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“I was with someone recently who asked: ‘Well, don’t you think that if you do too much therapy it will take away your artistic process?’ And I told them: ‘The biggest lie that we’ve ever been sold is that we as artists have to stay in pain to create.’” Katy Perry as quoted in Vogue Australia

By Julie Daley

creative spiritThere was a point during my Process where magic came alive again within me, that magic I once knew when I painted, sitting under the old willow tree in the backyard, and I was simply me – happy and free.

I was a passionate little girl. I loved bright colors and loved to paint – especially the color yellow. I loved feeling that I was a part of the world around me. But, as the Negative Love Syndrome describes, I learned to be cautious and careful in order to stay attached to my parents. I grew up in a frightening, chaotic environment. Learning to find ways to control things helped me feel like life was more in control. Of course it wasn’t, but the illusion of control helped to calm me. I learned to control myself. This passionate, creative, spitfire of a girl became more quiet, polite, and very controlling of what came out of her mouth and what she would allow herself to express.

Uncovering the Creative Spirit

We often learn to carry the suffering of those we love in order to be loved by them in return. If our caregivers were unhappy and stuck in their own patterned behaviors and moods, we as children felt guilty just being our happy, free, and creative selves. I was too young to put any meaning to it. I just knew that suddenly I felt alone (the attachment broken) if I expressed my joyful nature.

I became hypervigilant around my mother, closely watching her to see how she was feeling. After the divorce, she mostly wasn’t happy. If she wasn’t happy then I shouldn’t be happy. I reigned myself in. I quickly got myself under control.

Years later, in my journey to reclaim my wholeness as a human being, the most important thing for me was to let go of all that I thought I was so that I could be what I truly am. I’ve come to see that in its simplest form: I adopted my parents’ suffering – their sadness, fear, and shame – and put my joyous self-expression away somewhere where I could pretend it wasn’t mine.

The Source of My Best Work

As an artist and a businesswoman, the natural creative joy within me is the source of my best work in the world. There’s a fundamental quality that is different when my work in the world holds joy. It’s intoxicating and it’s contagious. Spirit IS joyful; my nature is joyful. My nature is creative; and it is loving.

When I soften back into this nature, I am of greatest service to those I love and to the world at large. It does no one any good for me to pretend I am something that I am not. When I am present as my Spiritual Self, and when you are present as yours, what we express is exactly right for the moment at hand. This IS what it means to be a loving, creative human being. This IS what it means to be the artist of your life and to make art with your life. We do not have to stay in pain to create the lives we are meant to live.

  • Sharon Dilley


    02/15/19 at 7:11 AM

    Love that your creativity is more alive now. I find mine is going crazy with ideas and thoughts for how to do my job better. I work for American Humane Teaching dogs and trading Service Dogs.

    • Julie


      03/05/19 at 9:00 AM

      Dear Sharon,
      How wonderful – crazy with ideas for improving your job, which sounds like a wonderful job. Nice to meet you.

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