Healing Self-doubt and the Tarot

I just did a reading on how to heal self-doubt. The results were illuminating.  The cards I pulled were: Love, King of Swords, Knight of Cups, and the Hanged Man.  These cards provide a beautiful explanation on how to work with the persistent irritation self-criticism that haunts so many of us.

The first card, Love, is self-explanatory – love yourself the way the Divine loves you, the way a mother loves her baby, love yourself as much as you love the most beloved people in your life.  It’s the foundation to overcoming our fears.

The second card, King of Swords, encourages reason over instinct and intellect over passion.  It’s about mastering our emotions through the use of deliberate logic, questioning our knee-jerk reactions when we make a mistake.  What’s our first reaction when we mess up?  My first reaction is emotional – I feel shame.  And for some reason, I tend to over-amplify the feeling of shame, as if punishing myself would help the situation.

But why?  Questioning our reactions through the use of reason and logic can talk us out of irrational emotions. The third card, Knight of Cups, has to do with heightened emotional awareness and seeing the best in ourselves.  It’s helpful to see that deepening our emotional awareness can improve our emotional health and reduce anxiety!  It’s the learned, unconscious, reactive responses that tend to get us bogged down.  Knight of Cups is asking us to elevate our emotions to a more spiritual level, one that is more generous and purposefully positive.

And the final card is perhaps the most useful: the Hanged Man.  This trump card has to do with surrendering to what is. Be willing to be turned upside-down, and release control – trusting that you are safe.  It’s the ability to laugh at yourself, to sigh and say, “oh well!”  To roll with the punches.

The resilient attitude represented by this card can interrupt self-doubt because it helps us to not take life too seriously.  We aren’t ultimately in control here, after all. So how do we overcome self-doubt?  Through love, applying reason over-reactivity, through self-appreciation, and letting go.  Don’t you love it when the cards are so to-the-point?  The message is loud and clear!