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  • Julie Embleton

January Tarot Inspiration

Hurray for January! The holiday fuss is over and spring is on her way. Days are stretching just that wee bit longer, and of course, we’re into a brand new year and all the possibilities it brings. With these themes of endings, beginnings, and new opportunities, there’s lots of inspiration to draw upon from within your tarot deck; the four Aces, the World, and Death, to name just a few. So, if you’re seeking to take your January tarot practice a little deeper, consider working with one, or all, of these inspiring cards.


Aces from the Tarot deck on a wooden surface
The 4 Aces. Perfect cards for new beginnings.

The Aces


Aces bring hopeful messages of new beginnings, so what better cards to look to as a new year unfolds? Depending on your intentions or resolutions, working with the energy of the relevant Ace can assist with laser-focus.


The Ace of Cups brings abundance of love, emotion, and healing. If you’re working to align yourself with an energy that encourages meaningful relationships, self-love, and making a deeper connection with your intuition, then this is the ideal card. It’s also a kind friend to those caring for a fragile heart and hesitant to be vulnerable again.


The Ace of Wands is all about creation. It’s turning over a new leaf; a passionate beginning fired up with motivation and determination. An ideal card for creatives looking to reinvigorate their processes, or launch a new project, the Ace of Wands is the epitome of creative spark.


If it’s mental clarity you’re seeking as the new year kicks off, then the Ace of Swords is the card for you. With themes of mental stimulation, seeking truth, and cutting away the noise, this is the card for thinkers ready to take decisive action. The Ace of Swords typically indicates an ‘a-ha!’ moment where mental fog clears to gift a bright, clear view. So if you’re wrangling with a decision, look to this Ace for guidance.


The Ace of Pentacles is the card of manifestation. It signifies a new beginning with finances and work, so a great omen if you’re hunting for a new job, or working towards a promotion. If your intentions centre on financial prosperity, material success, and overall growth in earthly pursuits, this Ace is a perfect match.


4 Knights of the tarot deck.
The 4 Knights. Their wild energy encourages action.

The one thing to remember with Aces is that they’re just a starting point. Their energy is empowering and invigorating, but all the thinking and planning in the world won’t achieve anything unless there’s physical doing. So while you enjoy the inspiring zingy energy of Aces, don’t forget to take actionable steps to manifest their power into your reality. Why not pair a Knight of the same suit with your Ace? With the exception of the slow and steady Knight of Pentacles (who is probably the most sensible of all the Knights) the others fly into action without hesitation. Just don’t get too carried away; those wild Knights can be a little reckless at times . . .


Death tarot card on a wooden surface
Death. It gets a bad rep, but this card is really a positive one!

Death


Did 2022 leave you exhausted? If you experienced a year that has left you frazzled, the idea of intention setting may give you the ick. While others bounce around with get-up-and-go, it’s taking all you have to simply get out of bed some days. If this sounds like you, meditating on the transformation of Death may be just what you need.


Death brings the end of a cycle. The road has ended, and you can stare back at it in the rear view, or aim your focus to the new beginning lying ahead. Either way, life is taking you forward, whether you’re ready or not. With Death comes the message of accepting fate. Fighting against it won’t allow you to move into something better. So if you feel you’re stuck in the past, let go the wheel and know that with the Death card, the Universe will take you where you need to be.


If making sweeping changes to your life is on your agenda for 2023, then Death is a wonderful companion card. It encourages us to dump out the old, cleanse our space, and welcome in the new. Think of a butterfly emerging from its cocoon. It may prefer to stay in the security of its binds, but nature takes charge and the caterpillar suddenly finds itself transformed.


Unlike the Tower, where change comes in with a kick up the ass, Death is a smoother transition. This card often appears for expectant mothers. As they leave behind maidenhood to enter into motherhood, their world transforms. Likewise for someone leaving behind a marriage, job, or home. Death has your back as you shift into a new cycle. You got this.

The World tarot card on a wooden surface
The World. Completion and a new cycle come with this card.

The World


When it comes to completion, there’s no card quite like the World. But while it brings a message of accomplishment and closure, it also reminds us that the wheel continues to turn. Even though one cycle has drawn to a close, another will soon begin, so if you’re working on any form of further development in 2023, buddy up with this card for motivation.


As a card of celebration, the World brings a positive energy. It’s a wonderful reminder that if you did it before, you can do it again. Think of all that’s been learned from previous experience, and how it can be put to use again moving forward. Reflect too on how you might have felt at the beginning of that last journey; the hopes and fears, where confidence soared or nervousness dragged your feet. If 2023 intentions include setting up a business, taking on new challenges in your career, or even diving deeper with self-development, the World is there to motivate you.


Gratitude is another important message of the World, so consider adding a gratitude ritual to your daily routine. Simply take a moment to reflect on three things within your day that made you grateful. It could be a book, a conversation with a friend, a roof over your head, a seat on the bus, or an especially nice cup of coffee. No matter how big or small, write it down. When we send out thanks to the Universe, it hears us, and sends us more back blessings in reply!

The Fool tarot card on a wooden surface
The Fool. The ultimate card for new beginnings!

The Fool


The ultimate card for new beginnings, the Fool will take your hand and leap with you into new adventures in 2023. Maybe you can’t see the whole picture yet. Perhaps you know where to start, but aren’t so sure about what happens after. If so, that’s Fool energy. He leaps with courage, confident the Universe has his back. The Fool is when you have that idea, a spark of something so exciting that even though you don’t know quite where you’re headed, your heart and soul tell you you’re on the right path. You’re open and ready for the adventure, and are prepared to do what it takes as you journey into the unknown.


Fool energy can be equated to a career change, a move to a new location, the launch of a new business, or commencing a spiritual quest. The card is numbered zero, so neither a beginning nor an end. It’s a ‘in the now’ card, so very much a fly by the seat of your pants energy. If this sounds like you as 2023 begins, then you’ve got the Fool on your side!


The chariot tarot card on a wooden surface
For a serious boost of control and willpower, work with the Chariot.

The Chariot


Another powerful card, the Chariot brings an energy of willpower and victory. The reins are firmly in your hand, and with sustained effort, you’ll succeed.


Looking to smash major goals in 2023? If so, look to the Chariot for guidance. This is the card of control, where the ability to work with adversity instead of allowing it to knock you down brings incredible empowerment. Setting up a new business? Making major life adjustments? If the only outcome you’re willing to accept is victory, keep the Chariot to hand. This card is a reminder of how sustained effort will get you where you need to be. It’s a serious card. There’s no room for uncertainty or laziness.


The Chariot keeps ego in check as it thunders along. Confidence is vital, but cockiness is a no-no. And don’t worry if you hit a pothole or two. Your vehicle (you) contains all that’s necessary to dodge the dips and smash through obstacles.

8 of wands tarot card on a wooden surface
Go, go, GO, baby! The 8 of Wands brings movement.

8 of Wands


Movement, action, and travel are the themes of the 8 of Wands. It’s an inspiring card when it comes to taking decisive action. If you’re refusing to allow anything to slow you down as you work on your goals, and powered into 2023 already fired up and itching to manifest goals into reality, you’re already working with the driven energy of the 8 of Wands.


Whether you dream of travelling the world or simply exploring what lies beyond your current horizon, this card carries an energy of passionate action. It tells you to go for it, to get your ducks in a row and welcome transformational movement into your life.


Itching to travel? Why not place your passport and the 8 of Wands side by side in a place where you’ll see them daily? You could also create a vision board of places you long to experience and place the 8 of Wands smack bang in the middle.

The sun tarot card on a wooden surface
The Sun brings abundance and joy!

The Sun


Abundance, joy, success—all the good stuff comes with the Sun. It brings promise of beauty and wonder, and is also a great card for anything related to children.


Perhaps you don’t have resolutions or intentions for specific areas of your life. You may just wish for joy and abundance across the board. If so, look to the Sun for inspiration. Maybe you had an amazing 2022 and are still basking in the glow of the year’s successes. If so, the Sun encourages you to give gratitude for your blessings and enjoy this period of joy.


Thinking you’d like to hit pause on being an adult for a while? Had enough of all the dull grown-up demands? If you’re looking to find more outlets for fun, the Sun has your back. It reminds you to play, to be silly and enjoy some light-hearted fun. Dig into past nostalgia and recall how you got your kicks as a kid. How might it feel to pull out that bike, skateboard or skates again? When did you last spend hours lost in a boardgame, jigsaw, or book? If you need an injection of fun in your life, the Sun reminds you to awaken your inner child and return to the pursuits that lifted your young heart.


The 8 of Pentacles tarot card on a wooden surface
Get your head in the game with the 8 of Pentacles.

8 of Pentacles


Productivity is the keyword for the 8 of Pentacles. This is the card if you seek learning, development, and getting shit done in 2023. A card which embodies wisdom and experience through hard work and dedication, the 8 of Pentacles is ideal for students or interns. With the 8 of Pentacles comes the drive to succeed, but with an understanding that the seeker faces a step by step process. Success won’t come overnight.


If you’re considering a new skill, levelling up, or simply arming yourself with new knowledge, work with 8 of Pentacles to boost your motivation.


The 3 of Wands tarot card on a wooden surface
3 of Wands. If it's expansion you seek for 2023, this card is your buddy.

3 of Wands


For those whose goals are already taking shape, the expansion energy of the 3 of Wands could be just the extra inspiration you need. Wheels are already in motion, and although it may still be the early stages of a project, you’re already thinking ahead. You’re open to opportunity, and willing to accept advice and/or assistance all for the greater good of your goals and dreams.


Exploration is another way to look at this card. Again, it’s that energy of being open to possibility so your world can expand. This is an ideal card for anyone who has already gotten to grips with a project, and is currently focused on forward planning.



A tarot journal and tarot cards
Ready for a January check-in? Grab your journal and try out this spread.

How’s about a January check-in? Grab your deck and try out this spread to see how your intentions are progressing so far.


  1. Current energy

  2. What’s working

  3. What needs tweaking

  4. Inner check-in: How am I doing?

  5. Outer check-in: What’s beyond my control?

  6. Where I’m headed


January Check-in Tarot Spread

If you’ve picked one or more cards for January tarot inspiration, there are plenty of ways to work with them.

  • Create a focal point on an altar with the card/s on display. If you have tokens, photos, or any items that reflect or further inspire your goal, add them for an inspirational boost.

  • Meditate upon your chosen card/s. Journal how you can engage with the energy, and how the card/s can guide you with bringing these goals to life.

  • Create affirmations based around the card/s. For example: 3 of Wands: I am open to welcoming expansion and opportunity into my life. Or for the Chariot. I am in control. Sustained effort comes easy.

  • Can you count the number of times a day you check your phone? I’ll bet it’s a lot! Why not use a picture of your tarot card as a screen saver? Every time you see the image, it’s a reminder to repeat your affirmations, or take a moment to feel the reality you’re working to achieve.

  • Make a vision board with the card/s as the centre point. Place the board where you can see it daily. The bathroom mirror is a great place. For the two minutes you brush your teeth, you can gaze upon your future life!


If you don’t wish to split your tarot deck by using cards in a vision board or on an altar, make a copy, or even draw your own version, adding images or words that have meaning to you.


Tarot card with crystals and incense
Place your card/s where you see them daily to remind you of intentions.

I hope these ideas bring a little inspiration for your January tarot practice. Has a card jumped out at you—one that embodies the energy you’re working with for the month? Tell me! I’m always ready for a chat, especially when it’s tarot related. You can find me at julie@creativesoultarot.com


Deck: Rider Smith Waite tarot. US Games.



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