Moving into fear

Basic painted face

A quick face painted with acrylics

How do you deal with fear? A lot of people will tell you it’s only by moving into whatever it is that you fear that you can overcome it. But how do you move into what you fear? How do you go boldly (or not so boldly) ahead into a situation that gives you the shivers? I’ll be the first to admit that I didn’t have a clue.

Then, I took up painting. And as I tried and experimented and failed and tried again, I realized – this is how you move into fear!

You move into fear by sticking with something even when you’re scared and have no idea what the hell you’re doing. It means taking a piece you don’t like and working it until you do. And if you still don’t like it, chalking it up to experimenting and experience, and then cutting it up to use as the base of another piece, so you can reframe and redo.

Fearless painting

Some fearless mark making

And each time you take a deep breath and make another mark on that paper or canvas, not knowing where you will end up, you grow your muscles of bravery. It may not be bold bravery, but rather the quiet kind of bravery that enables you to stick with a task; to look for answers; to try one approach, then another, and another until you start to see some semblance of success; to constantly learn and evolve and grow.

It’s a knowing that mistakes can be fixed. And that if they cannot be fixed, they can serve as the foundation for the next stage of your evolution.

Fearless painting

The final piece – after many layers of mark making and re-painting. Moving through the fear of having “ruined” the face with my fearless marks.

Ultimately, it’s the knowledge that life is fluid, constantly moving and shaping and stretching and contracting – that nothing lasts forever (even though it sometimes feels like it does).

Just like one mark on the page can change the direction of your painting, so can one move…one choice…one decision, change the course of your journey. And so it is that each new mark…each new decision…can change the final outcome. And it all started by moving into your fear.

This piece was inspired by Annie Hamman’s lesson in Lifebook

Posted in Mindset for artists, On My Art Table, Soulful living and tagged , , , , , .

I’m an artist and art educator, podcaster, tarot reader, and writer. I share my discoveries along the path to inspire you to live a more creative, soul-centered life. Receive my love letters for more of my musings on life and creativity. P.S. I love Instagram - join me there?


  1. Why have I not read much of you before? Literally cursing myself. Moving into fear… I have been unknowingly following a similar pattern.. one doesn’t wake up to such things one fine day. You too much have been doing it in smaller ways always.

    Painting is simply amazing.. and how wonderfully you showed the transition with words and paint 🙂 Love you for writing this 🙂

  2. What a brilliant blog post! I know Annie’s work and I love it too! What you say here is so true and resonates with my own experience. Love this art work and your words here. Thank You so much for sharing! xx

  3. Exactly. Confront fear, don’t run away from it. It’s hard, and sometimes you might not succeed. But there is still satisfaction in knowing that you tried anyways.

  4. “It’s a knowing that mistakes can be fixed. And that if they cannot be fixed, they can serve as the foundation for the next stage of your evolution.” Understanding that is the key! You really can’t fail…

  5. This was a must read, Shinjini. When I started to blog that’s when I moved into fear. It was frightful, exciting, soaked with doubts and exciting too. But I did anyway. Found answers and gathered courage to write more too. It was like a slow dance. 🙂 Beautiful read.

Leave a Reply