How Can You Do a 5 Card Tarot Spread?

Monday, October 23, 2023 • tarot
five card tarot spread

There are times in our lives when we feel frustrated regarding something. Whether it’s our career, our love life, our relationship with someone, or something else that’s been pestering us - we want to get guidance about that specific challenge in order to overcome it. And in this regard, a 5 card tarot spread can mean all the difference. 

A five card tarot spread is when you lay down five cards in various layouts (or spreads) and first find out the meaning of each card individually, and then the collective meaning of the spread. In this post, we’ll tell you about different spreads and how you can do them in your home too.

How to do a 5 Card Tarot Spread

Step 1: Get in The Mood

In order to do a 5 card Tarot spread, you need to be in the right mental state. Do this by getting focused and calm, removing distractions from your surroundings and getting in a comfortable area with your deck. Get a notebook or diary to keep track of your readings and insights that may occur.

Much like the 5 card spread is the 3 card Tarot spread, which also deals with the present, past, future, careers and love. If you want to read about it, check out our post on the 3 card Tarot spread

Step 2: Set Your Intent and Clear Your Mind

Relax your mind and establish your goal before shuffling and reading. You can get into that state by mindfulness, meditation, or any other way of self-care that helps you relax and focus. Once you’ve gotten into that state, declare your intent or ask a question and read it out aloud. 

Step 3: Shuffle and Read

Start shuffling your deck and once sufficiently shuffled, divide it into three piles and place them in front of you. Select the highest card from every pile and lay them using the five card Tarot spread styles we’ve listed below depending on your intention.

Step 4: Interpret the Cards

After you’ve laid them down (according to whichever five card Tarot spread you chose) examine the meanings behind each card and look at all of the symbolism in them. Then, piece together the collective meaning of the spread. Do consider how they relate to your purpose or question and the general meaning. 

Talking to an experienced Tarot card reader or reading books on Tarot for a better understanding is also recommended.

Step 5: Journal The Meanings

After finding out the right meanings, record your thoughts in a diary. This is the most effective way to track your progress and to help understand the meanings and directions that Tarot reading offers. 

five card tarot spread

The Spreads

5 Card Tarot Spread for the Past, Present and Future

Take three cards and lay them down from left to right. The first on the left represents your past, the middle one represents the present and the right one stands for your future. Place one card underneath the first, which would represent what’s holding you back and another card underneath the future card which represents how to move forward.

Spreads for Love and Self-Love

There are many Tarot spreads related to love, finding love and breakups that you can gain valuable insight from. Here we will discuss some of them.

1. 5 Card Tarot Spread for Finding Love

This card will help you find love and address what you need to do in order to overcome unresolved problems that may be left by older relationships

Take five cards and place one in front of you. It stands for your current attitude towards love and your present mental situation. Now take the second card and place it to the top left of the first. This card stands for your past relationships. The third card will be placed on the top right of the first and will stand for what goes well in your relationships. 

The fourth card now will be placed on the bottom left of the first. It stands for your past issues that have gone unresolved. Finally, the last card goes on the bottom right of the first and stands for all that you need to work on. 

5 card tarot spread

2. Spread for Breakups

This is the five card Tarot spread you need to get a grip on reality when going through or after a breakup. It will help you understand the reasons behind the breakup and give guidance on how to face the future.

Start by placing three cards from left to right on the ground. 

The left one is the first one which will tell you about your part in the relationship. The middle one is the second that tells about your ex’s part in that relationship. The right one will be the third and will signify any outside forces that had contributed in the breakup. 

Place the fourth card now above the middle one, this will represent all that you’ve gained in this relationship. Finally, place the fifth one underneath the second one which will signify what you can learn from this relationship.

3. Self-Love and Healing Spread

This 5 card Tarot spread can guide you immensely if you’re looking to love and heal yourself. Take the first card and place it to the left, this one tells you about what makes you wonderful and what are your positive traits. Place the second card to the first’s left, this card tells you why you should be proud of yourself.

The third card goes to the right of the second and denotes the amazing value that you add to other people’s lives. Above the second card goes the fourth one which will signify negative actions and thoughts that are holding you back. The last card will be underneath the second and will denote your positive actions and behavior. 

The Horseshoe 5 Card Tarot Spread

A horseshoe spread can be used when you’re looking for answers to specific questions. They’re very versatile spreads and can be used with a 5 card variation too. As you can imagine, a horseshoe five card Tarot spread is laid out in a U-shaped/horseshoe-like manner.

Start by placing the first card to the left, which would represent past influences and things that are affecting you right now. To this card’s top right, place the second card. This represents your current circumstances and what favorable result you desire from the current situation. 

To the second card’s top-right, place the third card. It stands for any unexpected issues that you might face which you must be aware of. To its bottom left, place the fourth card. It stands for the best course of action that you need to take. Finally, place the fifth card in this five card Tarot spread to signify the outcome of your present situation. 

five card tarot spread

Spreads for Career

The 5 card Tarot spread can be used for career-related guidance as well. It’ll tell you where you are in a career-related manner and predict where you wish to be. 

1. Five Card Tarot Spread for Career Guidance

This can be a really beneficial spread for you if you’re looking for solid career guidance. It’s laid out in a star shape. The first card stands for your current situation. The second one, laid to the top left of the first, signifies your attitude towards your work and dreams. 

The third one will be placed to the top right of the second and will denote what’s been holding you back from progressing in your career. The fourth one will go to the bottom right of the third and will stand for what you need to work on. Finally, the last one will be placed at the bottom left of the fourth one and will tell you about the next step that you must take.

2. New Job Spread

In terms of both the layout and the intent, this 5 card Tarot spread is very simple. If you’ve landed a new job and are looking for some insight into what this job holds, this is the spread you need. Moreover, it can also be used if you’ve been offered a promotion and you’re reluctant to accept it. 

Lay three cards side-by-side. The one on the left is the first one and denotes the benefits of the job. The middle, or second one, signifies the disadvantages of the job. The one on the right, the third one, will tell you where you are in your career right now. 

The fourth will go above the second and will signify the best course of action that you must take. Finally, the last card will go underneath the second and will denote the outcome of the situation.

General Spreads

Lastly, we have two general spreads for the present and the future that you can use to get a better understanding of what is happening to you currently and what you’ll face in the future.

1. General Present 5 Card Tarot Spread

This is the spread you can use when you just want to see how life has been treating you lately. Start by placing three cards left to right (like in other spreads we’ve seen so far) numbered one (denoting love), two (denoting family) and three (signifying career). Next, place a card each above and underneath the family/second card, these two will stand for all the positive and negative things in your life right now. 

2. General Future 5 Card Tarot Spread

This is an excellent five card Tarot spread that you may use when looking into the future and see what it holds for you. You can use it at the start of every week as well. 

Start by taking one card and placing it on the ground. It’s the main card and shows you the purpose in the near future and what’ll be important in your life. Take four cards now, laying them side-by-side with each other underneath the main one in a pyramid-like manner.

The one on the far left (the second) is about love, the one beside it (the third) is about career and money, the one to its right (the fourth) denotes health and the one on the far right is about your life at home. 

5 card tarot spread

Summing Up The 5 Card Tarot Spread

A five card Tarot spread is a versatile tool that you can use to get information on what is happening or will happen in your life. From love and self-love to careers, jobs and the future, these cards can be of immense value in guiding you through life. 

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