shorter Spreads and
Example Readings

There are many different tarot spreads, which vary by topic or focus and by the number of cards used. We choose a spread based on how the information it provides fits the issue or question we have. 

One-Card Spreads

One-card spreadscan be used when we want a quick idea about an issue or situation. Pulling one card can help us realize another aspect of our issue we may not have seen before, or give us a focus for our day.


Here’s an example: I’m in a stalemate with my partner about how to spend our COVID stimulus check; I want to spend it and he wants to save it.


I pull the 10 of Skills card:

  • Suit: Skills = possessions and the material body

  • Number: 10 = excess

  • Image: a figure having a tantrum; reversed = immature energy is opening toward maturity

  • Keyword: Maturity

  • Meaning: endurance and stability; concerned with the long-term; being with others without dependency; taking part in traditions with those we love


The story of this reading might be that the best decision at this time would be saving the check – this will allow us to have a sense of financial stability.

Three-Card Spreads

Short three-card spreadsprovide a snapshot of an issue: past/present/future; mind/body/spirit; situation/obstacle/ advice. The cards can be laid out like this:


Here’s an example of a three-card spread where I’m wondering whether I should look for a new career:



  • Card #1 = 10 of Vitality

    • ​​Position Signficance: the past

    • Suit: Vitality = creativity and will

    • Number: 10 = excess

    • Image: a figure looking at a tiny figure through a magnifying glass

    • Keyword: Perfectionism

    • Card Meaning: burdened and overextended; feeling trapped; refusing to say "no;"

    • too much energy used to make things perfect

  • Card #2 = 5 of Struggle reversed

    • ​Position Significance: the present

    • Suit: Struggle = thinking and reason

    • Number: 5 = with effort

    • Image: a figure pointing at another figure who's drawing back; reversed = blaming energy is opening toward making amends 

    • Reversed Keyword: Amends

    • Reversed Card Meaning: beginning to move past defeat; reconciling; letting it go; feeling sorrow after a failure

  • Card #3 = Affinity Feeler

    • ​Position Significance: the future

    • Suit: Affinity = emotions and love

    • Number: Feeler = inward-focused; inner knowing; feminine energy

    • Image: a figure hugging a large heart to itself

    • Keyword: Empathy

    • Card Meaning: feeling compassion for ourselves and the others we relate to; emotional authenticity; intuitive and sensitive; emotionally secure


So the story of this reading might be that looking for a new career might help me decide to move on (card #2) from the struggles I’ve been having in my current job (card #1), toward a future profession where I can feel more emotionally satisfied (card #3).