Intuitive Tuesday: 5 Bad Tarot Habits & How to Fix Them

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We all have them. Those little habits that creep into your tarot practice seem innocent enough at first, but over time they can keep you from getting the most out of your readings. Even if you only read for yourself it’s crucial that you are getting as clear a signal from the cosmos as you can.

Why? Because intuition is power, and you deserve to feel powerful.

Over the years, I’ve seen a few issues come up again and again in my personal practice. Here are my repeat offenders, and how I fix them:

1. Not writing it down.

Do you write down your tarot readings? If you don’t, start today. Grab a sheet of paper and scrawl out the results of your reading, as well as your thoughts in that moment. Sometimes the meaning of a spread is instantly recognizable, but other times it takes longer to unfurl. I know you’re busy, but it’s worth it to give yourself the opportunity to see how the meaning opens up over time. If nothing else, it’s a wonderful journal of sorts.

Not into pen and paper? Try using your iPhone to snap a picture of the spread to jog your memory, or log the results in Evernote (two of my favorite methods!).

2. Asking the same question over and over again.

If the cards you pulled weren’t what you were expecting, it’s natural to want additional information… or a complete do-over. Still, I’ve found that the first reading you do on a topic is the most accurate. Trust that the cards and your own intuition are giving you the messages you need to hear, even if it’s tough love.

Also, be very conscious when using clarifiers. Do you really need to pull another card, or is the answer already there beneath a few more layers?

An aside: if you’re following #1, you won’t need to ask multiple times. You’ll have a beautifully written answer to refer back to whenever you need it.

3. Assuming the best.

I have a tricky habit of trying to create positive interpretations for cards whose message may be less than positive. Don’t do this. If sadness is there, feel the sadness. Don’t lie to yourself, even if it’s tempting.

Instead, try creating an “action step” for every difficult card you pull. Sometimes, I’ll even pull another card and place it underneath the tough one to represent what I can do to heal the situation.

Make sure you consider all meanings for traditionally celebratory cards too. Yes, 3 of Cups can be a good party, but it can also represent love triangles or escapism. Be open to all possibilities, and let your intuition guide you to the answer.

4. Assuming the worst.

That said, sometimes historically bad cards can have a good spin. 10 of Swords looks scary, but it can also be a sign that the worst is over and better days lie ahead. Don’t let your fear of a card get in the way of a positive message.

5. Not paying attention to how you feel.

The little white book can only get you so far. If you only take one thing away from this post, let it be this: the only way to know if the 3 of Cups is pointing to a night on the town or numbing out is the way you feel when you first see it. Do you feel lit up, excited, and comforted? Or, do you feel sleazy, like you need to take a shower? Your first instinct is nearly always right. Listen close.

Here’s to a fresh, clean tarot practice!

xx

PS- Do you have a bad tarot habit, and if so, how will you break it? Share yours in the comments down below!

Magical Miscellany: 12.15.2014

Christmas tree

The holidays are nearly here! The tree is up, but I’ve still got to wrap the gifts. Are you ready for winter solstice?

This thoughtful post from Laura Simms of Create as Folk is a must-read if you’re choosing a word of the year.

On Brain Pickings, a surgeon talks about the crossroads between our bodies and our inner lives and what really matters in the end.

Important words from Esmé Wang on Ferguson, Eric Garner, and what it means to feel safe.

What if self-reflection is actually hurting you more than it’s helping?

Lena Dunham’s Buzzfeed op-ed on why she chose to speak out about her sexual assault is timely, brave, and much needed. Also, I can’t recommend her book highly enough!

On treating your lover like an altar, and why love is a spiritual practice.

Want to treat yourself this Christmas? Jen Cintron, the beautiful soul + megawatt talent behind Intuitive Insights Tarot, is creating custom malas. She’ll select beads to help with your unique intention, and charge the mala under the full moon. (I met her at the Soulful Proprietor retreat, and she has the most lovely vibe! Trust me, you’re gonna love these.)

xx

Intuitive Tuesday: Divining Your Goals For 2015

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It’s that time again, people! The air is decidedly chilly and dry, spicy scented candles warm up our homes, tree lights twinkle, and every parking lot is packed with ravenous shoppers (much to my chagrin).

It may be easy to get lost in the hustle and bustle of the holidays, or to climb into a blanket cocoon and not emerge until the new year. However, you’d be missing out on one of the most rewarding activities of the season: goal setting.

I recognize that more work may not be what you had in mind for your winter holiday, but remember that Christmas actually corresponds to the ancient pagan festival of Saturnalia. That’s right, the feast of Saturn, ruler of hard work and discipline! And it’s on the same day that the sun moves into ambitious Capricorn, which is also ruled by Saturn. There couldn’t be a better time for planning, setting up new structures, and defining your rituals for the upcoming year.

My winter solstice gift to you is this: I’m sharing the method I use for choosing goals and planning for the year ahead. I’ve used it for three years and counting and it works, I promise!

Don’t worry, you don’t have to know exactly what you want your goals to be in advance! As a matter of fact, it may be helpful to go into this process with an open mind.

Ready? Grab your favorite journal and a laptop, and let’s hit it!

Step 1: Astrology

You’ll need a copy of your birth chart to do this part. I recommend grabbing one from Astro.com. Use Chart Drawing Ascendant option.

Next, go back to the front page. You’ll want to scroll down slightly and look at the Current Planets in the right sidebar. For now, we’re only considering the large, slow moving planets: Jupiter, Saturn, Uranus, Neptune, and Pluto. Write down the exact degree of each planet at that moment, and find where those degrees are in your birth chart. Whatever house each of those planets is transiting is an area where you’ll want to focus your mojo in the coming year.

Here are a few key words and phrases for each planet to get your started:

Jupiter- expansion, acceleration, good luck, where you have a chance to grow

Saturn- hard work, ambition, structure, where you can step up your game

Uranus- revolution, big changes, innovation, where you can shake things up

Neptune- dreams, spirituality, magic, where you connect on a soul level

Pluto- karma, transformation, rebirth, where you can rise from the ashes

Once you’ve taken note of where each planet is transiting in relation to your birth chart, take some time to brainstorm how you can make the most of those vibes. For example, if Jupiter is passing through your 2nd house of value, you may want to focus on growing your income and enjoying the fruits of your labor. Or, if Neptune is transiting your 3rd house of communication, you could keep a dream journal throughout the year or focus on writing as a spiritual practice.

Let your mind run wild with this part. Remember, anything is possible!

Still with me? Great!

Step 2: Tarot

Once you’ve gotten a solid list of goal ideas (there’s no amount too large or small, but I usually end up with around 5), grab your favorite tarot deck. For each goal, ask

“What will be the likely outcome of me pursuing this goal?”

Alternately, you could ask, “What will I learn from pursuing this goal?”, or “How will this goal help me grow?”

Pull 3 cards for each goal, and make sure you write down your answers. Sit with them. Let them percolate. Sometimes the answers are clear right away, but other times it takes a while to suss it out.

Once you’ve completed this step, use your tarot reading to choose which goals you think will be most beneficial for you over the coming year.

Step 3: Gut Check

After consulting the stars and cards, its important to ask yourself, “Does this feel right?”. Only you know what’s best for you. If something looks good on paper but feels off, chances are good that it is. Choose goals that make you feel lit up and full of excitement, and you’ll be on your way to a beautiful year.

I’ll leave you with one of my favorite blessings from my beloved Briana Saussy:

May you know the right way to go with wisdom and discernment.

Happy almost new year! XX

Image credit: Death to Stock Photography

Magical Miscellany: 12.08.2014

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Another one from my Charleston trip last month. That light was so perfect!

Susannah Conway’s Unravelling Your Year Ahead is my favorite way to wind down the past year and prepare for the new. There’s some serious magic in that PDF. Don’t miss it.

Psst… I’ll be using this hot chocolate recipe to make Christmas gifts for my colleagues and friends. Bonus: it’s dairy free!

I’ve never used a Filofax, but I think it may be time to start. If it’s got Gala Darling and Michelle Nikolaisen of Bombchelle talking, then it’s good enough for me!

Choosing your reading material based on your Mercury sign is absolute genius. It is the planet of communication, after all!

How to make a good first impression online.

25 gift ideas for bloggers and biz ladies.

These four words could revolutionize the way you interact with others: “I’d prefer not to.”

Confession: I’m a huge James Bond fan. I could hardly contain my excitement when they announced the cast and title for the new Bond film last week! And Lea Seydoux as a Bond girl? Yes, please.

COMING SOON: Elemental Astrology

It all started with this:

So many of you have told me that you want to learn astrology, but you don’t know where to start. You want to know what all the lovely symbols on your birth chart mean, but feel like it’s just so… complicated.

I’m creating something just for you.

On February 25, 2015, I’m launching Elemental Astrology, a comprehensive guide to living by the rhythm of the stars.

It’s a downloadable e-course, so you can work at your own pace. There are eight delicious modules, each of which comes with a PDF lesson + workbook that you can print out and scribble in as you move through the course. There will also be an audio recording of each lesson so you can listen on the bus or from the comfort of your bed.

We’ll delve deep into the most elemental parts of reading a zodiac wheel (planets, signs, houses, aspects, oh my!) and planning by the stars. By the end, you’ll be able to read your natal chart like a pro. Eclipses and retrogrades won’t have anything on you.

Sound like your cup of tea? Click the button below to be notified when preorders start. Earlybirds will get secret goodies, so hop on the list now if you want in!

 
I can’t wait to take this journey with you.

Here’s to living by the stars! XX

Magical Miscellany: 11.30.2014

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I snapped this photo last week in beautiful Charleston, South Carolina. I’ve been to Paris, Milan, and London, and Charleston still charms me every time! There’s something magical about verandas and palm trees in November.

Not sure how to answer your loved ones when they ask what you do for a living? Sarah Morgan of XO Sarah shares 6 ways to explain self-employment to friends and family.

My girl Paige Zaferiou of Tarot and Tea is multitalented. Watch her rock a ukulele in this adorable video!

In soulful businesses like the sacred arts it’s important to connect with others on an emotional level, but keep in mind that  too much emotional appeal can hurt your credibility.

Mystic Medusa’s take on the astrology of delusional fans is fascinating.

What expenses are involved in being a professional tarot reader? My mentor Hilary Parry gives you the scoop.

I love Beth Maiden, the delightful tarot reader behind Little Red Tarot, and her fresh, vibrant approach to the very traditional divination system. Her post on reinterpreting The Hierophant is genius, and I’ll absolutely be using her holiday tarot spread.

I’m completely addicted to fragrance, but sometimes the language of perfumery can be a bit esoteric. This glossary of fragrance terms by Into the Gloss was just what I needed.

Sincerity Sunday: Things I Love

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Hello beautiful people! Here’s hoping you’ve recovered from your food coma by now and are enjoying some serious relaxation. In the spirit of the holidays, I wanted to share something fun and intimate with you. The items on this list make my life more efficient, beautiful, and just plain delightful. I hope they make yours delightful too!

I couldn’t live without my Longchamp Le Pliage tote bag. It’s enormous (not to mention waterproof!) and the handles are just the right size, so it’s perfect if you do a lot of traveling.

I gave up high heels over a year ago after having surgery on both feet. How? Frye boots. They’re sexy, comfortable, and look good with everything.

As you might imagine, I do a lot of writing. Poppin notebooks are my favorite. If you ask me they’re better than Moleskine, and you can’t beat their gorgeous range of colors.

Also, Pilot G-2 07 pens are the best, hands down.

I keep my Llewellyn’s Daily Planetary Guide with me at all times. Each day lists transits and Lady Luna’s movements with exact times, and there’s an ephemeris in the back.

I love my iPad Air. It’s small enough to fit in my bag without being too heavy, and the screen is being enough that I can use it for astrology readings or writing when I’m out and about.

I use Astro.com for all my astrology readings. Their Extended Chart Options page is the best astrology software I’ve ever used.

Naturally, I read a lot of blogs. Bloglovin puts them into one feed, so I don’t have to spend time going to each URL. It’s revolutionary. (Psst! You can follow The Midheaven there too.)

I also use Evernote to organize all my research for blogs posts and future projects. It syncs to all your devices, so it’s also handy for grocery lists and such. It’s the ADHD person’s dream.

I don’t eat dairy or eggs, so Lara bars are a life saver when I need breakfast or a snack on the fly. Oreos are dairy free too, so they’ve quickly become my favorite dessert!

Voluspa candles smell unbelievably luxurious. Baltic Amber and Bella Sucre are my current favorites.

The Morgan Greer Tarot is my go-to deck. I love the bright colors and straightforward images. I also adore the Cosmic Tarot. If you look closely, you’ll see little astrological symbols hidden on each card. If you’re learning the astrology behind tarot, this deck is a great place to start!

Confession: I’m a bit obsessed with perfume. Right now I have Tom Ford Velvet Orchid in high rotation. It’s warm, spicy, and very Scorpio.

After years of being platinum blonde, my hair needs lots of TLC. I love Organix hair care. Their Nourishing Coconut Milk Shampoo and Conditioner smell like cupcake frosting and leave your hair feeling weightless and soft. Also, the Renewing Morrocan Argan Oil is my secret weapon.

Ponds Cold Cream is my skincare regimen. All you need is a washcloth and this stuff to take off your makeup, cleanse, and moisturize. The fact that it smells like roses is just icing on the cake.

I’ve recently fallen in love with Maybelline Full N’ Soft mascara. Full disclosure: I found this gem on Into the Gloss. It uses Vitamin E to soften the lashes instead of making them crunchy like other mascaras do.

There’s no feeling better than playing a fresh set of guitar strings. I prefer Ernie Ball Super Slinky 9 gauge.

XX

Intuitive Tuesday: What Is Intuition?

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If you’re a modern mystic, seeker, or just spiritually curious, you’ve probably encountered the word “intuition”.

Pinterest platitudes declaring “follow your intuition” blanket everyone’s boards, and these days having a go-to intuitive reader is as essential as having an amazing stylist.

But what is intuition, anyway?

Merriam Webster defines intuition as follows:

intuition /int(y)o͞oˈiSH(ə)n/ (noun)- a natural ability or power that makes it possible to know something without any proof or evidence : a feeling that guides a person to act a certain way without fully understanding why

Simply put, intuition is an “instinct”, or a “gut feeling”.

It’s the feeling that whispers “Hell no!” when you’re faced with a something that looks good on paper, but makes your stomach turn when you think about it.

It’s the feeling that subtly warns you not to turn the corner there, so you take a different route to work instead. Later that evening, you find out a crime was committed on that street.

It’s the feeling that nudges you to go on that weekend retreat, even though you’re an introvert. You go, and you meet a brand new soul sister.

It’s the feeling that shouts “Hell yes!” against all odds, a deep, inner knowing that your big idea is going to be the one that propels you into the entrepreneurial stratosphere.

None of these things are absolute certainties, but in each situation, you know the truth beyond the shadow of a doubt. That’s intuition.

Despite what certain “intuitives” may say, intuition is not a special gift available to a gifted few.

You have intuition already. You just have to learn how to use it.

Many people use tools like tarot cards and astrology charts to access their intuition, but they aren’t necessary. All that’s required is a quiet mind and an open heart.

It can be as simple as closing your eyes and asking yourself, “How does this situation really make me feel?”

The answer might surprise you.

This week, I’d love for you to try using this question to tap into your intuition. You can do it in your office, at your favorite café, or in the comfort of your bedroom. Take a few minutes to get in touch with how you feel about your current situation. How does it feel in your body? What thoughts come into your mind? Even a passing thought can be a useful clue.

Here’s to your intuition!

XX

PS- If you have any questions or topics you’d like to see me write about on Intuitive Tuesday, send me a note on my Contact page and we’ll chat!

Image credit: Death to Stock Photography

 

 

Magical Miscellany: 11.24.2014

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Taken just outside my office last week. The leaves + sunset were even more radiant in person!

Confession: I’ve developed a serious blog crush on Kelly-Ann Maddox of The Four Queens. Her posts for Global Entrepreneurship Week were delicious, thoughtful, and damn useful, especially this one on troubleshooting 10 common dilemmas for spiritual biz owners.

Paige Zaferiou of Tarot and Tea has a secret weapon for combating depression.

You teach people how to treat you.

I love these 8 ways to invoke your muse from Happy Fish Tarot. (She’s also quickly becoming one of my favorite tarot bloggers!)

These anti-business-guru tips from Theresa Reed of The Tarot Lady are much needed in the entrepreneurial world. Always question the authorities.

Briana Saussy is a my go-to lady for all things magical. Her instructions on how to write a petition are simple + potent.

Are you caught in a habit loop?

What do you do when someone else has your brilliant idea? Hey Shenee has you covered.

Magical Miscellany: 11.16.2014

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I took this picture very early in the morning en route to the Soulful Proprietor retreat. What an exquisite sunrise!

Quitting your job? Don’t be dumb.

The human tragedy, according to Sylvia Plath. (I adore this quote.)

Full disclosure: this piece by Alexandra Franzen on the power of words and true love made me misty. You’ve been warned.

This list of cultural icons and their favorite books is intriguing.

Astrology can be so damn sexist.

Buy experiences, not things.

PS- Don’t forget to stop by Instagram and check out #StarsAndCards for an inside look at the astrology behind tarot!

XX