Tarot and Mental Health: Change and Trauma
Discover how tarot can help us navigate change with Tarot Reader and Astrologer Maisy Bristol
Stable mental health is about a balance between two things: the force of outside circumstances such as trauma, and our response to it. The greater the balance, the more stable we feel. The problem with trauma is this: in an effort to stay ‘safe’, we end up shutting out our pain—which inevitably ruins any chance of healing from it.
Have you ever looked back on something and physically grimaced? To move on, you shake your head and never think of it again. The very act of recounting that painful memory is instinctively met with reluctantly shutting it out.
Without an extra support ‘tool’, whether that be a therapist, a best friend, or tarot cards, it is almost impossible for us to access intimate wounds on our own.
External forms of support such as therapy may be more difficult for some people because, in most cases, you’re actually allowing others to see your pain as well. Tarot cards can act as that third party support, but also allow you to stay within an intimate, one-on-one setting with yourself.
For that reason, tarot is a pretty special tool because it encourages self-healing.
It can even be used without fully understanding it. As long as you have an open mind, the guidebook your deck comes with, and an ability to notice symbols that resonate with you personally, you’ll be able to comprehend as you go (which may even bring more powerful insights!)
Here are a few ways to use tarot to heal from change and trauma.
How to Use Tarot to Heal from Change
I define ‘change’ as something that marks major upheaval in our life. Examples of this might be healing from a broken heart, having to move unexpectedly, overcoming a debilitating injury, losing a job, and so on.
What tarot can do in this situation is help you see the brighter side of things. In a world of pain and hurt, it can be hard to see what lessons we can take from a situation or even how our lives might be better off moving forward. Here are some questions you can ask tarot to help navigate major changes:
- What lesson is this teaching me?
- What personal quality should I lean on to help me through this?
- Who should I contact to help me through this?
- What is the silver lining here?
- What opportunity is this opening for me?
- What will this help me gain (such as “love” or “money”)?
- What will this situation look like in one month? Six months? 12 months?
- Why is this for my greater good?
- What advice can you give me?
How to Use Tarot to Heal from Trauma
I define ‘trauma’ as something that takes a deep-seated root in our soul. It never leaves us, but it can heal over time. Examples of this might be: experiencing abuse, losing a loved one, living debt-ridden, being shamed for your sexuality or appearance, and the like.
For situations like these, trying to find “the brighter side” is as impossible as it is insulting. What tarot can do in these sensitive situations is help you understand the big-picture situation, the perspectives of others involved, and the lessons you’re learning. Here are a few questions you can ask tarot to help heal from trauma:
- What have I learned about myself?
- How do I release?
- What burdens am I carrying?
- How has this impacted my self-image/self-esteem?
- How can I boost my self-image/self-esteem?
- What’s one thing that will never be the same for me?
- What new insecurity have I gained?
- What might help me right now?
- How does [Person B] feel?
- What fear is [Person B] facing?
- What advice can you give me?
How to Get Started With Tarot
When you first pick up those 78 cards, the very weight of the tarot deck can be intimidating. But I promise, learning tarot can be easy if you stay on top of things!
If you’re hoping to learn, here are a few things you can do:
- Head to your local bookstore and buy all the books you can
- Follow modern day tarot readers on social media
- Listen to tarot podcasts. Look up tarot articles
- Read, read, and read some more. Filling your head with knowledge will help you decipher what tarot means for you. Tarot is all about personal interpretations!
- Practice daily. Pull a daily card for yourself
- For a more structured learning environment, there are many informational YouTube videos or online classes you can take (including my tarot course!)
The main thing to remember is this: Above all, tarot cards are about your intuition. If you see something in the card that resonates with your situation, run with it. That’s where the real healing begins.