Like the Death card, the Ten of Swords is asking for flexibility and openness to other ways of thinking, but it also symbolises the loneliness we often experience when we evolve. When I look at the classic Ten of Swords figure, driven into the ground by blades, stuck to the spot and wrapped in a cloak, I see the butterfly in the chrysalis. It is not an image of gruesome death but of the fear which comes when metamorphosis can no longer be prevented. It is a hard road to have to walk - the road towards realisation, maturity, acceptance, even sorrow. But that road leads to greater clarity and deeper reserves of strength.
The Ten of Swords might symbolise a time of not really knowing where your home is. Maybe not knowing who your friends are. Maybe you're finding out who is prepared to stand by you or support your choices. Maybe you are trying to support your own choices but finding them at odds with what you want to present to the world. Perhaps the way you define success is changing rapidly and your ego can barely keep up! You might have caught yourself trying to cling onto a system which no longer works and doesn't serve you, but you're desperate to keep things as they are for fear of what lies beyond your own boundaries. Metamorphosis is not always beautiful and illuminating - it's often a huge bloody battle between your past and your future, between resistance and allowance. The Ten of Swords tends to illustrate that battle above all else, for me at least.