How to Use “Calming Cards” to Calm Your Nervous System and Find Peace in the Middle of Chaos
The Central Nervous System, Stress, and Overwhelm
Many of us have stressful and hectic situations in our lives from time to time. I’m not sure about you, but when this happens to me, I “freak out” a little!
Because I am a Taurus Sun and Moon, my comfort zone is exactly that. When a number of external circumstances and pressures begin to drive me out of “feeling comfortable,” or as if it’s “just one thing after another,” things may quickly become overwhelming.
Stress and overwhelm can both engage our central nervous system. The brain and spinal cord comprise the central nervous system. When engaged, the central nervous system also causes physiological responses in the body, such as increasing heart rate, tightening muscles, shortening breath, and making us feel sick to our stomach.
When my nervous system is stimulated, it allows for a wide range of physical experiences and symptoms. Calming Cards can be a big help in discovering the underlying source of my stress and helping me toward the path of nervous system regulation and healing at times like this.
(Just to be clear, Calming Cards are not designed to provide medical advice or diagnoses.)
If you can identify with these emotions, know that you are not alone. These physical sensations may be the result of your anger, irritation, fear, or disappointment.
You may let those feelings float through your system like clouds if you can identify and work through them as they occur. But the problem arises when you cling to those sentiments for too long. The more those emotions pile up within you, the faster a storm will form. Before we get there, let’s go back to the beginning and see how a Tarot Reading can assist.
What Exactly Are Calming Cards?
Calming Cards can assist us in processing unpleasant emotions in a healthier and more efficient manner, allowing us to re-regulate our nerve systems during times of stress. Calming Cards relieve emotional tension by allowing us to tune in, better understand “negative” feelings, and create the space we need to process them in healthy ways.
It’s vital to remember that this applies to both emotions you’re experiencing directly and emotions you’re experiencing through other people. Tarot readers are often incredibly empathic, which is why it’s critical for us to learn how to handle all kinds of emotions in healthy, constructive ways.
How to Make Use of Calming Cards
Pick up your Tarot cards, shuffle them, and draw a card if your nervous system is overwhelmed or active. Don’t bother about attempting to concentrate your energy or tune in just yet; as a Tarot reader, this may seem paradoxical, but the idea is to draw a card in the midst of emotional turmoil.
Your underlying emotional condition is represented by the first card you draw. It could symbolise how you’re feeling right now, something you’d like to change or achieve, or the general energy of the scenario or dilemma you’ve found yourself in. Whatever it is, it is a representation of the chaotic energy that you are feeling. It may symbolise the energy of a single mood or scenario, or it could represent a combination of multiple things happening all at once.
The key is that this card provides you a “general read” on your underlying energy — and why your nervous system is active right now.
After you’ve drawn your first card, close your eyes for a moment (ideally somewhere quiet and secluded). Breathe deeply three times. Allow your diaphragm to expand as you feel the air move up through your nose and deep into your lungs. Notice how the air feels as it goes up your airway, past your lips, and out into the world when you exhale. Allow your attention to settle into your body as you repeat these breaths.
Continue to breathe and check your body. Pay attention to the tips of your toes first, then to your feet, ankles, shins, calves, knees, thighs, and all the way up to the crown of your head. Check for any tightness, discomfort, soreness, or vibration in your muscles, joints, or extremities.
Consider which emotion is associated with this sensation. What emotions come to the surface when I focus on this sensation? What one word would you use to characterise these feelings?
Open your eyes when you’re ready. Re-read your Tarot cards and consider the sensations you’ve noticed in your body. Shuffle the deck and draw a second card.
This card has the guidance you require to move through the emotion you’re feeling, re-regulate your nervous system, and release the physical symptoms.
Understanding the Function of Calming Cards
As I have stated, these cards are not designed to provide medical or psychiatric advice. Calming Cards, on the other hand, are a means to return your attention back to the present now, connect with your physical body, and assist you in interpreting the messages that your nervous system is sending you.
Using Tarot in this manner is not a cure-all; it is merely a mindfulness practice. It’s a technique for putting some distance between your ideas, emotions, and physical reactions so you can catch your breath and start working through your feelings one by one. There are other different meditative practises that can help you reach the same goal — and if they appeal to you more, I encourage you to try them.