ok as long as you present it with your own flavor.  No one else can bring to the table what you have in quite the way you do.

Learn more about Ginny at her blog 78 Notes To Self or follow Ginny on Facebook.

James Wells, Tarot Listener, Consultant, Teacher, and Facilitator

James WellsFirst, know who you are and what it is that you offer as a tarot practitioner.  What are the primary facets of your personality that people will likely encounter?  What are your interests, your dislikes, the aspects of you that endear you to people, the aspects of you that are less endearing, the traits that (at this point in your life, anyway) add up to the image you present to the world?  Who is most likely to resonate with that image?  Reach out to them.  What unique perspective or process do you bring to your tarot practice?  What is it that you actually do in a session?  What have people told you stands out as your gift to tarot reading?  Build on it.

Don’t spend too much time telling people what you don’t do.  Focus on what you DO offer and what your style IS.  Gear your words, images, and other materials to people who are most likely to appreciate the experience that you offer.  There’s no point in offering predictive readings to people who want psychological insight and it’s futile to publicise tarot counselling to folk who want psychic readings.

Know yourself, know your audience, and be clear about who you are and what you do.

Second, the word “professional” invites us to contemplate the verb “to profess”.  When a member of a religious or spiritual community makes her/his profession, s/he is publicly taking a vow of dedication to whatever is sacred to her/him.  At that moment, a person remembers his/her holy calling and solemnly affirms his/her commitment to that calling as faithfully as possible.  Then tangible symbols of the profession are given to the initiate.

What might a professional tarot reader’s version of this look or sound like?  What, to you, is sacred?  To what are you called as a tarot practitioner?  How might you declare your dedication?  How might you receive the symbols of the tarot in a way that encourages you to be of service?

In your own way, make a vow to be an excellent practitioner of, and ambassador for, the best that the tarot can offer.

Learn more about James Wells.

Kim Huggens, Young Tarosophist of the Year (2012), Author and Deck Creator

kim-huggensOne of the scariest things about starting out as a professional Tarot reader is trying to work out what the reader expects of you. Should you be an all-powerful, all-knowing oracle filled with wisdom that can be dispensed if enough money is put in? Should you be a counselor or therapist? Should you be 100% right 100% of the time? A surprising number of us think we should be all of these things, but the truth is, we’re human, and we’re all still learning (no matter how experienced with the cards we are!)

So, the best thing I ever did for my own self-confidence as a professional Tarot reader was to preface all my sessions with a nice cup of tea. I’m British, we run on tea. If you’re American, coffee will do, or perhaps even a hot chocolate, a herbal infusion… The important thing is that this warm beverage is something that immediately triggers a certain response in us: ‘Mmmmm… and relax.’ It’s something we drink when we have friends over for a casual chat. We drink it when we want a break from work. We drink it when we want a moment out of time just for ourselves. So, make that cuppa, and make it well. And don’t be afraid to chat casually to the client while making it – this isn’t cheating!

This hot drink (this bit even works with water) will also allow you, as a reader, to take a few moments away from doing the talking to just sip your drink and examine the cards. Often, we panic when we think we don’t know what the cards are saying, and those few moments of trying to work them out can feel like an eternity, and also like a failure. It isn’t. But we need a way to trick ourselves into learning that! So, while your lips are wrapped around the cup, they can’t be forming words. And that means you can think unhindered by fear. It’s also very easy to dehydrate while reading, so the beverage helps with that.

Tarot and Tea for Two!”

Learn more about Kim Huggens and discover her Tarot deck, Pistis Sophia Tarot.

Linda Marson, Professional Tarot Reader, Teacher, Author and Founder of Global Spiritual Studies

linda-marsonYour job as a tarot reader is so much easier if you help clients formulate their questions. For me, this is the key to an effective reading because it allows clients to explore their issue more fully. I steer people away from closed questions, that is, questions like ‘Will I get the job I’ve applied for?’ The only answer here is ‘yes’ or ‘no’. For me it’s more effective to help clients ask open questions. Then choose a layout which points to a likely outcome but also offers a range of issues to be considered. In other words, readings that help clients make informed decisions.

Let’s tweak the question to be ‘What will happen as a result of the job application I’ve just submitted?’. For this sort of question I use a seven-card layout with one card providing ‘the answer’ and other cards indicating a short term outcome, a longer term outcome, the environment surrounding the question and so on. If the Five of Swords is the ‘answer’, the Six of Wands the short term outcome and the Devil the longer term outcome, you could talk about stiff competition for the position, followed by your client being the successful applicant. However, you could also say that the cards are indicating your client may find  the job frustrating a year or so down the track due to restrictions that were not immediately obvious. This gives you client ammunition for their interview, alerts them to the need to seek more information about the nature of the job so that, when offered the position, they can make the decision that’s right for them.

So, ‘get the question right’ is my single piece of advice!

Learn more about Linda Marson on Global Spiritual Studies and Experience the Tarot.

Mary K Greer, Scholar, Writer, Teacher, Professional Tarot Consultant and Grandmaster

mary-k-greerThe best advice I can offer is that, after you’ve gained familiarity with the cards and have read for family, friends and friends of friends and now want to hang up your shingle, you can benefit from a rite of passage. I suggest one that both tests your ability to work with clients and pushes you to the next level.

The ideal way to do this is to volunteer to read at a charity event or for good cause, but any faire that will allow charity readings can work. It’s best if you read for two full days, although one long day may suffice. Charge a tad lower than professional rates for short readings (15-20 minutes is usual) with all the money going to the cause (it’s even better if the organizers collect the money).

Hopefully, you will be busy the whole time, so make sure you bring water and an easy-to-munch-on snack and that you schedule a couple of breaks. If someone asks for a reading at the very end of the day, try to fit them in. You want to push yourself beyond what you think you can do, for, when you reach that point, there is often a breakthrough.

At the end, note the things you learned, what you did best and where you could improve. If it’s okay with the organizers, distribute your new business card or flyers and make a professional sign.

At the end of a very full weekend, I guarantee you’ll be on the far side of the divide with a bevy of professional readings under your belt.

One final thing—make sure you know and comply with local laws and business regulations.

Learn more about Mary K Greer.

Ruth Ann & Wald Amberstone, Founders of the Tarot School and Producers of the Annual Readers Studio Tarot Conference

ruth ann wald amberstoneOne of the challenges you might face once you’ve decided to go pro is where to find those first clients. Friends and family are great for practice, but it might be awkward to start charging them, especially if you’ve been reading for them for free. However, don’t feel shy about asking them to refer you to their friends and co-workers if they’ve found your readings helpful.

If there’s a local metaphysical shop, find out if they host readers at the store.

If so, offer an “audition reading” to the shop owner. You’ll most likely have to split your fee, but it can be a good way to get known in the community. Check with area cafes and restaurants, as well.

If you have your own personal service business (bodyworker, hairdresser, yoga instructor, etc.), you’re really in luck! Your own clients are a great source of potential reading clients. They already know and trust you, and are already used to paying you.

No matter where you find your clientele, make sure you have a professional looking website where prospects can learn about you, your approach to reading, the types of readings you offer and price schedule. Your business card should include your website’s URL, your phone number and email address as well.

Learn more about Ruth Ann & Wald Amberstone and connect via Facebook.

Sasha Graham, Tarot Card Reader and Author of Tarot Diva

sasha grahamTarot Reading is a fabulous, noble profession, allowing you to create your own schedule, set your own hours and indulge in your passions. Best part? Zero start up cost. Two essential elements stick out in my mind if you seek success.

Be Professional

Tarot Readers historically operated on the fringes of society but it doesn’t mean you should. Write a business plan, invest in a marketing strategy, get to your local Small Business Administration to find support etc. Return emails and business queries immediately. This is especially important if you want to work parties and events which is guaranteed to bring you the most income in the least amount of time. Never get catty with other readers. There are over 7 billion people on the planet. Trust you will find your client base.

Be Yourself

“Know Thyself,” an ancient Greek motto salient for your life and career. Know who you are. Be true to it. A Tarot Reader has the luxury of creating her own mystique, we are goddesses of insight. The public expects us to be eccentric. Don’t feel like you have to “fit in” in order to become a successful business woman or man. Use what makes you special in attracting like minded clients. Are you a goth chick, obsessed with darkness? Create a reading chamber akin to Hecate’s boudoir.  Are you a passionate gardener? Offer garden readings in the midst of cultivated flower beds. Take what makes you special, what you love and place it in the center of your Tarot business.

And by the way, one of my favorite things about being a Professional Tarot Reader? Aging only works to our benefit. :) Good luck oh wise one!

Learn more about Sasha Graham and check out Tarot Diva: Ignite Your Intuition Glamourize Your Life Unleash Your Fabulousity!

P.S. Ready to ‘Go Pro’?

Taking the first step to becoming a professional Tarot reader can be very daunting. Not only do you need to feel confident in your Tarot reading skills, you also need to know how to manage a business, promote yourself (without sounding like a sleaze) and build long-lasting relationships with your clients and potential customers.

It took me 15 years to fine-tune the strategies that I use and teach today. I now draw upon these highly effective strategies as I coach aspiring Tarot professionals to take the leap and ‘go pro’. I’ve done the work so you don’t have to. By working with me, you’ll be able tap into these strategies and business know-how instantly and launch your professional Tarot reading career with a bang.

Join me for a free 15-minute coaching consultation here.

{ 33 comments… read them below or add one }

Sigrun Helene February 6, 2013 at 7:54 am

Hi Biddy!

This article is like a packet full of kinder-eggs on a Saturday evening – or a Christmas gift. Thanks for working so hard to share and care for all your readers and followers. I appreciate your good intentions and warm energy so very much. Happy Februar!

Warm regards from Sigrun

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Brigit February 6, 2013 at 8:37 am

It was a lot of work to pull it together, but absolutely worth it in the end. I hope it helps many with their Tarot journeys!

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Elise February 6, 2013 at 10:14 am

Thanks so much – again – for putting this together. Every idea a golden nugget, or a kinder egg… Will use it all.

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Brigit February 6, 2013 at 11:04 am

My pleasure! So lucky to have these wonderful Tarot readers share their secrets!

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Clare February 6, 2013 at 10:46 am

Thanks from me too Bridgit…

I’m going to go out on a limb though and disagree with the esteemed Mary K Greer.

I disagree with doing long days when first doing professional readings and extending yourself…I did that and it never worked for me. My best readings are when I am relaxed and working within my strict boundaries including my time.

My other tip…always use protection….Aura Soma deep red pomander is fabulous.

Thank you Biddy.
Clare

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Brigit February 6, 2013 at 11:05 am

Thanks for sharing, Clare. It’s good to see you found where your personal boundaries lay – very important!

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Mary K. Greer February 9, 2013 at 1:11 pm

Clare – I’m glad you spoke up. The fact that you discovered that long reading days don’t work for you is priceless information. That’s exactly the kind of thing one can learn from doing such a rite of passage. Rites of passage are not meant to be effortless, but that doesn’t mean that this is the only way to go.

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kelly February 6, 2013 at 11:38 pm

Thanks for the work you have put into this, a lot of great information and interesting to see the common and different advice given.

I’d agree with knowing thy self and also I’ve learnt as well that the more I read, the more I tune in to intuition the more I pick up on where I need to take better care of myself…like eating healthy, spending time outdoors, socializing. When I first started it felt like a barely went out.
Also realizing a need to experience life more…new things like travelling, taking up classes on various subjects and so on..as a reader I’ve found (personally) that my readings are only as good as my life experiences.

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Shelley February 7, 2013 at 9:53 am

Great article, will surely be a resource for years to come!
When I was reflecting on Mary K. Greer’s suggestion to have a “rite of passage,” I realized I had done it already, by offering free readings on your site! That first wave of requests was a real trial by fire in terms of reading for every single person and getting through them all (took me just under two weeks!), but like Mary says, you come out of it with a wealth of professional readings under your belt in a short amount of time, and you push yourself to grow. Another great thing is the feedback which then I had ready to go for when I set up my professional website. Fantastic!
Thanks Brigit!

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Brigit February 7, 2013 at 1:41 pm

I had never thought of it like that, but you are absolutely right. Doing the free readings is absolutely a trial by fire! Something that you probably want to do for a few months, before building the confidence to go ‘pro’.

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Zamm February 7, 2013 at 1:38 pm

Another article full of helpful information – thanks for putting this together, Biddy!
Kind regards.

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Bruce Delmont February 8, 2013 at 1:54 am

“Been there, done that.” For many years I charged for readings, but got tired of the problems charging for readings brings.
And besides that, it never settled for me, charging that is, there was always something inside me that never felt comfortable, and I think it had to do with me being human, and not always being right, not being able to garauntee my results, yet taking money from someone. Reading Tarot, which is so personal, a giving of myself to others, lost its special charm when it became a business, and I didn’t like that. I know that I was put on earth to help others, and it fulfills me, makes me happy to do that, and Tarot is my way. But to make it a business seemed to put up a wall for me, there was “something” there in front of me that I didn’t like, and I didn’t want it there.
But on a more practical level, I noticed none of the advice given above didn’t really get down to where “the rubber meets the road”: taxes, liability, insurance, bills (website, rent, travel expenses, etc.), laws, personal protection, etc. All these things should be addressed, and need to be covered/taken care of when running any kind of business. What is a professional tarot reader going to do when he/she gets sued, for perhaps taking your advice from reading, with tragic results? How can a professional tarot reader take money without a garauntee of 100% accuracy (and nobody is 100% accurate)? Somebody falls on your property? You violate local law? These things need to be addressed, if you really want to give someone advice.

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Brigit February 8, 2013 at 9:25 pm

“Each to their own.” Professional Tarot reading isn’t going to work for everyone. I am glad to hear that you have acknowledged where your own boundaries lie and what feels right for you.

Personally, I feel blessed that I have found something that fits me to a tee. I get so much personal reward out of helping people to transform their lives through Tarot, and I see others getting so much out of it too. Sure, you can’t ‘guarantee results’ because so much of it has to do with the individual wanting to make positive change and results, but this is often the case with many other things such as counselling, weight loss, even financial planning.

I also love that I can create an authentic business in this field. I’m doing something I love, I’m bringing my ‘whole self’ to what I do, and I am successful at it. Marketing is no problem, because I don’t see it as something ‘sleazy’. I just bring myself to it and it works.

Taxes, etc. Yes, these should all be considered. This post was intended more as a few nuggets of great advice from some wonderful people in the industry, rather than the “Definitive Guide to Professional Tarot Reading.”

Thank-you for sharing your point of view and engaging in the discussion.

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Mary K. Greer February 9, 2013 at 1:20 pm

Bruce – It’s pretty hard to give specific advice regarding laws, taxes, liability, insurance, bills, etc. when you are putting this information out to people on several continents and dozens of countries. I believe several people pointed out the importance of knowing local laws and good business practices, but the specifics vary from location-to-location. In the U.S. the laws can vary between what’s allowed within a city-limits and what’s allowed in the county containing that city – much less the different state and federal laws. Most of us aren’t lawyers and it would be very inappropriate for us to tell someone in another country what to do if you violate a local law or if someone falls on your property. One of the first rules of a professional is knowing what you are and are not qualified to advise on.

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Christiana Gaudet February 8, 2013 at 3:43 am

Thanks, Biddy, for putting this together and including me.
I am actually replying to Bruce’s comment above. He raises some good points. First, not every tarotist can or should be a professional reader. Tarot is a versatile tool and can be used in many ways. Professional readers in no way have the market cornered on tarot wisdom and understanding
Second, most modern professional readers have a strict code of ethics, and use tarot to help the client understand themselves, their situation and their options. The client knows right away if the reading is “accurate.” As far as predicting the future is concerned, most of us understand that we have the same responsiblity as a meteorologist or sports pundit. We do not claim to know the future – we make predictions based on what we see. We know that and we make sure our clients know that. No one I know would ever say they were 100% accurate in their future predictions, and no one I know would read for a client who expected that.
On an international blog such as this one it is impossible to talk intelligently about taxes and laws because they differ so greatly. But I also think we are intelligent enough that this doesn’t need to be mentioned. Telling someone to pay their taxes, buy business insurance and not break laws is tantamount to telling someone to wear underwear and brush their teeth.
If you live in a litigious place such as the US lawsuits are always possible -not just for readers but for everyone. Anyone can sue anyone for anything. Adhering to a code of ethics will limit exposure, but it is always a possibility for any person, not just readers.
It seems that tarot reading felt like a risky profession for you, but it may be that you were reacting to the expectations of others rather than being clear about what they can and should expect. And that seems like another good piece of advice for the pro reader.
Thanks for raising some interesting issues.

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Katrina Wynne February 8, 2013 at 3:58 am

Dear Tarot Biddy and all the fabulous Tarot Professionals who shared their hard earned wisdom…

I enjoyed this well-rounded sampling of the ingredients that support the development of a professional approach to working with Tarot. It could certainly be expanded into a book.

Here are the three main themes I gleaned from these writings:
1) Know thyself – your passion, your path, your style, your limits, your comforts, and more,
2) Know your tool “Tarot” – know your craft, keep learning more, practice, experiment,
3) Know your profession – approach your Tarot work as any professional would develop a business or a career for which they intend to be successful, this is a service-oriented profession.

I would like to add one more Tarot professional tip…
When you know your boundaries, the limits of your knowledge or comfort with people or topics, it helps to have a ready referral list. These are professionals who you trust can help your clients find more completion with whatever need may have appeared in your session, be it expertise in finances, law, or within the realm of mental or spiritual counseling, to name a few.

My own advice reflects my values….
I approach people, including clients, with a feeling of compassion and non-judgment, for who they are or what they are revealing. I find this creates a safe atmosphere in which they feel free to explore their topic, their life, in a more meaningful way. It can be transformative.

Fantastic work all and thank you for your generous sharing of your experience and time.

In Spirit,
Katrina

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Brigit February 8, 2013 at 9:27 pm

Hi Katrina,

Thank-you so much for sharing your advice – much appreciated! And welcome to the Biddy Tarot blog.

Brigit

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Bruce Delmont February 8, 2013 at 4:58 am

No, it wasn’t a risky thing. I just didn’t feel right about taking people’s money for something that can’t be 100%. It’s like, if I buy a tv, or a car, or anything I pay money for, I expect it to be 100%…a fair exchange: 100% money, for 100% product, and if it is faulty in some way, it’s returned for one that isn’t…that’s all.
I usually have good feedback from clients, that they were well pleased, that I was “right on,” etc. and I was glad to be of help to them. But I was just pointing out some things, from a practical standpoint, that others might not be aware of, if they are contemplating starting a Tarot business. With me, I eventualy became more focused on the money aspect, on marketing, etc., which seems a natural progression, to keep things going. And I didn’t like that. And as far as working within the Law, no, that is not a “no-brainer,” many people don’t, and end up getting into messes, both financial and legal, and so, I was just pointing out that people need to be aware of their local laws…that’s all I was saying. :)
* side note: I was so busy, so many clients, that eventually I didn’t even need my Tarot cards anymore, and to tell you the truth, it scared me, and I put away reading for a few years…I did some reasearch, learned more about self protection and control measures, and have resumed, and I will try to better manage my workload, but I still don’t charge, and don’t plan to because I don’t want to get into the Schedule C (taxes), and spending money on all kinds of stuff, that I have to make up by charging a fee. It’s a lot simpler for me, and is a win-win situation, and I can concentrate, and devote more of my time, on the Tarot. It works for me. :)

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Bruce Delmont February 8, 2013 at 5:12 am

** I think I need to clarify a point: when I talked about being so busy, so many clients, didn’t need the cards, I was trying to say that my psychic/intuition became so sharp that I would establish a connection with clients immediately, even over internet, and become swamped with energy, engulfed with the clients energy so that I didn’t need the Tarot cards, the room where I would be sitting would kinda shrink away, and everything would swirl and move, and the images coming, that I would relate to client…it’s very hard to describe, but if anyone here has experienced that, you know what I’m talking about. Well, it scared me enough to put the cards away for a few years.

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Jenne Perlstein February 11, 2013 at 12:00 am

all the wisdom and insight is marvelous here. My thoughts as a practitioner of 17 years. Learn the cards well, practice on friends , acquaintances, psychic lines…..and search for your niche. We all have varying degrees of intuition, psych ism , clairvoyance,…some of us little, some of us hugely gifted in this area , and we likewise have varying degrees of psychological knowledge, counseling skills and mental health awareness. Thus know your limits, be very aware you are dealing with people coming with problems who can be vulnerable. Go no further than your own knowledge and experience dictates. Learn counselling and basic mental health skills eg how to deal with someone who is depressed . Learn your local mental health resources eg Crisis assessment team contact details, and who and where to refer to. Get supervision and support and keep doing ongoing professional development. Join a professional association. That niche I mentioned is very powerful , as you do attract and are more able to work effectively with particular types of people and with your particular style. I call myself a Tarot counselor, and I seem to attract people ( mostly) who want to be self determining, want to understand the unconscious causes of their issues and to take responsibility. Linda Marsons advice about open ended questions is spot on…. an example of a counselling technique. It allows the client to be empowered, the tarot to be a guide and an opener of options. You will make mistakes. Be honest with the client,learn and move on. the client will still be there! Finally be open to the Universe. Jenne

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Brigit February 15, 2013 at 3:25 pm

Thanks for sharing your insights, Jenne!

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Rhett February 26, 2013 at 8:58 am

I have had my own tarot/lenormand card reading business since about June 2012. I’ve always wanted to know, what do you do if a client is unhappy? What if. they want their money back? This has never happened to me, but you never know, it could…

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Brigit February 27, 2013 at 2:32 pm

Good question! I wrote this post on a very similar topic – http://www.biddytarot.com/bad-tarot-readings/

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Mary K. Greer February 28, 2013 at 7:28 am

I’ve had this happen three times. The first time it was obviously a scam. It was at the first large fair that I ever read at, and it turned out that all the other readers had refused to read for her. We settled at half-price since her complaint was that I was a ‘tarot reader’ and not a psychic (despite my clear signs and tarot cards). I did my gratitude practice and decided that I needed a brief oral agreement at the beginning of each reading showing that we were both clear about the kind of reading I was offering. I perfected my statement throughout the weekend and use something like it to this day.

The second time, the woman was totally in denial about her grown son being a problem, although he was in his 30s, rarely employed and still living with her. The cards were clear that this wasn’t healthy, she confirmed the basic information, but she declared he/they had no problems and so I hadn’t given her a good reading.

The third time, a woman wanted to know when her ex-boyfriend (now married and with a new baby) was going to come back to her. She didn’t want to know anything else (like what she could do with her own life) except when he would be returning and she wouldn’t believe ‘never.’

I believe I also split the fee with both of those. I insisted on splitting the fee rather than money back because I gave more than the allotted time to each of them and felt I had gone over and above what was called for and given them correct information. If I could have caught the problem early on I might have returned their fee and ended the session right away, but I have had difficult readings totally turn around on many occasions, so I tend to stick with them.

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Rhett February 28, 2013 at 8:20 am

Actually that’s what I thought i’d probably do: give a 50% refund instead of a full one, because even if they don’t like it, I still put a lot of time, effort and mental/psychilogical energy into doing it. Thanks Mary!

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Mary K. Greer February 28, 2013 at 8:35 am

Rhett – It really depends on the circumstances, so it’s best to stay open to what is happening in the moment. My most important lesson was to take a moment of gratitude for the experience, as soon as possible, and see what wisdom arises for me when in that state of giving thanks to the person. There’s always a gift in it for me.

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Rhett February 28, 2013 at 8:39 am

I will try. I’m an overly-sensitive person so I’m the type that will probably burst into tears and take it personally if/when a client ends up getting angry with me. I need to be tougher. Thank you Mary!

Brigit February 28, 2013 at 4:15 pm

I have experimented with a few different models. First, I flatly refused to offer a refund because I felt I had delivered the service as expected. I found that this just lead to an angry customer, escalating the issue. I currently offer a full refund, simply because I just want to nip it in the bud. I do feel somewhat short-changed because I have invested a lot of time and energy, but I also don’t want to invest more energy into arguing my case or agreeing on a compromise. That said, I do really like Mary’s idea of a 50% refund. It’s a halfway point and could be clearly stated somewhere in your policies to avoid any confusion.

Thanks so much for sharing, Mary.

James Wells March 14, 2013 at 9:01 am

I’ve only refused payment once in all the years I’ve been offering tarot consultations on a professional basis. I don’t want to get into the whole long story, but it boiled down to the person having everything in hir life planned practically week-by-week for the next few years (by hirself and by hir family), so didn’t really feel connected to the creative possibilities of the cards. And a friend of that particular readee had talked the readee into it, so s/he wasn’t really into it to begin with.
These days, I have a process that engages people before we do the session. I ask a series of questions. They respond to them. Their responses help me craft or choose a layout/map for their consultation. By the time the appointment rolls around, we’ve agreed that this is what we’ll explore. They can’t say that we didn’t explore what we said we would because we both have a map of it with all the layout positions clearly defined.

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Susan October 3, 2013 at 5:44 pm

What a fabulous article – LOVED it! What an invitation to do what I love and be who I am – and expand on it (kind of the gist of it all).

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Lauren October 7, 2013 at 10:01 am

This article was fantastic! I just wanted to say thank you to everyone who offered their advice. I’ve been reading the tarot for about 10 years now and have been considering reading professionally.n this article was exactly what I needed. Thanks again!

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Carolyn January 24, 2014 at 11:10 am

Thank you for sharing this. As i start on my journey as a “professional” I have found myself asking the questions regarding what my vision is all about. Of course, staying open to being guided is important, but I know I can’t help everyone. What do I want to bring to the world in general became an important question and to see that these seasoned pros still consider these questions and continue to grow and change allows me to take a deep breath…just like I suggest to all my clients before we read together.

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Ms.V April 19, 2014 at 1:13 am

Thank you all for the wonderful words of advice and perspective! This is something I want to pursue and this advice makes the journey and transition very foreseeable!

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