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Do you know when to listen and when to speak up? This tarot spread can help.

The art of listening - to yourself and to the people in your life - is one of the most important skills to hone as a human being. This spread, which focuses on where you need to listen, where you need to reflect, where you need to speak, and where you need to disengage can help you sharpen your listening skills and identify when you do - and don't - need to shut up.

Today's spread is inspired by Julia Cameron’s The Listening Path. Cameron is the author of The Artist's Way - a brilliant text but one I’ve always found a bit unwieldy. The Listening Path, a six week program, boils The Artist's Way to its bare bones, and focuses on how listening - to others, to the self, and to the world - is the cornerstone of creativity. It’s as brilliant as it is simple, and I highly recommend it.

In this spread and collective reading, we’re looking at where in our lives we need to listen more, Where we need to be heard more, which lessons we need to listen to and reflect on more deeply, and where listening, speaking, or reflecting are actually futile saps on our energy.

the key theme

  • across the board, our personal power is crying out to be acknowledged, listened to, and learned from.

  • mess isn’t our enemy, but people and environments who delight in drawing us into their mess aren’t where our attention will prove most useful.

the cards

listen | queen of wands

We’re called this week to listen to the queen of wands, and this means two things. first, we need to listen to our own passions and pleasures - to indulge ourselves in the niggles towards delight. to bask in the glow of our personal sun.

We’re also invited to listen deeply to others’ passions, and celebrate them. I’ve recently joined a writing circle that makes me feel both like a Queen of Wands, and like I’m surrounded by other Queens of Wands too. It’s magical, and creating an experience where we honor others by listening to them, and that can allow us to be honored and listened to, too.

speak | eight of swords

We deserve to be heard when we feel cornered/trapped/in any situation which isn’t working for us. But if we want our problems to be heard, we have to speak up - and we have to speak up clearly.

Are there areas in your life where you’re avoiding standing up for yourself? Eight of Swords warns that until we fight our own corner, we will stay stuck.

reflect | the tower

Tough experiences we’ve been through in the past are asking us to see them in a new light and apply the lessons we learned from them to our current situations.

Whether those lessons are here to help us avoid future issues, or heal from recent ones, the card in this position asks us to sit with our past and present pains to better understand what we’ve been through and how to get through the present.

disengage | knight of swords, reversed

Knight of Swords reversed here represents a relationship or a situation in which we’re being forced to move at someone else’s pace or meet someone else’s unrealistic demands.

if you’ve got a person or group of people in your life who steamroll over your comfort, boundaries, requests, whatever - if you’ve already tried the eight of swords standing up for yourself route - it’s time to walk away. not everyone is worth listening too, and there’s a lot of strength in deciding who you won’t give your attention to.

journal prompts

  • who are the queens of wands in your life? how can you listen to and learn from them to indulge your own passions and pleasures?

  • on the other end of the spectrum, who are the reversed knights of swords in your life? how can you rethink what you do and don’t owe them when it comes to your attention?

  • what past “tower” moments could offer helpful lessons to review now? think back to a time when you went through something difficult and look at the situation anew. what strengths are you surprised to see in your past self?

the spread

Thanks for reading, pals! i hope this collective reading resonated, and that the spread below is useful to you (pro tip: if you don’t have tarot cards, here’s how you can still make use of the spread using your spotify account).

Feel free to comment here, DM me on instagram, or email me at - always want to know what you think of this spread and the reading, plus I’m here for any tarot/creativity related thoughts!


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