“I don’t tell fortunes, I create fortunes!”
Roger, owner of Tarot Dude, is a professional Tarot reader and blogger. He is a firm believer that Tarot readings can and should be an empowering experience for both the client and the reader.
In this interview, I find out how Roger uses the Tarot for empowerment and creativity through his Tarot readings and his blog. We also talk about the journey of learning to read Tarot and becoming a professional Tarot reader.
On your website, you point out that you don’t tell fortunes, you create fortunes. Tell me more about your philosophy.
“There are so many uses for Tarot and one of my favourites is manifestation. I have found that Tarot is a most effective tool to help clients achieve their goals, whether it be bringing love into their life or increasing their financial stability.
“I’m not a big believer in “wish-craft”, where you just wish/hope/pray that something will happen in your life. Rather, I feel that in order to create something in your life, you need to take action — and the cards can help map out a path to do so.”
Would you consider yourself a counsellor rather than a fortune teller? What made you choose the counselling path, while others have chosen the fortune-telling path?
“Yes, I definitely use Tarot more as a counselling tool. This goes back to my belief that the future is not carved in stone and our actions determine what occurs in our life. So in this way, I’ve never been a fan of telling a client “so and so will happen on this date.”
“My education is in Psychology and I have also worked as a crisis telephone line counsellor so using Tarot as a counselling tool is a natural fit for me.”
What is your secret to creating empowering Tarot readings?
“Putting aside the need to be correct and instead, focusing on being helpful to the client is, in my opinion, one of the most important ingredients to an empowering reading.
“So often we are so focused on providing the correct answer or proving that we are an adept psychic, that we forget that the ultimate goal here is to help the client, to provide them a map to create improvement in their life.
“Another thing which I find essential, is to end each session with an action plan for the client – concrete, physical steps they can take to bring them closer to their goals. “
What inspired you to start your own Tarot blog? What lessons have you learned along the way?
“I see my blog as a way of giving back to the Tarot community, a community that has given me so much. It’s also an excellent way of engaging with and learning from others who share my favourite interest – Tarot.
“What I’ve learned is to not let the negative people out there bring you down. I do not allow a negative comment or a hostile e-mail to destroy the goodwill created by all the wonderful comments and emails I have received. Some people get discouraged by the negativity, sometimes even to the point to quitting. Here, I’ve learned that the saying “One bad apple does not spoil the whole bunch” is important to keep in mind. There will always be the embittered naysayers out there. Focus instead on those who have added value to your life and to your work.”
How do you find it, being a professional Tarot reader?
“I’ve been the kind of person where I’ve never depended only on one stream of income for my livelihood so I’ve always gone into the many. While do Tarot readings does bring in a good amount of my income, my livelihood also comes from my Reiki sessions & classes, Tarot classes, Weddings (I’m a wedding officiate), and my various writing projects.
“While doing Tarot readings does occupy a good portion of my week, the other projects that I’m involved with helps to prevent burnout.
“At one time, I was doing only readings – sometimes even 5 or more a day and after a while I became a tad burnt out as a result. So now, while I still do quite a few readings, I find that the other projects in my life help to keep me in balance.”
You wrote in your expert advice that practising Tarot readings was key to becoming an expert in Tarot. How did you start your Tarot reading practice?
“I started doing readings about 15 years ago. I was fortunate in that I had very open-minded friends so I practiced quite a bit on them. I also volunteered for a Free Tarot Reading site and it was there that I really learned Tarot! Putting your time in at a busy reading site exposes you to every sort of question (and client) imaginable! It’s an excellent way to “hit the ground running.”
“At that time, I also started volunteering at local Psychic fairs as well. While reading for my friends was a huge help for me in learning the cards, I found that reading for strangers helped to truly hone my skills in that I had no idea what their question – or their reaction to my comments – might be.”
I see that you have taken classes with the Tarot School. Do you recommend that other Tarot enthusiasts take classes, or is being self-taught sufficient?
“Most definitely! The beauty of Tarot, is that there is never an end to the learning. I still take Tarot classes any chance I get and from a variety of different teachers, because no matter how much you think you know, you will always learn something from others.
“I also listen to a variety of Tarot podcasts, one of my favourites being Donnaleigh’s “Beyond Worlds” – another excellent way to learn new techniques and methods.
“While being self-taught can suffice, I strongly believe that continuously learning from others keeps you from becoming stale, complacent or getting in a rut.”
What has been your biggest mistake as a Tarot reader? What did you learn from this experience?
“Trying to fix people!
“For those of us in any sort of helping profession, it’s easy to fall into the trap of putting all of our energy into trying to fix our clients. While we should strive to be as helpful as possible, we also need to set boundaries and realize that it is ultimately up to the client to help themselves – they have to take responsibility for their own healing.
“If the same client shows up every month, asking the same question each time and never taking any action steps of their own, it might be time be cut them loose until they are ready to help fix themselves, instead of trying to find somebody else to fix them.”
What’s on for the next 12 months at Tarot Dude?
“Expect to see more video blog posts on the Tarot Dude site in the coming year, my new passion as of late.
“I will also be working on a new series of blog posts, focusing on creativity and our artistic talents so keep an eye out for that towards the end of January.
“I am also working on a Study at Home Tarot Course, complete with videos, worksheets, and more, which I hope to have completed by early spring. I’m looking forward to a fun and creative 2012!”
Learn more about using Tarot for empowerment and creativity at Roger’s website and blog, Tarot Dude.