Author: Ashley Bunn
Just like there’s no right or wrong way to reflect or create, there’s no right or wrong way to keep a Tarot journal. With anything Tarot, it starts with intuition.
My introduction to Tarot was at my first astrology reading. The card that my astrologer pulled was The Star. She referenced it during my reading, and I found myself drawn and connected to this card, analysis, and outlet for reflection.
She kept referencing the idea of hope that is often seen in this card, and I held onto that hope as I began my own journey into Tarot and intuitive reading. I received my first Tarot deck shortly after that reading.
At first, I was hesitant to use the cards. How do I do this? Do I need to be trained? What if I read the Tarot cards wrong?
I began pulling a card a day and reading different interpretations, and then journaling on my own connections to my life and thoughts. This helped me get to know the cards.
I created a chart with the cards and their various interpretations. This process helped me trust my own intuition and readings.
This practice slowly evolved, and over the years, I’ve been able to draw connections between various cards, readings, and circumstances in my life.
This was where I started. Again, there is no wrong way to keep a Tarot journal, or use the cards for reflection. While there is history behind the cards and their interpretations, your personal connection and interpretation is also an important part of the process.
Ways to Begin A Tarot Journal
Pulling a card every day and taking time to journal and reflect on its meaning and any thoughts that arise for you personally is an easy way to start a Tarot Journal.
I preferred to use my Writual Tarot journal in the morning. My medium is written reflection. I know others who prefer to pull cards in the evening, at the beginning of the week or month, or in relation to the cycles of the moon.
Starting with one card each day is a great way to get to know and understand the cards, so it might be a great jumping off point (think The Fool…wink!).
Listen to yourself, and you will find your own personal schedule and preferences. I suggest taking a moment to sit with the card and Tarot journal. Think about what images and symbols you see in the card, what thoughts and emotions arise, and how you could connect this to your life before you look to outside sources for interpretation.
You may be surprised to find similarities and parallels between your reading and professional interpretations and historical meanings of the card. After your reflection, you can add in some notes from other sources that will aid in your reading and understanding of the card.
If writing isn’t your preferred method of reflection, feel empowered to use any creative outlet or organizational technique to work with the cards. You could draw or collage in response to the card and your feelings — you could even start to create your own versions of the cards!
For example, as a poet, I have been working on creating poems for each card. This is a way I can use my natural form of expression to deepen my relationship to the cards. Others like to approach their Tarot journal in a more pragmatic or organized way.
You could make a chart or list to contain your reflections, card meanings, or other connections to things like astrology, crystals, the chakras, etc.
Let yourself explore, and you’ll discover what serves you most. This process can change as your circumstances and experience with the Tarot develop.
Getting to Know The Tarot Cards
In my own Tarot journaling, I find that I will pull the same cards over and over again during a certain time in my life. The more you interact with a Tarot card, the more your relationship will deepen and broaden with that particular card.
Using your Tarot journal, you can go back and follow the card’s development in your life, and the myriad meanings and interpretations it has held for you.
It’s powerful to go back through your Tarot journal and see cards resurfacing over and over and to track how it has played out in your experience.
There are certain cards you will be drawn to (like The Star for me). While all the cards are important, there are some cards that will hold significance for you at various times of your life.
Again, find your own connections and interpretations of the cards. Let it be okay if you draw a different interpretation from these cards than what’s popular.
The wonderful thing about Tarot is that it is both individual and communal. It allows us to reflect personally and to find collective meaning and growth.
Eventually, you might start to feel connected with the cards and trusting enough of your own intuition to offer Tarot readings for others!
What You Can Keep in Your Tarot Journal
- Meanings of the cards - your own interpretations and popular interpretations.
- Significant cards - Track which cards appear often or cards that you feel particularly drawn or attached to. You can see how this meaning shifts and deepens over time.
- Readings - Readings you have done for yourself or others, or readings others have done for you.
- Spreads - Keep track of the different spreads you try or learn about. You can follow different Tarot pages and readers to find specific readings for the time of the year, the phases of the moon, other aspects of astrology, or for different life events (marriage, birthdays, deaths, etc.).
- Decks - You can keep track of your different Tarot decks, the artists who created them, or how the cards might have a different focus depending on the deck you are using.
- Resources - Tarot resources or individuals that inspire or support you in your work.
- Anything - You really can use your Tarot journal for anything. Again, there is no wrong way to keep a Tarot journal.
How Will You Start Your Tarot Journey?
There's no rulebook for how to keep a Tarot journal. Trust your intuition, and enjoy the process!
To get started, you'll need a Tarot journal. I prefer the physical Writual Tarot journal, but there are also great digital options to choose from.
About the Author
Ashley Howell Bunn is a yoga guide and intuitive healer in Denver, CO. She's pursuing her MFA in poetry through Regis University, where she's also a graduate writing consultant. Ashley is a poet whose work has appeared in various literary journals. Her healing practices combine yoga, Yoga Nidra, Reiki/ healing touch, Tarot, and written reflection. When she isn’t writing, she guides and practices yoga and runs a small personal business centered around healing. She lives in Denver, CO with her partner and child. You can find more information or contact Ashley at www.howellandheal.com.