5 Simple Steps to Read Tarot with Confidence

6 Techniques for Psychic Self-Protection

By February 13, 2013Everyday Tarot

Ever done a Tarot reading for someone and walked away feeling as if you have just been completely drained of your own energy? Or perhaps you walked into that reading feeling great, but now you’re walking out feeling just as bad as your client did?

This can happen to even the most resilient Tarot readers.

It’s a sign that we have opened ourselves up to our clients, but in the process we have taken on their energy and have carried it away with us. It doesn’t happen all of the time (thank goodness, or we’d be blithering wrecks!) but when it does, you can certainly feel it.

And for some people, this energy transference can happen much more frequently, particularly for those who are highly empathic and receptive to other people’s energies.

So how can you protect yourself from energy drain or negative energy transferring from your client to you? It’s all about looking after yourself and taking a few extra precautions to protect your intuitive self from other people’s energy. And, as we’ll see later on, it’s also about setting boundaries and aligning your beliefs so that you’ll avoid the need to protect yourself in the first place.

Here are 6 techniques for psychic self-protection.

1. Use a Self-Protection Visualisation

Before a Tarot reading, and in-between readings, imagine yourself surrounded by white light that is protecting you from any negative energy.

Alternatively, imagine a sheet of safety glass between you and your Tarot cards, the reading, and/or the client so that you are protected from any strong emotional energy. You can still ‘read’ the Tarot cards and the client, but you don’t personally feel any of the negative emotion that may be emitted.

2. Recite Affirmations or an Incantation

It can help to use affirmations, incantations, prayers and rituals before and after a Tarot reading. It doesn’t really matter what you say, it’s the intent that is the most important.

Before a Tarot reading, you may like to say an incantation such as the following:

“Love surrounds me.
Faith supports me.
Wisdom guides me.”

And after a reading, you may like to close with a personal affirmation such as, “I am clear of all negative energy. I bring only positive energy into my life.”

3. Select a ‘Protector’ Tarot Card

You can use the Tarot cards themselves to ‘protect’ you during a Tarot reading. Cards from the Suit of Cups protect you from being emotionally impacted by the reading. Sword cards provide protection from being judged and criticised in your reading. Pentacles may help protect against physical attack or financial issues. And Wands’ cards protect against any psychic attacks or negative energy.

Of course, if you ever feel that you are at risk of any abuse or attack to begin with, don’t do the reading. Your emotional, mental, spiritual and physical safety come first.

4. Use Rituals and Symbols for Protection

cleanse-tarot-cardsThere are an abundance of options when it comes to self-protection rituals and symbols. You can burn sage or rosemary before a reading; wear a protective talisman; burn a white and black candle to dispel negative energy; anoint yourself with frankincense or olive oil; or place a clear quartz crystal by your side.

Here are a number of other rituals from the readers on the Biddy Tarot Facebook page:

  • “While doing a practice reading I call Archangel Michael to come and guide me in the reading and also protect me from the negative energy and shield me in his purple light!”
  • “I say a quick short prayer, imagining white light around me and slowing breathing …. “Spirits of Love and Light – come to the Gateway of my Soul and protect me from all that is Evil.””
  • “I hold my amethyst and clear quartz then sage me, the cards before and after . then I will sage the whole house!”
  • “Raise and close the circle as always for spell/ ritual/ Sabbath. Afterwards grounding myself by eating and drinking.”
  • “I wear an owl bracelet which acts as a personal amulet for protection.”

As with affirmations and incantations, it is the intent that matters most. So set yourself a clear intent as you perform these rituals.

5. Release the Energy

If you’ve been overwhelmed by someone else’s energy, then use the Release and Let Go spread for yourself.

Alternatively, have a shower, go for a walk, shake your hands, have a cup of tea – whatever it takes to rid yourself of that energy.

You may also want to release any energy from the Tarot cards themselves. Use any of these Tarot card cleansing techniques.

6. Balance Your Energy In Between Readings

chakra-balancingIn between readings, do regular energy balancing meditations or chakra balances. I personally use Deepak Chopra’s “Chakra Balancing” CD which includes a guided meditation for clearing each chakra. Also included is a CD of meditation music, which is just perfect for your Tarot readings.

How to Avoid Needing Self-Protection in the First Place

Self-protection is certainly helpful if you feel you have taken on too much negative energy in a particular Tarot reading.

However, if you are prone to feeling drained or overwhelmed after every reading, know that you don’t have to feel this way. Tarot is meant to be an empowering and insightful tool, so if you are constantly feeling a need for self-protection, you may need to reflect more deeply on your personal boundaries and your beliefs about Tarot.

Listen to Your Personal Needs & Set Boundaries

Always listen to your inner voice and if you’re feeling tired or exhausted, stop reading until you feel better. Schedule regular breaks from your Tarot cards to allow yourself to restore your own energy. And limit yourself to a certain number of readings per day so you don’t overwhelm yourself.

Remember that you are also not obliged to read for anyone. If you feel that there is a mismatch between you and your client, or that they are repeatedly draining your energy with little value to either party, then suggest that they seek out another Tarot reader.

Get Back in the Driver’s Seat

Remember that the Tarot cards are not ‘voodoo’, ‘cursed’ or ‘evil’. They’re not here to take over your life and to make life ‘hell’. They are simply a series of images printed on cardstock, and are a tool for connecting with your intuition and providing insight and guidance.

So get back into the driver’s seat and create the experience YOU want with your Tarot cards.

Don’t let yourself become so tied to your Tarot cards that you allow every message to dictate how you feel (the Devil comes to mind). At the end of the day, YOU choose how you feel – not your cards and not your clients.

Therefore, use these self-protection techniques if you feel that you need them after a particularly challenging Tarot reading or client. Over time, however, work with your personal boundaries and belief systems to create an experience with your Tarot cards that is empowering and that contributes to a greater sense of self.

Over to you. Do you use any self-protection techniques? If so, please share what techniques you use. And if not, why not? (I mean that in an inquisitive, curious way!)

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  • Aasheesh says:

    Nice and informative article on psychic protection.It is a must to protect yourself from negative energies lest they play havoc with your aura.Wearing quartz crystals enhance your aura and protect you.I am a Reiki Level 2 practitioner and i use various symbols to keep my aura safe.
    One should use these rituals as a part of everyday life so as to keep negative energies away.
    Thanks Brigit for this post. It would make your readers aware of the need to protect oneself.

  • Joanna Ash says:

    Here’s another one. Crystals are great for the purpose too. I always have a grounding stone with me placed on my Tarot cloth when I read. Obsidian, Lapis Lazuli, Hermatite, Tourmaline, work very well for me.

  • kelly says:

    Great information that is very important for anyone reading tarot. This is something I didn’t do at first but got to a point where I had to learn about it very quickly. I liked all the suggestions mentioned. I find the best way for me is eating healthy, drinking some water before and after a reading, limiting amount of readings I do, and socializing or getting out in I will get into the garden, or sit outside, or go for a walk at the local park etc on a daily basis. I like to begin readings with a prayer from Susan Chumsky’s book for instance “the love of god surrounds me, engulfs em etc and end with ‘I am” statements such as I am the authority in my life etc.

  • Kelsey Lynore says:

    This is interesting. I had thought about psychic protection and energy vampires regularly, but never connected it to Tarot… which is weird! I use the Golden Dawn invocation before I throw. But now that I consider these issues in relation to Tarot, I think that Tarot has served as my go-to psychic protection against everything else, although I wasn’t conscious of that until this article. I get drained regularly by others but never when I read. Reading, *so far,* keeps others at bay. I also run, swim, do yoga, and sing and dance regularly. These acts serve a similar function to Tarot — but I think this whole time I’ve been using Tarot as a subconscious, almost instinctual form of psychic protection unto itself. Huh! Really odd that I never thought of it… Intriguing article!

  • Aasheesh says:

    One more suggestion.Doing salt water bath therapy daily cleanses your aura.

  • Priti says:

    I loved this aarticle,
    My Kundalini power protects me when i’m with difficult people. It helps me to connect with thweir inner will to know what really their nature is and what nature intends to do…
    keep up with such wonderful articles, your posts are enjoyable and I make a point I read each and every bit of it! 🙂

  • Eleanor Barron says:

    What a great article. I am always impacted by the energy others whether I am doing a tarot reading or holding a psychotherapy session. No one, up to this point, has spelled out how to self protect as you have. Thanks a million.


  • Lesley says:

    Rubbing your palms with Turkish Dead Sea Salt or holding it for a while then washing it off absorbs any negativity which goes down the plughole with the discarded salt. You physically feel it leave you and you feel lighter. Available from Boots or online. In emergency normal table salt will have similar effect.
    In the home open doors and windows, chuck Dead Sea Salt around, leave it for a while then hoover up and throw out the contents of the hoover bag or sweep strewn salt out of the door and the negativity goes with it.

  • Lesley says:

    My husband opened a mediterranean restaurant bang on the announcement of this horrendous recession. We had put too much money in to step back at the time. It crawled on it’s belly creasing us physically, emotionally and financially for 3.5 years, we were threadbare in all departments.
    Alongside this I had a teaspoon of Turkish Dead Sea Salt placed in the palm of my left hand by someone trying to sell me some handcream containing this salt. The minute he did it I felt all the negativity I was harbouring (mine and other people’s which I seem to like to collect!) drain down my arms and into the salt. When I delightedly mentioned it the sales person just looked and said ‘Oh…..the energy thing.’.
    With that in mind I ordered some from the internet – but you can buy it in Boots chemists – gave some to my husband and said ‘Here, go and chuck that all around the restaurant, leave it for 24 – 48 hours then sweep it up, bag and bin it and we will see what happens.’.
    Shortly after he said ‘I’ll have to get a stick.’. Me being me said ‘What the hell for?’. ‘To beat the custmers off.’. He’s been fully booked ever since. If I am going into a challenging environment I stuff some in my pockets and throw it out after the event, marvellous stuff.
    I also mentally throw a dark blanket over people and situations I feel will not be a positive influence or another trick is to mentally shrink down overbearing people and situations until they are 1″ high – because that’s the size of their spirituality. Another use for the Turkish Salt is when my husband is overbearingly negative and dragging and draining I wait until he is asleep and put a trail of it up and down the bed between us and also cast some over him while he is sleeping……but he doesn’t know that so don’t tell him! lol
    Gotta get on with life now, thanks for listening.
    love and light,

  • Dimitry says:

    Thanks for the information on the psychic self-protection – it is very helpful! Here is another interesting set of psychic defense techniques:

  • labarbara says:

    Thanks for this information. It is all very helpful and interesting and quite useful. Also it helps me to REMEMBER to protect myself. I mostly just read for family and friends for fun – so sometimes forget that i need to protect myself from their energy. Anyway – when i do remember, being a huge Star Trek fan – I will quickly say “shields up” and visualize a shield surrounding me just as it did the starship Enterprise. I do this not only before a reading – but also whenever i am in a conversation that is or turns negative. Its fun and it’s a way to protect yourself quickly. AND – it works!!! As you say – it is the intent that matters most! : )

    Also on a daily basis I exercise and eat healthy (i do have guilty days). I feel that taking care of my body helps me to connect to Spirit on a deep level and also protects me.

  • marion says:

    Surprised there aren’t more mentions of candles, I would light pink for love or green for money or health and so on, and have the client end the reading by making a wish for something wonderful and blowing their candle out, like a little blessing at the end 🙂

  • Vatsala says:

    I use both the amethyst and clear crystal quartz but more for chakra balancing. My favorite technique to ward off invasions of my aura when in company where I might feel uncomfortable is to sit with my ankles crossed and keep my hands on my lap with the two thumbs touching each other and the other fingers placed on the opposite hand. I find it cuts the circuit of energy flow and keeps me balanced.

  • bilobi says:

    One should ALWAYS protect themselves, so I disagree with “How to Avoid Needing Self-Protection in the First Place”.

  • almir says:

    I started reading from gypsy cards….soone I felt the presence of some dark entety in my room at night, I tryed rituals of clensing but its still there I think

    I was advised to stop practising the ocult (minister in the churc advised to stop emediatly)

    I really dont want to get in to truble ….have you experianced something similar?

    • Brigit says:

      The Tarot cards themselves don’t bring dark or evil entities with them. You might have picked up a darker energy elsewhere, through your intentions or limiting beliefs and fears. Also, the Tarot is not “the occult”. Yes, the Tarot cards can be used in occult practice, but so too can water and we don’t consider water evil, do we? 🙂

      • almir says:

        I am just confused, Religion forbides it, and a lot of people tell me its wrong in gods eyes to to such things as tarot reading.
        I am very ethical, I dont charge people, I just want to help them and to give them trust in theirselfs. my clients tell me Im good at what I do and they tell me that stuff I said came true, so they come to me regulary when they need help. I love card reading, but yeah…..I dont want to get in trouble with the big guy (god) 🙂 My intentions are always clear and good.

        • Brigit says:

          Everyone will have their opinion of what is ‘right’ and ‘wrong’. In my view, there is nothing evil or ‘wrong’ about Tarot. I feel it brings me closer to my spirituality and to Source and certainly wouldn’t get me in trouble with the big guy (who isn’t really a big guy but a Universal energy:-))

  • Jupiter says:

    For the first time in 7 years of reading Tarot I felt absolutely drained in every way after a reading I did last night. The whole situation (and people involved) was negative, with a pretty awful outcome. The reading was for a family member, and with myself being an EXTREME empath (who has yet to learn to recycle and re-disperse all the energy I pick up) I had emotional ties to it. I tried to do another reading immediately after (I energetically cleared the area, but not myself! Duh!) I got one of those readings where none of it makes sense, and it’s as if the deck was just spitting random cards so I would just stop. I thanked my deck for that, it seemed to know I needed to quit. Definitely going to try and protect myself better. My empath abilities have gotten SO STRONG lately. Thank you for the insight!!!!

    • Brigit says:

      It’s great that you’re listening to your intuition and your body, especially when they’re saying it’s time to take a break. Ground yourself by walking on grass, meditating, or communing with nature.

  • Sapphire rose says:

    Great article
    Im returning to using tarot cards after losing my confidence,a sitter was very negative to their reading and it shatteted my confidence your article was easy to read and insightful many thanks and blessings to you

  • Dee says:

    I wear a dangling cross earring in my “left” pierced ear…looks cool, and “I” think helps protect me…

  • Tanya says:


    How do I block my relative from doing regular tarot card readings on me and my husband? She gets detailed information about our feelings, events and actions by using a psychic or a tarot card reader. I want that when she does a reading on us again she gets random, mixed readings which don’t make sense and that will discourage her from spending so much money on such an intrusive act of violating our privacy.

    Thank you 🙁

    • Brigit says:

      Hi Tanya – The only way to ‘stop’ it from happening is to address with your relative! Be clear in your request. Try to remain positive, and protect yourself! Best of Luck …

  • Virgo says:

    Is there anyway to block certain influences from a reading? For example if the query is about love but the sitter has a number of admirers, is there a way to concentrate only on an outcome with the one the sitter is specifically asking about?

  • Kirk is Out says:

    To ground and dispose of bad energies
    Coil uncapped copper wire on a sandal, sole and insole. Wear as needed.
    Kirk is Out

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