Promotions and Progressions

A client of mine was promoted to lead a large division of a new company – a big and very welcome career move. She’d been at the new job for 5 months when she came to me for a reading. Things were going well, but she was impatient to see more progress. Despite herself, she was feeling the start of a crisis of confidence, and hoped that a reading could help guide her forward.

To the left, I drew several cards to represent her situation now. To the right, a parallel spread would answer, “How can I best get to where I want to be?” I have shown the key cards in the images here, from the Rider-Waite-Smith deck.

The progression of the overarching cards was crystal clear. To the left, the World card, and to the right, the Queen of Pentacles. I translated: “You are on the top of the world! Now bring it down to earth.”

It was an encouraging start, which helped us ease into the more challenging cards that showed up next.

Version 4In tarot dictionaries, the 7 of Swords is associated with dishonesty, and the 8 with feeling trapped. Those traditional definitions were not resonating with me. How could the 8 of Swords be a helpful, something she would do well to embrace?

The key was to get a handle on the 7, which characterized her present. My client was adamant that “dishonesty” did not feel like an issue at her work. The connection she made with the image was one of running with scissors, going too fast and risking a sloppy accident or injury. She identified with the feeling of being on the move. She felt she basically knew where she was headed, but had so many possibilities to choose from that it was as if she was grabbing at swords, knowing that she couldn’t get them all.CCF30112015 copy

Version 2Her description has a lot in common with another 7 card – the 7 of Cups, which is associated with daydreaming and failing to focus. I wondered why this card hadn’t come up instead. Well, she was hardly daydreaming. She was leading a highly complex, heady activity. Rather than daydreaming, she was multitasking. Though inspired, she was not being particularly strategic.

Another reason the 7 of Swords was so fitting is its direct progression to the 8 of Swords. In the light of this nuanced definition of the 7, the 8 now looked more like discipline than entrapment. It said, “put those swords in a row. Limit your own options for the time being. This will enable you to move from the inspiration of the World to the practicality of the Queen of Pentacles.”

My client said this reading felt like an invitation to slow down and embrace her new authority, and that she couldn’t wait ‘till Monday.


Do you have a work problem the Tarot could help you work out? Use my scheduler to book a reading, or email me at

Please note that when I publish accounts based on actual readings, I alter all identifying details to fully protect the privacy of the people I read for.


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