The Four of Swords tarot card represents feeling overwhelmed and anxious. When this card shows up in a reading, it appears to suggest that you need to take a step back from the chaos of your life.
The regular day to day hustle and bustle can leave even the toughest person feeling mentally drained and in need of some alone time. Have you been feeling overloaded and stressed out lately? Now is the time to step away from the crowd and recharge your battery.
Four of Swords Key Words
Before diving deeper into the upright- and reversed Four of Swords card meaning, and its connection to love, career, and life, below a quick overview of the most important words connected to this Minor Arcana card.
Four of Swords tarot Card Description
The Four of Swords tarot card depicts the carving of a man lying atop a tomb. His hands are pressed together as if he is praying and his expression is serene.
Above him hangs three swords, and the fourth sword is carved into the front of his resting place. In the background, we see stained glass art depicting a woman and child.
The man lying on the tomb represents the need to retreat and clarity that can be gained in solitude. The man’s expression and body language tell us that this time will be relaxing, and that wisdom will be gained from it.
The swords that are mounted on the wall behind him are a reminder of the emotional battles he has fought in the past, and the sword below him signals that the battle has ended. Although this card might seem negative to the untrained eye, it is actually a ‘solution’ card that provides an answer to your current problems.
Four of Swords Tarot Meaning
If you receive the Four of Swords tarot card in the upright position in a reading, it indicates feelings of overstimulation, being out of touch, and overwhelmed in life. You might be dealing with conflict in your family, relationship, or friend circle that is causing you to want to withdraw. If this resonates with you, follow your instincts. Spending time alone to relax and recharge will be just the thing to get you feeling back to normal once again.
Money and Career Meaning
In a career reading, the Four of Swords has two main interpretations. The first signals a return to work after a leave of absence or a vacation. Because you have taken some time for yourself, you can make this return to work feeling recharged and ready to take on whatever comes your way. The cards show that you will be successful in managing a hectic environment at work since you have allowed yourself the time needed to prepare.
The other interpretation foretells feeling ‘at the end of your rope’ at work. Have you been dealing with an ongoing conflict with coworkers or authority at the workplace lately?
The Four of Swords is here to remind you that no job is worth sacrificing your happiness for. Now may be a good time for you to re-evaluate your work situation and decide if this career is a good fit for you. Re-examine your goals as well. How would staying or leaving your current field help you achieve your long-term targets?
Love and Relationships Meaning
If the Four of Swords appears in a love reading, there are also two common interpretations. The first denotes a relationship returning to normal after a period of disagreement.
If you have struggled with constant fighting in the past, the end is surely in sight. All you must do is focus on your own behavior and do what you can to solve problems in your control. You might be able to control your partner’s actions, but you have all the power to react in the right way.
The Four of Swords in a love or friendship reading also happens when you will be confronted with new issues that could ‘make or break your relationship.’ Do you suspect infidelity, lies, secrets or other dealbreakers? You may need to take a break for your own mental health.
If you wish to continue the connection, you will have to accept what is and be willing to compromise. Is there something you can do to fix the problems that you have been having? Now is the time to step up and take responsibility for your part and set boundaries as well. It all starts with you.
Health and Spirituality Meaning
There is also a word of warning delivered by the Four of Swords: Take your mental health seriously. Chronic stress and anxiety can wreak havoc on every area of your life if not addressed early on. Look for healthy ways to cope and eliminate your triggers instead of ignoring the problems.
In a health reading, these weapons also signify a return to health following a battle with illness. You have followed the doctor’s orders and taken the necessary steps to take care of yourself. You will soon be free of all sickness whether it be physical or spiritual.
Four of Swords Reversed
Are you putting too much on your plate and struggling to manage it all? The reversed Four of Swords brings good news. A period of rest is going to bring you back to life. If you resist doing so, mental breakdown or collapse could be in your future.
No matter how hard it might be for you to take a moment to breathe, remember that you will work at your full capacity when you are feeling rested and energetic. The best way to bring these emotions about is by taking care of yourself first and foremost. A solo weekend getaway is in order!
Four of Swords: Yes or No
The Four of Swords points to stress or feeling of being overwhelmed in your life. At the same time, it encourages rest and relaxation as a way to get over these problems. The position of the Four of Swords in a Yes or No reading is mostly neutral, but it does carry a positive connotation when it is connected to self-care The resulting answer is most likely yes.
Important Card Combinations
The Four of Swords reminds you to take some time for yourself and take a step back from the chaos of your life. Yet, in combinations with other tarot cards, the meaning of the Four of Swords can be influenced.
Four of Swords and The Magician
The combination with the Magician foreshadows a long-term relationship in your future. The key interpretation of the Four of Swords in this combo is that building yourself as a person first will attract the right partner.
When self-love is such a big part of knowing how to love another person, you can’t afford to neglect yourself at all. Remember to set time aside each day for self-care, and you will be in the perfect position to meet the person that’s meant to love you.
Four of Swords and The Empress
This duo embodies all the characteristics of a happy home. It reminds you to maintain a peaceful and serene mood in your home as a strategy for maintaining a happy and healthy family life.
Remind all members of your household that putting yourself first is the best way to achieve happiness for yourself and those around you. The advice of the Four combined with the Empress is that a relaxed mind is a healthy mind, and it all starts at home!
Four of Swords and The Hermit
When the Four of Swords and The Hermit are together the connection signals growing old with someone. The current relationship that you are in is likely to be your happily ever after. The best advice you can take from these cards is to focus some of your energy on things you enjoy rather than focusing completely on your partner. It is your responsibility to hold up your end of the bargain in a relationship, and you can only do that if you are happy and whole in your own right.
Four of Swords and Ace of Wands
If the Four of Swords and the Ace of Wands appear alongside one another in a reading, now is the time to focus on new beginnings. Have you been considering starting a new chapter in life? Now is the time to push forward and completely ‘reset’. Your past matters very little! It is what lies ahead that is important.
My Favorite Four of Swords Cards
Although I write all the descriptions based on the Rider-Waite Tarot deck, I use other decks too. Below you can find a small selection of my favorite Four of Swords tarot cards. If you drew a tarot card yourself and want to share this, I would love to hear from you.
The Four of Swords Tarot Card in a Reading
That’s all for the Four of Swords tarot meaning! If you have pulled the upright or reversed Four of Swords card in your spread, did the meaning make sense to your situation in life?
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