5 Simple Steps to Read Tarot with Confidence

Easy Three Card Tarot Spreads

By May 25, 2010Tarot Spreads

Three-card Tarot spreads are great if you need a quick answer to  an uncomplicated question, or are learning to read the Tarot cards and want to practice with a number of fast Tarot spreads and readings. Even for the seasoned Tarot reader, a three-card Tarot reading can help you get back to basics and serve as a reminder that even the most complex situations can have simple answers.

In the following post, I provide you with a number of easy three-card Tarot spreads to get you started. Feel free to mix and match between the suggestions below to create your own three card Tarot spreads. You might even have a few favourites of your own! I’d love to hear more about them, so please leave me a comment.

Understanding a Situation

Past / Present / Future

What will help you / What will hinder you / What is your unrealised potential

The nature of your problem / The cause / The solution

Current situation / Obstacle / Advice

Situation / Action / Outcome

Context of the situation / Where you need to focus / Outcome

What I think about the situation / What I feel / What I do

Where you stand now / What you aspire to / How to get there

What you aspire to / What is standing in your way / How you can overcome this

What you can change / What you can’t change / What you may not be aware of

What worked well / What didn’t work well / Key learnings

Understanding Relationships

You / The other person / The relationship

What you want from the relationship / What they want from the relationship / Where the relationship is heading

What brings you together / What pulls you apart / What needs your attention

Making Choices and Decisions

Strengths / Weaknesses / Advice

Opportunities / Challenges / Outcome

Option 1 / Option 2 / Option 3

Option 1 / Option 2 / What you need to know to make a decision

The solution / An alternative solution / How to choose

Understanding Yourself

Mind / Body / Spirit

Your conscious mind / Your sub-conscious mind / Your super-conscious mind

Material state / Emotional state / Spiritual state

You / Your current path / Your potential

Stop / Start / Continue

What the Universe wants you to be / The personal qualities required / Specific action required

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  • Emma says:

    Oh sorry, i just went back and found my name, my apologies. However, there’s no comments or help in understand what the cards meant by the time i thought my quest and drew out the card…thanks

  • Melanie says:

    I’m soo glad you spoke of not reading your own cards when high emotion or your mind is running wild. Got an exact reading of my thoughts and fears

  • Camille says:

    Hello…can these spreads be used for commercial purposes…giving readings for pay and creating new spreads? I do Angel Card Readings. Thank you 🙂

  • Louise says:

    Hi Brigit,

    Many thanks for this article, it’s very helpful.

    With regards to the three card approach can you advise on how to structure the questions for examples such as ‘Should I do X?’ And ‘Should we do Z’?

    Hope that makes sense!

  • Louise says:

    Oh my apologies I just read your ‘What Not to Ask the Tarot!’ Ok will rethink my questions!

  • Marina Rivera says:

    Thanks for the article, I found it very helpful

  • Louise Havell says:

    Hi Brigit,

    Are you able to advise? I asked the tarot what would be the pros, cons & general outcome of my partner & I buying a new boat (a bigger boat then we currently live on). I received The Devil, Knight of Swords, The Wheel of Fortune & The Hermit.

    Does this sound rather ominous? Your thoughts much appreciated!

    Best wishes,


  • Rita cobb says:

    Need to find out about a job I love but can end up.loosing

  • Paula says:

    Your three-card spreads are excellent!
    Never realised how flexible, yet specific they could be 🙂
    One question though, the spread under the heading ‘Understanding Yourself’, what is your ‘super-conscious ‘mind? i.e. I understand conscious and sub-conscious but not super-conscious mind.
    Thanks you.

    • Brigit says:

      Thank-you! The super conscious mind is that which is connected to the Universe and the ‘one’ energy around us. It’s the place of fullest potential and abundance.

  • Anne says:

    Thanks for the great list!

    I have a question: If the card for weakness / obstacle / hinder / what didn’t work well is a reversed card, how to interpret that?

  • Christina says:

    How do you start spreading the cards? Do u cut in 2parts and pick the second part and lay the 3cards??

    Thank you

  • Aleks says:

    I have read in some of your other articles that performing tarot on the same topic multiple times is not a good idea. What if, for example, I performed the Past / Present / Future spread for my academics, and then performed the What Worked Well / What Didn’t Work Well / Key Learnings spread on the previous school that I attended? Does that still count as the same topic, even though one is very general and the other more specific?

  • Mollie says:

    Do you fan the deck and select 3 cards, or do you deal three cards from the top? Does it matter one way or the other? Thanks!

  • Leo says:

    Hello Brigit

    I hace bookmarked your article. I have been doing a three card Tarot spread every morning to train my intuition, and your list is quite helpful and worthy of reviewing from time to time.

  • Poppy says:

    Hi Brigit,

    Before I searched for your article I was only aware of the first past/present/future way of reading the three card spread and I asked a question if my ex would talk to me again and got death/king of cups/reversed page of cups. I also asked if he we would be back together and got nine of cups/three of wands reversed/the lovers. Both these seemed to be opposite to me.

    Therefore, I was wondering whether the future covered the total future or immediate future so I searched for more info and got your page here. So I guess my question is which future is it? Or can I use another three card spread to interprete after I have chosen cards? Or would I have had to state that as my intention before I dealt the cards? Don’t want to be just finding an answer which fits what I want I want a real reading.

    Any help or anyone’s interpretations would be great. Many thanks X

  • Poppy says:

    Thanks Brigit 🙂 x

  • Rebecca says:

    I just did a three-card spread on myself questioning the relationship I am in. The results were Temperance, three of Cups and the star. Can you please enlighten me on this

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