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What challenges do I need to overcome?

Extending the theme from the last reading, I decided to use the same spread layout to answer a different question: “What long-term challenges will I need to overcome?” In this case, the inner triad represents the three challenges while the outer triad represents the solutions I will need to implement, and the shadow card in the center illustrates the premise of the reading, or how all of these challenges are connected.

First we have the Nine of Cups, which has the idea of granting wishes or finding satisfaction. This would seem to say that one of my recurring problems will be finding something fulfilling that I can take joy in, that will bring me closer to realizing my goals, rather than send me further away and cause me to put my own desires on a shelf.

The way for me to do this is illustrated by the Eight of Swords. This is an intriguing, and confusing, card to pull here because it has to do with restrictions and perhaps waiting to be rescued. The message here might be that there’s no point waiting for the perfect solution. I’m not going to find my dream job by waiting for it to come to me; I have to be the one to initiate. Picking a direction and moving forward is going to serve me better here.

Next we have the Eight of Cups, which has the idea of realizing that a cycle is ending, lacking energy or motivation, or focusing on your spiritual side. This may be saying that one of the major challenges I will face will be disengaging and moving on from things that are draining to me. There are several things in my life this could apply to, and I’m already in the process of doing this in some cases.

The Page of Wands says that I will be best served in this endeavor by focusing on renewing my creative energy and going in a new direction. The message seems to be that I should follow my passion instead of trying to force myself to spend creative energy on things I’m not as enthusiastic of out of obligation.

Finally we have the Sun, which is very interesting considering that in my last reading it was also one of my long-term goals. This may imply that my ideals are limiting me in some way. Going back to the Nine of Cups, it would appear that in setting such lofty goals, I’ve lost sight of the mundane.

The Ten of Wands suggests and interesting way to deal with this conundrum. Interpreted in a positive way, it speaks of pushing through with determination and pushing against the current. Basically it means I shouldn’t shy away from the hard work that needs to be done, even if it is unpleasant or doesn’t seem to bring me closer to my ideals.

The Five of Cups links these issues together, and finally we have a negative card that makes sense in the position it’s drawn. This card speaks of loss and regret, and letting go of things that you wanted to hold onto, but no longer are able to. This is reflected in the other cards which speak of leaving behind attachments to things no longer serving me, but that I still feel obligated to try to find a way to make work. In a word: it’s not.

Taken together, I get the sense that now may be the time to start pushing myself again, if I can manage to shrug off the things that are holding me back, emotionally and creatively. I need to start making progress, in whatever form it may take, even if it means working a little overtime.

[This reading was done on 10/25/13 at 12:10am EST]



  1. Interesting, I’ve come to a very different conclusion.

    I felt this spread was a little unfocused so I rearranged it. Instead of three challenges and three solutions, I interpreted the cards as three aspects of one challenge and solution. In doing so I arrive at a very different conclusion.

    The Five of Hearts tells me that the premise of the question is emotional. Disappointment especially in relationships.
    I read the challenges together: the Nine of Hearts, the Eight of Hearts, and the Sun. Again, the challenge is emotional. The Sun as the only major arcana is dominant here. The Sun speaks of being comfortable with yourself and your path. You want to radiate and be a figure that others look up to. Figuratively, lighting up the lives of others. Your challenge is finding fulfillment but it involves sacrifice perhaps more than you can bear.

    So we come to the solutions. When read together the Eight of Swords, Page of Wands, and Ten of Wands provides advice and a warning. The Eight of Swords as the only air tells me that caution is the best course of action. Reflect some more because the Page of Wands and Ten of Wands say that impulsiveness and overburdening yourself are big risks.

    Basically, finding your purpose and path is your biggest challenge, but be cautious and reflect some more on the correct one.

    • You can go either way with this spread, and I think it still works. When I first looked at the cards I realized that it might be better to interpret them the way you did, but I did it this way because it’s easier for me to interpret cards individually, and that’s the way I had decided to do it before I started shuffling.

      I kind of see them as three facets of the same problem, that can be dealt with individually. Does that make sense?

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