Four of Cups Tarot Card Meaning

By Charrette Vachon

It is part of human nature to overlook opportunities and take things for granted. The Four of Cups represents these missed opportunities, along with regret. The card also symbolizes a time of necessary introspection and contemplation. Rather than focusing on the issues and obstacles that stand in your way, fixate your mind on finding solutions to these problems. Letting go of fear, stubbornness, and bitterness will allow you to move forward and clearly see what is around you.

  • Key dates: 12 July to 21 July
  • Planet: Moon
  • Element: Water
  • Astrological sign: Cancer

Visual Elements and Symbolism

The image on the Four of Cups shows a man sitting under a tree on top of a hill. He appears to be thinking deeply or meditating. While he is focused on three golden cups that are laying on the grass before him, a fourth cup is being offered to him by a hand in the air. However, the man is in such deep thought that he does not notice the fourth cup. He appears upset and unimpressed with the three cups on the ground. An interesting point is that the Four of Cups is the only non-Ace card that features the “Divine Hand” symbol. The man ignores the sacred hand right next to him, showing that he chooses instead to focus on worldly, materialistic things.

This image represents how we as humans are inclined to take the things that we have for granted, which blinds us to the opportunities that the universe presents us with. We overlook the solutions to our problems, even if they are right next to us.

The Four of Cups as a Person

This card represents a person who is unmotivated and cannot find happiness or lacks the inspiration to pursue it. They often take what they have for granted, and this causes them to look past new opportunities. They are so focused on how things in their life are going wrong that they feel stuck and can’t seem to move forward in any aspect of their life.

The Four of Cups Upright

The card often appears in the upright position when you are feeling unmotivated and frustrated with your current situation, even though the solution may be right in front of you. You may tend to ignore solutions or turn them away due to stubbornness or because you feel that they are not of interest to you.


The Four of Cups indicates that you might be feeling distracted or bored at work. You might feel an overwhelming sense of stagnation. This will cause you to find it tough to get things done or to complete projects, which can negatively affect your performance. If possible, take time off to do some internal reflection. You may even consider changing jobs. If this is not an option for you, try to find ways to motivate yourself.

Love and Relationships

If you are single, the Four of Cups love reading signifies indifference within your romantic life. You may be unbothered and feel like you are not open to new opportunities. This is the ideal time to do some reflection and think about what you are looking for in a future partner.

As a romantic partner, the card symbolizes boredom and a lack of interest in your relationship. The relationship may have lost its spark and no longer enriches your or your partner’s life. This could be a sign that it is time to move on.

If you are actively pursuing a new love interest, the Four of Cards could signify that you should be careful. The person may be deceiving you by hiding something.


The upright Four of Cups indicates that your health may not be as good as it should be because you have not been prioritizing it. You might be feeling depressed because of physical and emotional stress. It’s time to focus on improving your lifestyle by doing more exercise, getting more rest, and making better decisions when it comes to food. Neglecting these things can be causing you to feel overly tired and unmotivated.

When it comes to your mental health, think about the things that are causing you to lose motivation and feel down. Think about whether or not to eliminate these things from your life. If these are things that you cannot let go of, try to change how you perceive and deal with them.


In terms of money, the Four of Cups can mean that you are envious of other people’s financial situations. Constantly comparing yourself to others causes you to be distracted and prevents you from appreciating what you have.

Try to be grateful and keep your eyes open for new opportunities that can help you to improve your financial life and reach your goals.

The Four of Cups Reversed

While the upright Four of Cups indicates frustration and demotivation, the reversed card signifies a yearning for a new beginning. You may feel a strong desire to break free from feelings of apathy and disappointment. The Four of Cups reversed can be a sign that you need to withdraw for a while and do some soul-searching.


New opportunities are coming up that could potentially put an end to the period of stagnation you have been experiencing at work. The change might be sudden, but it will likely be positive.

Love and Relationships

You may have gone through a period in which you were not interested in pursuing relationships at all. This may have been the result of a rough breakup, but things are looking up. You finally feel ready to start dating and looking for love once again.

If you are in a relationship, problems may arise that cause you to seriously question whether you should continue to pursue this relationship. It’s time to make a decision regarding whether you are both prepared to put in the necessary effort to make things work, or whether you have reached the end of the road.


The Four of Cups reversed signifies rejuvenation. Health problems may have been plaguing you and causing you to feel defeated, but this will soon change, causing you to feel more positive and grateful.


You may have been struggling with envy, but now you are taking positive steps to make better financial decisions and appreciate what you have. You will likely come across new opportunities and feel much more motivated. This might be a period where hard work will be necessary, but the rewards will be worth it.

Your Past, Present, and Future

If the Four of Cups is pulled in the past position, this can signify bitterness and remorse. You may have neglected a potentially life-changing opportunity or an important relationship. Instead of owning your mistakes, you often put the blame on people, things, or circumstances. The only way to let go of your bitterness is to accept responsibility and try to put the past behind you.

In the present position, the card can indicate stubbornness and being closed off. There are obvious, simple solutions to your problems, and you choose to ignore them. These defense mechanisms are only hindering the progress of your career, relationships, and personal and spiritual growth.

When appearing in the future position, the Four of Cups signifies growth and wisdom. Over time, you will learn to recognize your own negative behavior along with what triggers it and how to control it. This will allow you to have a more positive, open outlook on your life.

Important Card Combinations

When the Four of Cups is combined with other cards, it usually adds a negative meaning to the cards. If a positive card is drawn before the Four of Cups, this serves as a warning that deception may be involved or that an opportunity may be too good to be true. You should approach new opportunities with caution and try not to get your hopes up.

On the other hand, if a positive card appears after the Four of Cups, this signifies that something exciting and positive could be coming your way. You might experience a breakthrough, leaving behind the skepticism that has been preventing you from recognizing or taking on new opportunities.

Four of Cups and Temperance

The Temperance card signifies the ability to stay focused and avoid temptation. When combined, these two cards show that you are ready to make the necessary changes in order to pursue happiness and peace.

Four of Cups and Ace of Swords

The Ace of Swords represents clarity of the mind, while the Four of Cups indicates our inclination to take things for granted. The combination of these two cards shows a harshness in the way that you express yourself. You might have gained clarity but are offending those close to you with how you choose to convey it.

Four of Cups and Ace of Wands

The Ace of Wands symbolizes creativity, inspiration, and the potential for new opportunities. In combination, these cards signify that you have conquered a certain skill and have the confidence to know what to do and how to act.

Four of Cups: Yes or No?

The Yes or No meaning of the Four of Cups is no. Any problem or situation should not be dealt with right now, and it would be best to wait until a later time.