Tips

My tarot study journal

Whether you’re new to tarot or well seasoned, you’ve probably heard others recommend keeping a tarot journal over and over again. I’m part of that group as well! Keeping a tarot journal is one of the most effective ways in learning tarot, connecting with the cards, and even just getting familiar with a new deck. For most of my own tarot practice I’ve kept a tarot journal and it wasn’t until fairly recently that I discovered a tarot journaling system that works for me! While I do sway back and forth between this journaling system and my composition books, I love using this journal for most of my study!

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Deck: Mystic Mondays

Every journal I have ever kept always has some collage pages or images that I glue down that inspire me. I collage everything! Above is the inside front cover of my tarot study journal (the one I’m discussing today on the blog) and I’m still adding to these pages as time goes on.

what I use

Most of my journals in general are cheap composition books, but one tarot journal is a Moleskine Professional Notebook and have found it works really well for tarot journaling and study! This journal features an index up front, numbered pages, tear out list paper in the back, as well as a folder/pocket combo on the inside back cover. What I like most about this journal in general is the page layout of the journaling pages, this is where the magic happens!

Each page has a space that can be utilized for not just a daily reading but also for card study. I break down these sections on each page for my daily tarot draw like so…

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Draw a card

Each morning I do a daily single card draw. At the top of the page I fill in the date and I write down the moon phase with current astrological sign. I use a full moon stamp for my moon and just fill in the phase, it’s easier and quicker that way. I’ll also write the card name at the top of the page and note the deck I used. Writing down the deck you use is a good way to keep track of why you read a certain card the way you did, sometimes the same card can read differently from deck to deck.

KEYWORDS

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Next, I move on over to the list column on the side. I start writing down the keywords that I have for the card drawn starting with any keywords that I personally associate to the card, once I run out of my personal keyword associations I’ll pull up an app, book, or online reference to find more keywords that resonate with me. Some card keywords don’t feel right so I don’t use them, I only use keywords that I resonate with. My keywords may differ than your keywords and that’s totally ok!

If I pulled the same card earlier in my journal, I’ll write down “see page…” to note the other page this card was referenced. Sometimes I used different keywords and it gives me a nice way to follow the card over time, it’s like creating a “family tree” for this card. It just seems really repetitive to write down the keywords every time you pull the same card, especially if it’s a card that keeps popping up for you.

MY OWN THOUGHTS + INTERPRETATION

Then, I’ll move over to the center note area and this is where I write down a paragraph or so of what this card means to me at this very moment, like a journal prompt. This isn’t the interpretation per se, this is more of how I associate to this card, a memory attached to this card, etc. It’s the “exploration” area for this card. Maybe some of the colors in the card remind me of an event or a symbol in the card catches my attention, I’ll write all that down.

Once I finish writing that, I then jump to the top of the page and write down my rough interpretation of the card for the day. If you follow my daily readings on Instagram, this is where I write down the starting point of those readings.

MY DAY

Lastly, I write “My Day” in the center section, just under my personal journaling of the card. This is where I write down little things in my day that remind me of the card I drew that morning. Maybe I pulled the 2 of Coins and I found myself reorganizing my planner that day (prioritizing) or maybe I found two quarters on the sidewalk (literally, 2 coins), and so on. If I carry my journal with me, I tend to write down a lot more notes about my day and that card drawn. Otherwise, I just take a moment in the evening to pinpoint anything that may have happened or appeared in my day that reminded me of the card I drew.

This little exercise in general really helps to expand your interpretations of the cards by associating them to your day to day life. So if a certain card shows up in a reading, you may recall a specific memory that could be applied to the reading or help trigger a new interpretation.

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That’s it! That is how I use my daily journal for both journaling and tarot study. It’s a nice way to have all your notes, thoughts, personal associations, and memories all in one place that is well organized and easy to carry with you.

I journal so much more in this journal than in previous journals, something about looking at a totally blank page never did it for me. I would often skip writing things down or never get around to noting down my tarot readings and daily pulls. Having a page that is broken up into more “fill in” friendly spaces is inspiring and fun!

I hope this little post was helpful and inspires you in your own tarot practice!

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Do you keep a tarot journal?
Let me know what works for you, I’m always looking for new ideas!

5 Ways You Can Connect More to Your Cards

I get asked often "what tips do you have for connecting more with tarot cards?" so I decided to compile my own favorite ways! I'm always looking to dig deeper in my tarot practice, some come by accident even.

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1. Playing Card Cartomancy

While yes, you can read playing cards like tarot cards, but this isn't the cartomancy I'm talking about. I took an online course called "Your Future is in the Cards" taught by Kristen of Over the Moon Oracle Cards. It is basically a how-to for reading playing cards in its own system. Cartomancy has truly changed how I view tarot and how I break down a reading.

By learning how to read playing cards, it really gave me a new layer to look at with my tarot cards. It helped me see card positions differently, ways the court cards interact, and extra little things to look for in a reading like numerical themes. Not to mention, cartomancy is so much fun - it's like being a detective and following the bread crumbs.

 

2. Doodles

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Another online course I took through Kristen was called "Doodles for Divination". I'm actually wrapping this course up now! This is Kristen's recent course that really packs a punch and has been extremely eye opening! It's like handwriting analysis meets sketchbook. The course has me looking at symbolism and art in a whole new light, especially with indie decks. I've been picking apart the cards in my decks, researching every little nuances I find. It's brought new layers to my cards and has me looking for little symbols everywhere I go. I'm obsessed!

I've always been a huge believer that everything is a sign and everything has a message. This course really confirmed that for me, it's crazy how our mind speaks and shows up to the plate.

 

3. Exploring

Another thing that can be easily done is just simply explore around your city, backyard, house, anywhere! Pull a card in the morning, not for guidance or anything, but just pull a card and keep it on your mind throughout the day. Look for that card in your day, while you're at the store, sitting in traffic, anywhere. Say that you pulled the 2 of Coins - look for double number two's, twin circles, anything being balance or unbalanced, maybe you found two quarters in your bag, etc. You can look for imagery that reminds you of the card itself and situations you come across. It's a great way to build up your own relationship with the cards that is unique to you.

 

4. Marseille

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Anytime I dive into my Marseille studies, it always adds more depth to my other tarot readings. Marseille has such a neat language it speaks, it's much more fluid than it appears. While yes, numerology plays a big role in Marseille but it's more about how the imagery flows for me. The way the courts are looking and acting towards the other cards. The opening and closing of vines, flowers and swords. Even if you learn just a little about the Marseille system, I really think it will for sure add an extra boost to your RWS deck readings! If anything it will spark some inspiration to work with.

If you like documentaries, I highly recommend watching Tarotology by Enrique Enriquez. It is an absolutely an amazing film! I've watched it at least 4 times already and will watch it again. I also recommend the book "Tarot on Earth" by Tom Benjamin, it's written like a workbook for learning Marseille and it's great fun!

 

5. Journal Prompting

One thing I love to do, especially when my mind is drawing a blank, is to use tarot cards to prompt my journaling. I'll pull 3-5 cards and write about 1/2 page per card, I do this often with my morning pages where I journal 3 pages each morning and I just can't think of anything else to write. Morning pages are like a brain dump for right after you get up each morning, doing them alone really helps me think more clearly during the day and reducing my stress!

So for example, say the first card I flip over is the 6 of Cups, I'll journal about a good memory or something. Then the next card, say it's the Emperor, I'll write about my dad. Then the next, say it's The Fool, I'll write about an adventure I took... and so on. Doing this really helps me add more personal layers to the card meanings and associations. It gets my mind going and triggers my creative juices.

Well, I hope these spark some interest in you and help add some new layers to your tarot practice! Be sure to let me know in the comments if you try any of these and if that help!

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What things help you connect more to the cards?
Share in the comments!