The dreaded negative spread full of depressing cards can be upsetting when it’s a reading for yourself and nerve-wracking when it’s a reading for someone else. So what do you do when someone comes to you hoping for a positive reading and every card is negative?
I recently did a reading for someone who was at a crossroads in his life. The cards provided answers but I knew they weren’t the answers he was hoping for. I definitely found myself concentrating on the positive side of things. The reason for doing this was because the client had expressed at the beginning of the reading that he was terrified he’d get the death card or something scary. He was apprehensive about even getting a reading in the first place. I didn’t want to confirm his fears by telling him the bad news and so I sugar-coated slightly.
The question is though, what is sugar-coating? I’ve talked to a lot of people who visit psychics and tarot readers regularly who say that there’s nothing worse than sugar-coating. When I discussed this more with them I came to the conclusion that in their opinion, sugar-coating a tarot reading isn’t just a case of focusing more on the positives, it is a case of completely ignoring the negatives.
I don’t believe there are many psychics and tarot readers who ignore the negative side of a reading but a reader who concentrates on the hope that comes from a reading rather than the despair may be classed as a sugar-coater. I think this is a wrong assumption for many reasons. Firstly in every negative card, there is hope in there and in some cases a positive interpretation. The Death card is an obvious example. It can mean a bad change, the end of something good but more often than not it can represent the end of an old way of life and the beginning of a better one. It isn’t sugar-coating to tell the client what the cards really say, and there is always hope somewhere or lessons to be learned to achieve a positive outcome. In life there’s a balance of bad and good and the same goes for any tarot spread.
The second point I want to mention is that a reader’s approach is very important. Most psychics, mediums and tarot readers are compassionate and empathic, they want to help people and guide them. They are rarely blunt and negative because they don’t want to hurt the client, they want to assist the client in whatever way they can. If a tarot reader said “Oh we’ve got the Tower and The Death card, yeah your life is ruined, if I were you I’d just give up trying” then the client would be very upset and the tarot reader would technically be lying because getting those two cards have many different interpretations. Someone shouldn’t be told to give up on life since the tarot should offer guidance to move past the negatives.
The key is to balance the reading, if it’s a bad spread then there is nothing wrong with telling the client the positive side of it, as long as you also mention why it’s a negative reading. A tarot reading should help to guide someone and so a negative reading isn’t even necessarily bad. Depending on the nature of the question asked by the querent, a negative spread could indicate past difficulties and detrimental patterns that the client must learn from.
Sometimes it is down to someone’s personal preferences. When I’m unwell, I want someone to tell me I’m going to be alright. I don’t want someone to say ‘Yep sounds like a brain tumour’ when I meet someone who says ‘I say it as it is, if I don’t like you I’ll tell you’ I instantly think that person is probably not very nice whereas some people prefer someone like that who is brutally honest. If you’re ever unsure, ask what the client wants from the reading, try to figure out if they can handle straightforward negative answers or if they’re the kind of person who needs some hope too.
You can never please everyone! some people will get angry with a negative reading, others will appreciate the honesty. Some will claim you were sugar-coating and others will be glad to get some hope out of a negative reading. Everyone is different and it’s down to the reader to choose how they deliver the reading.