If you know yourself, if you know what you can and can’t do, and what you will and won’t do (which are often different), and you focus your attention on the client (who, after all, is what it is about), then a reading goes well.
Occasionally I find that the person who sits down in front of me is someone that I’d probably ordinarily cross the road to avoid. Newsflash: you can’t cross the road in your own working-space, buster. So you take a deep breath (or a very shallow one if personal odour is the problem), put aside your prejudices, and focus on that person ‘s needs.
No matter how seemingly objectionable the client, I almost invariably find that after half-an-hour or so of looking very seriously at the insides of someone’s life, I come to be genuinely in-tune with them, and sympathetic to them. Thus, it’s easy to look at “negative” cards in a spread and see in them the seeds of their own repair – or if not, to pull out a modifying card to show where to go from there, what choices to make or actions to take.
If the reader can get past their ego, the need to have everyone like them and be in awe of their talents and just allow themselves to be comfortable with themselves, warts and all, then being able to talk candidly to a client becomes much easier. When you step out of how you look and just meet people and deal with them honestly, they are much more likely to think well of you than if you actually want them to.
There is a process of adjusting away from yourself which needs to happen before you can deal with someone with compassion. And compassion isn’t about feeling their pain and being discombobulated by it. Compassion is, in this case, about accepting that they are, like all of us, a pure soul overlaid with the detritus of their lives, and that they are in the situations they are in due to layers upon layers of history and not due to whimsical choice, and first feeling the inevitability of them being just them. Once you “get” them on that level, the compassion exists, even if you’d still never invite them into your house or heart. And that’s where the real work begins, in a three-way dialogue between them and their circumstances, your deck, and your intelligence and tolerance.
There is always a way forward. It may not be a sparkle-arkle-y happy-happy way forward, but there are always ways to minimise harm and accentuate positive possibilities, and any spread should show it. You then have to have the time, patience and interpersonal expertise to talk it through with your cards, and hey-presto! – you may not have changed their circumstances at all, but they will leave feeling relieved, and as if they can suddenly see options they couldn’t see before.
Job done. Next!