Deborah Kruger

On Fear of Failure

Anyone who is struggling with a fear of failure is actually really dealing with a fear of living fully. To live in the present is to experience the joys, sorrows and lessons of life. For artists, this means learning from each piece. Setting it up to succeed or fail is unfair to the piece and to you. It’s not a useful duality. I look at each piece as a teacher. Every piece has something for me to learn: it could be a new technique, a new way to combine color, a surprising new idea. And so I embrace making art as a spiritual practice letting each piece lead me along both my artistic and personal path. Sometimes if I cannot work on a piece, I realize that instead of fear, I am simply not ready to move forward. I often work on several pieces simultaneously so if something is not working on one, I just move onto another until I’m ready to resume. Often the second or third piece has some wisdom for the first. If you are feeling fear, ask yourself why. Journal about it. Befriend this feeling and get to know why you have it and what’s under it. I think you will find that you are blocking yourself from the full spectrum of life. I invite you into the fray, whether artistic or psychological and embrace the precious lessons that life is ready to lay at your feet. Or hands!