When you do a spread without specific meanings (see here), sometimes the context becomes confusing. One card just doesn’t seem to fit. It’s an outlier, in the middle of nowhere, without a map or GPS it can’t for the life of it find the rest of the reading.
What do you do then? How to help it find the rest of the reading?
There are two things to do.
First, step back and read the card by itself. What does the card mean? Just give a straight reading from the card itself. Once you talk about the card itself, how can it be applied to a reading.
The second is to add a clarification card. When I go to add this card, I specifically ask “How does this (the original card) apply to the question?” then I cut the deck and pull out one card. I read that card and how it links back to the original reading.
Here’s an example:
I’m doing a reading on my career: from the reading, everything is looking good, the’re a new project in the works and everything is looking good. But I can’t put my finger on that 4 of swords: why do I need a break? It’s not a time for me to heal, I have stuff to do with that project. So I lay out a clarification card (10 of Wands): I need a break, I’m running myself ragged because of this new project and while it is looking good, the 4 of Swords is saying that I’m not taking care of myself. I need to spend some time taking care of myself, otherwise the project isn’t going to be the resounding success it can be.
Ace of Wands – 19 The Sun – 4 of Swords (10 of Wands)
When the cards are confusing, always go back to the cards themselves. If it still doesn’t make sense, add one card. Don’t start a whole new reading because one card doesn’t make sense. Remember, the beauty of the cards is the ability to keep them simple.