How Do I Put A Story Together That Makes Sense?

 If the person querying is a woman, one starts from sheet 29, spinning a jocular tale from the cards nearby around the figures on display. If it is for a man, the tale is started from sheet 28 and again makes use of the cards surrounding this one. This will bring much entertainment to any merry company

Original fortune telling instructions (translated) for Das Spiel Der Hoffnung, Game of Hope

.As we see from more traditional descriptions of how to read Lenormand cards, both with the Game of Hope as above, and the later so-called Philippe Lenormand Near and Far instructions, Lenormand has always been based on a storytelling system of combining the cards, rather than just on single meanings or cards read separately.

Now, this isn’t the first time I’ve written about making a story out of Lenormand cards, but it is still probably the single biggest problem beginning card readers seem to have.

For reference to previous times I’ve covered the issue, you can check back to the following post:

How To Tell A Story With Lenormand

You might also find the following two useful. They are essentially both about quick and dirty ways of reading more than three cards.

3 Quick and Easy Ways To Read 3-Card Spreads

Quick and Easy Ways Of Reading 5-Card Spreads

I’m not going to just repeat the info in these since they are all freely available to read, but as I know some people still have problems with this, here are some practical tips for getting better and more fluent/fluid at this particular skill.

And to be honest, it IS a skill to develop that requires a little intuitiveness, a little imagination, and the ability to pull things together naturally. It’s a bit like what we call “gut instinct” which is, in reality, based on the human ability to pull together lots of tiny cues, perceptions and clues from what’s around us into one unifying feeling.

I can’t magically hand that ability to you on a plate; the only way you’re going to get better at it is to practice it yourself until you improve. So how might you do that? Well, here, I’ll try to give you some steps you can take for practicing/improving your general storytelling or “pulling the cards together” skills!

1. Warming Up: Just Use The Pictures

To start warming up, how about imagining that these aren’t Big Meaningful Lenormand cards at all and are simply pictures or illustrations. Like in a child’s picture-book.

Imagine you were asked to make an imaginative child-level ‘story’ (without any reference to Lenormand card meaning) that somehow just incorporates the pictures in these cards. There is no right or wrong in this exercise, but just try and make an imaginary ‘story’ that somehow incorporates all the images on the cards in order, from left to right. It can be completely ridiculous, but they need to form a “story”. Here’s a couple of examples.

Lenormand Woman CardLenormand Heart CardLenormand Snake Card

If these pictures appeared as a simple story in a child’s picture book, what might the story be? Maybe…

  • A woman or girl falls in love with a snake
  • A woman or girl finds a heart-shaped box on the ground and gets bitten by a snake
  • A princess in love treads on a snake
  • A princess’s heart gets bitten by a snake

Okay, what about these three?

Lenormand Sun CardLenormand Woman CardLenormand Clouds Card

Maybe:

  • On a day that starts out sunny, a woman goes outside and it rains
  • Sunshine for a woman turns to rain
  • In a hot, sunny place, a woman sees some clouds
  • Light for a woman turns to dark

Now, let’s get a little more complicated, with five cards

Lenormand Man CardLenormand Crossroad CardLenormand Garden Card Lenormand Tree CardLenormand Storks Card

  • A man comes to a crossroads and goes to a park, where he sits under a tree and sees a stork in it.
  • A man chooses a direction and walks to a garden, where he looks at the trees and watches a stork that is nearby.

Lenormand Man CardLenormand Ship CardLenormand Sun CardLenormand Clouds CardLenormand Woman Card

  • A man on a ship sails towards the sun, but then they cloud over and he meets a woman
  • A man travels on a ship to a hot place but then it rains when he meets a woman
  • A man lies on the deck of his yacht in the sunshine, but it clouds over and he sees the shape of a woman in a pattern in the clouds
  • A man with a toy boat paints it with suns but he changes them to clouds after he has a bad experience with a woman

2. Now do the same, but using the looked up Lenormand meanings of the individual cards

Again, there is no ‘right’ or ‘wrong’ answer as such, or there may be a few options, but now try to come up with ‘stories’ including each of the card’s meanings, from left to right.

Lenormand Woman CardLenormand Heart CardLenormand Snake Card

Woman: A woman

Heart:  Love, romance, passion

SnakeBetrayal, misfortune, cheat

Putting these meanings into a story, just individually from left to right for now, might, for example lead to:

  • A woman has a romance but suffers a betrayal
  • A woman falls in love with a cheat
  • A woman’s love is betrayed
  • A woman’s romance goes wrong

 

Lenormand Sun CardLenormand Woman CardLenormand Clouds Card

Sun: Happiness, success

Woman: A woman

Clouds: Confusion, darkness

Maybe:

  • Happiness for a woman turns to darkness
  • Success for a woman becomes clouded and dark
  • Success for a woman leads to her feeling confused

What about with the five cards?

Lenormand Man CardLenormand Crossroad CardLenormand Garden Card Lenormand Tree CardLenormand Storks Card

 

Man A man

Crossroads Choices, a fork in the road

Garden Public, society, social life, outdoors

Tree  Health, wellbeing, energy

Storks Change, new start

  • A man comes to a personal fork in the road with regard to his social life or how he appears in public. He decides to focus on his health and wellbeing, and makes changes in his life.
  • A man has choices presented to him by a group of people he is involved with that are to do with his health and wellbeing. He makes changes in his life as a result and sees this as a new beginning.
  • A man has choices of where to go running. He chooses to go outside, which is great for his health and he feels like a changed person.

And this? Remember, these might not be the only options; this is just for practicing telling a story.

Lenormand Man CardLenormand Ship CardLenormand Sun CardLenormand Clouds CardLenormand Woman Card

Man A man

Ship Travel, a journey, movement

Sun: Happiness, success

Clouds: Confusion, darkness

Woman: A woman

  • A man goes on a trip and thinks he’s found happiness, but then darkness and confusion descends that is connected to a woman.
  • A man is on a journey to success but then is beset by confusion and doubt brought by the appearance of a woman in his life
  • A man making good progress towards happiness and success has it spoiled by a woman.

3. Now try using looked-up combinations

You’ll get more from your readings if you learn to combine the cards. Here, you can try linking together some of the looked-up version of the combinations, bearing in mind these are only SOME of the possible meanings of those combinations. There  would be many more if you came up with them yourself.

Again, there is no ‘right’ or ‘wrong’ answer as such, or there may be a few options, but now try to come up with ‘stories’ including each of the card’s combinations, from left to right.

Lenormand Woman CardLenormand Heart CardLenormand Snake Card

 

Woman-Heart  Loving woman; lover; soulmate

Heart-Snake   Romantic betrayal; cheating heart

Putting these combinations into a story from left to right for now, might, for example lead to the following ‘stories’:

  • A loving woman experiences a romantic betrayal
  • A seemingly loving woman actually has a cheating heart
  • A female lover has her heart betrayed

 

Lenormand Sun CardLenormand Woman CardLenormand Clouds Card

 

Sun-Woman: Woman’s achievement; woman’s success; woman’s happiness

Woman-Clouds Confused woman; misleading individual

Maybe:

  • A woman’s achievement is followed by her being confused
  • A woman’s happiness is misleading
  • A woman’s success leads to her confusion

What about with the five cards?

Lenormand Man CardLenormand Crossroad CardLenormand Garden Card Lenormand Tree CardLenormand Storks Card

Man-Crossroads: Commitment-phobe; man with many choices; several men

Crossroads-Garden: Sociability;  parties; choice of events

Garden-Tree: Karmic meeting; public health; spa

Tree-Storks Bouncing back; new lease of life; new lifestyle; birth

  • A man has choices about his social life, opts for a health-related public event and gets a new lease of life as a result
  • A man has a choice of public venues, picks a spa and develops a new lifestyle
  • A man with loads of choices ahead of him goes to loads of parties, and has a karmic meeting which changes his life

And this? Remember, these might not be the only options; this is just for practicing telling a story.

Lenormand Man CardLenormand Ship CardLenormand Sun CardLenormand Clouds CardLenormand Woman Card

Man-Ship:A male traveller; foreign man

Ship-Sun: Successful journey; tropical country; summer holiday

Sun-Clouds: Marred success; uncertain victory

Clouds-Woman:Conwoman; unstable woman

  • A male traveller goes on a successful journey, but his success is marred by a conwoman
  • A foreign man from a tropical country finds his happiness spoilt by an unstable woman
  • A male traveller on summer holidays is uncertain about his victory over a conwoman

 

4. But what if those stories from looking up the combinations don’t fit my situation?

And THIS is why I tell my readers not to get too attached to card meaning and combination lists, because they will NEVER contain everything that makes sense when it is applied to YOUR situation. This is why I advocate instead doing four things:

  • Use ‘underlying’ essence meanings of the cards. I talk about doing that in this post: How Do I Know Which Lenormand Meaning Is Right?
  • Create basic combinations yourself, using the Noun + Adjective method
  • THEN apply those combinations to make a very simple ‘essence’ story
  • THEN apply that to your particular situation  and question to flesh it out into a much more detailed story.

Scary, I know, but you should actually find this MUCH easier than trying to fit looked-up combinations into a story that make sense to you. It’s best to start by going as basic as you can.

Here, I’m going to do the first two of these steps. Bare bones essence meanings and combinations. No looking-up should be necessary if you are familiar with the basic fundamental meaning of each card, the singular energy of each card. Check the card meaning pages to get the ‘feel’ of them all.

And for a reminder of the basics of card combination, you can check these two posts here:

How To Read Lenormand Card Combinations – the #1 Secret!

How To Make Your Own Card Combinations

Lenormand Woman CardLenormand Heart CardLenormand Snake Card

Woman = Woman

Heart = Love

Snake = Betrayal

Basic Combinations:

Woman-Heart = A loving woman

Heart-Snake = A betrayed love

Essence story: A loving woman’s love is betrayed

 

Lenormand Sun CardLenormand Woman CardLenormand Clouds Card

Sun = Success & Positivity

Woman = Woman

Clouds = Darkness, Confusion

Basic Combinations:

Sun-Woman = A woman’s positivity and success

Woman-Clouds= An uncertain woman

Essence Story: A woman’s positivity and success is followed by her uncertainty

 

Lenormand Man CardLenormand Crossroad CardLenormand Garden Card Lenormand Tree CardLenormand Storks Card

Man = Man

Crossroads = Choice

Garden = Outside, public

 Tree = Energy

Storks = Change

Basic Combinations:

Man-Crossroads = Choices for a man

Crossroads-Garden= Outside, public choices

Garden-Tree = Energetic or healthy being outside/public

Tree-Storks = Changed energy

Essence Story: When a man has choices ahead, he chooses to go outside, where it is energetic or healthy, and he changes his energy.

And this? Remember, we are trying to go for the most basic  underlying meanings

Lenormand Man CardLenormand Ship CardLenormand Sun CardLenormand Clouds CardLenormand Woman Card

Man = Man

Ship = Journey

Sun = Success, Positivity

Clouds = Darkness, uncertainty

Woman = Woman

Basic Combinations:

Man-Ship = A travelling man

Ship-Sun= A positive journey

Sun-Clouds = Uncertain success

Clouds-Woman = A woman’s uncertainty

Essence Story: A man travelling on a positive journey experiences his success being made uncertain by a woman

 

5. Finally, let’s try applying those simple stories to specific contexts and questions to make the stories more specific.

This is the essence of reading Lenormand stories fluently and fluidly. You need to be able to apply these very simple essence stories to YOUR situation and question. As I said, you should actually find it much easier to do so than trying to fit looked-up combinations into a story that works for you. If you ask the cards something specific, you can get the detail of the card meanings by applying them to your context and in answer to your question.

Lenormand Woman CardLenormand Heart CardLenormand Snake Card

Essence story: A loving woman’s love is betrayed

Contexts/Questions:

How will my love life go? Your love is likely to be betrayed

What will my new job be like? Your passion and/or warm-heartedness is likely to be treated disrespectfully, or the job will betray your passions.

Why haven’t I heard from my friend? She has been experiencing romantic problems

What advice can you give me for my personal development? Is something or someone you love holding you back?

 

Lenormand Sun CardLenormand Woman CardLenormand Clouds Card

Essence Story: A woman’s positivity and success is followed by her uncertainty

Contexts/Questions:

How will my love life go? You should feel great about things at first, but then may be plagued by doubts

What will my new job be like? Everything will seem to be going really well, but then you might start losing confidence.

Why haven’t I heard from my friend? She has gone from feeling really positive to low and uncertain.

What advice can you give me for my personal development? Lows can often follow highs.

 

Lenormand Man CardLenormand Crossroad CardLenormand Garden Card Lenormand Tree CardLenormand Storks Card

Essence Story: When a man has choices ahead, he chooses to go outside, where it is energetic or healthy, and he changes his energy.

Contexts/Questions:

How will my love life go? You have choices ahead, so choose to get out and about in the world, and you should find it gives you renewed energy, a renewed sense of self.

What will my new job be like? There will be lots of options for you to really get out there and socialise, build networks which should give you a healthy new growth.

Why haven’t I heard from my friend? He’s got a lot going on, especially socially, has a new lease of life and has a lot of changes going on and new things in his life.

What advice can you give me for my personal development? You’ve got choices. See what’s out there, and really build your connections, as it should give you a new lease of life and sense of energy.

 

And finally, this?

Lenormand Man CardLenormand Ship CardLenormand Sun CardLenormand Clouds CardLenormand Woman Card

Essence Story: A man travelling on a positive journey experiences his success being made uncertain by a woman

Contexts/Questions:

How will my love life go? You’re on a journey to positivity, (or you may literally be going on a holiday somewhere hot!) but be careful of a woman who is likely to put a dampener on things or con you.

What will my new job be like? Things are generally looking good, and you are making good progress in your career, but watch out for a woman who rains on your parade.

Why haven’t I heard from my friend? He’s off travelling at the moment and may be having problems with a woman OR he was doing really well but is currently involved with a woman who is clouding his judgement.

What advice can you give me for my personal development? (If you’re the man) Generally, your progress is really good, but don’t let issues to do with a particular woman or women spoil things or get you down. (If you’re the woman) A man in your life seems to be having great success. Are you focusing a bit too much on trying to dampen that ‘win’ of his instead of on yourself?

 

Now, these are just some examples, but can you see from all these how using fundamental meanings can ‘loosen up’  your storytelling and ability to “see’ the stories in the cards way more easily than always relying on combination lists? Those should just be there to guide you or to double check with; they’re not a bible, and shouldn’t really be the basis of your reading, especially if you want to get better at telling stories with the cards. I suspect that, quite often, when my readers are struggling to “tell the story”, you are kind of trying to fit very rigid looked-up meanings into boxes where they don’t quite fit.

 

Do You Need More Guidance?

My Lenormand Tips page has links to a great many articles and Lenormand FAQs for more tips about common issues and problems.

You can also use the SEARCH box above to search common topics: you’ll generally find I have covered a lot of them in detail already!

If you DON”T find what you need on the blog, and you still have questions, you can let me know what Lenormand topics or areas you have difficulty with that you’d still like me to cover by clicking on the link to the survey below.

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