The Hip Hop Guide To Being A Tarot Professional

by Theresa Reed on June 15, 2011


If you’re going to commit your time to the daily grind of running a tarot business, you’ll need to be motivated every day because it’s hard out here for a tarot pimp (and even harder if you are a tarot wimp).

I look for inspiration everywhere.  And I bet you think my main motivational revelations come from the words of business geniuses such as Donald Trump or Marie Forleo.  Or perhaps from tarot superstars such as Mary Greer or Rachel Pollack.  Well, you are mistaken, my friend.

Don’t get me wrong – those people light a much needed fire under my can.  But my best badass business inspiration actually comes from hip hop artists. Yup. You read that right.

Now before you say WTH and back away with hands in the air and a look of disbelief on your face, let me tell you this: my admiration for rappers isn’t just because I like the beat (or think they are sex-say).  I like the way these cats do their thang, man. They run their businesses with cunning street sense, amazing vision and giant fearless BALLS.

And hear this: many of them come from very difficult backgrounds.  Most do not hold an MBA. In fact, it’s EXTREMELY unusual to find a rapper that comes from a silver spoon ivy league educated background like Donald Trump.  But that doesn’t stop them from succeeding. These guys make it because they set the intention and do it.

Do you think Jay Z let his hardscrabble childhood keep him from becoming one of the richest men in the world?  Nope!  Did 50 Cent let a hail of gunshots stop him from being one of the most respected rappers in the industry?  HELL NO.  So let me ask my fellow tarot readers this: what is stopping you from pursuing your dream to become a professional reader?

Let me dig into some of my favorite rap lyrics that keep me inspired to quit whining and keep on grindin’ and flipping those cards day in and day out like a true tarot thug:

  1. “Check yourself before you wreck yourself.” ~ Ice Cube. Before you begin your business, it’s important to reflect on your motivation and to get your personal act together. Money is a good motivator but you must have a burning, yearning passion for tarot and for helping others if you intend to make this your occupation.  It can’t just be about the Benjamins (moola). Oh, and if you are going to be doling out spiritual advice to others, you better have your own life in order.  This work will drain the life out of you if you cannot manage to get your own house clean.  Make your dysfunctions functional and ground yourself.
  2. “Gangstas don’t hide so I show my face often.” ~ Slim Thug. You can’t make a living if you are the best kept secret in your industry.  You will have to market your business. Learn how to promote yourself properly (social media is a great tool). And more important: be AUTHENTICALLY you.  Don’t be a weak ass imitation of anyone else.  Put your true self out there, heart on the line, face on the screen.  Let people know the REAL trill you.  Get your website up NOW and get your grill out there.
  3. “I’m A Self Made Trillioinaire.” ~ Bun B. It may be tempting to put your business in the hands of someone else and let them host your site through their Ning thing or tweet for you but it is always best to maintain total control of your own content and empire.  Get your own url and host your own damn site (I recommend WordPress).  Be intimately involved with the running of your business, including your own marketing. Don’t give someone the power to pull the plug on your tarot empire.  Be self made, not dependent on anyone.  (PS It’s not as hard as you think.  If I can do it, YOU CAN.)
  4. “Paid the cost like a Boss.” ~ Slim Thug. Sure, you can do some things for free but at some point you will have to invest in your business if you wish to grow it.  Paying for an office, accountant, computer, education, tarot conferences, lawyer and marketing may seem like a scary thing but let me tell you this: whenever I have invested in my business, it GREW by a major leap.  You have to spend some money if you want to make money.  Stop being a cheap ass and invest in your career.  It will pay off.  Trust me on that.
  5. “Go on brush your shoulders off.” ~ Jay Z. Sadly, you will attract some haters at some point in your career (this happens in EVERY career – tarot readers aren’t the only ones singled out as pariahs in their community).  Negative feedback  and criticism may hit you from people who don’t believe in the tarot; it may come from fellow tarotists or your own family.  Let it go. Focus on good tarot and leave those haters in your dust.
  6. “The bigger the bullet, the more that bitch gonna bang.” ~ Rick Ross. Think you are going to raise your street cred by talking trash on a public forum?  Think again. Dissing others to make yourself look big will eventually backfire on your sorry ass.  Treat your fellow tarot peeps with respect. Don’t like someone?  Keep it on the lowdown.  Allow people to save face even if you think they are whack. Being courteous is not just good manners, it’s how pros operate.  Remember this – no one likes a hater.
  7. “Is it worth it – let me work it.” ~ Missy Elliot. Being a tarot reader is definitely “worth it”.  Every day, you get the opportunity to help people find direction and better their lives.  You’ll have to work harder than you ever thought possible. But it is THE most rewarding career that you will ever have.  So stop waiting. JUST DO IT.

Now go on wid yo bad self and start flipping those cards and living your tarot dream.  No more excuses. Word.



© Theresa Reed | The Tarot Lady 2011

special thanks to taoxproductions for the superfly image

Who inspires you?  Where do you get the motivation for your career?  Post your role models and their brilliance in the comment section below:

Carolyn Cushing June 15, 2011 at 11:34 am

I love all the varied strands that you weave together in your life and practice, Teresa. It makes a cool and unique tapestry!

admin June 15, 2011 at 2:01 pm

Thanks Carolyn! I’m a classic Gemini – always integrating my many varied interests!


Sara June 15, 2011 at 12:11 pm

you are totally boss! love it!

admin June 15, 2011 at 2:01 pm

HOLLA Sara! Thanks for the shout out! 🙂

abbee June 15, 2011 at 12:49 pm

HAHA, boss, indeed! FTW! m/

admin June 15, 2011 at 2:02 pm

LOL “Like A Boss” by Slim Thug is one of my favorite “theme songs”, Abbee. I listen to that sucka whenever I am feeling extra whiney!

Donna June 15, 2011 at 1:13 pm

Theresa, I always enjoy your blogs…They are extremely encouraging..This was a gem..

admin June 15, 2011 at 2:03 pm

Hi Donna!

Thank you so much! I am glad you enjoyed this post. It took me A LONG time to write.


Iseke June 15, 2011 at 1:42 pm

What an apt way of putting it! I have to admit to not being very familiar with rap, so I appreciated the perspective you offered through it. Excellent advice as always!

admin June 15, 2011 at 2:04 pm

Hey there Iseke

I’m a huge fan of music in general – but find rap and hip hop to be my main motivators when I need a cosmic kick in the pants. Slim Thug is my favorite!


Heba Zay June 15, 2011 at 2:41 pm

Hehe, great post. I never had you down as a hip hop chick.

I totally hear ya though; the hip hop game has produced some great examples of success stories and self made millionaires. The determination and drive demonstrated by people like Puff Daddy/P Diddy/Swag or whatever he’s calling himself nowadays, Jay Z, 50 Cent and Lil Wayne to name a few is inspiring.

admin June 15, 2011 at 2:53 pm

Hey Heba

I like all kinds of music – I’m an old skool punk rocker but am quite fond of hip hop, gangsta rap, Emo, industrial and alternative country. 🙂

Heba Zay June 15, 2011 at 4:10 pm

Yes, diversity is the way to go; you get to take a little bit of something from everything! 🙂

Hilary June 15, 2011 at 3:37 pm

I was wondering when this post would finally happen… possibly BEFORE you even thought to create it!

YOU inspire me, my tarot mentor! and a few more people of the hip hop/rap genre:

“Can’t leave rap alone the streets need me
Hunger in they eyes, is what seems to feed me
Inside peace mixed with beast seem to breed me
Nobody believe, until I believe me.”—Common, “The People”
(you have to believe in your authentic self before anyone else can believe in you!)

“You knew me before records, you never disrespected me
Now that I’m successful you’ll pull this sh*t”—Jay-Z, “Heart of the City”
(even when people start to hate, I will pay them no mind)

Of course when I was reading this post, both the Ice Cube song and the Jay-Z song you quoted in your post came on the station I was listening to! 🙂

admin June 15, 2011 at 8:09 pm

LOL Hilary! Synchronicity!

Ginny Hunt June 15, 2011 at 5:11 pm

I am not organically a rap/hip hop fan but my bf has enlightened me to some gems. I was just listening to Jay Z’s “On To The Next One” the other day and felt it was such an encouragement to be authentic and ambitious and not to worry about endeavors that don’t work, just move forward. “Somebody bring me back some money please, I got a million ways to get it, on to the next one…”

admin June 15, 2011 at 8:09 pm

Hi Ginny!

Thanks for stopping by! I LOVE that song by Jay Z – did you see the video for it? OMG – genius!

Chea June 15, 2011 at 8:40 pm

GREAT blog post! I used to work at a hip hop record company in NYC. It was ALWAYS a kick-ass place where I learned about more ways to push forward (not always good ways, ahem) than I ever imagined existed. Definitely learned that a “No” was just a warm-up… Love how you put the lyrics together with solid biz advice.

admin June 17, 2011 at 3:36 pm

Hi Chea

Lucky you – I would have killed to work at a hip hop record company!

Glad you enjoyed the post,

Lisa June 17, 2011 at 2:26 pm

Thanks for this, Theresa! Even though I barely know who these artists are, I enjoyed the energy of this post and how it made reading about the business side of tarot fun – UNIQUE and INSPIRING… Well done!

admin June 17, 2011 at 3:37 pm

Hi Lisa

Thanks a lot for your kind words! Glad you enjoyed my post!


cjwright June 19, 2011 at 4:24 pm

What a fantastic post! One of the best I’ve ever read on being pro. It’s both inspirational and full of great business advice. Your post reminds me of something my husband said a long time ago, “You know what I like about Prince? He sticks it out there. Ya gotta admire that.”

admin June 23, 2011 at 6:44 pm

Hello CJ

Thank you for your comment. And I LOVE your husband’s thoughts about Prince! LOL I LOVE Prince!


Wendy June 21, 2011 at 8:30 am

What fun! I love visiting your blog. 🙂

admin June 23, 2011 at 6:44 pm

Hi Wendy! Glad you are having fun here! 🙂

Melissa July 11, 2011 at 11:02 pm


I like the way you think, lady. 😀

admin July 14, 2011 at 6:19 am

LOL Melissa!

Robin Dalton January 1, 2012 at 3:43 pm

Just in case I haven’t mentioned it lately… you rock my world GF!! *does a little dance around her kitchen*
Stardreamer Tarot & Astrology

Theresa Reed January 16, 2012 at 7:55 am

LOL Thank you Robin! 🙂

Meaningful Movement August 20, 2012 at 1:11 pm

BRILLIANT and entertaining!!!

Rebecca Walker December 5, 2012 at 2:25 pm

Love it! And all very relevant, actually.

Naware Danaus June 7, 2013 at 11:24 pm

I love how you related this all so eloquently! I’m not a huge fan of rap but you got me on board with clear language and putting it out there yo! <3

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