a difficult conversation

Tarot Spread for Difficult Conversations

Last Updated: October 26, 2022

We all know difficult conversations are difficult for a reason. They have the potential to cause upset, pain and conflict. We all have them from time to time – with our loved ones, colleagues or clients. No matter how well we prepare, there’s always an element of risk involved. Will the other person understand where we’re coming from? Will they get defensive and shut down? Or worse, will the conversation turn into a full-blown argument? However, if we don’t address them they will only continue to fester and grow. 

In this tarot spread, we will look at the energy we need before going into these difficult discussions, what boundaries we need to set and how best to communicate effectively with difficult people.

Table of Contents

Self Care before the conversation

Before we even have to go into this situation of a difficult chat, we need to make sure that our cup is full. This means taking care of ourselves emotionally and physically. We need to be in a good headspace before we can even hope to deal with someone else’s difficult energy. This might look like taking some time out for yourself, doing some relaxation exercises or reaching out to your support network. If we go in when we don’t have the energy to ensure this is a constructive conversation, then you’re actually doing yourself a disservice by trying to set it up when you’re not ready yourself.

Difficult conversation tarot spread layout & questions to ask

How tarot can help in this circumstance is by giving you some guidance and clarity as to what you need to do. It can help to provide some confidence in handling the situation and also give you an insight into the other person’s difficult energy. This is an eight-card spread with a lot of supportive questions there for you at the beginning, and it can also give you insight into the behaviour of the other person. You could also add any new questions within this spread too, or pull additional clarifier cards for any questions you need more information for, as this is something that I’d do with myself. 

If you don’t feel that you’re in the space to pull these cards now, and it’s super important you respect your own energy levels, save this tarot spread for later or alternatively book a tarot reading with me so I can go through this with you.

To begin, shuffle your tarot deck and draw a card for each position in the mental health tarot draw (as shown in the below layout).

Finally, take some time to reflect on the questions that each card position represents and what message the tarot cards in that position might be trying to tell you. If you’re just starting to learn tarot, or if you’re still getting to know your deck, you may find my in-depth articles on the meanings of every tarot card helpful.

difficult conversation tarot spread

Tarot Card #1: Outside of my control influences

This first card demonstrates a nod towards things that are potentially going on that are nothing to do with you personally, and potentially something that even though it comes up in the conversation isn’t your responsibility and not productive to a conclusion for you both.

Tarot Card #2: Energy to prep & ground myself with prior

This second card advises a type of energy to embrace to help “fill your cup” before you get stuck into this conversation. Whether it’s a fire-based Wands recommendation of going for a run or going on a little adventure, or a Swords prompted journaling session or mental break by binging some TV shows, pay attention as this could be exactly what you need to ground yourself before the chat.

Tarot Card #3: Energy to take into the conversation

This third card is a suggestion of what energy to embrace for the conversation to help you keep yourself steady. Whether this is The High Priestess asking you to trust your intuition with whatever is said, or if it’s Pentacles energy asking you to keep grounded and logical (emotions may run high), this card wants you to remember what you need to do to keep yourself feeling safe and confident in this situation.

Tarot Card #4: The best way to effectively communicate with this person

A way to find out what is the best way for this person to listen, hear you, and understand, the fourth card is here to suggest ways that communication may be most beneficial for the other. Whether it’s the Sun suggesting you keep things light and highlight the happier times, or the Empress to acknowledge the creativity/abundance brought by this person into your life, the cards will suggest something to help this conversation feel like you are heard.

Tarot Card #5: Actions can we take to move forward

This fifth tarot card will show you some suggestions that can help this situation be drawn to a conclusion with actionable steps to move forward together. This may be The Tower card suggesting that drastic changes need to happen in order to rebuild, or it may be The Devil card which suggests some things need to be let go of in order for both parties to move on.

Tarot Card #6: Honoring & holding space for each other moving forward

This sixth card is very much a moving forward, letting go, healing card. It will show you how to best honor each other and hold space so that you can both move on from this difficult situation. This may be The Star card which suggests hope and faith for the future, or The World card which shows that by working together you can create something beautiful moving forward.

Tarot Card #7: Beliefs/ideals/mindset to help promote peace and harmony moving forward

The penultimate card for the reading is like tying up loose ends and to collectively decide the route of peace for you both in the future. This card may provide mindsets, “mantras” or clichés which can be incredibly beneficial for you both so that you can heal. The Hermit card may be here to suggest some time apart is necessary, or The Lovers which could be a sign that this difficult conversation was needed in order for you both to remember why you’re in this together. This card is the one that pulls it all together. It will provide a sense of closure and how to look after yourselves, so ensure you take its message from a place of love.

Tarot Card #8: What can wait to be discussed another time

This is a card I included because sometimes things aren’t relevant to what is needed to be discussed now, and what can actually wait till later. It may be something that you are aware of, or it may be something your counterpart may bring it up, so it’s something you may be prepared to set a boundary for.

Setting boundaries is incredibly difficult, and it’s important that during any conversation you are clear, concise and concrete – don’t break new rules you have to set or be lenient if someone doesn’t abide by them, because that doesn’t benefit you. If you say that something needs to happen, and it doesn’t, then there is accountability that needs to be taken. This can be difficult, but this is why having the tarot as a guide can really help you out.

What to do after this tarot reading

After you’ve finished a tarot reading, there are a few things you can do in order to reflect on the experience and integrate the insights you gained. Here are some suggestions:

Use a tarot journal to record your findings

Jotting down your thoughts in a tarot journal after reading can be helpful in a few ways. First, it can help you remember the details of your reading later on, such as how you felt at the moment and perhaps your first impressions of what a card meant. Second, it can provide a space for you to process the information you’ve received and explore what it means for you. Third, it can be a way to keep track of your progress over time as you revisit your journal entries and reflect on your journey.

Take a picture of the cards

If you want to remember the position of the cards and what they meant in relation to your questions, take a picture of the spread. This will help you look back on the reading later and review the insights you received. Sometimes, clarity is better acquired after you’ve stepped back from the situation for a little while and had some time to process it.

Some people create Instagram accounts or Pinterest accounts specifically for this, and if you use any of our spreads please tag us @backyardbanshee if you feel comfortable!

Take some time to meditate and reflect

Immediately after a tarot reading, it’s important to take some time to sit with the insights you’ve received. This can be done through proper meditation, visualisation, or simply taking some time to reflect on the reading. It can be helpful to think about what the messages from the cards mean for your life and how you can apply the advice that was given to you. That time can also be used to replenish your energy level and cleanse your tarot deck.

Get a second opinion from a close friend

If you have close friends who also happen to be tarot practitioners, it can be helpful to get their take on your reading. They may be able to offer additional insights or perspectives that you hadn’t considered before. This is also a good way to get feedback on your own interpretation of the cards.

Ensure to ask permission before just blindly sending your cards across in a message and saying “what does this mean to you?” as your friends may not have the energy or have a boundary with this sort of thing – manners cost nothing, and this is especially to note if they are a professional tarot reader who normally gets paid to interpret readings.

Layer your reading with more divination

Why not try adding astrology dice or a pendulum reading to your tarot session? Your intuition will guide you on how to best use these tools, but they can be helpful in providing more clarity around the messages from your tarot reading. We have lots of methods for you to utilise here on the website.

Do the same reading a month later

This is a great way to check in on your progress and see how far you’ve come. It can also be helpful in understanding the cyclical nature of our lives and how our current situation is likely to change over time. This can be especially useful if you’re struggling with a decision or trying to figure out which path to take as to offer suggestions, provide perspective and encourage your confidence to move forward.

At the end of the day, tarot readings are meant to be a helpful tool, not a replacement for your own intuition. The best way to use tarot is to combine the insights you receive with your own understanding of the situation. Trust your gut and follow your heart—the answers you’re looking for will come.

I hope you enjoyed this tarot spread, and that it provides some guidance the next time you need to have a difficult conversation! If you have any questions, please feel free to reach out, and I wish you all of the luck & strength with this hard situation x


I have been passionate about reading divination for more than 15 years. This gives me a unique perspective when it comes to creating fun, supportive and creative tarot spreads. I hope they help you find the clarity and insight you are looking for.

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