Cold Reading Tips & Split Ends

To most people, hair is an important part of their lives and their identity. And the great thing about this, for our purposes, is that everyone at one time or another hasn't been happy with their hair. From forced trips to the barber shop to a cow lick that won't stay down.

So bring it up in your readings. "There have been times when you weren't happy with your hair." Or..."I get a sense that you haven't always been happy with your hair." (It would be best to work out your own routine.)

Think about your life. Have you always been delighted with your hair? I certainly haven't.

Although you could use the Bad Hair/Problem Hair line while giving a past, present, or future reading, I'd recommend just using in a past reading.

Some thought on this will tell you why: if you are giving a reading to someone who is graying or bald, it will be pretty obvious that this matters to them (if they do care, I'd say most do). And of course, nobody wants to hear that they are going to thin out and/or go gray and/or go bald. So leave it out of your future readings.

It's up to you if you want to tell someone about their hair if you can tell they are dying it or wearing a toupee.


Finally available: The Cold Reading Mastery Course

If you've been trying to learn cold reading, but are frustrated at the lack of decent information out there, I know the feeling. Sure, there are some great cold reading books on the market. Books like Ian Rowland's Full Facts Book of Cold Reading (more of an exposé than a how-to) and Kenton Kneppler's Completely Cold (good for quick 5 minute readings) are good as introductions.

But if you want a step-by-step guide on how to give incredible readings effortlessly, check out this webpage: Cold Reading Mastery Course.

Unfinished Busine...

Here's a great technique to use when you are talking about a sitter's/client's past: talk about their unfinished business.

Bring up the sense, the impression, the sight (if scrying), of some sort of unfinished business in your clients' (or HB's) life. Let them fill in the blanks and tell you what it is.

For example, if I were to say to you, "Your Fate Line has a slight break in it towards your wrist; this tells me you have some sort of unfinished business... What does that mean to you?"

Upon hearing the "unfinished business" and the question, you might start a transderivational search for meaning. You might think of unfinished courses, unfinished books, appologies never given, forgiveness, no closure, something you wanted to say to a deceased relative, etc.

This technique is powerful and therefore it comes with a warning: for some people unfinished business has strong emotions attached to it, sometimes negative. If you are going to use unfinished business in your readings, you MUST calibrate your client's state.

Any sense of things going negative (sighing, down-turned mouth, getting misty eyed, immediate slumping of shoulders, etc.) you should immediately break state. You can do this by changing palms ("OK, let me see your other hand now."), having him or her cut the tarot deck, standing up, anything that changes their position or state. Then move on to something more positive.

This is an advanced cold reading technique. Use it carefully, and you will have a powerful tool in your psychic entertaining kit.

I think it would be great if you


Free Palm Reading Guide

I came across some good videos on palm reading basics. Keep in mind while watching the video that the teacher, Jim Winter, is closed-eyed about palm reading (just my assumption).

Still, learning palm reading from video is better than getting your palms read from a "real" psychic reader and "legit" palm reading books (how I learned years ago). This is just one in a series of videos, if you're interested in seeing more, just click the video and you'll be taken to the YouTube channel.


Failure Into Flexibility

Say you're new at giving cold readings and you have a few sticking points. For example, maybe you hem and haw when you can't think of anything to say. Perhaps you become flustered when you get a miss.

Whatever your dilemma (and we all have them at one time or another), we have a powerful way to eliminate your cold reading sticking points.

It's from the field of NLP, and it's called Failure Into Flexibility. You won't believe how simple it is...and the profound effect it will have on your readings.

Say you gave, what you feel, was a lousy reading. Here's what you do:

1. That day, while you're lying in bed, before you drift off to sleep for the night, in your mind's eye, go through the reading you gave earlier. It's like you are reliving the reading again.

2. When you get to the point where you had a problem, stop and freeze the action. Think about what you really wanted to accomplish with that person.

3. Now in your imagination, carry out the exact behavior you would have wanted. What would you have said? How would you like to have reacted? Imagine everything going as planned.

4. Anchor this desirable response into an external cue. It could be the palm of someone's hand (if you're doing palmistry) or the cards (Tarot), even somebody's face.

5. Go to sleep, realizing you are integrating these new desirable behaviors into future readings.

Always reflect on your performance. What did you do right? Did wrong? Could improve? Use the Failure Into Flexibility exercise whenever you need boost.


How to Guess Someone's Job With 99.999% Accuracy

In many readings, and especially ones for entertainment, clients (read: wise-asses) will often ask if you can "guess" what they do for a living. "Okay Mister Mind Reader, if you're such a psychic, what's my job?"

How would you answer, not knowing this person AND with hundreds of thousands of job descriptions out there?

The best answer you can give is that the person "fixes or repairs something". This line is great in that the vast majority of jobs do actually "fix or repair something." "I'm getting the impression that you are involved with fixing or repairing..."

Think about it. Aside from the obvious jobs like mechanic or dentist. How about a sales person? He or she repairs a company's bottom line. Teachers? They fix a student's' ablility to learn. Taxi drivers? Apart from doing minor repairs to their cabs, they have routes "fixed" in their minds. A receptionist? Maybe he or she doesn't repair or fix anything per se, but there's a good chance their company might.

I'd say almost any job or career can be reframed as one that fixes problems or repairs something.

To get some practice with this, go over your job. . .and the jobs of family members, friends, and neighbours. How do their jobs fix or repair something?

(I got this idea from cold reader Herb Dewey, although he preferred to use the word "rehabilitate.")


Proof You Are Good

When I was in India, I saw this technique used a lot by the wandering psychic readers (and ear cleaners) who frequented the tourist haunts. They would carry a notebook around with them, and after they gave a reading, they'd have the customer write a few lines telling how great the reader was.

Of course, when the reader approached people, he'd show them his testimonial book. That would hook them in, they'd get a reading. The reader would get his fee and another testimonial.

If you are giving readings at events like psychic fairs or restaurants, you might want to start doing the same. After you've given the reading, ask your clients for a testimonial in writing and signed.

Then, once you have enough testimonials, you can have your book prominently displayed proving to prospective clients that you're the real deal.


Quick Cold Reading Tip: Easy Way to Avoid Misses

Here's an important tip to keep in mind, especially if you are just starting out in this field. When giving character readings, try to use conditional statements (can, could, somewhat, etc.) rather than universal quantifiers (always, never, etc.) in your readings. Also be careful of using implied universal quantifiers.

Check out the differences here:

• "You tend to be stubborn." Or, "You can be stubborn (at times)."

to this

• "You are stubborn." Or, "You're never stubborn." (Notice the first statement implies a universal statement.)

It's harder to disagree with the first statements, the ones that are conditional. Therefore, it's harder to miss with these kind of statements.

Here are a bunch of conditional words and phrases you can immediately add to your repertoire:

You tend to..., Now and then you...., Frequently you..., At times...., If you wanted to, you could..., You have a tendency to... Occasionally..., There have been times....

That should be enough to get you started since you have a tendency to catch on quickly.


Psychic Impressions

One of the things you're going to love about this next cold reading language pattern is how effective it is.

It allows you to make statements that can be complete misses and yet will fly right by your client, often encouraging them to add the missing information.

This language pattern and its variations are part of every good psychic's repertoire.

• There's
• I get
• I'm getting
• I'm picking up

an indication...
an impression...
a sense of...
You can mix and match the above since, for our purposes, they pretty much mean the same thing.

Here's an example:

READER: Looking at the cards, I'm getting an impression of a health concern.
CLIENT: Who? Me? I'm fine. (BLASTED! A MISS)
READER: Yes, that's right. And there's an indication of a health concern with an older member of your family.
CLIENT: Really? My parents are healthy.
READER: But I'm getting an impression of someone older than your parents.
CLIENT: Well, my grandparents have all passed away. Oh, wait, you know, my Uncle Jim had a heart attack two years ago.
READER: I thought so. The cards don't lie.
What you tag on at the end is up to you: feelings, events, etc. Since what you're "seeing" isn't very clear and the language you're using suggests that, the client will fill in to help you out.

I'm getting an impression that in the days and weeks ahead, you'll find yourself using this pattern and others with ease and elegance.

(Photo by Stig Nygaard)


Your Cold Reading Persona

How would it feel if you had a quick way to master cold reading? Although it is a skill that does take some practice, there are shortcuts to learning and one of these shortcuts is taking on a psychic's persona.

If you are giving readings to your friends or family, this isn't so important. If you want to pick up a cutie at a pub or do readings with strangers just for fun, you're going to have to at least say that you studied palmistry, astrology, or whatever divination technique, in order to be taken somewhat seriously.

But if you want to give psychic readings for money, you are going to have to develop a persona.

A persona is the combination of characteristics an actor takes on in order to become their chosen role.

What kind of persona? Well, as a psychic reader, how would you like to appear to others? Mysterious? Funny? Gentle? Therapeutic? Wise?

If you can't decide what persona, figure out which performers appeal to you. How about an actor or actress playing a role in a film?

Bear in mind, that your persona doesn't have to be an exact replica of someone famous. It can also be a composite of alluring traits.

Make a list of all the qualities, traits, characteristics, and behaviours you want to have in your persona. Just realizing consciously how you want to appear to others while you're cold reading can help. To take it a step further, however, think of the benefits of each quality, think of why each quality is important.

For example, if I have "speaking in a low voice" on my list of what I want to do during a reading, I might put this: "speaking in a low voice might make people more intrigued with what I say, will draw people physically closer to me as I speak, and develop deeper rapport."

Of course, you'll have your own reasons.

Be aware that this can be subtle. You don't really have to do a 180º in your personality if you don't want to. Remember, you are becoming an actor just doing a role.

By stepping into your cold reading persona and really getting into the tradecraft cold reading, you will be able to give far more convincing readings than if you were just your average joe-shmoe.

I wonder if you've already started to notice how you are subconsciously taking on the persona of a mesmerizing cold reader.