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Six of Swords | Symbology & Interpretations | Tarot Card Meanings

The Six of Swords depicts a scene where two characters are leaving a situation on a small boat.

The Six of Swords Keywords

Upright Meanings

Reversed Meanings

Retreat, transition, hardship, releasing hurt, calm after the storm, courage, moving on, leaving, protection.

Staying, returning, quiet leaving, avoidance, lack of resolution, feeling stuck, unable to escape, carrying baggage.

Imagery & Symbolism

Six of Swords
Six of Swords

Boat: The boat indicates transition and moving away from one situation to another.

Island: The island indicates the arrival to a calmer place.

Water: In the 6 of Swords, part of the water is calm, and the other part is unsettled, this indicates a transition from one situation to a calmer one.


Six of Swords Tarot Card Meanings


The Six of Swords traditionally means that you are moving away from a negative situation, towards a more positive situation. In readings, I will read the Six of Swords as a more independent and courageous card due to the fact that it typically appears when the seeker is making these decisions for their own benefit.


The Six of Swords means that you want to move away, but there could be an obstacle preventing you, or you are avoiding the choice due to fearing what could happen afterwards.



In a relationship reading, the Six of Swords can indicate leaving your partner or a romantic relationship. The relationship is likely not good for your mental health and has a toxic environment. Moving away or leaving the relationship is the better decision to make.


The Six of Swords can indicate holding onto negative or toxic relationships that do not serve you any good. It is likely that in relationships, you hold onto them in hopes of your relationship improving rather than leaving them for something better. Alternatively, the Six of Swords can suggest an obstacle that prevents you from leaving a negative situation in a relationship.



In a reading that is work-related, the Six of Swords can suggest the work environment you are in is negative and does not allow you to reach your truest potential. The Six of Swords can indicate that you are leaving a negative or toxic work environment and can suggest leaving a job role or moving positions to something more calmer and beneficial. This can be supported by cards such as the Ace of Pentacles, or Page of Pentacles.


The Six of Swords in a work-related position can suggest that you are having trouble escaping or moving away from a negative work environment. You may find it difficult and want to move away, but there are obstacles preventing you from leaving, or you hope that in time, things will improve.



In a financial-related reading, the Six of Swords is a positive sign that you are slowly moving away from a negative financial situation. It can indicate that you are slowly making more positive decisions and are taking the initiative when it comes to improving your finances. The Six of Swords usually indicates that your finances are in a negative position and you are wanting to move away from this.


The Six of Swords appearing for your finances can indicate avoiding dealing with your financial situation. It may be difficult right now for you to move away from your finances, or take a break from it, however, it is probably the best you can do for now. Focus on what you can work on for now when it comes to your finances.



In a health reading, the Six of Swords can indicate that your health has been taking a toll on your mental well-being. The environment that you are in is negative and not working for your best health interests. It is important to know what is working well for your health and move away from what is not working.


The Six of Swords can indicate that you are struggling to move away from an environment that is not helping your mental well-being. It is likely you are avoiding leaving this environment because it is what you are used to and you are struggling to find the right moment to move away for the betterment of your health.


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