So a few days ago, for World Tarot Day, I recorded a short video on Facebook. I offered 3 free, 3 card readings to celebrate. I was excited! I really do love reading for people, and this was a way for me to use my skills doing something I love.
So I did the readings, and another one for a friend the next day. They were all 4 really accurate to the questions being asked, and I was again reminded how cool it feels when the cards just speak to me. I love feeling the messages ‘come in’, and I love feeling like I might be able to help someone find a way out of a difficult situation or make a decision, depending on what the cards say.
I’m also really, REALLY good at this. I’m not bragging blindly here, I hear it time and again. And I should be good. I’ve spent 30 years reading tarot, studying, practicing, working on honing my intuition, and poring over my decks, trying to glean the deeper meanings of all 78 cards. I worked hard to be good at this, and I do believe that it shows.
So when I gave one of the readings, the person I read for had a few more questions that would have required more readings. They would have required more of my time, energy, and skills. So I politely said that I would love to read for them again, and sent them a link to my Etsy page so that they could purchase another reading. The free readings were giveaways for World Tarot Day after all, and he did say that he felt I was ‘powerful’ and the reading was ‘spot on’.
As so often happens, this sparked a discussion. I was told that I shouldn’t charge for readings because I would ‘get a bad rep’, and other things that suggested that I’m selling out for money. There were other things about money being a tool of a corrupt government, etc., and that it was about ‘The Message, not the money’.
You’d be amazed at how often I hear variations on this theme. At least 3-5 times/week someone comes to me, asking for a reading. When I politely direct them to my Etsy page, and let them know that I’ll start working on their readings as soon as payment is received, I usually find out that no, they were wanting their reading for free. They don’t have the money, or they don’t think they should have to pay for various reasons. Some people are nice, some people are not.
Here’s the thing. I’m new at PROFESSIONAL tarot reading if not tarot in general, I’ll admit that. But it IS my job right now, and I’m treating it as such. Do I ask other people to do their job for me for free? Nope. If someone has spent 30 years learning how to repair cars, perfecting their craft, getting really good, would I ask them to repair my car for free, insisting that they share their gifts with me as a spiritual gift? Nope, nope, nope. That’s not the way the world works.
As far as money being the tool of a corrupt government, sullying the spirituality of the reading, or somehow being non-spiritual, I say bullshit. Money is a form of energy, just like time, attention, or love. And I spend a lot of time working on tarot, I give a lot of attention to my querants (after all, reading tarot is very similar to counseling a lot of the time), and I LOVE reading tarot for people. I love the idea of being able to help them through various situations in life. I put a ton of energy into my readings, and I’m quite literally exhausted after doing a few. So yes, I do feel that money is a very equal and positive exchange for that.
Sometimes I hear ‘you can use me as practice!’ Nope. I’ve been practicing for 30+ years. I have a willing husband, sister, mother, and friends all over the place that I can practice on. I practice daily, you’re not doing me a favor by letting me ‘practice’ on you. I also feel like you get what you pay for in tarot or other readings of the sort. If someone is just getting started and needs practice, sure! They should be able to give readings away for free with no qualms.
So please, stop asking me for free readings. It’s beneath you.
Know what goes into tarot reading- the time, the study, the passion, and don’t feel so entitled to receive those things for free. Also, tip your server, be nice to customer service people, and just generally try to be a nice human to other humans. It’s what we’re all here for, right?