“The creative process is a process of surrender, not control.”-Julia Cameron

This weekend I am taking a course by Julia Cameron: The Artist Way. It’s based on her best selling book, a 12 week program on reconnecting with the lost creative side within. Loads of artists swear by it’s effectiveness in unlocking the mystery of creativity to include Alicia Keys, Elizabeth Gilbert, Russell Brand, and Florence (from Florence and the Machine) to name a few.

It was recommended by a friend over ten years ago, although I never have finished it in its entirety. I’ve used it numerous times with clients, offering the book as a gift for those whose creative spirit has been diminished.

It’s a two day course in London. Today we were given a 90 minute lunch, and were encouraged to take 20 minutes in silence to note our a-ha moments. I took my packaged lunch to Regent Park and planned to reflect.

This came easily. The day was surprisingly gorgeous, and I did not look anything up on my cellphone. One thing I vowed to do once a week for this year is to limit technology one day per week. This is part of my project of doing 40 things I am afraid of this year. It’s a weekly tech fast to include no social media, emails, phone calls, and texting only for emergencies. Today happens to be the day I do this.

What a-ha moments that arose were “signs.” I began seeing signs everywhere: the shirts people wore, signs on the street, parts of conversation I overheard.

The signs included the following tee shirts:

Create your own future

Stage coach

Stay positive

Roll with it



I then found a hotel key which I picked up and savoured:

As I walked back to the venue , I saw this sign.

It seemed blatantly obvious that the world was talking and I needed to listen. A-ha moments exist everywhere, if I provide silence to catch the whispers.

In my youth, I used to always search for signs as a means to find the answers to questions I was not sure about. I set an intentional wonderment into the ether, and the universe would respond by giving me signs. Over the years, I lost touch with this. Perhaps I became too busy in my everyday mind, which constantly chatters. Another likely cause is smartphones. I am highly guilty of distracting my free moments with checking emails , texts, and social media. It’s as if I do not allow my life to have space to simply be in the world. I must constantly be entertained , or inputting new information in my head.

But now that I am removing this temporarily from my life, I have space to see what the world may be guiding me to see. I can lean towards my intuitive side which is longing to be recognised.

It’s something I realise I did not even miss, until it reappeared today. If I pay attention, I can note the subtle ways I am being nudged to an answer. I am excited to see what tomorrow has in store.


Originally published at itonlytakesasmile.com


  • Dr. Tricia

    Creativity Coach, Author, Psychologist, Yogini, and Community Wellness Consultant

    Tricia immerses herself in the world of helping others live passionately in the present moment. For the past several years, she has been working with the USAF Special Forces overseas as a clinical psychologist, consultant, workshop facilitator, and yoga instructor. She has published her first book The Fragrance of Wanderlust: How to Capture the Essence of Travel in Our Everyday Lives. In the meantime, check out her weekly podcast The Golden Mirror.