Nine of Wands Tarot Card Meanings

Nine of Wands’ Upright & Reversed Meanings

Nine of Wands tarot card image
Nine of Wands (Reversed, Lacking)

Ideas: Strength recovery, transfer, undependability

Traits: Cowardly, hesitant, irresponsible, lazy, relaxed, submissive, timid, unreliable, weak

Emotions: Apprehension, contentment, insecurity, nervousness, relief, satisfaction, uneasiness

  • Actions:
    • Abandoning your post
    • Accepting a painful truth
    • Finding an easier way to do a hard job
    • Knowing when to give up
    • Passing the baton to someone else
    • Recovering your strength
Nine of Wands (Upright, Balanced)

Ideas: Devotion, persistence, stamina

Traits: Confidential, determined, dutiful, incorruptible, loyal, private, protective, strong, stubborn, tough

Emotions: Eagerness, enthusiasm, excitement, exhilaration, hope, optimism, thrill, zeal, zest

  • Actions:
    • Bearing up under incredible duress
    • Dragging yourself across the finish line
    • Fulfilling your promises and obligations
    • Performing as good as you can
    • Picking yourself up by your own bootstraps
    • Refusing to quit
    • Sticking with it for the duration
Nine of Wands (Upright, Excessive)

Ideas: Burnout, losing battle, martyr

Traits: Dogmatic, impractical, irrational, paranoid, rigid, suspicious, unrealistic

Emotions: Annoyance, defeat, disappointment, frustration, hurt, irritation, neglect, suffering

  • Actions:
    • Burning yourself out
    • Clinging to something that needs to be released
    • Ending up hurting yourself the most
    • Failing to take care of your health
    • Fighting a losing battle
    • Making yourself a martyr

Nine of Wands’ Advice

Personal Growth

Know when to be a hero. Coached by phrases like “When the going gets tough, the tough get going,” you’ll be tempted to crawl ahead even when you’re down. Some causes deserve your total dedication; some don’t. Knowing the difference is an important component of maturity.

Relationship

Sometimes relationships of any kind are hard work. You and your partner must be able to count on each other when the going gets rough. If you’ve been unreliable, it’s time to change your ways. If your partner doesn’t seem to be in things for the long haul, you should plan accordingly.

Career

When there’s hard work to be done, you learn who your real friends are. Call on others for support, especially if you feel overwhelmed. Take note of who responds. Recognize, too, when you’ve had enough; doggedly pressing on when you’re broken benefits no one.

Spirituality

Meaningful progress takes time. You’ll be tempted to give up, to abandon your practices, to shrug off your faith. Stick with it. Your transformation is slow, but steady. Encourage yourself by looking back and seeing how far you’ve come.

Nine of Wands’ Symbols & Insights

The Battered Hero

The figure on Rider–Waite–Smith-inspired versions of this card looks exhausted; his Wand is more a prop than a weapon. Still, he persists. If you’ve been through a lot yourself, this card can be a reminder that there’s light at the end of the tunnel.

Eight Background Wands

Eight is the number of action and outer work; Wands is the suit of intention. In the background of many Rider–Waite–Smith versions of this card, we see eight Wands; they represent the work done to get this far. When you’re exhausted, look back. Your achievements can give you the strength to keep moving forward.

The Fullness of Intention

A slightly different take on numerology positions this card as the “fullness of intention.” Having done all that can be done, we must let go.

The Marseilles Image

Another intrusive Wand appears, but the lattice of eight Wands is to strong to be broken. One imagines the entire structure sagging under the weight of this new addition. Will the work (suggested by the eight Wands) done so far hold up to this new challenge? Only time will tell.

More About Nine of Wands Tarot Card

Prediction
Don’t relax yet; there’s more to come.
The test you’re facing now is happening for one reason: to show you who your real friends are.
Timing
Between December 3 and 12
Affirmation
“When the going gets tough, I stay the course.”
Numerology Number
9
(the completion: fullness, readiness, ripeness)
Classical Element
Fire
Astrological Planet in Sign
Moon in Sagittarius
Story Character
The main character continues to strive for the goal, despite terrible odds.
Questions to Ask
How do you cope when things get really tough?
When you get low, what encourages you to go on?
At what point should you be able to let this situation go?
Other Tarot Card Meanings